You want to become eco-friendly but can’t afford solar panels or a hybrid car. Hey no problem. Reducing your impact on the environment can be done in many ways; some ways that might even lighten your financial burden. Whatever your lifestyle -whether you are a college student wanting to save some cash or mother of two trying to find ways to handle your budget- environmentalism is the way to save!

Holidays and birthdays are probably the times when your wallet and the environment are hit hardest. There are so many people to buy gifts for and most of those gifts come with a lot of packaging that ends up in the dumpster. The chart below shows the average amount spent by an individual on holiday shopping in 2010.

There are many ways to cut this spending by being eco-friendly! The areas that could be significantly cut are gifts, decorations and cards. These three areas account for over half of the total spending. Try these ideas:


  • Get your friends to agree on having a white elephant gift exchange this year. A white elephant gift is giving something that you already have but not necessarily need or wat as a present. Maybe you have too many picture frames or you know your friend Stacey would love that sweater you never wear. This gift costs you and the environment absolutely nothing!


  • Going all out for holidays and birthdays is time honored American tradition. Decorations help bring people into the holiday whether they are a Scrooge at Christmas or a sucker for everything heart shaped. Not many people think about making decorations out of what they already have.


  • St. Patrick’s Day is all about the green…so try saving some this year.  Print out decorations instead of buying them. Turn it into a coloring activity for friends or kids. How about finding that pot of gold in your wallet? Instead of forking out cash at the bar for green beer, make your own. Buys ome cheap, light colored beer and add food coloring.


  • Tired of the mess and cost of pumpkins for Halloween Jack-o-lanterns? M family makes scary/funky decorations out of brown paper bags (you get at the supermarket) and magazines. Cute different face features from different magazines (eyes, nose, mouth, eyebrows, ect) and mix them up for a new scary face. Then glue the face to the brown bag. Add a battery powered candle if wanted. These scary faces not only save you money but they can also be used for many Halloweens to come!


  • Putting time and effort into making a card for a loved one not only shows how much you care but it can also be fun. Who knows your best friend or your girlfriend better than you? Making a card personalizes the message and makes it a more meaningful gesture. When’s the last time you made something for your mom? Making a card for Mother’s Day would deifnitely bring back the memories for her. Gifts from the heart are often cheaper, less likely to be thrown out, and appreciated more. Plus if you give it in person there is no need for an envelope or postage!

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2 thoughts on “Saving The Environment & Your Wallet

  1. jameskdom
    7:29 am - 3-10-2011

    Thanks for sharing these ideas. I agree to all that you have written and I too have been thinking on how to spend less and become an eco-friendly human citizen.

    • Court
      2:49 pm - 3-13-2011

      You’re welcome! Environmentalism is a passion of mine (and so is saving a few bucks!). More helpful posts to come soon!

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