Oh Christmas Mulch

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This Christmas I’ve decided to go a little greener and a little more Scroogier. Not that I don’t like Christmas, but I don’t get off on all the materialistic stuff with the waste that ends up slowly killing our planet. I mean, when was the last time a feel-good moment and kind spirit ever polluted anything? When does a good deed hurt Mother Earth? How does a little caring end life down the road? But that wrapping, and all that plastic, is quickly forgotten in the waste bin by Boxing Day.

This year, instead of using an artificial tree made of petroleum products, how about giving a new sapling a chance for life and nurture it into something that will help? If all your neighbours were to do that, you could start a neighbourhood forest. And if you feel that you can’t commit to watching a tree grow, you can give it up for adoption or turn it into mulch. Either way, it’s a nice Christmas gesture to Mommy Nature.

Other ways would be to wrap all your presents in new blankets or sheets, one for each kid, and forego the whole waste-of-paper process. You could wrap them in their favourite theme-based designs and make it personal at the same time. Separate your plastics and paper and shred the paper to use later for some other purpose. Mulch anything organic, including your leftover turkey bones, and feed your newly adopted baby tree over the next few years. In time, you can leave it potted so you can take it outside, but don’t forget to place it beyond the reach of a dog’s raised leg. Care for your tree and celebrate its birthday every Christmas.

To save on electricity and lights, and falls from rooftops and ladders, not to mention electrocution, place your big-screen TV facing outside your window and tune in Christmas scenes with music to match. If you have more televisions, cover more windows and voilà, instant decorations. To decorate your tree, hang pictures of loved ones and use homemade decorations. Of course, the stockings should be handmade or, even better, use a pillowcase. If you don’t have a real fireplace, don’t sweat it, just display a flickering fireplace on your TV.

Donate to charity and fill food baskets for those who struggle during this time of the year. It’s another feel-good way to give back. You never know, karma may just do its own wonderful stuff in the future. Helping those in need is a humble way to celebrate and share good tidings. At office parties you could organize a gift-giving event for those in need instead of exchanging awkward sweaters with co-workers. Back in the day, it meant a lot of wood chopping for the widows and elderly in return for a gentle kiss from Googum that made it all worth it.

As much as feasting is about eating, it’s more about sharing and not wasting. Don’t forget to scrape those bones dry lest we forget the sad times of starvation, we were told about by the Elders, who never left a piece of meat or cartilage on a bone. For those old enough to remember, winter meant hard times if the hunt was poor. Today, we should be thankful that we are so fortunate, and show our thanks by sharing with those who aren’t.

I pass on this Christmas cheer to all of you kind readers and hopefully you will mulch right through the New Year!

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