Monday, December 21, 2009

Green Holidays

This year the holiday was a bit greener. I've been trying to use less wrapping paper. Sure it is pretty but it is used once, maybe twice and then it goes into the recycle bin or worse the landfill. I've been meaning to make some reusable fabric gift bags but haven't seemed to be able to find the time.

This year I came across an article on "furoshiki", a Japanese style gift wrapping. This simple and beautiful form of gift wrapping uses fabric to wrap presents. The fabric can be single or two sided, a specially made piece or a scarf or bandanna. The article ( was complete with a YouTube video and a link for a wrapping guide posted by the Japanese government ( It seemed too simple not to try. For the kids Hanukkah presents I wrapped 5 of the 8 nights gifts in dark colored bandannas. The kids didn't even blink. They still recognized a present when they see one and were able to get them open to see what surprises were within. We also reused a few gift bags too for the larger gifts.

We might not be up to a carbon neutral holiday but every little bit to make it greener is a good change.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Juice Box Straws

I love the Rubbermaid juice boxes. They add a nice flexibility for the kids of juices I pack for the kids and they reduce the waist of buying juice in juice boxes. But hate that it is so hard to clean the straw out. I have discovered that a nicely soaped up skewer will nicely clean out the inside of the straws. So simple and something many of us already have handy.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Shawl "Pin"

I have just received a beautiful shawl, which is perfect for keeping my shoulders warm and looking business like. The problem was all of my shawl pins are very dated and I do not mean in a good “vintage” way. Therefore had a dilemma of how to keep the shawl in place as I went about my day. I found a quick solution, which looked nice and worked well, my hair scrunchie. A basic black fabric scrunchie wrapped around the ends of the medium weight woven fabric worked very well. I plan to get a fancier beaded scrunchie to see if it will work as well and look a bit dressier. Having a multifunctional piece in the jewelry box makes organization and packing to travel much easier. It also fits the reduce part of the overall recycling plan J