Sunday, April 8, 2012

Simple, Little Eco-friendly Easter Tips

So how do you make Easter more Eco-friendly?   By re-using items from previous years of course!!  When my daughter was a toddler, I bought a couple of bags of plastic eggs at the dollar store (I've never seen any at a garage sale or thrift store). 

Plastic Easter Eggs ("hidden" outside)
Since then, we've used and used and used those eggs!   Every year we put age-appropriate items in the eggs and hide them for her.  Rain or shine they hold up - and best of all they don't rot (which is a problem with real eggs...as we found out when I was young and my dad ran over one with the lawnmower a month later - EW!). 

Has she noticed that the eggs are the same every year? Nope.  At this point we're good for at least another year or two before she probably even realizes that the Easter Bunny didn't leave them (oh oh, I'd better make sure she doesn't read this blog!). 

We also re-use the "grass" in the baskets.  In fact, we have quite a bit of "grass" that we've been given by friends and family and we have never had to buy any.  Frankly I can't stand the stuff, but I can't bring myself to toss it out because it really can't be recycled.  So, until I find a different use for it, it will continue to grace her Easter Basket. 

Other items we re-use are: window-clings, figurines, bunny-ear headbands, and banners.   Many of which were also gotten at garage sales or are family heirlooms (recycling at it's best... quality items being handed down through generations).

My daughter's favorite Easter basket and bunny ears
Baskets are another item we re-use.  We have several favorites that we use over and over for Easter (and other gift-giving occasions).  All of my baskets are finds at garage sales (and believe me, there are a LOT of great baskets available at garage sales for GREAT prices!! Thrift stores are another good source for inexpensive baskets.  When buying used baskets, you do want to make sure that they are strongly constructed and don't have any lose or broken parts (unless you are good at repairing them). 

We even look for Easter dresses at thrift stores since fancy dresses are not usually worn more than a few times before they are donated... and we have found some lovely dresses there over the years.

I will admit that the one thing we do buy new is candy.  Each year we get a nice variety of decent-quality chocolates (and they are usually chocolates that her father and I might want to "help" her eat!).   But overall, our financial outlay for Easter and our ecological impact are pretty low. 

The only real issue we have with holiday recycling and re-using items is storage.  I have to admit that storage can be a real challenge... but it's worth it.  Not only do most of the items we use save us money and help out the environment, but most of the items bring a real smile of joy to all of our faces as we bring out beloved items which hold many cherished memories - and that's really what Easter and other family holidays are about - making memories. 


Happy Easter to you and your family!!