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Greening your Thanksgiving

A few easy tips to make Thanksgiving or any holiday gathering a bit more "green."

Thanksgiving is a unique holiday that began with the celebration of survival in a land with many diverse, locally available fruits, vegetables, fish and animals.  Today we celebrate the harvest season and enjoy time with family and/or friends.  As with any occasion, there are ways to “green” the celebration. 

The first is to set the table with real plates, utensils and glassware.  If the clean-up is a concern, remember that getting everyone to pitch in can add to the comradrie of the gathering.   

Use cooking spray and aluminum to keep clean-up easy and reduce the amount of scrubbing water. Soak when necessary and avoid cleaning with the water running as it wastes over two gallons of water a minute. 

If you don’t have enough place settings, relax and stop at the local Goodwill or variety thrift store to purchase some extra tableware or ask guests to bring a few. Everything doesn’t need to match and the mis-matched items can be a conversation piece. 

Consider setting the table with cloth napkins and a centerpiece made from gourds, pine cones or other natural items that can be composted later. Cloth napkins can be tossed in the wash with clothes to be used far more times than disposable varieties. 

Avoid plastic plates and cups that can’t be recycled. If you must use disposable, paper plates and cups can be composted or will eventually decompose in a landfill.

Compost potato peels and other vegetable and fruit scraps. It is better than placing them in the disposal (which uses a lot of water) or sending them to the landfill. 

Wrap leftovers in aluminum foil if you don’t have enough storage containers.  Remember that all aluminum foil, down to the Hershey Kiss wrapper, can be recycled. 

Turn down the thermostat a few degrees. Between the extra people and the cooking, your home will be warmer anyway. 

Set out the recycling container beside the garbage can so guests remember to recycle but also find it as convenient to dispose of items that can’t be recycled.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving from www.willcountygreen.com.   

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

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