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Green Valentines

Valentine’s Day is celebrated in many places around the world. Though the history of St. Valentine and the facts surrounding this romantic day of celebration is uncertain, it has culminated in an annual event held every February 14th.

While many wish to recognize the endearing people in their lives with valentine wishes, the amount of cards and candy boxes that are tossed out after this holiday is over can be wasteful.

The U.S. Greeting Card Association reported that approximately 1 billion Valentine’s Day cards are bought each year in the states alone. While giving a card is a nice gesture, what isn’t nice is picturing all those stacks of paper after the thought.

For an alternative to paper cards consider making your own. Do-it-yourself valentines can be constructed by reusing materials around the house, like old cards and papers, turning them into personalized greetings. ParentMap offers suggestions for children to get involved in designing homemade cards. If crafting is not your forte or time is of the essence, look for store bought cards that are printed on recycled paper.

Flowers are also a popular choice for gifts, with reportedly more than 180 million roses being purchased for Valentine’s Day. While delightful and fragrant in a vase, after a few days they wilt and expire. Better substitutes are native potted plants or flowers that can be planted outside during growing seasons.

To give the best of cards and flowers combined, think about giving plantable seed paper cards. These can be purchased at some plant nurseries, or seeds can be sprinkled into homemade paper for a one of a kind presentation. Once done enjoying the card it can be planted to sprout into another gift. Look at NaturesFinestSeed for instructions on how to make your own seed paper.

Greener gift options for those with a fondness for sweets are fair trade chocolates or candies from local shops. Also, making homespun treats for Valentine’s Day will surely be appreciated. Choosing a favorite dessert to make allows ingredient control as well as opting not to use artificial food colorings or sweeteners. Read through Mother Nature Network’s Valentine’s Day desserts to stir up some baking ideas.

Taking the time to choose a green valentine instead of grabbing a mass produced one shows that you care about the recipient, but also about the world around them.

Cohen, M. Green Love on Valentine’s Day. Retrieved on January 1, 2013 from: The Desoto

Image: MoonStarsandPaper

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