I love Christmas. The lights, music, laughter, time off work and with family, the tree, decorations, food, etc. But as I get older I can’t help but think that the gifts have become more important than all these other things. Does the season of giving have to mean that we give more plastic useless stuff that carries a heavy price to our planet? I thought it meant giving of ourselves? Our time, love, thoughts, even charity. I find I’m more inclined to value the time with family – it’s precious and that is where the memories are made.
I received a very thoughtful newsletter the other day, in which the writer said, “We are coaxed into consumption, it is promoted everywhere we look… There are so many more worthwhile reasons to live our lives” This push to consume keeps us distracted from thinking about the bigger picture, it gives us a temporary buzz, and keeps the economy rolling. But our planet cannot support endless consumption. Eventually, we will run out of “stuff” to make more stuff – then what happens?
I don’t know about you, but I want my child to grow up to appreciate the Earth around him and what it provides, which is everything. I’m asking myself this year, what can I give that isn’t “stuff”?
Here’s some ideas:
1. Buy a Slieve Aughty Centre gift voucher or hamper! Have a look.
2. Buy a handmade bag made from Syrian refugees (Esther has them for sale and they are gorgeous)
3. Donate to a charity (how about TIAFI?)
4. Take the kids for a day out. Ideas include the park, zoo, aquarium, swimming pool.
5. Volunteer your time for those less fortunate.
6. Make or bake something.
7. Plant a tree.
8. If you are going to buy, buy from sustainable sources, fair trade products and local shops.