Archive for the ‘Holiday’ Category

Trick-or-Treating Never Looked So Green

The doorbell rings and you answer it, only to discover a slew of monsters assembled on your doorstep!
Relax: it’s Halloween and those are just trick-or-treaters. But what’s really scary – even more frightening than a gang of beasts showing up to demand treats – is waiting until the last minute to buy a pricey costume that might only get worn once! Our suggestion? Make all your costumes this year from pieces you already had lying around in the first place.
Paper and scrap cardboard
Believe it or not, this stuff is pretty handy when it comes to crafting a decent and eco-friendly Halloween costume. Use it as the fringe on cowboy chaps, the teeth on a makeshift crocodile mask: even the basis of shoulder pads on a samurai warrior uniform!
Worn-out clothes
Rather than throw out clothes that are getting a little threadbare, use them one last time to top off your costume. You may not even need the whole piece, but a small snippet of the garment to complete the look you want to achieve at very little cost. Best of all, when you’ve gone through your old clothes and decided what to use, you can always donate any items that are still in good condition so that someone else can enjoy them!
Tin foil
Need to pull off the look of a space cadet, or maybe even a knight in shining armor? Don’t splurge on plastic renderings of your favorite characters to achieve the right effect; tin foil can be wrapped around any solid surface to create the illusion you need on Halloween night! Not only that, but when you’re done it can be reused or recycled, depending on what other purposes it could serve for you.
Discarded boxes
For larger items like props or even support for more elaborate or bulky costumes, why not take pieces of the last package delivery you received? Broken down boxes provide excellent and inconspicuous flat surfaces with which you can work to make your Halloween costume all the more realistic. All you need are the boxes, markers for places you might need to cut or fold the cardboard, and a little artistic patience.
And the classics 
Though the idea may not have turned out so well for Charlie Brown, sheets can actually be quite handy when it comes to a good Halloween costume. We might not suggest just cutting holes for your vision and calling it a day, but there are plenty of ways to use old sheets as accessories or the basis of your costume attire. And best of all? If you play your cards right, you’re bound to get more than just rocks in your trick-or-treat bags.
At the end of the night, when you’ve returned home from the party and all the candy has been accounted for, take your recyclables and be sure to discard them accordingly so they can keep on making the rounds, one costume at a time.

Green Valentine’s Date Night

What is more romantic than an eco-friendly, sustainable Valentines date with the one you love? What? You didn’t think sustainability was romantic? Wrong. February is the month of love, and with Cupid shooting his arrow on the 14th, we want to make sure that you are prepared to take your special someone on the perfect Valentine’s Day date! We have come up with a list of date ideas, so that you can love both your day and the earth this Valentine’s Day.
Get Outside 
Show your beautiful date the beautiful scenery that Mother Nature has to offer, and plan an outdoor date. There are plenty of ways to make the outdoors romantic! Perhaps you take a bike ride to your favorite local park. While you’re there, pick an ideal spot for spreading out a blanked for you and your honey to sit on while you unpack a romantic picnic (eco-friendly, of course).  Pack a meal filled with organic ingredient and fresh produce.
Hit the Kitchen
Everyone enjoys when someone takes the time to cook a delicious, well thought-out meal for them. Why not have dinner at home and cook a meal for your loved one this Valentine’s Day? The first step is to hit your local grocery store for all things organic! We recommend Whole Foods or Trader Joes, but the majority of local grocery stores provide plenty of organic options. Eco-friendly cooking not only benefits the environment, but it is also significantly healthier for you and your date. Start perusing Pinterest for eco-friendly, organic recipes, put on your apron, and hit the kitchen to whip something up for your love!
Plant Love
When you think of romance, gardening might not be the first thing that comes to mind. But why not watch your love grow while planting a tree together? It’s worth a shot! It might sound peculiar for a date, but it’s a beautiful way to show that you are not only committed to one another, but also committed to the earth. Let your relationship’s roots grow deep as you plant those roots in the ground. Plus, it will be fun to visit it next Valentine’s Day to see how far it has come… just like you and your partner!
DIY Dating
Time to pull out the paint brushes, canvases, and markers for your very own craft night! This might seem like more of a feminine date night, but there are plenty of masculine DIY options as well. Build something together and create new memories while creating homemade projects. Maybe even make each other your very own homemade Valentine’s Cards?
Break a Sweat
It’s not everyone’s favorite activity, but exercise can be a great activity for date night. Take a yoga class outside or go for a walk or run around your favorite spot in town. Put on your helmets and cruise around town on your bicycles. A green workout will not only burn calories, but it will also keep your relationship healthy!
You don’t have to visit a recycling plant to sort through plastic and paper in order to have an eco-friendly date with your partner. There are so many ways to be with the one you love and help make the earth a better place together. Creating a healthy environment leads to healthy relationships. Happy Valentine’s Day!

Have Yourself a DIY Christmas

As the classic carol says, it’s the most wonderful time of the year! Beyond the twinkle lights, garland galore, hot cocoa, and holiday cheer, there is one more way to make this holiday season even more wonderful: recycling! During a time when it feels like all we do is consume (mainly Christmas cookies), we want to equip you with some fun new DIY ideas for Christmas decorations. Here is a list of some easy decorations and crafts that you can make at home:
Cork Wreath
If you are wine lover, don’t throw those corks away! Put them to good use and create a beautiful holiday wreath for your door. All you need is a Styrofoam wreath, hot glue gun, and of course, corks! Use the Styrofoam as a base, glue the corks close to each other around the circle, tie a ribbon to the top, and hang your new creation to your door. Your guests will immediately feel your holiday cheer as they walk up onto your front porch!
Lightbulb Ornaments
When the lights go out, you can still make your tree shine! Take your burnt-out lightbulbs, cover them with glitter or spray paint, tie a cute red or green ribbon on top, and hang your new ornaments on your tree to add a little extra sparkle to those twinkle lights! This craft is really simple and can be adjusted to whatever supplies you already have at your house.
Coffee Christmas Tree
Coffee doesn’t just add a pep in your step – it can also add an extra touch to your holiday decorations! All you need for this craft is coffee filters, a foam cone (or something else to use as the tree base), and a sturdy base. Start stacking those filters on top of each other around the foam cone, and watch your coffee Christmas tree grow right before your eyes! If you are feeling extra jolly, glue buttons to the outside for ornaments. 
Paper Snowflakes
This magical snowflake requires white paper plates, scissors, glue sticks, ribbon, and crayons. All you need to do is stack and then fold two paper plates in half and cut through both plates to create a unique snowflake design. Leave an uncut area in the middle at the fold for the face of the snowflake. Carefully unfold the paper plates and watch your snowflake form! Use crayons and glitter to add a little chill to your flakes, and glue the snowflakes back to back. Once dry, glue a pretty ribbon to the top and lace your window with a homemade winter wonderland. 
Paper Plate Angel Topper 
Still have paper plates left over from the snowflakes? It’s time to make a Christmas tree topper! Begin by tracing your angel on the bottom side of the paper plate. Once traced, begin to cut out the body of your angel along the lines you drew. Pull the middle lines you cut toward the back of the paper plate and staple.  This will form the body of your angel. Decorate the angel to your liking and top off your tree!
Make this holiday season one to remember by creating new traditions with your loved ones, saving the planet, and having a blast by bringing these festive DIY projects to life!

Give Thanks to the Earth this Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is just around the corner! While you put together your grocery lists and start thinking about what you are thankful for this year, take a little extra time to thank the Earth. There are plenty of simple ways to “green” your Thanksgiving this year that will make both you and the environment feel better. Give thanks to the Earth with these helpful holidays tips!
Decorate Au Naturel
Before you run to Hobby Lobby to buy that beautiful centerpiece for your dining room table, take a quick look around your house or your yard. Elegance can be found right in front of you! Pick up some of those fallen pine cones and colorful leaves, and transform them into festive fall arrangements. Sometimes nature can be the most beautiful decoration. Plus, you can WOW your guests with all of your DIY surprises!
Shop Local
Try to avoid those mass grocery stores this year and choose your local farmers market for fresh finds instead! Shopping locally not only helps create and sustain jobs within your community’s economy, but it also preserves the environment of the land around you. Provide your family and friends with healthy and sustainable recipes this year, and we promise their holiday cravings will be just as satisfied.   
Hitch a Ride
Are you having lots of company over to your home for that big Thanksgiving feast? Encourage your guests to carpool to your house! Instead of flooding the already busy streets with more traffic and unnecessary carbon, family and friends can pile into the same vehicle to give Mother Nature more fresh air. Not to mention, this will cut out the chaos of holiday traffic and gather everyone to your festive table at the same time.
Stick to Tap
Just say no to bottled water this year! With all of that food, you and your guests are guaranteed to be thirsty. With multiple refills, its best to send your guests to the sink to get that next glass of water. Bottle water creates completely avoidable plastic waste. Save money and the environment by sticking to tap water this year.
Paper or Plastic? NEITHER.
We know that doing the dishes after a big feast can seem daunting, but it is important to stay away from resorting to paper plates and plastic utensils. By using reusable plates, you are eliminating so much extra unwanted waste. Expecting a large crowd this year? Have them chip in and bring some of their own dishes! While you’re at it, ask them to help you out with the dishes too. 
Portion Control
Before getting uncomfortably stuffed on stuffing this year, pause and portion out what you put on your plate. One of the biggest environmental catastrophes during the holiday season is wasting food. That being said, don’t let your stomach get ahead of your brain. Take a moment to think about how much you are putting on your plate. If you are hungry for more after that first plate, you can always go back for seconds! However, you do not want to waste any food that you thought you might be able to handle.
Show Your Leftovers Some Love
I think we can all agree that one of the best parts about Thanksgiving is the endless amounts of leftovers. Who doesn’t love to make turkey sandwiches for lunch the next day? Make sure to use reusable containers when packing up your leftovers for the week. It’s also a good idea to give your guests some to take home, in order to ensure that no food is forgotten. If you have had enough of turkey and mashed potatoes, consider donating your leftovers to a nearby shelter or food bank.
We know that the holidays can be stressful and you might just be trying to survive through the chaos of family gatherings, cooking, and football games, but you have an opportunity to take some stress off of Mother Nature by going green this Thanksgiving. Trust us, it’s worth it!

This Halloween, Put Your Pumpkin to Work

As we gear up for that infamous day of trick-or-treating, pumpkin becomes a staple for the whole month of October, in both our diets and our décor! When you are driving by that pristine patch, wandering through your town’s fall festival, adding that extra touch of autumn to your front porch, or carving this year’s jack-o-lantern with your kids, the humble pumpkin is everywhere.
Unfortunately, Jack-O-Lantern isn’t as tough as he looks. As the days become cooler, he will become weaker. But fear not! Before Mother Nature reclaims her work, you have a chance to compost your pumpkin and add even more use to it. These simple steps will you help start a new “green” Halloween tradition!
Step 1: Go All Natural 
The first step to composting your pumpkin is to remove any artificial or non-organic materials. For instance, if you have a candle inside your jack-o-lantern or perhaps any decoration on the outside, those items will need to be detached. Prior to the composting process, you want to ensure that only natural items remain.
Step 2: Be a Little Shady       
The second step for preserving your pumpkin is to find a compost spot. If you do not already have a compost pile, don’t worry! The best place you can use for compositing is a shady area, so find a shady spot in your garden to place your pumpkin.
Step 3: Smashing Pumpkins  
Smashing Pumpkins is no longer just a rock band from the 90s—now it’s also your next step to a green Halloween! Take your big, round pumpkin and smash it up into tiny pieces. Eliminating large surface areas enables a faster compost process.
Step 4: Cover Up         
Now is the time to use other natural materials from your yard, such as leaves, sticks, and saw dust, and cover up the remains of your pumpkin. Keep those tiny critters away from the airing-out process of composting.
Step 5: Let Mother Nature Do Her Thing
All Mother Nature needs now is a little time to do her job! After a few weeks, your pumpkin will evolve and become dense in nutrients. Now is the time to take that hard-earned compost and bring fresh life and special care to your beautiful garden during the sometimes harsh winter months.
Think outside of the box and find ways to turn each season into an opportunity to go green. Add a little sustenance to your Halloween holiday! For more tips on contributing to a clean earth, like us on Facebook and follow us on Pinterest.

Happy Ozone Day to the World!

Did you find yourself getting sunburnt this summer? Maybe it seemed like no matter how many layers of sunscreen you applied, those extra crisp kisses from the sun still found you. The Earth’s ozone layer holds many jobs, but one of its most important roles is acting as a sort of sunscreen for the earth.
What is the ozone?
The ozone protects us from the sun by absorbing about 98 percent of the very harmful UV light. An increase in UV radiation reaching the earth surface can be highly detrimental to human health and the environment. Too much exposure is known to lead to destructive diseases, including melanoma and various types of skin cancers, plus an increased possibility for premature aging. The ozone layer traps the different types of ultraviolet radiation. Essentially, our ozone is our shield, which is why it is crucial that we act to protect our protector.
A day to celebrate.
Scientists have discovered over the decades that the Earth’s ozone is thinning, caused by the release of ozone depleting chemicals. This is why the Montreal Protocol signed a resolution titled “International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer” in 1987. It’s been celebrated every September 16th since.
Through raising awareness about the depletion of the ozone, The Montreal Protocol has been successful in reducing the amount of ozone-depleting components in the world. These efforts have produced hope for the ozone to recover by the middle of this century.
How can you help?
You might be wondering how you can celebrate World Ozone Day? Each year, World Ozone Day holds a specific theme. The theme for the 2016 celebration is “Ozone layer Protection: The Mission Goes On.” Dozens of seminars and discussions are held in Montreal on September 16th to search for solutions to preserve our ozone. Students are educated about the destruction and empowered to help provide solutions. The day itself is mainly expected to boost awareness and stir reaction.
There are a variety of practical ways to resolve this issue. For example, you can find non-ozone-depleting substitutes for your home, including air-conditioning and refrigeration applications. Additional improvements include: cutting down on your use of plastic food containers such as plastic film wrap and bags, and carpooling, biking, or walking in order to drive less (nitrous oxide, which is produced by cars, is the largest ozone-depleting substance caused by humans).
Our fascinating ozone is something to be celebrated! Join us in actively protecting our world on September 16th! Join Carolina Fibre this year in celebrating World Ozone Day.
For more tips on how to keep our Earth healthy and safe, don’t forget to like us Facebook and follow us on Pinterest.

5 Facts You Need to Know About Earth Day

Ever year when April 22nd rolls around, the world throws a big party for one thing we all share in common—our planet! It’s called Earth Day, and while you’ve probably heard of it, how much do you actually know? It doesn’t matter if you’re an Earth Day expert or a brand new arrival to our beautiful planet. After reading this blog post, you’ll have all the facts you need to throw a great Earth Day celebration!
1. What is Earth Day, exactly? 
While it’s not a federal holiday, it’s recognized on the same day every year—April 22nd. The goal of Earth Day is to celebrate the planet and raise awareness about the need to protect and respect it. Earth Day isn’t just an American holiday, either—it’s celebrated all over the world!
2. Who created Earth Day? 
U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson originally came up with the idea for a national day to focus on the environment. In 1969 he, like many Americans, witnessed the ravages of the 1969 oil spill in Santa Barbara, California. Inspired by the student anti-war movement, he realized that if he could combine that energy with a public understanding of air and water pollution, it would force environmental protection onto the national political agenda. And he was right!
3. When was the first Earth Day? 
The first Earth Day took place on April 22nd, 1970, and it’s been celebrated every year since. This year will be 46th anniversary of Earth Day! Better start planning for the 50th celebration in 2020…
4. What has Earth Day accomplished? 
A lot! The Environmental Protection Agency was founded in December 1970, just 8 months after the first Earth Day. Earth Day has also helped pass the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, and the Endangered Species Act. Not only that, but Earth Day has inspired countless people to spend a day thinking about the planet and how they can make sure they leave it in good shape for their children and grandchildren. After all, we only have one planet! We need to treat it right.
5. How can you celebrate Earth Day? 
There are many ways to celebrate Earth Day, and many resources to turn to for ideas and inspiration. For example:

We hope this blog post helps you celebrate our planet year round! For more tips on living a greener life, make sure to like Carolina Fibre Corporation on Facebook. Happy Earth Day!

5 Creative Ways to Recycle Your Christmas Tree

One of our favorite parts of Christmas is the tree. From picking it out, to bringing it home, to decorating it with ornaments that have been cherished and passed down from generation to generation, the Christmas tree never fails to bring a smile to our faces. No matter how much we love our tree, however, there comes a time to bid it goodbye. This usually happens around January 1st, when the boughs have become brittle and pine needles are scattered all over the living room floor.
Instead of dragging your beloved tree to the curb and sending it to the landfill, there are a number of ways to give your tree a second life by recycling it. Below are some of our favorite methods. Choose one, try it out, and give the earth a gift this holiday season!
1. Make your own mulch.
If you have access to a wood chipper, you can shred your tree into small pieces and scatter them throughout your garden and under your shrubs. (Just make sure to remove your ornaments first!) If you don’t have a wood chipper, you can simply cut off the boughs and place them at the base of plants that are susceptible to wind and weather.
2. Let it swim with the fish.
If you have a pond on your property, you can sink your tree to the bottom of it, or lay it down in the shallow end. The tree will break down over time while providing a natural habitat for fish and insects, and contributing to a healthy ecosystem.
3. Create a bird habitat.
Move your tree outside, either in its stand or to an area where it can be propped up without falling over. If you can, place it near a bird feeder or hang treats from its branches, such as pinecones smeared with peanut butter and birdseed. This will give you an opportunity to bird watch from the comfort of your own home—a very soothing activity, especially during the dark and cold days of winter!
4. Make your own potpourri.
One of the best parts of having a live Christmas tree is the scent of pine that wafts through the house. You can enjoy that scent even longer if you strip the tree of its needles and use them to make aromatic potpourri. If you’re ambitious, sew small sachets out of fabric and place them throughout your house. They’ll be pretty to look at and pleasant to smell—a lovely combination.
5. Compost your tree.
Let’s face it—the holidays are exhausting, and by the time they’re over some of us don’t have the energy to transform our tree in a creative or time-consuming way. If this is the case for you, don’t worry. You can still take advantage of the easiest solution of all. Simply take your tree outside and lay it in your compost pile. While it will take a while to break down (especially if you don’t strip the needles or cut it into small pieces first) it should be gone by next Christmas, and that’s all that really matters.
We hope this post has given you some new ideas for recycling your Christmas tree. If you liked this post, make sure to follow us on Facebook for more helpful tips and tricks.

How to “Green” Your Halloween

Halloween is right around the corner. While most of us know that ghosts and ghouls aren’t real, other things, like pollution, litter, and waste, are downright scary! To keep our planet from looking like a haunted house during this holiday, why not “green” your Halloween? If you’re wondering how to have a more earth-friendly spookfest, never fear—Carolina Fibre is here with some scary good suggestions.
Host a pre-Halloween costume swap.
If you’ve got little ones in the house, chances are they’ve already outgrown last year’s costume. Instead of tossing last season’s outfits and heading to the store for new ones, why not host a costume swap with friends and neighbors? This is a great way to give old costumes a new life. Plus one child’s trash is another child’s treasure!
Compost your pumpkins.
After you’ve carved your pumpkin, toasted the seeds for a healthy snack, and admired its spooky glow on your front porch, you can reward it for all the fun and joy it brought you by returning it to nature. Toss it onto your compost pile, fill it with seeds and turn into a “pumpkin feeder,” plant the seeds for next year’s harvest, or simply leave it in pieces in the corner of the yard and let the local wildlife take care of it. These options are all much better than tossing it into a plastic trash bag!
When it comes to candy, go for the good stuff.
Don’t worry, we’re not going to suggest you hand out apples and bananas to your poor, unsuspecting trick-or-treaters—this is a holiday, after all! However, we have to face the facts. During Halloween, the average American will spend $77.52 on candy, costumes, and decorations. Make sure at least some of those dollars are going toward organic, fair-trade chocolates and treats. While it might cost a bit more, knowing your money is helping sustainable and responsible farmers is worth it.
Decorate with all natural products.
Halloween occurs during the harvest season, so it’s not too difficult to think outside the box and decorate your house and yard with all natural décor. Think bales of hay, scarecrows stuffed with straw, organic pumpkins, gourds, and swaying ghosts made from old bed sheets. With a little imagination, you’ll be able to have a frightfully good time while keeping your festivities environmentally friendly.
We hope these tips help you have the greenest Halloween ever! For more tips on how to keep the planet healthy and happy, follow Carolina Fibre Corporation on Facebook and let us know—what’s your best idea for a green Halloween?