Holiday Archives 2008
Happy Holidays to everyone
This year I will combine errands to use less fuel.
I will take my own reusable bag for all shopping purposes
I will make at least one donation to a local nonprofit on behalf of friends and family.
I will celebrate the holiday season by setting up recycling bins at my holiday parties.
I can give at least three needed items to less fortunate families and ask friends to do the same.
I will honor the holiday spirit by giving gifts of usefullness, plants or food instead of buying items.
I will uphold my living creed by volunteering at least three hours of my time during the holiday season.
I can use reusable or biodegradable products instead of disposables for my holiday parties and give out tips for same
I will reuse materials like newspaper, paper bags, maps, coffee bags, etc., for gift wrapping. I will try hard to give more then I think I can to others who really need a hand.
Happy HolidaysWith Grace & Gratitude,Colleen Kudo, Editor
This is a great and informative video on cloth alternatives to wrapping paper.
Don't you find wrapping paper quite wasteful and the cost ridiculous especially considering the whole idea is rip it off and throw it away?
Fabric shops offer cloth scraps or look into a local yard sale for old tableclothes & napkins for making reusable cloth wrapping. Hunt local thrift stores and garage sales to discover creative packaging. Comics books & comic strips are fun, kids love them, also old maps, tea boxes, sewing patterns, old books with pictures and quotes, old calendars, try match stuff like music sheet pages to wrap a wonderful treasure for the music lover in your life, recipe book pages to wrap garden seeds that go with an attached favorite recipe.
In Hawaii the C&H sugar bags are ideal, heavy duty and fun just turn inside out and you have a brown bag canvas, make sure you have discarded all the sugar(ants!) then stamp or color or go natural with raffia, fresh herbs, seeds, plants, twigs, or shells. You can also use that same bags to start fragrant seedings and give a living gift, as a bonus, the whole package can be planted directly into a garden. sweet.
This year we are making recycled paper for cards & tags with garden herb seeds in the paper; plant the paper after use and it grows. So far it is kinda hard to do, very messy, lot of work though totally worth it.
There are so many alternatives, we would love to hear about yours.. submit to: firstname.lastname@example.org
FYI the above video was found on a cool blog site about a family that has not thrown away any trash for a year, inspirational.. yeah Dave!!!
The new realities of consumption and the economy, acting different this holiday season..something to think about
Further analysis of the financial crisis by Dr. Juliet Schor
Spending our way to prosperity? Not this time around.
As a “New Dream” economist, I am asked all the time: won’t consuming less hurt the economy? When there’s less spending, people get laid off, their incomes fall and businesses, especially small ones, go bankrupt. This question is especially urgent today, given that the recession is deepening and spreading. George Bush was widely (and rightly) criticized for suggesting shopping as the patriotic response to 9/11. Would Barack Obama be wrong if he suggested the same?
Short answer: Yes. But with this topic, there’s rarely a short answer. So here’s the longer one.
Let’s remember, first, that the economic crisis wasn’t caused by a decline in consumer spending. It was triggered by the bursting of the housing bubble, Wall Street excesses, and some other factors. Consumers are cutting back now, but the decline in spending is one of a series of falling dominos—more an effect of recession than a cause.
Even if she didn’t cause the problem, can the heroic consumer can still save the day, as she has in recent recessions? Not this time around. Consumers can’t afford to be the engine of growth because they’ve suffered traumatic losses of jobs, incomes, creditworthiness, homes, and wealth, far beyond the experiences of other recessions. If the government were to give another tax rebate, it would most likely be saved, not spent. And if it were spent, a lot of that money would flow right out of the country, because so much of consumer spending is for imports. That’s especially true at the holiday season, when people buy apparel, footwear, toys, games, household items, and other so-called durable goods. A huge fraction of those items (in the 90% range for some of the categories) are now manufactured abroad.
In a stunning reversal of the reigning “free market” or “neo-liberal” paradigm, economists across the political spectrum have recognized this and are saying that the government needs to step in with big expenditures to put people back to work. They recognize that jobs, not consumer spending, are the key. Action on foreclosures, debt, and some other issues is also needed. But the system needs bold action from its biggest player, the Federal government, to instill confidence, stabilize demand and provide leadership.
So we’re getting a lot of calls that harken back to the 1930s. But old-style Depression-economics isn’t the answer either. Because the planet is telling us, loud and clear, that it can’t cope with business as usual (BAU).
People who are following the news on climate, bio-diversity and other ecological issues also understand that the standard remedy of getting consumers and/or government, to spend more can’t work this time around. We’ve lost the ability to profitably or responsibly grow our way out of recession. The usual kinds of consumer spending (cars, electronics, furniture, apparel, travel) degrade vital eco-systems and have an economic cost. BAU puts us deeper into an economic hole, because every dollar of GNP creates new and unacceptable damage to the planet. A government program which mainly goes to shoring up a failing automotive infrastructure (roads and bridges) suffers from the same problem. It’s throwing good money after bad. The latest findings about climate are that we need to stabilize greenhouse gases in the atmosphere immediately. Whatever government and consumers spend on needs to reflect that reality.
So where does that leave us? We need to do more sharing—job sharing, property and income re-distributing, and sharing of access and know-how. This time the economic pain needs to be assuaged by deeper structural changes that re-introduce fairness into our system. That’s not just moral, it’s also good economic sense. The deepest, underlying structures of inequality are ultimately at the root of why we got into this mess. Reversing the dramatic growth in inequality will help us get out of it.
And yes, there are opportunities for spending. But they are for purchases that enhance and re-generate the planet and its people, such as buying from local food systems, hiring the unemployed to provide services (especially green ones), and supporting non-profits that are solving, rather than creating problems. It’s good to spend on businesses that are truly sustainable, especially those that are expanding the green economy. Those patterns of spending, which new dreamers are in the forefront of, are key to the structural transformation toward more equality, fairness and sustainability.
So here’s to a local, frugal, just, and fun holiday season. More music, less wrapping paper!
Buy a Locally Grown Tree!!
Buy a locally grown Christmas tree
O’ahu’s ONLY Christmas-tree farm
KAHEA is an islands-wide alliance of environmental advocates, Native Hawaiian cultural practitioners, scientists, activists and thousands of individuals. Together, the KAHEA alliance is committed to securing the strongest possible protections for Hawaii’s most ecologically important, endangered, and culturally sacred resources.
Why should you buy a locally grown tree from KAHEA? A few perfect reasons:
- Did you know that each year 100,000 trees are shipped to Hawai’i in some 500 container loads!?! These imported trees can introduce invasive species to our islands.
- By buying local, there is no fossil fuel used for shipping. Since they are grown locally they will not introduce invasive pests. Plus, you will be supporting a sustainable local farm business.
- Your ‘ohana gets to enjoy the tradition of picking out your own tree, choosing from 10,000 mature trees at the farm.
- Helemano Farms is careful to cut the trees so that the remaining stump will regrow into another tree.
ONLY $40 for a BEAUTIFUL, LOCAL 6-ft. tall CHRISTMAS TREE!
Spread the word to all your family, friends & office, and help KAHEA fundraise this holiday season! KAHEA will get $7 for each tree they sell! And Earth Friends Wildlife Fund will match every dollar raised! Mahalo piha to the Helemano ‘ohana for sharing the holiday cheer with KAHEA!
ORDERS & QUESTIONS:
Call or email KAHEA: toll free 1-888-528-6288; email@example.com
HOW TO ORDER:
Credit Card- You can order your tree online by following
Check- made out to “KAHEA”, with “Christmas Tree” in the memo section.
1149 Bethel St, #415
Honolulu, HI 96813
In-person- at KAHEA’s Chinatown offices on Bethel St.- just call ahead to be sure someone’s in!
- For all orders KAHEA will give you a ticket that you redeem at the farm whenever you are ready to pick out your tree.
- Helemano Farms will be open for tree selection starting Nov. 26. You can order your tree from KAHEA now!
- Wreaths may be available too, call/email KAHEA if interested.
- Please note: KAHEA is only selling tree orders, you get to pick out your own tree at Helemano Farms in Wahiawa. KAHEA cannot deliver the trees or sell them direct.
For more info, check
The work that KAHEA accomplishes is possible only through the support of individuals like you! KAHEA is committed to fundraising ‘taroroots’-style. And in the spirit of keeping it real, KAHEA does not solicit or accept any corporate or Federal money. This makes your support all the more important!
If not interested in a tree, you can still support KAHEA by making a contribution online at
1149 Bethel St, #415, Honolulu, HI 96813.
Every dollar you give is matched by the Earth Friends Wildlife Fund. MAHALO PIHA!
KanuHawaii site By
Don't deny yourself all of those great treats over the holidays.
This spiced pumpkin cake is easy to make and not as lethal as other sugar & fat-laden recipes.
Cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves spice up this low-fat twist on pumpkin bread.
Serves 12-18, moderately easy
These make great gifts & can be frozen!!
for more holiday ideas click here...
Spiced Pumpkin Cake