“Tons of Change Thursday”

Tweenie’s Greenies: Thursday Edition

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My family has about 20 million birthdays in the month of November and I am trying to plan ahead for gifts.  Not only that, my lovely frugal group (a smaller group of ladies in my Mom’s group) is talking about saving for Christmas gifts by planning/shopping now.  Gift overload!!  What’s a girl to do? 

Well, we have been giving it some serious thought over here.  We would love to wrap up a big box of love for everyone because that’s what we want to give them, everyday.  That’s what we would love everyone to give our kids too. Isn’t that sweet??  Actually, it’s purely selfish.  Our kids have more than they could possibly ever need.  Our families are always so generous at holidays and birthdays.  I don’t even know what to put on their Christmas lists when they just had their birthdays and received everything under the sun!  Our playroom is bursting with primary colored plastic from the past 4 years of gift receiving.  So, we are going to try and support “alternative gift giving”.  It’s a little greener in that it won’t provide more plastic trinkets that are either covered in lead paint or end up in the trash in a couple years.

Thanks to Green Mommy Thoughts, I found this website for Alternative Gift Giving Ideas for Weddings and Baby Showers.  I LOVE their ideas and the fact that you can still have central registry for people to peruse.  “LOVE IT!” (You must say this in your best Oprah voice to get the full effect.)  Even though this site doesn’t have a registry for kids gifts you can get plenty ideas from their sample lists to modify for children. 

Here are some of my ideas for alternative gifts/green gifts for children:  Playdate Certificates (take the birthday boy or girl out to enjoy some individual attention and to give the parents a little break), gift Certificates to take an exercise or sports class, memberships to museums or other kid friendly “cultural” places, great hand-me-down clothes (Especially anything that can be used for dress up, such as used Halloween costumes.), and money towards a college fund (your green rewards can really double on this one if they go into environmental studies :)). If you want something for the kids to unwrap, buy toys that are eco friendly or made from sustainable resources.  Here’s some ideas of activities and toys for children.  I think that with some creativity and thought, anyone can be more eco-friendly in this area.  You may just end up with a cleaner toy room and a trash can that’s not overflowing with excessive packaging after Christmas day.  That would be a saving grace in more than one way.

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