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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in Christmas
4 Easy Ways to Go Green This Holiday Season

Loving family gatherings and joyful gift giving are two reasons this is the most wonderful time of the year. For the environment, however, Thanksgiving through New Year’s isn’t as merry. Stores are flooded with cheap disposable toys, decorations and extra holiday embellishments often made with questionable materials. According to a review by Stanford University, Americans produce 25% more waste during this time, equating to about 7 million pounds of trash. In addition, the energy bill for an average family home increases almost $60 per month due to festive displays. Here are four simple tips for a greener holiday season.

1. Energy Saving

Reduce energy usage by using fewer decorative lights and animatronic ornaments as well as swapping incandescent bulbs for LEDs. Switching to LED bulbs and string lights uses an average of 75% less energy, while lasting about 25 times longer than incandescent lights. In addition to using more energy efficient bulbs, turn lights off during the day, when you’re not home and when you go to bed.

2. Eco-Friendly Gifts

It’s tempting to buy the trendiest toys and stock up on cute discount store finds, but these can often contain a mix of potentially toxic chemicals such as phthalates, flame retardants, bisphenol A and even lead. Instead, create your own gifts by baking, drawing, building or sewing or purchase gifts made with sustainable materials and natural ingredients. Also, consider presenting your loved ones with a relaxing spa day experience at home. Giving more meaningful gifts free from dangerous additives but packed full of your affections is not only better for the environment but will be remembered by the recipient long after the holiday has ended.

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Posted by on in News & Special Articles
4 Steps to a Stress Free Holiday

It’s the time of year for celebration, gratitude and worship. Traveling, partying and shopping are the top three activities during the holiday season, and each of these affairs alone trigger some level of stress. Ease some of the seasonal pressure by following these four tips.

Plan & Prioritize

In all my attempts to plan ahead for our annual Thanksgiving gathering, there’s always a detail I missed. Has this happened to you too? Whether you’re hosting a formal affair or casual get-together, preparing ahead of time will reduce last minute stressors such as multiple trips to the store and frantic cleaning. Prioritize your tasks: must-be-done and would-love-to-do. Don’t pressure yourself to present a Martha Stewart-worthy soirée if this isn’t one of your strengths (it’s not mine); instead put the focus on where you excel so you can mingle and enjoy time with your guests.

A few tasks to consider completing a week or two leading up to your event:

  • Kitchen prep – are you cooking or catering? Can any portion of the food and drinks be prepared and frozen or made a few days ahead? If not, complete your slicing and dicing the day before.
  • Cleaning – it’s much easier to vacuum and wipe down counters the morning of your event than to try to clean your house from top to bottom.
  • Shopping – food, decorations or gifts, you won’t want to wait until and be stuck in long lines and crowded stores.

Quick, Healthy Recipes

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