Some posts here on ARoseTintedWorld may contain affiliate links. This means that if you click a link and buy a product or register, then I may receive a commission at no extra cost to you. I may also use products from the companies mentioned in these posts. Thank you for supporting my blog!
A few weeks ago I did a whole series on Lagom. This is the Swedish word for living a life in balance. Not too little, and not too much, but just enough. It means that we are more mindful of what we are using, and encourages us to recycle and be more sustainable. So in the long term it saves us money, and perhaps the planet. Who doesn’t want to do those? So this year, why not have a Merry Lagom Christmas?
Merry Lagom Christmas
The mainstay of a Lagom lifestyle is to reuse, recycle and reduce how much we are using. To me the Christmas holiday is all about getting together and enjoying some quality time with the family. But it is also an increasingly commercial affair, and to children this means a load of new toys. And a lot of plastic. We throw an awful lot away over the holidays, from the wrapping paper to the toy boxes. So what can we do to make Christmas a less throwaway affair?
Maybe the most ecologically sound thing is to not give Christmas cards. But I do like cards, and they do arrive each year.
When I was younger we used to turn some of our cards into tags for the following year using pinking shears and string.
You could also reuse some of the best bits from your cards in making new handmade ones of your own to send. But I’ve found another decorative way to reuse old cards.
A Card Garland is easy to make by
- drawing circles around a glass on the fronts of the card,
- cutting out and sticking them together in pairs (I used a glue stick)
- sewing them on a sewing machine.
- Start with a really long length of thread before you sew.
- Sew the first pair of circles through the middle.
- As you reach the edge of one pair of circles, add the next pair.
- Leave a long length of thread at the end.
Make these as long as you need.
One of the best ways of recycling decorations is to have a tree that you can replant in the garden and reuse year in year out. Make sure to keep it watered and moist whilst indoors though.
However, for those of us that don’t have gardens, myself included, you may need to buy a fake tree or a new real tree each year.
If you do get a real tree, a lot of councils and other people advertise the service to come round afterwards to pick up and dispose of your tree in an ecologically sound way.
But one of the most Lagom ways of decorating is to get foliage, branches and flowers from the garden to decorate. You can use any extra branches that you don’t need from your real tree, plus holly, ivy and other seasonal plants from outdoors to decorate your mantle and hearth. Plus to make table centrepieces.
Christmas Wrapping Paper
You may not realise, but a fair amount of the wrapping paper that we send in our green bin cannot be recycled at all. Especially if it has plastic surfaces, metallic or glitter finishes. These end up in landfill.
So a better idea, and one of the best and most recyclable wrappings is plain brown paper. You can spend some time applying utensils, or use pretty string. Make it more personal.
Why not reuse old paper and bags, keeping them to one side for reuse next year? I do save old bags, and just add a new tag these days. It seems so wasteful to just throw them away.
Lastly, why not make fabric bags from Christmas fabric, with appliquéd names on them? These can be used year in and year out.
And while we are on the subject of presents, do we really need to buy so much this year? How much of it do we actually need?
Yes it is lovely to give and receive gifts, but maybe we need to stop just giving for the sake of it. Isn’t it a better idea just to give meaningful gifts?
How about setting a budget if frugality is the main aim? Giving memories rather than ‘things’? My favourite idea is to give ‘vouchers’ such as an offer to babysit, or do somebody’s nails. Giving your time is a much better present. Make a present. Give a cake that you have made. Or even a rag rug!
As to all the plastic toys that the children want? Well, there is always going to be the latest thing. But why not regift some of the old toys to children who are in need? Or give them to friends with younger children. Or sell them on eBay to make way for the new stock. It’s much better for the planet to buy second hand.
A Merry Lagom Christmas is not about me telling you how to life your life. I do realise that we are all strapped for time, and sometimes we have to spend money to save time. But you can save a lot of money, and make Christmas so much more personal by spending a little time and turning slightly away from the mass made market.
I hope you like some of my ideas for a Merry Lagom Christmas. Are there any that you would use? Do comment below. If you really like this post, why not share it?
Enjoyed reading this? Why not read more about how to Lagom your life? In Lagom Your Life. The Kitchen