Four a.m. wake ups. Shopper stampedes. Setting up camping tents outside the store. Fights.
Black Friday horror stories mean many people want to opt out. Opt out of the buying, stress, and pressure. If this is you, read on. I’ll give you some tips on how to reinvent the kick off to the winter holiday season and create a Green Friday instead.
What is Green Friday?
I’m not sure where or when the idea started, but it’s already morphed into a lot of different expressions. The general idea is to make the holidays more meaningful and ecologically friendly. Here are some ideas that embrace these concepts.
Put the green in green Friday by skipping the shopping and the sales and get outside in Nature. Take the partner and kids and go for a hike, pitch a tent, have bonfire. Reconnect with what’s important and make memories, not purchases.
Host a Craft Party
Want to get a jump on holiday gifts? Get your peeps together and have a craft party. Life’s about relationships. This idea allows you to nurture your relationships while you make one-of-a-kind, meaningful gifts. This feeds your social side, knocks out your gifts, and avoids indulging in consumerism.
Thanksgiving is a celebration of the last harvest. Since Mother Earth has shared her abundance with us, we can show reciprocity by doing some clean up. Is there a park, riverbank, or beach that is strewn with litter? What about cleaning up some graffiti? Maybe there is an area that is being overrun with nonnative, invasive species that needs a fall clean up. Or perhaps it’s your own yard! Wherever nature needs a sprucing up, this could be your Green Friday project.
Not an organizer? Check out hashtag #optoutside or meetup to join local events.
If you’re saying, “But, but, but… there are great sales on Black Friday!,” I hear you. If you have to shop, why not shop online? This saves fossil fuels and avoids the mayhem found in the stores. Other ideas to reduce the environmental impact of shopping is to repurpose items, buy vintage gifts, and buy local.
Volunteer at the Animal Shelter
Nature isn’t just the land. It’s also the creatures that dwell upon the land. Your local animal shelter can always use some help with cleaning cages, walking dogs, and socializing cats and other small creatures. This is a fabulous way to give back to pet who are living in less than ideal circumstances.
Share your green Friday plans with others. Animism is a spiritual path that is guided by our values. Together we can change the culture to create a love of land, clean air, clean water, and mutual respect. We can value people over things. This is not to suggest that we proselytize. Just speak from love about why we’re choosing something different. It may change someone’s heart. Perhaps the kick off to the winter holiday season will have a totally different meaning for our children.