This article is part of our "Round Ups" series, where we share things that inspire us, guide us, or are just really cool.
'Tis the season! Doesn't it always seem to go this way? You started out strong, with a few really thoughtful gift ideas, then the hoards of email marketers hit, and you got stressed and overwhelmed, and somehow it got to be the last minute and you have 27 tabs open and you're just looking for those few things and nothing is inspiring you and somehow, the very task you wanted to do, giving back to the folks you love, became incredibly stressful and complicated instead of filling you with sublime joy.
If you're feeling overwhelmed, you can close all those tabs. There are ways to show love and kindness to your neighbors, your relatives, your mail delivery folks, coworkers and friends— some involve shopping, many don't, and promise they won't give you a headache. The important part, after all, is that you write a thoughtful note, expressing your gratitude for the folks that make your life what it is.
Worrying about wastefulness or sustainability adds a whole other layer of stress to the equation, which is why wanted to help you out a bit— here are a few ideas to get you started. Riff away, make them your own, but don't be shy! We want to hear how it goes. 🙂
The way to a * insert person you care about's identity here * is in the kitchen. What are you really great at making? Whether you're Great British Bake-Off obsessed, or you make a mean lasagna, make a double or triple batch next time you're in the kitchen, and drop one off. (We actually have a cool zero waste thing for that.) Something warm and homemade from your kitchen that's freezer friendly and comes with a kind note or reusable bag is *chef's kiss*.
Missing a friend who is far away? Wish you could be as close as you were this time last year? How about having sustainable stationery made just for them? It'll encourage them to keep in touch with you and write a few more letters, plus it's also just really, really thoughtful. Goldune works with Paper Chase Press on our stationery, but we bet you could also find some really cool makers on Etsy.
Feeling drab and want to give your friend or neighbor a bit of life? No harm in planting some kale, spinach or carrots in a terracotta pot and dropping it off— if you're not enjoying a Californian winter, perhaps some indoor-friendly Basil, Sage, Mint or Thyme might do. Lord knows we're all cooking a lot more!
For someone you really, really like, make them a compost kit! Start with a bin, then some liners, and perhaps even a Farmer's Market haul or CSA box to help them christen their compost with some organic food scraps. This is a great larger gift for someone in your life who you know will appreciate the big gesture of helping them get started.
Still stumped? You can always email us for sustainable gift ideas at firstname.lastname@example.org or DM us at @goldune.co, or check out our mega gift guide here. Remember, when in doubt: the most important thing is that you give it with love, and a handwritten note whenever possible!