A little while ago I saw this article via Twitter about a ‘Merry Eco Christmas’ and it prompted me to think about my choices around this time of year. I’ve commented on a few of the points made below:
The first item on the least deals with food waste, something that I don’t think is any worse in our house at Christmas than any other time of year. That’s not to say that we don’t waste food, unfortunately we do, but mainly vegetables that can go into one of our compost bins. At Christmas, with it just being Ashley and myself (and occasionally a friend) eating Christmas dinner, I don’t bother with the traditional Turkey. Even a small one would be far too big for us and I’m quite happy with a good quality chicken on the table. Even so, there’s usually leftovers but a curry, risotto or stir fry usually takes care of that! This year we have our home grown parsnips to roast, but I don’t think our Brussels sprouts have grown enough to produce by Christmas – but you never know! I will try to make the effort to buy some local fresh veg – there are plenty of farm shops around here to choose from. To be honest, I can’t see any mince pies, puddings or cake being wasted around here! Ashley and I have made our own Christmas cake and I have promised myself I will make my own mince pies rather than buying them this year!
A few years ago, I decided to try to use mostly brown paper rather than pretty Christmas themed wrapping paper. I did add little bits of wrapping paper to brighten things up, but mostly it was brown paper. I thought that I was being more ‘eco-friendly’ and maybe I was, but realistically it’s down to the recipients of those presents to bother to recycle it. Our paper recycling bag sits in the corner of the living room each Christmas day to encourage us to put used wrapping paper straight into it.
The point about turning the thermostat down a degree is irrelevant to us! We don’t have our heating on at all as a rule! The wood burner in the living room does a grand job of heating most of the house (it’s only little), and we only put our central heating on if it’s unbearably cold – which is rare in Cornwall, and not generally until late Jan or Feb.
I must admit, I’ve never chosen Christmas cards based on whether they come from recycled sources or not! I usually buy a few at least, even if I’m making the bulk of them, so this year I will try to pay more attention to whether or not the card used is recycled. I always recycle cards that we receive though our normal council recycling.
On a final note, we don’t host a Christmas party or have friends/relatives to stay so no extra waste on disposable party plates etc!
All in all, I don’t think that we do too badly on the points mentioned in the article I read…..
There’s a lot more that I feel we could do; changes to how much we spend on presents and the types of things we buy, how much extra food we buy at Christmas (even though not much goes to waste!) and I’m sure many other things. I’m just not too sure on how prepared I am to make that leap into a much less commercial Christmas! But I must try…