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The Green Mama Blog

  • Greening Tips for the 4th of July

    Greening Your Red, White, and Blue Fireworks are arguably the best part of July 4th. No matter how old you get, they’re always fascinating to watch. Cookouts and seeing friends and family are also awesome. But how eco-friendly are 4th of July celebrations, really? Here’s how to put some more green in your red, white…
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  • Last minute holiday shopping: A green, ethical, and fun guide

    The Green Mama gives a few tips for shopping green, ethical, and last-minute

    No worries, I am not one to lecture about leaving shopping to the last minute. I am pretty sure it is the only shopping my family ever does. It seems to be made worse by my family’s disdain of typical consumerism. Yet, to handmake all the gifts I so desperately want to bestow on the teachers, friends, family, and many other loved ones I know, I would have needed to start months ago. And, I didn’t.

  • Six Tips for Adding Meaning (& Reducing Stuff) This Winter Holiday

    Six tips for getting more meaning (& less stuff) into your winter holiday whether you celebrate Hannukah, Christmas, Solstice, or something (or nothing) else 1. Have a conversation with your partner and older children about the traditions and values that resonate most and that you want to celebrate and strengthen. Similarly, discuss what you don’t…
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  • How to Create Magic In Your Holidays

    How to create more magic in your holidays, regardless of what you believe You don’t have to believe in magic yourself to create magic. But, if you would like to know WHY it is so important that children believe in magic, I encourage you to read the Green Mama article on it. In the article…
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  • How to Choose the Greenest Christmas Tree

    Greening your Christmas Tree If you want to go even greener with your Christmas Tree purchase, there are a variety of other options available to you. 1. Buy  a live, potted tree. My family has done this for years. Most pine trees can live for many years in a pot or you can replant the…
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  • How to Celebrate Advent

    How to Celebrate Advent Simply, no matter what your faith This is not really a “How To” in any sort of prescriptive way. I like the simplicity of that title. Advent is defined as the four Sundays that lead up to Christmas. Yet, in my family, where we celebrate Hannukah, Christmas, and the big event…
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  • Why to Lie to Your Kids About Santa, Fairies & Magic

    The importance of teaching your children how to believe in magic “Magic is important for kids,” says Dr. Faith Cohen, licensed psychologist. It’s not what you expect to hear from a child clinical psychologist with a specialty in trauma. She sees some dark stuff: sexual abuse, rape, and all kinds of addiction. Yet, she says,…
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  • How & Why to do a Winter Spiral

    The Winter Spiral aka the Advent Spiral is a beautiful tradition that can grace the season of any family, no matter what the belief system. I have been exposed to Advent Spirals from two sources. One, through Waldorf, where every year my children, and sometimes I, have walked into and back out of a double…
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  • Real vs Plastic Christmas Tree?

    Dear Nari, The VERY short answer is a real tree. Hands down. The plastic is so detrimental and not actually recyclable and detrimental to your indoor air quality. Read more about WHY on a blog I did about it: How to Choose the Greenest Christmas Tree. There are services now where you RENT a live…
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  • Paper garlands

    1, 2, 3…. beautiful paper garlands By Vanessa Zises Filley

  • How to Really Green A Kid’s Birthday Party

    Doing less may actually do more for children’s celebrations

    My own child was still a baby when I got invited to the birthday of the little neighbour girl turning six. Until that day, I hadn’t thought much about this new generation of birthday parties. Like most parents, I didn’t go to kids’ birthday parties until I had kids. When I was little birthday parties were simple affairs: my brother, sister, and myself eating a cake that my mom made, with one present to open afterwards.

  • A Greener Planet 101: will you help or hinder?

    Go Green in Four Easy Steps

    With the “springing” of Spring and all of its holidays: Earth Day, Mother’s Day, birthdays galore, and this year an election, I found this post by Green Mama contributor and yogi, Insiya Rasiwala-Finn to be well suited to the time. (Have you signed up to get the weekly Green Mama post delivered to your inbox door?)

  • The Thirteen Most Effective Habits for Greening 2013

    In 2013 Everyday Can Be Earthday

    For the last few years, green has been the fastest growing trend in food, buildings, and businesses. Consumers are smarter, and more demanding, than ever and the organizations that are thriving are those that are taking sustainability as part of what is essential. There are 13 habits that will guarantee that your lifestyle is more sustainable this year. Get good at them and you will save resources, money, and your health AND you will have fun in the process.

  • Greening Christmas (Hanukkah or any other Holiday)

    ‘Tis the season.  The lights of Hanukkah will soon fade into the past and the lights of Christmas are on the horizon. Parents everywhere are thinking about gifts. It is one of the questions I am most asked: “How do I green celebrations?” The winter holidays are a test for most of us: wanting to please our children, wanting to have more money, wanting less stuff, wanting to please our relatives.

  • Notes from Vancouver: Earth Hour just in the attitude?

    The results are in: Earth Hour was a success—mostly. As I have already mentioned, our family has been walking around gloating about our 85% reduction during Earth Hour.  (We know this because we are taking part in a real-time energy-use monitoring pilot with Pulse Energy.)

  • Out-conserving the neighbors: what Earth Hour is really about.

    In our family this year, we are celebrating Earth Hour by monitoring our energy use.  Hooray!??  (Earth Hour is celebrated around the world on Saturday March 27, 2010 at 8:00 p.m. in whichever time zone you reside. You can participate by simply turning off your lights—or unplugging the computer and TV—for that hour.)

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

  • A Greener Mother's Day

    My child will wake up from her nap in a moment and my good intentions to write my Mother’s Day blog will become yet more ominously close to NOT happening (at least until after the actual day).

  • How do you really celebrate Earth Day?

    Today, Earth Day turns 38. (Not the Earth, but the day itself). One of my favorite parenting websites (okay, this website is like a frenemy — love to hate it and hate to love it.) Anyway, they didn’t even mention Earthday on their daily email, they mentioned the new really expensive stroller I should buy.