I recently joined the “Green Team” at work. We try to come up with good viable ideas that are kind to the environment. There is so much you can do to be kinder to the planet. One of the things I suggested was a “greener” Christmas. When most people are thinking of a white Christmas I thought this was a clever idea.


Most shopaholics (me included) love to go shopping for bargains the day after Christmas and we love to buy gift wrap and cards to use next year. When the holiday rolls around somehow the rolls of paper are nowhere to be found. While I was doing a little cleaning in my guest room I discovered that I have more than enough wrapping paper for every occasion. My green commitment for this holiday season is not to buy any wrapping paper until I use what I have on hand.


I may have to get a little creative with my gift wrapping but it will be fun. You can even use newspaper and magazine pages for gift wrap. Tie it with a beautiful bow and your gift will stand out. If you have a digital camera full of pictures of friends and family have them developed or give them a digital frame so they can finally see those pictures.

I was talking to a friend about gifts and I told them that it would be fun to make cookies in the shape of shoes and wrap them in a shoebox. Remember you saw that idea here first. I’m heading to the store now to look for that shoe shaped cookie cutter. The fun part will be shopping green.

I think I’ll do most of my shopping in my favorite thrift stores and consignment shops. I’ll get started early for the best selection. Make sure to stop by Half Price Books. They have a wonderful selection of coffee table books, a wide variety of music and DVDs at a reduced price. Don’t forget eBay. You can shop right from your computer, the gift shows up on your doorstep and the possibilities are endless.

As far as holiday decorations, I won’t purchase any thing new to decorate with until all of the decorations that I have on hand have been placed. If it’s anything like last year I should have a lot of things left over. That reserve might end up on eBay or it will get packed up and sent to the Goodwill.

All of a sudden I’m tired of excess. This might be due to too many episodes of “Clean House.” I’m not saying that I plan on becoming a minimalist, I’m just tired of stuff. The more I think about it, could going green be part of the reason stores are closing? The public is starting to consciously reuse and re-cycle.

Has this shift in the economy brought people to their senses? If you are doing gifts this year why not tickets to an upcoming show or concert? A gift card to someone’s favorite restaurant is always in good taste or a certificate for a massage.

Some days I find more pleasure in keeping my money in my wallet than spending it. Wow, where did that come from? I still love to shop but having money is just as cool.

(E-mail the columnist at debbienorrell@aol.com.)

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