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Make the Season a Little Greener

Josie Weissburg, Contributing Writer

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The palpable joy of the holiday season is upon us at CRLS, and every student is looking forward to their week-long break, no matter what holiday they do or do not celebrate. The beloved materialism associated with the holidays comes with a lot of packaging.

Cardboard, plastic, tape, ribbons, and wrapping paper are all discarded and useless after the opening of a gift. In addition to the packaging, many gifts (whether initially wanted or not) begin to collect dust after a few weeks of enjoyment.

With the environment on the mind, it is hard to produce piles of waste without feeling bad. But there are things that you can do to enjoy the holidays with a clear conscience!


Wrapping Paper

Wrapping “paper” can’t be recycled because it is laminated in plastic, and it is too saturated in dyes to be reused. Along with that, ribbons, bows, and tape also need to be chucked into the trash. Wrap presents in newspaper (like this edition after you’re done reading it!) or a brown paper bag, which can function just like wrapping paper and can easily be recycled.

To be completely zero-waste, wrap presents in fabric. Buy various types of fabric by the yard from a fabric store, or simply use fabric from around the house! Fabric is easily reusable every year. When gifting to others, you can ask for the fabric back to reuse, or let them keep it to use themselves.



It’s great to receive a gift handmade by a friend or family, especially if it is specifically tailored to you. Gift a knitted item, bath salts or varied balms, or any other DIY item you know how to make.

Hunting through vintage or thrift stores for something to upcycle or a unique gift can also be fun. A great way to avoid material buildup is to buy experiences, such as movie or concert tickets, donations, or memberships such as yoga classes.



Decorate your house with clementines (or other citrus fruits) and cloves for a wonderful holiday smell. Simply press the individual cloves into a clementine rind in any pattern you wish.

Another compostable decor item is strung popcorn and cranberries. These make great tree wrappings and hangings for around your home. Thread popcorn and whole cranberries onto a thick string or fishing line using a needle and compost it after the holidays!

Even if you don’t use any of these suggestions, try to remember to be a little more eco-friendly this season so the Earth can be happy for the holidays, too.

This piece also appears in our December print edition.

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The Student Newspaper of Cambridge Rindge and Latin
Make the Season a Little Greener