Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Day 114 - The Gifts That Keep On Giving

Giving Pre-Owned Gifts

Nobody wants to get a "used" present, but who wouldn't love a nice, vintage, pre-owned gift? Hey, if the fancy, hyphenated wording gets us to buy cars and old clothing, won't it work for children's toys too? This is one of the ways I will be greening up my Christmas. It's all part of my plan to create an environmentally friendly holiday season.

Not all the gifts I give will be pre-owned, but this will be my "get out of jail free" or rather, my "give plastic crap from China without guilt" card. Of course I will avoid any recalled items, but other than that I will be allowed to buy as many used items as my budget will allow.

I already know of one pre-owned gift I'll be giving. The recipient is my very discerning nephew, who will be all of 11 months old this Christmas. He's a very happy-go-lucky little fella and I'm sure he'll be pleased as punch to get one of Daphne's hand-me-down toys.

I'm also sure his mom will be pleased -- since I'm not spending any money on new toys, he will receive the full $50 gift allotment straight into his 529 college savings plan. Hey, we've only got a few years to get away with this kind of trickery before the youngin's wise up. Might as well work it while we can.

I am so grateful that I have the kind of family that is not hung up on "new stuff" and is happy to oblige me and my green-ness. They geniunely prefer homemade to store-bought and wholeheartedly believe that it is, in fact, the thought that counts. They also agree that a pre-owned toy is just as good as a new one -- better, in fact, since someone else has already wrenched it from the packaging with the jaws of life.

So thank you, dear family, for being as green as a Christmas wreath and as sweet as eggnog (made from organic sugar, free-range-hen-laid eggs and locally-produced, happy-cow milk) You guys rock!


I'll definitely be saving a lot of money on these toys! I'll also be saving the energy that would have been required to make and ship the original toy, plus the packaging. I've said it before but it bears repeating -- one of the easiest and most effective ways to have a positive impact on our planet is to simply reuse our existing items.

Difficulty Level: 3 out of 5

It's not a difficult task, but it is a difficult stigma that we all need to just get over, myself included. "New" is not synonymous with "better" and "used" does not necessarily mean "used up".


Emily the Great and Terrible said...

With used stuff, you have the advantage of knowing how it's going to look in a month.

Jennifer said...

Some of my kid's favorite toys are, in fact, 25 year old toys that my Mom has had stashed in her attic. If you present them as cool, the kids usually belive least until peer pressure begins.

Anonymous said...

Whew. I'm so glad that "used" doesn't mean "used up".