What if we showed love to the Earth by having a more sustainable Valentine’s Day?
Valentine’s Day is kind of a big deal. We want to shower those we love and ourselves with tokens of appreciation, but that doesn’t have to mean that we have to act like we hate the Earth in the process. Personally, we can’t stop the overproduction of Valentine’s Day paraphernalia and junk that ends up at discount stores or in a dump, but if we collectively demand LESS STUFF, the supply will lesson, and we can have a more sustainable Valentine’s Day. Here are some tips that help me to be mindful and show love to the Earth on this holiday all about LOVE.
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Less Consumerism to Celebrate Valentine’s Day
Simply put, don’t buy things you don’t need for a holiday. While shopping at the thrift store, I saw shelves and shelves lined with stuffed animals with Valentine’s Day themes. Since I don’t feel that I could ever thoroughly clean a stuffed animal, that is one of my “no buy” thrift items. I wonder if many of those animals will be purchased. If not, I imagine they’ll just be trashed. Then I think about all of the new stuffed animals at box stores across the U.S. The number is likely astronomical! We can make choices to not support this type of overproduction by refusing to buy little trinkets that will contribute to massive amounts of waste.
Recycled Crafts, Thrifted Gifts, and More
Speaking of thrift stores, they are a great place to buy gifts that people actually need. Clothes and cleanable toys for kids, art and unique clothes for adult friends and family, and specific gifts for your loved ones. Has your boo been searching for a wall clock or golf clubs? I bet you can find them second hand – either at the thrift store or online marketplaces.
Read this: 25 Reasons Why You Should Shop Second Hand
If you like to make things by hand, upcycling items is a unique and personalized way to create and give gifts. Even if you feel like you aren’t creative, this would be a great time to practice your creative talents.
Another option is to not exchange physical gifts at all. You could also gift experiences and make memories together, instead.
In case you want a physical gift, here are some long-lasting and sustainable Valentine’s Day gift ideas:
- Plants, instead of flowers, such as any of these African houseplants or plants from my Houseplant Tour
- Fair Trade gifts, such as those on this Fair Trade Gift Guide
- Buy unique gifts from small businesses, which I really love! Small business owners really do a happy dance when you purchase from them
- Fair Trade Chocolates, because even the cocoa industry is rife with inhumane production practices – Divine Chocolates are my favorite
Meat Free Valentine’s Day Meal Ideas
I’m determined to have more meat free meals this year, and that includes holidays. It seems like holidays are the hardest to stop cooking eating meat, though, because it is tradition. Even if I don’t eat meat, I prepare it for others. Valentine’s Day isn’t one of our big holiday celebrations, so I figured it would be easy to start making holidays meat free on a holiday that we don’t normally go all out for. Here are some easy meat free (and homemade, so socially distanced) Valentine’s Day meal ideas.
- 25 Best Vegan Valentine’s Day Recipes via Vegan Runner Eats
- Epic Vegan Charcuterie Board via Reluctant Entertainer
- This Easy Mezze Mediterranean Party Platter is meat free
- 15 Vegan Valentine’s Day Recipes via Simple Vegan Blog
- Vegan Valentine’s Day Menu Recipes for breakfast, main dishes, and desserts via Make It Dairy Free
- 10 Vegan Valentine’s Day Recipes (Desserts) via Vanillacrunnch
What does a more sustainable Valentine’s Day look like for you? Share it with the Old World New community in the comments below.
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