So your kid’s birthday is coming up. Well now’s your chance to nip their expectations in the bud, and keep their demands from spiraling out of control, into what could years from now bear a striking resemblance to an episode of My Super Sweet 16. How about throwing a party with a purpose? An eco friendly birthday party is not just about going green. It will enable you to teach your kids at an early age about growing green.
ECHOage, for example, takes a typical online invitation like Evite to the next level. You choose an eco-friendly online invitation, pick a cause and invite their friends. When guests RSVP, they simply give a secure online contribution, in lieu of a gift. ECHOage then pools all of the money. A portion is used to buy the birthday child one, yes one, special gift. The rest goes to the charity of your choice. They learn the importance of giving, but are also able to receive. You, not to mention the landfills, won’t have that post-party heap of gift-wrap trash to contend with. Your guests won’t have to burn gas, time and energy looking for a gift. Like your kid needs a whole bunch of potentially toxic new toys anyway. Oh, and it’s tax deductible. So everybody celebrates. They don’t get you entirely off the hook though. You still have a party to plan. Below are a few more ways to get the job done, what we like to call, ecofficiently.
If the weather permits, consider holding the party outside, at a park, in your backyard, or even on a farm. This will leave party-goers plenty of room to run wild and burn their extra fuel.
Choose decorations like biodegradable crepe, rice paper lanterns and garlands. Consider using, or should I say reusing fabric table linens. Opt for palm leaf plates, cups and cutlery made from PLA corn. But what are your guests going to put on them? As far as food is concerned, easy-to-prepare, but healthy items like organic fruit, baked homemade sweet potato chips and veggie quesadillas with rice cheese are always appealing to the guests, as well as the burdened host. At the end of the day though, it’s still all about the cake. May we suggest you pass on the chemical-laden-processed-sugar-sheet-cake. All natural bakeries are sprouting up everywhere with a range of birthday cakes that are completely animal-free for vegans or those with dairy allergies, made with the finest organic, unprocessed and non-hydrogenated ingredients, even gluten and nut-free as a precaution for guests. Your child will blow out the beeswax candles, and the guests will be none the wiser that they were actually consuming an “alternative” cake.
You can’t send them home empty-handed though. Last but not least, are the eco friendly party favors and cloth goodie bags or boxes. Consider filling them with all natural candy like organic lollipops and chocolate or crafts like organic play dough, beeswax crayons or a wooden toy kit. Ecojewelry and hair clips are always a big hit with little girls.
Not only will your green birthday party go off without a hitch, but cleanup will hands-down be the easiest part of the process. Make those grubby fingerprints a distant memory with an all natural detergent like soap nuts. Recycle or compost what you can and put away what you can’t for another event. Dump the rest into your biodegradable trash bags. Remember what happens on earth, doesn’t have to stay on earth.
If you’re ever in need of an eco friendly gift, please visit http://www.thebestgreengifts.com for green gift ideas to give responsibly on any budget, to any one, for any occasion.
Cameron N. Taylor
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