Valentine’s Day can be fraught with of stress, expectations, and even sadness; and like many manufactured marketing holidays, it can be rough on momma earth. With over 180 million greeting cards exchanged and over 36 million heart-shaped boxes used to contain mostly un-fairly-traded, non-organic chocolates, there are a LOT of trees trees being sacrificed. And that’s only one aspect of the environmental impact of Valentine’s Day! Read on to learn about a couple more and some healthier alternatives for us and the planet!
Here are a few creative ways to get sexy (or not) and enjoy this holiday and remain faithful to mother earth — whether you are part of a romantic couple or not!
Between 100 – 200 million roses are produced just for Valentine’s Day. Growing them produces over 9,000 metric tons of CO2!
Commercially grown roses and flowers generally use tons of toxic pesticides and fertilizers (literally) and are among the nastiest crops grown on the planet in terms of toxicity. They are also generally grown in countries where the climate is warmer, which for us here in the US in February means they come from far, far away, which gives them an even bigger carbon footprint. Not to mention all the issues regarding whether they were grown under Fair Trade conditions for the workers … Fortunately, there are alternatives and here are a few;
The image here is of some gorgeous flowers sent to the Green Diva Studio by Marc Kessler, owner of California Organic Flowers, after our awesome interview last week, which we unfortunately lost (thank you Mercury Retrograde!).
- Learn more about Fair Made, Fair Trade and Organic Chocolate and Flowers from the Organic Consumers Association website.
- Florverde.org – find out where to buy responsibly grown flowers (and where they were actually grown!)
- California Organic Flowers – fresh, fair trade, certified organic flowers
- Organic Bouquet – fair trade certified organic flowers
- Listen to the Green Divas Sleeping Naked is Green 5-min podcast on Fair Trade 101
2. Give a Plant Instead …
Houseplants are excellent indoor air purifiers and detoxifiers! Why not consider giving a living plant that will last longer and give so much more! See my brief TV interview where I talk about the value of indoor houseplants.
3. Skip the Card …
As we mentioned above, there are way too many trees killed in the name of Valentine’s Day! Can we get creative electronically? Or write love poems on our bodies or something? There are lots of ways to send the message without killing trees. If you don’t have anyone to send a love message to, take some time to imagine you are your own lover and send yourself a wonderful love note and appreciate who you are!
- Send FREE eCards from Care2 and learn about how you can get more involved in your favorite causes!
4. Keep it Local …
Really. Stay Home. Send the Kids out or put them to bed early, and stay home and make a romantic candle-lit dinner (beeswax or soy candles, of course — keep reading for more deets on candles) at home. Visit your local markets and buy some sexy food (keep reading for more on aphrodisiac foods) – for me it hopefully involves peanut butter pie or chocolate mousse. If you are normally home alone, don’t wallow in self-pity, indulge in super self-pampering behavior or take yourself out to the movies or to the bookstore. If you are home alone with your beloved, consider giving each other a nice massage. Make your own massage oil with marvelous organic essential oils.
5. Get in the Mood with Food …
Green Diva Gina did an excellent post last week on aphrodisiac foods. There were some surprising foods on her list! Please read her wonderful post on 11 Aphrodisiac Foods to Cook up a Hot Valentine’s Day Meal.
6. Keep it Clean …
Instead of the daily solo power-shower, take a luxurious bath together (or shower if you don’t have a tub). When was the last time you did that? This of course, can be done solo and enjoyed almost as much (don’t forget healthy nice candles – see below)!
7. Do it by Candlelight . . .
But, instead of traditional petroleum-based paraffin candles, which are kinda like having a truck running in your house, use beeswax candles, which are totally non-toxic, or consider soy candles, which are less toxic and burn longer. I buy candles from my local bee lady at Gooserock Farm, along with my honey and some excellent soap as well. Do you have a local beekeeper who makes and sells these products?
8. Include the Kids …
If you have wee ones that are just getting into the game, have fun making cards or little love tokens with them.
Don’t forget to tell them (and remind yourself) that love and appreciation for each other shouldn’t be just one day a year!
9. Love for Animals too …
You could do what we did last year and go and rescue an animal that needs a loving home (read my post about being rescued by Grace on my 50th birthday). If you don’t want to add to your menagerie or just can’t have a pet, you can always share a little love by donating to a local animal rescue. Just make sure they are a legitimate rescue service. I support Big Fluff Dog Rescue and 11th Hour Rescue, but there are many other good ones too! Read my post here on Care2 about 11 reasons to adopt a rescue pet.
10. Keep Your Memory Green …
Spend a little time with your loved one(s) and dialog about what you love and appreciate about each other, just focusing on all the things that brought you together in the first place. If you don’t currently have a mate, write in a journal and list all the things you love about yourself.
11. Get Outside and Play …
Nothing like a long walk in nature or in your neighborhood to stimulate healthy conversation and or strengthen a romantic connection. Don’t forget to hold hands!
12. Get Creative …
One Mother’s Day, my daughters and I decided it would be fun to make vision boards together. A vision board is a collage of images, words, artwork and drawings that help illustrate what you want to manifest. Why not try this with your honey, your family or for yourself this valentine’s day? The image on the left is the vision board I made that great Mother’s Day!
13. Get Sexy & Keep it Green …
It may be a “Hallmark” holiday, but it has become an opportunity to get saucy and spicy in a relationship as our daily lives can get a little bland. It can be good clean, green fun with a partner or all by yourself!
- GoodCleanLove.com – healthy body oils, personal lubricants, body candles +
- Ecouterre’s Green Guide 14 Eco-Friendly Lingerie Gifts
- EdenFantasy.com – Green & Sexy Toys