Rent a live tree, or buy one that can be planted in your backyard.
Send electronic greetings, party invitations, and annual newsletters. For a large selection of e-cards and e-stationery, try iomoi.com.
Resist the urge to buy plastic ribbon and seasonal accessories. Instead, choose reusable decorations and vintage ornaments, and find new uses for everyday objects. For example, invert Champagne flutes or cocktail glasses to serve as bases for pillar candles (decorate the stems with colorful ribbon).
Compost scraps and be mindful of the quantity of food you cook. Making too much wastes money and resources. Donate the cash you save to a local food bank; visit FeedingAmerica.org for locations.
For parties, forgo paper goods or tableware, and designate one cloth napkin, plate, and glass per person. This cuts down on the trash from disposables and the water required for dishwashing. Use neatly pressed fabric remnants from sewing projects for soft or hard-to-wrap objects. Cut, fold, and punch holes into pages from old calendars or prints to make gift tags.
-By: Jess Chamberlain, Sunset