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An Eco Easter Basket

With Earth Day (April 22) so close to Easter, join me in nixing the traditional basket filler and hunt for goodies that encourage an appreciation of nature.  I’m pretty confident my outdoorsy, totally-curious-about-the-world 4-year old son will love it.

Reducing by Reusing

It really surprises me to learn that lots of folks trash their baskets after Easter.  Think of all of those sad, pastel baskets sitting in landfills for eons – discarded and forgotten.  And don’t get me started on those (soulless) cellophane wrapped pre-filled baskets you see in big box stores!  The Easter Bunny is way more creative and nature-conscious than that.

Growing up, my brother and I always reused the same baskets year after year.  Lots of memories tied to those baskets!    It was like seeing an old friend when my parents would pull my basket out of the attic each spring.  Believe it or not, my mom also saved and reused our Easter basket grass from year to year.  Her reasoning was rooted in saving money and getting the most use out of everything.  My mom’s example fits right in to my environmental outlook on life (not to mention my budget).  I bought a sturdy natural woven basket and a couple of bundles of green recycled paper grass for my son’s first Easter – and – four years later, we are still making holiday memories with them.

Gifts that last

As I set out shopping to help the Easter Bunny find gifts to fill my child’s basket, I noticed that some stores set out a dizzying array of disposable trinkets as filler for baskets.  The Easter-specific toys I spied seemed like they’d last a week before breaking.  Needless to say, I was uninspired.

With Earth Day in mind, I aimed to seek out items that would be fun, useful and encourage our kid to get outside and commune with nature.  Here are some of the ideas I thought up; share yours  too – I still have some room in the basket to fill.

Books about bugs, butterflies, birds can open up a young one’s eyes to the importance of conservation.

Springtime is a good time to replenish art supplies – a quality sketchpad and colored pencils could help a young artist to bloom.

A colorful water bottle can keep your kid hydrated and keep plastic out of landfills.

Encourage your young one to dig nature by tucking a few flower, herb or vegetable seed packets into their basket.

Look for organic, all-natural sweets made with ingredients sourced with care.  I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention Endangered Species Chocolate’s organic, dark and milk chocolate Bug Bites.  *smile*  It’s chocolate that not only tastes indulgent and contains ingredients I can feel good about giving my child – it funds species conservation, promotes fair trade and encourages sustainable cacao farming.

Comment below and tell us how you green up Easter!  Or add other eco-minded Easter basket ideas to our list.

13 Comments to “An Eco Easter Basket”

  • what a great post about enjoying the holiday without generating too much junk!thanks:)

  • Depending where you live (and the weather) a kite would be fun…and a good opportunity to talk about wind power!
    Happy Earth Day everyone!

    • Monica Erskine

      I L-O-V-E this idea! There is a family-owned kite store in my downtown area. This is a perfect way to support local business and put something useful, lasting and fun in my son’s Easter basket. Thanks for the idea, Moonsword.

  • I have never tried your candy before. I am entering a contest on new age mama. This is the first time I have heard of you. I love the idea that you are helping out the animals. What a great thing to be doing and I love your name. Rita Spratlen

    • Monica Erskine

      So glad New Age Mama introduced you to our chocolate (and this blog)! We hope you give Endangered Species Chocolate a try…maybe for Easter or Earth Day. :-)

  • This is great!!! I think it is about time that we start thinking more about the all unnecessary packaging that goes into gifts and other things. Thanks for this!

  • My family loves Endangered Species chocolates in their Easter baskets (we use the same baskets from year to year). It’s my favorite chocolate of all time!

  • Seeds are an awesome idea, I am going to it this year!

  • We have used the same baskets year after year with our kids…no need to be wasteful!! I focus on educational treats for my children too…they love books, games, art supplies as well!! Last year they got gardening gloves, gardening tools, and little smocks!!!

  • We have reused the same baskets for many years, but have occasionally used a toy or other container that can be used for storage in their rooms, or a big sand pail that was used year after year at the beach. Child size gardening tools were also a big hit. Shredded comics from the Sunday paper or construction paper works better than cellophane b/c it can be recycled.

  • I don’t have kids and I haven’t celebrated Easter in many years, but I would love a small piece of Endangered Species chocolate to make me feel like a kid again.

  • Love your article and can’t agree more. My company does gift baskets and our packaging is modern, reusable and eco-friendly – from the containers, to the fill and tissue, and even the bows.
    And we fill our gift baskets with wholesome delicious foods and treats including Endangered Species chocolate, too.
    For Easter, I add pretty painted eggs to the baskets – these can be reused by the recipient to make a lovely quick and easy display year after year.

  • Monica, I love this! My kids use the same basket each year, too! We fill theirs with books, art supplies, clothes, DVD’s and a few items of candy. Love the water bottle and seed packet ideas.

    Great post!

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