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Monday, December 17, 2007

My anti-wrapping paper campaign

This started as a diatribe against wrapping paper. I hate the stuff. It is the biggest waste of time, money, and natural resources around. It seems to me to represent all that is wrong with current holiday thinking. How on earth did the celebration of a saviors' birth turn from a religious holiday to all-out consumerism carnage? How did spreading a little holiday cheer become an excuse to destroy the earth?

Well, anyway, I refuse to buy any more wrapping paper. Several years ago I started collecting gift bags after everyone was done digging through them. At least they get a few more runs before they ultimately wind up in the land fill. This year I found a large container of very nice fabric literally by the side of the road. (It turns out a woman was emptying out her mother's house in preparation for selling it, and I found several useful if not beautiful objects in that stash.) Some of the fabric has a holiday pattern to it. Guess what I will be wrapping gifts in this year! There were also quite a few large white pieces of pretty good quality. These turned out to be some very nice paint-stamp art projects. (see pictures) What a nice way to have re-usable gift wrap material!

We have also done paint-stamp paper made from paper bags, and finger paint paper from paper bags. Now I am wrapping presents in the paper and using, instead of bows, all those bazilion Christmas cards that get sent to me every year in the hopes of securing a donation for something or other. The cards make very nice decorations/gift tags/greeting cards all-in-one. I will save the bag paper after the presents are opened. If it's not fit to re-use, it can go in the garden to keep weeds at bay.

I'm trying to save a little wear & tear on the earth by the presents I choose, too. We are doing some home-made and some kitchen gifts. I snagged a gift for my Mom at a garage sale this summer, and a few for my kiddo, too. One of kiddo's main gifts is going to come from e-bay. I have my eye on it right now.

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