Celebrate Being Green at Birthday Parties
Going green is all the rage these days – from electric cars and paperless bills to upcycling and composting – incorporating green ideals into your child’s lifestyle is key to helping them grow up with green habits. Birthday parties are a great way to show your child how your ideals can be put into practice any time.
Here are a few tips to help get your green party started.
- First, find a local outdoor place to hold your gathering, or hold the party in your own backyard to cut down on energy use and enjoy the great outdoors. Then, send tree-free invitations (and thank you notes) made from alternative fibers, like Green Field Paper, made of hemp and recycled paper, or use other alternatives to paper invitations, like email, E-vite or Paperless Post.
- At the party, serve an organic cake using pesticide-free ingredients. If it is in the shape of a globe, that’s a plus! Also, recycle gift-wrapping materials by using paper bags from the grocery store or using salvaged wrapping paper from previous gifts. Finally, invest in plant-based cleaning supplies for the after-party cleanup, because they are safer for the environment and healthier for your home.
For gifts and party favors, use a few of these fun ideas:
- For a unique present, buy your child an acre of rainforest or other natural habitat to protect. This is easy to do online and will be a lifetime gift for your child.
- Celebrate by planting a tree in your child’s name or by simply creating a garden for your little one.
- Plant trees or flowers in the number corresponding to the child’s age.
- For take-home gifts for guests, use recycled paper bags that can be decorated and include natural treats and gifts, avoiding harmful plastics.
- Ask that guests bring a plant or flower as a birthday present.
- Have guests create their own party favors using materials from nature, such as a flowered tiara, a basket woven of pine straw and yarn, or a centerpiece made from materials collected in your own backyard.
Decorating for a green party really lets you get creative. Here are some tips to get you ready for your child’s special day:
- Make colorful pompoms to hang using recycled tissue paper and newspaper.
- Recycled tissue paper and newspaper can be used for making your own piñata. Fill this with organic candies, fruits and raisins.
- Use paper products made from recycled materials for food and drink, or invest in party-friendly, reusable plates and cups.
- Use natural materials from your own backyard to decorate the mailbox, doorways and the table.
- Give take-home projects in goodie bags that incorporate natural materials to give the gift of going green.
- If you must use balloons, buy ones made of latex and not Mylar. Mylar takes several hundred years to biodegrade, while latex only takes six months.
- For candles as decorations or on the cake, try natural or multicolored beeswax candles to avoid chemicals like petroleum.
-Sarah E. King