Maven Moment: Browsing Through Holiday Catalogs

Since I was little, one of my favorite parts of the Christmas season has been the holiday catalogs that come in the mail. I’ve always had so much fun sitting down and looking through the colorful pages while having a snack and a hot drink.

My favorites were the Harriet Carter gifts catalog (the company has been around since 1958) and The Swiss Colony food catalog. Back then, they carried unusual items that you couldn’t find anywhere else like the petits fours that we got Grandma from Swiss Colony one year. There was no online shopping when I was young. My family’s holiday shopping was limited to what we could buy on a trip down the avenue and the odd item that we purchased from those colorful holiday catalogs.

Even if we didn’t buy anything, just browsing through those holiday catalogs became a treasured ritual that I still look forward to. But I only want a couple, so what do I do with the rest?

Of course, they can be recycled but can the paper be reused? I like to shred the catalogs and use the colorful strips to fill gift bags and baskets. After the gift is opened, the shredded paper can be recycled as usual (find out where you can recycle shredded paper near you). The colorful paper can also be used for a variety of crafts like papier-mache.

Of course, the best way to handle this excess paper is to opt out of receiving some catalogs. I can keep receiving the ones that I do like and refuse the rest.

By giving my actions some thought, I can retain this holiday ritual and minimize its impact on the environment.



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