Thanksgiving is coming up soon, and all across America planning is in full swing. If you’re hosting the celebration for the first time or the twentieth it is still an exciting venture. You’ve got your family and friends coming together to enjoy conversation over some of your favorite foods of the year. So really, what could be better? If like most of us you are always thinking about environmental sustainability you’ve probably already bookmarked the best organic recipes you could find from prestigious farm to table restaurants or celebrity chefs, added on to your family’s tried and true favorites that couldn’t be forgotten without causing a revolt. But while shopping for organic, locally-sourced foods and drinks is a fantastic step in the right direction this year, don’t forget about the decorations.
Traditional Thanksgiving decorations are often plastic, or actually made overseas and shipped thousands of miles to reach your table. There’s no reason to choose such unsustainable options, especially when you can also actually save money with eco friendly Thanksgiving decorations. Here are a couple of ideas to help you along!
The best Thanksgiving decorations are completely natural, and won’t cost you a thing. If you live in a part of the country that changes with the seasons you’ve got all the raw materials you’ll need right outside. Take a walk with a paper bag and collect fallen leaves, branches, pine cones, seed pods and chestnuts in your yard or at the park. All of these can be put together into centerpieces, or laid out in small dishes by color and size. They completely fit the time of year, and won’t cost you a thing. If you’ve got the time and interest, considering picking some flowers and letting them dry. Dried bunches of flowers hanging in each doorway make beautiful autumn decorations.
Other eco friendly decorations can serve a double purpose, as part of a meal the week following Thanksgiving. Pick up bags of fall fruits and vegetables you can array as edible centerpieces. The apples can go in the kids’ lunches all the next week, while pumpkin, squash and other root vegetables can be reused in a pie, soup or stew, or baked as a delicious side dish. Spend a bit extra for organic options, but know that the purchase is pulling double duty.
Candles also make fantastic eco friendly decorations, as long as you buy the right ones. Go with soy or beeswax candles instead of paraffin for greener options, or even make your own candles with your children. You’ll find step-by-step guides online for it, and it’s not particularly difficult. Pillar candles make a perfect point of interest in the middle of those fall centerpieces, and votive candles floating in shallow bowls of water are both inexpensive and strikingly beautiful when placed in bunches.
Finally, consider homemade decorations created by the children specifically for Thanksgiving. Chances are they’ll make something while at school, but everyone has made one of those colorful turkeys with a traced outline of your hand at one point or another. Have your kids make several of these, and draw their favorite Thanksgiving scenes to display all around the house. Make sure you stock up on extra colored paper and crayons so the visiting children can add to the fun when they come over. Check out that coupon loco site for discounts on the raw materials you will need. And send the pictures home with the proud aunts, uncles and grandparents for a one-of-a-kind giveaway at the end of the meal.