It may be the season of giving, but the holidays don’t have to be entirely about gifts. We like to focus on togetherness and shared experiences, since the memories will last so much longer than any gifts!
If you’re looking to start some new traditions this time of year, how about celebrating the Winter Solstice on December 21st? Some years we’ve packed a picnic, or at least a thermos of hot chocolate, and driven out a dirt road to watch the sun set and the stars come out on the shortest day of the year.
The tradition of wandering from door to door singing Christmas Carols began in the Victorian Era, when a collection of carols was published in 1833. It might not be as common as it once was, but it is still a fun group activity that will put a smile on the neighbor’s face.
Decorating cookies with friends and family is one of my favorite holiday traditions. To make it all about the decorating, have each person bring already baked cookies while you provide the frosting, sprinkles, jimmies, red hots and other bits of flare.
If cookies aren’t your thing, why not make gingerbread houses a tradition in your home? Each year you can try and top the previous houses with a unique design or new trimmings.
Hosting an Open House doesn’t have to break the bank or exhaust your resources. Instead of trying to impress with fancy finger foods, buy a couple of cheese platters and some egg nog and let your friends stop by at their convenience. Then the focus can be about togetherness and socializing.
Trimming the tree is a tradition that most of us engage in this time of year, so why not try your hand at DIY ornaments? There are a million amazing ornament ideas to be found, and most of them are easy and cheap. Instead of hanging a bunch of store-bought ornaments, take the time to make a new one each year. If you get your whole family in on it, you have the perfect gift for your neighbors, postman, teacher, etc.
I would love to hear what traditions you and your family have, so please share! Now that our kids are getting older, I’m excited to introduce some new ones!
The most eco-friendly holiday gift is no gift at all, but where’s the fun in that?! If you’re looking to stay green this holiday season, whether that means making your own gifts, up-cycling used presents or buying new gifts that are greener than their counterparts, check out some of our old posts to get those creative juices flowing!
For the health food nut, or someone trying to be more health conscience, a little of this goes a long way stirred into yogurt or added to a smoothie.
I’ve always been a bigger fan of “Reusing” than “Reducing” and “Recycling”. I’m not the only thriftstore bargin hunter and garage-salers at The Green Baby Guide, so I combed through the archives for the best posts on used baby gear.
Are you a dedicated thrift store bargin hunter and garage sale negotiator? Or do you prefer new gear for your baby?
Let’s face it: no kid wants to find raisins instead of candy in their Halloween loot. A toothbrush? Come on! Still, not all of us are comfortable with giving out a bunch of junk food to the neighborhood kids. Are there any kid-approved alternatives, candy or otherwise?
I always thought that packs of stickers were a good choice. There might not be a one-size-fits-all sticker, but you can stock up on choices that appeal to separate age groups and genders. Or just get scratch and sniff stickers, since who doesn’t like those? The bonus is that you can save leftovers for next year, like if you get rolls of Halloween stickers.
Crayons and mini activity books are another non-candy alternative. As a parent, I think these are a great choice! Not only are they sugar-free, but they last longer than a jaw-breaker. A handful of little toys is a similar option.
Annie’s Homegrown Organic Bunny Fruit Snacks Variety Pack (24 ct) are a sweet alternative to candy, and contain no artificial flavors, synthetic colors or preservatives.
This 5 Pound Bag YumEarth Organic Lollipops won’t break the bank and will last all night (contains 325 pops). Free of gluten, high fructose corn syrup, and artificial dyes, they are also allergen free AND kosher!
One option I was hoping to include is a fun-sized chocolate bar. I haven’t come across any chocolate choices that are reasonably priced and don’t contain artificial flavors, besides Lindt LINDOR Assorted Chocolate Truffles. I would love to hear your suggestions!
Do you still give out candy or have you switched to other treats for Halloween?
My favorite part of Halloween has always been making my own costume. Not only do you get to come up with a creative idea, but then you get to scour all the local thrift stores for the perfect materials! The ones you don’t find lurking in your own closet, that is. We’ve posted about DIY Halloween costumes every year, and here are some of the best posts!
I’m not planning too hard this year, since I could very well be in labor, or too big to move. But Franci’s grandma has taken charge of her costume and has been busy gathering materials and sewing accessories.
What DIY costume ideas have been your favorite over the years?