First, Pan's Labyrinth is not really a fantasy movie as much as a horror movie with some fantasy elements. Ugh. Gross scary disturbing film. Not the feel good movie of the year.
This is going to sound so silly coming from me, but here are some of the easy things that I've been doing or plan to do that make NO difference to me, and have even saved me money, but are better for others in some way, be it the environment, animals, or hassle wise.
1. Always carry a few bags in the trunk of your car, including a tote. Not only does it mean less trash, but it's just easier to carry things. I love having an old backpack and then when I shop it hurts my back pain less to carry things. I use my workout bag to grab lunch from the grocery store sometimes too.
2. You all know what a total cosmetic and bath product whore I am, but this year I decided to care a little after seeing some of what animals go through to be tested when it really isn't needed. Here's some of the product exchanging I did.
a. Went to the Aveda store and bought a HUGE color safe bottle of both the shampoo and conditioner. These come with a pump. It was expensive at the time, but it has lasted WELL over a year and I am able to go twice as long hair appointments. Also, look at how long, thick, and healthy my hair is compared to the start of the year. Not only do they not test on animals, but my hair smells good and they have green practices.3. Still reusing plastic. I get plastic to do the cat litter. I also reuse the bags. If you NEED plastic bags, still ask for them at the grocery store. If you reuse them, ask around to see if anyone has extras.
b. Lush is amazing. Not only do you get a discount for reusing your shampoo bar tins, bringing in your own bag, but they wrap your soap up in paper and do not test on animals. They have a sale right now going on and you can get free samples too. Get yourself a bubble bar (if you like bubble baths), a bar of soap in the fragrance you like, and a massage oil solid bar. The solids that turn into liquids save on ton on bottles.
c. I've switched to Bare Escentuals mineral makeup. No animal testing, and I use to little of it that there is less garbage produced. Not only that, but it's better for your skin! Buy the starter kit and check it out. If you want to try it, I LOVE to do makeup. Let me know when you want to come over and I'll do your makeup.
4. My friend Chaundra stopped using bags and wrapping paper. Instead she used cheap christmas fabric to make reusable bags for all of the gifts for the family but one! What a fun idea! When a good sale is on I may go for this one. Better yet, what a nice way to recieve a gift? Wrapped in a handmade reusable Christmas bag? That's part of the gift itself.
5. Breaking out the reusable traditions of yore. Because I am a bit broke, I'll be sharing some of my Swedish ancestry this year with amazing cookies as part of gift decore. This takes time, but if you've ever had a few of these, they are like crack! I am giving out the recipe too so that my Swedish great great grandma's creativity lives on. It makes me feel good to share some of this stuff that takes more work and it's from the heart.
6. Giving YOU a break. If you feel one bit bad about being broke for the holidays, it would mean more to me to know you aren't stressing about me than to have a gift. A nice note or even plans for the future to catch a movie, or join me for tea would mean so much. It's not about the stuff. Let's get back to basics and the spirit of Christmas this year. We've never had more incentive to do so. Also, I LOVE things you make, like even a burned disk of music is very cool to me. I love used books, hand me down outfits, and even help to do something. You don't need money to give a great gift.