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Sunday, December 6, 2009

I'm Dreaming of a Green Christmas


By Dana D, Charlotte Smarty Pants

Wow! I can’t believe the holidays are here already. I have been making my list and checking it twice….so here are my suggestions for 2009 in making your gift giving a little more green this year. Remember finding ways to reuse and recycle items as gifts are a great way to reduce our footprints and a great way to survive the holidays during today’s economy.

Now if you are going to spend some green, here are some fabulous gift ideas that will make you feel good about how you have spent your money.

For that special someone:

Breathe Organic Massage
Who doesn’t need a little pampering around the holidays? The holidays are great but often bring on a little chaos and stress. Let Jonathon take care of you! This is a great gift for yourself or anyone for that matter.

Organica Deluxe
These local gals have quite the following! Even Entourage cast members are commenting on their packaging. If you need a gift, that make s a statement then this is where you go. There is a range of organic products to choose from ranging from cookies to home goods. All packaged in a beautiful turquoise box.

Paddywax soy candles
Yummy candles and the company plants a tree for every candle sold. I think everyone would welcome one of these as a gift.

Dogeared jewelry roll
For the frequent traveler or those who just like to travel in style. Keep your new jewelry in this organic carrier when on the road.

Kindle
For the avid reader, this is the perfect gift. Read your books on this gadget and you will be saving millions of trees. This is so easy to take on vacation or just around town.

For the greenie:

Baggu by Emily Sugihara
This young entrepeneur has a reusable bag that is chic and affordable. Always a great gift.

Ikea Sunnan solar cell powered work lamp - $20
Perfect for that someone who landed the office or the cube by the window….

For the Martha Stewart in your family:

Bamboo utensils – head to Earth Fare or Crate and Barrel. Again, these are now widely available so you can find them at many places. If shopping online is your thing then try www.nestorganics.com. This store in Asheville is filled with goodies for everyone!

Eco friendly cookware- choose cast iron. Yes, Teflon is bad for you especially at high heat cooking. Stainless steel and good ole cast iron are much better choices.

Organic towels and linens- you can find these almost anywhere these days at affordable prices. Check out Pottery Barn, Gaiam and even Target. Remember that cotton is the worst offender of pesticide use.

Green crafter book
One project a week for the whole year to make use of what you have lying around the house. This is a wonderful gift for the Martha Stewart in your family.


For kids and the young at heart:

Solar flashlight - $19.95
Charge lasts up to 8 hours, waterproof and choose your colors. My boys love running around the house and yard with flashlights. Now they can have their own minus the batteries! Yeah! This is great now that it gets dark early in the evening now. Perfect for camping as well.

Plan Toys Green Dollhouse
Okay, this is super cool! This dollhouse comes with solar panels, wind energy generators and recycling bins. There are several other green accessories you can buy as well. I am tempted to buy this for my boys:)

Recycle Kyle Green Doll
Great doll sending a perfect message to your kiddos. Made of organic materials. Fantastic alternative to the toxic dolls of the past.

Sprig Toys
You can find these awesome toys at Pottery Barn Kids and even Toys R Us. These are a sure hit. They are eco-friendly toys, kid operated (no batteries- whoohoo!) and paint free! They have the Adventure series, the Sprig Hollow, Eco Trucks and the Story Builders.

Kettler Go Green Trike
Made from recycled steel and plastic. For ages 18 months and older. Love this idea and it’s much less expensive than the other Kettler trikes.

Green Toys dump truck and tea set for ages 3 and up
Green Toys is a great company that has a limited but fab line of products. Go check it out. Your kids will enjoy it and you can feel good that the toys are made from recycled milk jugs and are BPA/phthalate free. If you get plastic toys this is the way to go!

Green Toys Jump Rope
Get the kids jumping with this cool rope.


Jayden Earth Doll
This is a spectacular heirloom quality rag doll. Its hair is made from cotton, skin made from hemp and stuffing made from recycled plastic containers. Each doll comes with a backpack and inside is a Hope Tree (Douglas Fir) to be planted by child. Now that is one awesome doll!

Plan City by Plan Toys for age 3-8.
This is a very cool set up that the kids are sure to enjoy. High quality, nontoxic wood pieces dyed with soy inks. There are road, garages, you name it….exactly what you would find in a city. Remember, any toy from Plan Toys is a hit in my book. I haven’t found one I didn’t like yet. Check out Toys and Co. (in Greensboro) for a great selection.

Element Blocks
Inspired by the earth’s elements (rainbow, water, stone, fire).
Made in Germany from solid alderwood and colored with natural dyes. This is a fun change from your basic block sets.

Check out Magic Cabin for the following eco friendly items:

E- Racer for ages 2 and up- these are cool cars made from eco friendly materials. My boys have these and they are a hit.

Automoblox – Again, my boys really enjoy these although they do take apart the wheels which drives me crazy since I am always looking for the parts. You can find these at Play and Learn in Southpark Mall.

Terra Cids Camping Lanterns for ages 6 and up. Powered by a built in generator, wind the crank- no batteries. $34.98

Recycled Tire Horse Swing for ages 5 and up – Made of recycled tires with a hemp mane
This will soon be replacing our current swing. Don’t you remember the old tires swings we used to have as kids? Even cooler.

Wooden stencils kit- a fun alternative to their usual day of coloring.

Sea scope for ages 6 and up - can be used as a land scope or underwater with and under water flashlight

Earth Monopoly
A cool board game for the family! For ages 8 to adult. Packaged in recyclable materials.

Playsilks
I love everything on this site and you have probably heard me talk about Palumba before. I especially like the playsilks, capes and skirts. You will find great things to foster creativity and imaginative play.

Stubby Pencil Studio
For all your eco friendly art supplies and much more. Get the Holiday scented Smencils. Cinnamon, Sugar Plum, Candy Cane, Gingerbread and Sugar cookie. Don’t forget to stock up on your crayon rocks and Lyra Beeswax crayons

Barefoot Books
These are beautifully crafted books with fun and important messages. They are all about exploring other cultures, the planet and ourselves.

For the Product Junkies:

Jurlique gift set
You cannot go wrong here. One of my all time faves! High quality line of organic skin care.

Organic pajamas
These are the ultimate comfy and good for you pajamas. You can sleep tight knowing you are surrounded in all natural goodness. No pesticides here. They have kids sizes as well.

Organic cottonrobe
Again, what better way to keep yourself warm and fuzzy than in this fabulous robe.

For the Gardeners:

Seracon Flowers and Trees
Every day is Earth Day here at Seracon. They have cool mini trees for stocking stuffers only at $6. There are plenty of other earthy gifts that will not disappoint like soaps, candles, herbs, flowers and reed diffusers.

I hope that helps point you in the right direction! There are so many green options out there these days that you should be able to find something! Remember it’s always a great idea to contribute to a charitable organization during the holidays. Please comment or question and Happy Holidays!!

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2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Excellent ideas! Very cute gifts. Thanks!

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