Posted by: webbhouston | December 29, 2008

Christmas is over… now what?

For most of us the great gift grab and food feast is over. Our families have gone on their merry little ways back home. You are finishing up cleaning the dishes from the messes that you made.

The leftover fruit salad is brown and needs to be thrown out but you dont throw it out because you are worried that it might smell up the house so you keep postponing it until the cure for cancer seems to be growing inside of your tupperware and you are really scared of opening it now so you wonder if it would be awful to throw away the whole shebang so that you dont have to open it at all.

The gifts have been put away or returned… and your family members seem to really wonder if you like the Paul Deen cooking set that they bought you… if you were really just being nice when you smiled and said that you wanted one of these, especially since you ask them for the gift receipt afterwards and where you bought it from because you know that you are jonesing to return it but you tell them that you really just want to get the rest of the set so that they match and you get into a fight with your husband about why they didnt just stick to the gift list that you sent them then you wouldnt be having this conversation and your husband says I DID I PROMISE but you dont believe him because he has a history of being non-confrontational with his family so you know he really just prayed that they would.

Ok so maybe all of your days after christmas didnt go this way but I know that a few of your christmases did and to those of you that did I just want to say… Next time, pick better inlaws. You know.. like I did. :p

Back to the topic at hand here… what do people do with all of the stuff that goes back and forth during the holidays?

The Three R’s come in handy here.

Reduce – try to save on your energy consumption by car pooling to see Aunt Hedda.   This way it is also easier to leave and blame it on each other when she pulls out the pictures of her when she was still a man.

Reuse – Dont throw away the gift bags that you were given. Take the tags off and use them to give stuff to your family next year! We have been doing this for year and honestly it saves us a ton of money too.

Recycle – all of those cardboard gifts that your “not so green” family members brought you your gifts in can be recycled, the plastics most likely can too.  I know that none of you guys gave your family gifts in anything but reuseable totes and wonderful little handmade baskets bought at fair trade stores… but I am sure that some of you have friends and family that are not as enlightened as you are… and that is ok. Take it upon yourselves to educate them on the wonders of reuseable packaging. Trust me, they will thank you… and if they dont our earth will. :p

If you received items that are not returnable that you cannot (or will not) use. Look into donating things to a women’s shelter, food bank, or other type of organization which will give things to those in need. Never underestimate the power that a nice bath with sweet smelling lotions to someone who hasnt had anything like that in a long time.

Did the kids get a million and a half new toys and things to play with? Most kids get overwhelmed when they have so many toys, so why not gather some of the older toys still in great condition along with some new toys that wont be used and take them to a children’s center? Of course make sure that the toys are not on any recall list, are safe, and still have plenty of life left in them.

Trying to make more space in the ouse after all of the new things that were given to you? Try Freecycle.   You get +100 karma points for giving stuff away to other who might need it.

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