Gransnet forums

Chat

What 'newer' Christmas traditions could be scrapped to help save the planet

(132 Posts)
Beswitched Fri 03-Dec-21 09:43:13

I was just thinking about office Secret Santas, which are a relatively (as in maybe 30 years old or so) new Christmas tradition.

There must be thousands of people every year smiling politely as they unwrap a set of santa themed plastic cocktail glasses or a drinking chocolate making kit, and then putting them straight into the charity shop bag as soon as they get home.

It used to be seen as a bit of harmless fun, but it's hard not to see the waste nowadays I think.

Oopsadaisy1 Fri 03-Dec-21 09:44:34

Anything and everything made of or wrapped in Plastic.

Josianne Fri 03-Dec-21 09:56:13

I agree, that's where these experience type gifts are good because they usually come with no waste. Hopefully they might take the place of the rubbish stuff.

lemongrove Fri 03-Dec-21 10:02:15

Christmas Boxes...given to children on Christmas Eve and stuffed with presents that they don’t need.

Galaxy Fri 03-Dec-21 10:05:21

I think the idea of controlling things like this are nonsense and often people have no idea of the impact on the environment is worse or better. Where is the evidence to show that experience gifts cause less damage to the environment than a candle say.

rafichagran Fri 03-Dec-21 10:08:25

We do a £1.00 present, does not break the bank, and is harmless fun.

eazybee Fri 03-Dec-21 10:08:55

Well, our Secret Santas used to be very amusing, with carefully chosen, appropriate and cheap presents. We were not amused when a senior manager decided of his own volition that we would instead donate to a charity of his choice, (particularly as many of us had already bought our witty, amusing and cheap presents.) and sent an envelope around for the £% donations. He also banned the sending of Christmas cards. Ignored.
You don't like them personally, therefore they must stop, under the pretence of Saving The Planet. Lot of that about at present.

Mollygo Fri 03-Dec-21 10:13:33

I could be a real killjoy and say the endless lights and decorations hanging outside houses, pubs, offices and on trees and the plastic illuminated santas, reindeer etc-all using electricity.
I love to see them-it makes the journey to or from work or the shops a pleasure. Should it be stopped to save the planet?

Sago Fri 03-Dec-21 10:16:53

I was shocked to see Christmas bedding…… do people really have bedding just for the Christmas period?

Witzend Fri 03-Dec-21 10:20:35

Sago

I was shocked to see Christmas bedding…… do people really have bedding just for the Christmas period?

Er, I never imagined I’d do any such thing, but 2 years ago I bought a Father Christmas duvet set for the double bed little Gdcs were sharing (they were staying for Christmas).

I dug it out again last weekend, since they were here for 2 nights.

Beswitched Fri 03-Dec-21 10:23:13

Mollygo

I could be a real killjoy and say the endless lights and decorations hanging outside houses, pubs, offices and on trees and the plastic illuminated santas, reindeer etc-all using electricity.
I love to see them-it makes the journey to or from work or the shops a pleasure. Should it be stopped to save the planet?

Well it depends on how seriously we are taking the destruction of our natural resources and the planet we're going to hand on to our grandchildren and great grandchildren.
Like I said I used to enjoy the Secret Santa as a bit of harmless fun, but it's hard to look at all the newer traditions without wondering about the cost of Christmas every year to our planet.

Boz Fri 03-Dec-21 10:34:12

You can do your small bit. Buy reuseable gift bags instead of wrapping paper - especially the foil stuff which cannot be recycled. I have bought twelve gold tote bags that can also be used for gifts throughout the year. See Amazon!

Cabbie21 Fri 03-Dec-21 10:38:18

I don’t understand some people’s need to buy completely new decorations each year, according to supposed fashions in colour, theme etc. Total waste.

Witzend Fri 03-Dec-21 10:40:30

I used to have a neighbour who did this, Cabbie21. Always a big tree, too.
She once asked me what colour Christmas tree we were having that year.
Er, green?

MerylStreep Fri 03-Dec-21 10:43:32

We are never going to win the war on plastic crap. I have some ideas but I only share them with friends 😉
But, I’ve been thinking for some time if nature will adapt, well it looks as if it is.

www.nbcnews.com/science/environment/great-pacific-garbage-patch-scientists-find-surprise-coastal-life-rcna7292

Beswitched Fri 03-Dec-21 10:51:05

Cabbie21

I don’t understand some people’s need to buy completely new decorations each year, according to supposed fashions in colour, theme etc. Total waste.

Yes I find this a bit dispiriting. Not only is it wasteful but as children I remember the excitement of seeing the same decorations coming out every year. We still have some of them and they're a lovely link to the past.

Beswitched Fri 03-Dec-21 10:59:50

eazybee

Well, our Secret Santas used to be very amusing, with carefully chosen, appropriate and cheap presents. We were not amused when a senior manager decided of his own volition that we would instead donate to a charity of his choice, (particularly as many of us had already bought our witty, amusing and cheap presents.) and sent an envelope around for the £% donations. He also banned the sending of Christmas cards. Ignored.
You don't like them personally, therefore they must stop, under the pretence of Saving The Planet. Lot of that about at present.

Do you mean he banned the sending of corporate Christmas cards, or he banned colleague from sending cards to each other. How on earth could he enforce the latter?

Urmstongran Fri 03-Dec-21 11:04:42

Our daughter brings out the Christmas themed bedding, towels and buys new Christmas pyjamas for our grandchildren. Why not? Special bedtime cosiness for December, the children love it. They only outgrow the pyjamas, the rest gets vacuum packed away till next year. I don’t see any harm.

Galaxy Fri 03-Dec-21 11:30:08

That's because there isnt, its frequently people using the environment because they dont like people doing things differently to them.
I watched a group of children finding the elf this week, after a pretty awful year for them, their delight and excitement was joyous. There was plastic involved.

theworriedwell Fri 03-Dec-21 11:35:49

Where I used to work we stopped sending Christmas cards. We had a big Christmas poster on the wall and you made a donation to put your message up. Win win I thought.

1. Not writing loads of cards (I hate that chore)
2. Saved all that wasted paper and card
3. No one felt left out e.g. one staff member getting a pile of cards and someone else forgotten.
4. Hefty donation going to a charity we all agreed on.

Obviously if you were close to someone you could still send a card but it stopped the feeling of having to write cards to x y and z.

Septimia Fri 03-Dec-21 11:36:23

We could probably manage very well without any of those items of 'expensive tat' that are advertised in Christmas catalogues (do away with those, too) or on television (like all those perfumes).

We could also do without a lot of the things that aren't actually useful or usable.

theworriedwell Fri 03-Dec-21 11:39:52

Cabbie21

I don’t understand some people’s need to buy completely new decorations each year, according to supposed fashions in colour, theme etc. Total waste.

We've got my DH's Christmas angel on the top of the tree. She is at least 70 years old and to be honest not particularly glamorous but it means something to him.

All the tree decorations are old, most probably 20 years old but one or two that are 10 years old.

We have a little china nativity scene that is about 25 years old.

I don't understand the need for new ones either.

theworriedwell Fri 03-Dec-21 11:42:42

Beswitched

Cabbie21

I don’t understand some people’s need to buy completely new decorations each year, according to supposed fashions in colour, theme etc. Total waste.

Yes I find this a bit dispiriting. Not only is it wasteful but as children I remember the excitement of seeing the same decorations coming out every year. We still have some of them and they're a lovely link to the past.

Reminds me of GS who lives with me. I bought a wooden advent calendar for his first Christmas. He was so excited when it came out again and said he wants to always have it, he wants it to be at my house and when I'm no longer here he says it will be something special to remember me as it is one constant thing in his life and he has had quite a disrupted childhood.

One of those, "I got something right" moments.

Beswitched Fri 03-Dec-21 11:50:50

Galaxy

That's because there isnt, its frequently people using the environment because they dont like people doing things differently to them.
I watched a group of children finding the elf this week, after a pretty awful year for them, their delight and excitement was joyous. There was plastic involved.

I don't think that generally true. Lots of people are changing their behaviour to help save the planet. There may be the odd person who'uses the environment' to object to something they just don't like.
But there are also lots of people just look at some of our behaviour with new eyes.
I used to happily take part in and even sometimes organise Secret Santas for varioud groups. But in recent years, seeing the amount of useless and unwanted stuff being received, and often not even brought home from work or the pub, I began to see it as needless waste at a time when we're trying to save the planet.

Tizliz Fri 03-Dec-21 12:42:19

Balloons. Apart from the fact that I hate balloons, why is it suddenly fashionable to have decorative balloon arches? You can’t reuse them. How long do they last? Not recyclable, and dangerous to animals if they fly away. Anyone else here hate balloons touching them? Or am I strange?