A Sustainable Spring
- Posted on
- By Hazel Baby & Kids
- Posted in easter, eco-friendly, spring, sustainable
Here is a list of fun tips for creating a joyful spring season for the family that also keeps the health of our planet in mind.
Spring has arrived and we couldn't be more ready to welcome in all of the sunlight, fresh air, and warm days that come along with it! This time of year, strolling around our neighborhood often means stepping into a world of fresh blooms, cheerful pastels, egg motifs, and bunny rabbits.
According to the National Retail Federation, 85% of Americans plan to celebrate Easter, and if you find yourself among them, you may be curious about the impact the holiday has on our planet. Last year, Easter-related spending reached $21.6 billion dollars, with $3 billion of that alone being spent on candy (more than Halloween!) - much of that candy will be distributed into small plastic eggs for egg hunts.
A large majority of plastic eggs are not reusable. Add that to the tiny plastic toys we place inside of the eggs, and all of the fake plastic grass we use to fill Easter baskets, and that is a whole lot of plastic in our trash cans at the end of the day! However, none of this should mean that you need to skip the joys of Easter and spring celebrations entirely. Here are some tips for creating a fun spring season for the family, while also keeping the health of our planet in mind.
Skip the Plastic Eggs and Go Sustainable
Instead of cheap plastic eggs that will quickly end up cracking and getting thrown out, opt for eco-friendly alternatives such as wooden eggs (or this musical set) that can be used year after year, chalk eggs, or reusable eggs made from recycled plastic (we are big fans of the ones made by Eco Kids).
When dying eggs, look for nontoxic dyes such as this set, which is made with all natural and organic vegetable and plant extracts (bonus - it also includes a grass growing kit!).
Get Creative With Your Basket Stuffers
Instead of sugar-loaded candy or the tiny plastic tchotchkes that will provide a momentary thrill and then quickly be tossed to the side, consider some of these longer-lasting alternatives:
- Puzzles: Doing a puzzle reinforces connections between brain cells, improves mental speed, and improves short-term memory. Puzzles with smaller pieces can be broken down and placed inside your reusable eggs - once the hunt is over, all the children can work together on completing the puzzle! Here are a few to consider, in a variety of age levels: one, two, three.
- Building Pieces: A great sustainable swap for Legos (and interchangeable if you already own a few sets!), fill your reusable eggs with individual pieces from this set of biodegradable wooden construction blocks. Once all eggs are found, children will be busy combining the pieces into a beautiful creation!
- Books: Books are a gift that we always welcome! In sticking with the spring theme, here are a few wonderful options that we offer in store: one, two, three.
- Encourage Time Spent in the Great Outdoors: Chalk, bubbles, and a playground ball are just a few of the things that live rent-free in the bottom of our strollers beginning in early April each year. We also love tossing a few packets of seeds into our baskets to use when we plant our gardens!
- Needed Supplies: Easter baskets are a great time to do a quick refresh on things you might typically buy anyway - our bunny loves to make sure we keep our teeth shiny, brush our hair each day, and have fun taking bubble baths!
- Art Supplies: Encourage your child's creativity with a fresh set of watercolor paints. This set in particular is especially wonderful for travel, or to toss in the stroller and bring to your favorite park - watercolor is an excellent medium for painting spring blooms! Grab some extra paintbrushes here.
- For the younger children: These jumbo-sized beeswax crayons provide an easy grip and are difficult to break.
- For the older children: This new make your own jewelry set has been quite popular!
Support Eco-Friendly Brands
Did you know that Bla Bla Kids plants a tree for every doll they sell? Not only that - these timeless dolls are hand-made from high quality natural Peruvian fibers - which make them incredibly soft and huggable. The bunny doll, Fleur, is an adorable option for baskets!
Think About a Basket to Last Through the Ages
Right around this time every year, drugstores and retailers begin to display cute inexpensive baskets for our egg hunts and celebrations. Skip the temptation to buy the favorite-character-of-the-moment plastic basket, and opt for something fun, but still timeless and classic - such as a sturdy willow basket. We've had great luck finding sturdy baskets in our local thrift stores and second-hand shops. The thought of our little ones using the same basket from birth all the way through adulthood (and maybe even passing down to children of their own one day!) is not only better for the planet, but warms our hearts and makes us smile!
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