This year I had my heart set on a little potted fir tree, thinking I could keep it alive ever after in the yard. Thus solving the environmentalist's condundrum of whether a live tree that is chopped down and thrown out is better than a fake tree made out of plastic but used year after year. However, I was disappointed that the tree vendors at the farmers market near me are only selling cut trees. I've seen some potted trees for sale at the usual sidewalk setups, but I'd rather not support them since they probably use pesticides and probably racked up carbon miles by bringing the trees from Canada.
So no tree it is. But over the past few days I've created a warm holiday feel in the apartment through other decorations, incorporating reusable or recycled materials.
* A fake evergreen garland and ornaments bought on sale years ago. Easy to store in a small apartment and we bring them out every year. The lights were donated by my parents - I think it was an extra string they had lying around. Unfortunately I don't think they are LED lights, so I am trying to remember to turn off some of our regular lamps to plug in these lights instead during the few hours each evening I am home.
* I was excited to hang stockings from my new mantel, until I realized they would be within reach of the puppy's grasp and possibly shredded within a day. So I hung them from the window instead with the garland, which looks great.
The stockings are from etsy seller The Little Green Bean, who makes stockings out of recycled coffeebean bags and old sweaters, and I just saw she has a whole bunch of other cute holiday things for sale. I'm excited to exchange little stocking gifts the night before Christmas eve, before heading to my parents' house for the holidays! Possibly with champagne (or maybe hot chocolate and peppermint schnapps) and cookies? Can I make this a new tradition?
* Inspired by hanging stars made from kraft paper at bigBANG studio's Thanksgiving, I cut stars out of cardboard boxes leftover from a birthday gift. I jazzed them up with some gold paint I found sitting in my craft drawer and then strung them up with yarn, fishing wire, and tape .
* I have a tradition of hanging paper snowflakes and leaving them up all winter for continual cheer. I thought I saved last years's to rehang, but I couldn't find them, so I cut this year's out of repurposed white wrapping paper (as I've said before, collecting bags and gift wrap in my craft drawer is oh so handy). Click here for a basic how-to on paper snowflakes - from there I like to just use my imagination to cut out designs!
Tell me about your decorations this year. Did you get a tree? Are you making any fun crafts? Are you trying to incorporate sustainable materials? Here are a few more ideas from other bloggers to spark your decorating:
* LifeUnscripted's Old Fashioned Tree Garland
* EcoYogini's Green Holiday Decorating Complete with Eco-Recon
* Green Phone Booth's I'm Dreaming of a Green Christmas