Monday, December 19, 2011

Last Minute Holiday Gift Ideas From Clean Ocean Action's Staff

With the holidays closing in, Clean Ocean Action is sharing a few ocean-friendly ideas for your loved ones this year.  Enjoying the holidays with friends and family is made that much better knowing it is done in an environmentally responsible way!

Cut Back on Plastic Wherever Possible! 
When choosing toys, games, gifts, etc, pick the ones with the least packaging, choose to wrap the gifts yourself (with re-used newspaper from your recycle bin!), and re-use those giant bags stores give you as garbage bags or food shopping bags (not in that order).  Plastic takes several hundred years to degrade – and in the meanwhile it’s choking our oceans, our marine life, and our beaches!

Gift Idea: Reusable Coffee Mugs/Water Bottles
Sometimes explaining to your friends and family why they should have re-usable coffee mugs and water bottles isn't enough.  This Christmas you can take the extra step and get one for them!  People may not realize how many plastic water bottles and Styrofoam coffee mugs are used every day.  Often, after that one-time use, that plastic and Styrofoam end up as ocean pollution.  Your friends and family will feel better knowing that their daily trip to the coffee shop won't cause harm to the ocean!  Check out COA's re-usable bottles here.

Have a Party for your Friends and Family!
Gifts are great, but so is a pot-luck dinner.  Making special meals for your loved ones is a treat not to be missed! Make it even more meaningful by having a donation-raffle: pass around a basket to collect donations, have everyone write down their favorite non-profit organization and drop them in another basket, hat or stocking; shake, stir, mix up the names, and then have someone select one (or two) as the "winning" organization.  In the holiday spirit, any size gift matters!

Stories, not Stuff!
Reduce the accumulation of useless material objects by giving a gift of experience.  There are plenty of waste-free options for holiday gifts. Gift certificates, tickets for sports games and shows, music lessons, and travel adventures will always be welcome and come without all that gift-wrap. You can also think outside of the box and create a personalized booklet with coupons for getting out of chores, eating out, or staying up late.

Happy Holidays!!

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