Monday, November 22, 2010

Yulemas: Eco-Stocking Favourites

This is our first Christmas-Yule together (Yulemas?) and although it will be sad to miss my family's celebration, I'm kinda excited to be creating our own traditions.

Now, I might believe that buying a zillion new things is not that great- but do I adore my Christmas stocking. It's one of my favourite part of the morning- opening our stockings (my other favourite parts of the season include decorating the tree and Christmas Eve with family).

My stocking was handmade by my late Tante Virginia, who passed away from breast cancer when I was 14 years old. It's red and white and says my name... I heart it very much.

We're working through ways to have a meaningful Yulemas without a ridiculous amount of waste while still retaining the fun of opening and surprise. In another post we'll chat about new traditions that Andrew and I are considering for our first eco-Yulemas. But for now.... eco-gifts for the stocking (or holiday sock thingy... :) ).

1. Consumables. Sounds sexy no? Hah, consumables are gifts that your gift receiver can use. Things like gift certificates for a restaurant, theatre outing, spa experience or yoga class. In Halifax:
- Morris East- yummy locally sourced food with the most delicious brunch cocktails. Fresh and different, we adore this eco-resto.
- Netflix subscription: doesn't use the ridiculous amount of energy required to run like movie theatres and you can watch what you want from home!
- Rachel's yoga podcasts subscriptions!
- Be Well Spa on Robie: located in a beautiful old home with natural and sustainable products. They even have their own urban garden in the back yard!

2. Chocolate.... yummy fair trade organic chocolate. A consumable that you can enjoy right away. My favs? Local JustUs! spicy chocolate powder that I can use in my coffee every morning. A nice kick...

3. Handmade baubles. I love sparkly jewelery. The more shiny and handcrafted the better. They fit perfectly in a stocking and are a nice surprise when nestled amongst yummy chocolate. There are lots of handmade places to find these pretties... at the Farmer's Market, local crafter's fair or etsy. My favourite places in Halifax:
- Love Me Boutique. The owner, Chara, always has amazing Canadian handcrafted sparklies that are unique and definitely amazing.
- The Halifax Crafter's Fair that happens every year. Fantabulous stuff and you get to meet the artist right there! This year: December 4th and 5th at the Olympic Centre. Woo!
- Bhavana Yoga Boutique: The epitomy of yoga bling, Krista Watters owner of this lovely spot, carefully chooses her pieces for handcraftedness and meaningfulness. (She also has the best yoga-gear in the city, Canadian and USA made!).

4. Necessaries... ya know. Stuff you need. Like a toothbrush. And soap that smells yummy. And deodorant, floss and socks. Some eco-options:
- preserve toothbrushes. Made from recycled plastic and you can send them back to be recycled!
- the rock- salt deodorant stone. Amazing thing.... although wasn't successful for us, we know the thing works.
- Birch Bark Soap. Amazing. Of course, you could check out a local soap maker near you on etsy!
- Five Seed amazing lip balms, scents and other goodness. PERFECT size for stockings.
- And if you wanted to be REALLY awesome- A new Diva Cup. Yep- the bestest stocking gift EVER. Seriously. Haven't tried it???? What's wrong with you?! Go read this post. And put a Diva Cup on your list.

5. Makeup-y stuff. I like painting... and that includes my face. Girly? Yep. Do I care? Nope. My feminist self and makeup loving self have been friends for a while.
- Dr. Hauschka- has a whole line of less-synthetic makeup options. It's pretty darn difficult to be completely non-synthetic with regards to makeup, but they do a good job. Halifax: Planet Organic.
- Stript- new to me, this stuff is M.A.C. equivalent but less chemicalled. Halifax: Pretty Things Boutique (awesome store for fun girly clothing for real women).

Things your stocking does not need:
- any sort of yoga mat spray. I mean, since when do you need prepackaged synthetic chemicals to clean something your face and body are in close contact with? Vinegar and water (and tea tree oil) will do just fine thank you.
- packaged a zillion times wasteful trinkets that you'll just through out in two seconds. Who needs a weird plastic tree ornament anyways?
- Yoga sox thingys. Really? Your toes can grip the mat just fine...

How to wrap up your beautiful little eco-stocking treasures? With newspaper or pretty magazine ads of course! That way you can still enjoy the surprise without using extra trees and resources! Remember to recycle all the paper though :)

Have any eco-stocking ideas out there?

article copyright of EcoYogini at


  1. 6 months' worth of yoga podcasts perhaps... (not that I have an offer coming soon on the blog or anything....;)) x

  2. oh...what lovely, lovely-licious ideas!!

    hand-crafted baubles and chocolate? that'll do just fine...


  3. LOVE this! Yulemas! I'm totally stealing that name. LOL!

    I love the idea of buying Rachel's vid feed! Awesomeness! And thank you very very much for the Five Seed shout-out!

    I'm trying to figure out what to do for our home, too - last year we mostly submitted to the family traditions, but this year, that's not going to happen. So we need to come up with something fun and green!

  4. Halifax crafters host several fairs every year:) Great for non december gifts too.
    I like using cloth bags for putting presents in. I have used newspaper colour comics and old calendar pages for years but am trending towards reusable now. I also collect (paper) gift bags and we then reuse them over and over again.

  5. Love this! We have Yulemas at our house as well, and I always fret about what to give people. This year my husband and I bought ourselves tickets to a few plays. I'll probably end up baking lots of cookies and biscotti for family members in addition to buying a few things.

  6. fantastic, I also love the term "Yulemas"! very happy holidays :)


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