If you are like me, this can be a hard time of year to be a parent. The holidays are wonderful, stressful, cozy, busy, hilarious and so much more, often all at the same time! I want my children to feel celebrated and experience the magic and joy that the holidays promise. And when I think deeply about the gifts I’d like to give my children, now in middle and high school, I want nothing more than to wrap up a future bright with promise and opportunity, unclouded by fears of climate crises, resource struggles, unprovoked violence and discrimination, and other deeply challenging issues of our day. I’d put a big ole bow on it and tuck it under a tree or menorah or even a pillow for my children to receive now and keep forever.
Collectively, we can create that bright and sustainable future, just as we know that we can’t keep consuming resources at the rate our society consumes them and expect our finite planet to be able to produce enough to support that consumption. The great news is that there are a heap of ways to reduce, reuse and recycle our way to holidays that consumption-light, easier on the earth and still full of cheer, celebration and connection to those who are important to us – and bring us closer to giving our children a world that has the systems it needs to be sustainable for the long haul.
Click here for an eco-holiday guide put together by Home ReSource in support of Missoula’s Zero by Fifty sustainability efforts that offers six broad tips and infinite possibility for Zero Waste-ing your holidays and helping build that sustainable future for us all.
Wishing you and your families one of the best holidays ever.
Katie Deuel, mother of Kintla Thomas (7th grade)