East Tennessee Goes Green for the Holidays

Admit it.  The luster of shopping for glittery new things is often lost in the hurry, the expense, and the wastefulness of it all.  How about a way to green your holidays and devote time to something other than walking store aisles?  Here are some opportunities for East Tennesseans to enjoy a greener season:

Ijams Nature Center is hosting its 29th Annual Holiday Craft party this Saturday, December 15th from 10 am to 2 pm.  It's a great family event designed for both children and the young at heart.  You can make at least a dozen holiday crafts to take home.They cleverly incorporate recycled materials in keeping with the Ijams mission as an environmental learning center.  Normal cost is $5 for members and $8 for nonmembers.  But if you mention Flour Sack Mama when you check in, Ijams is offering you a $2 discount off regular prices.  Please call 577-4717 ext. 115 to register.

Are you ready to clear out the kids' toy box to make room for Santa's new arrivals?  Bring gently used toys for a toy swap next Wednesday, December 19th inside the new meeting hall at New Harvest Park in East Knox County.  The local chapter of Holistic Moms Network is hosting the swap.  In addition, they're collecting new, unwrapped toys to donate to the local Ronald McDonald House.  The toy drop-off is from 5:00-6:00 pm.  Organizers are handing out tickets as follows:  "Small items= 1 ticket (x-small items like rattles, books, stuffed animals will be 5 for 1 ticket), Medium=2 tickets, Large=3 tickets, and x-large=4 tickets."  Shopping for HMN members begins at 6:00 pm, with non-members paying $3 admission to start shopping at 6:15 and with everyone shopping with their tickets instead of cash.

Need another easy way to go green?  

Why not swap last year's leftover wrapping paper roll with a friend so you can both have a new look under the tree without buying more paper?

Have girls who love to wear hair bows and grosgrain ribbons?  Decorate a gift package with those instead of buying craft bows.

Scour thrift stores for decorations and gift baskets instead of buying new.

If you are buying new, purchase at least one locally made decorative or gift item.