15 Creative Ways to Celebrate Earth Day This Year
Plant a Tree
There's a reason planting a tree is a popular Earth Day activity: This annual event is meant to increase awareness and appreciation for the environment, often through opportunities to take part in the preservation of nature. Public or private lands in any community benefit from additional trees as they grow and provide beauty, shade, food, pollution control, shelter for wildlife, and a legacy to future residents. This year, make it a family affair to plant and care for the tree.
Make Beeswax Wraps
Instead of single-use plastics, try wrapping your leftovers in homemade beeswax wraps. This simple DIY project is a great way to use up scraps of cotton fabric without any sewing! Make your own in an afternoon and use them up to 150 times.
Hang an Earth Day Banner
Earth Day is on April 22 each year, but it is easy to get busy and forget to commemorate the occasion. Create a decorative Earth Day banner to remind neighbors, friends, and family of the special day. Recycle pillowcases into bright flags showing natural icons, such as a plant, bird, or butterfly, then get creative with freehand drawing and lettering. Slide a length of clothesline rope ($4, Scheels) through the hem of each flag and display on a fence or porch.
Make Reusable Paper Towels
Earth Day is all about taking a closer look at our habits and making small sustainable lifestyle changes. Traditional paper towels are easy and convenient, but they're no friend to the environment. Learn how to make your own reusable paper towels and start implementing them into your regular kitchen routine.
Make a Nature Terrarium
Creating a DIY terrarium is a great way to help youngsters appreciate nature and spend some valuable time outdoors. Any clear glass or plastic container with a wide mouth can qualify as a terrarium. Pour a foundation of pea gravel or small pebbles ($4, Michaels), followed by soil, into the container. Get creative with sticks, rocks, plants, and even earthworms to make a little Earth Day world that is self-contained and low maintenance.
Make Zero-Waste Sponges
It's easy to reach for a sponge while you're doing dishes or cleaning the kitchen, but did you know sponges are full of microplastics that are flushed right down the kitchen sink and eventually end up in the ocean? This Earth Day, make your own no-waste sponges and commit to a more sustainable cleaning routine.
Gather Plant Seed Bundle Gifts
Make easy, eco-friendly gifts for friends and family with tree seedlings, tulle, and jute. For each bundle, place seedlings in the center of a 5-inch square of tulle, pull up all four corners to meet in the center, and tie with jute or another natural fiber. Include a label and planting directions.
Make DIY Makeup Remover Pads
Did you know more than one billion single-use wipes are thrown away each year? If makeup wipes are still part of your beauty routine, spend this holiday learning to sew your own DIY makeup remover pads. They're just as easy and effective to use, and they'll even help you save money over time.
Bottle Your Own Beverages
Instead of purchasing plastic bottled beverages that will clutter landfills, make the switch to reusable glass jars ($12 for a 4-pack, Walmart) and fill with water, tea, or juice. Store them in the fridge to grab on the go, or tote them to picnics or gatherings for refreshments. Add fresh mint and strawberries or lemon slices to wide-mouth bottles for extra flavor. Don't forget to grab a set of reusable straws ($6, Target) too!
Sew a Fabric Tote Bag
Paper or plastic? Neither! Make a fashionable fabric tote and use it for your groceries or other shopping. All you'll need is two fabrics and coordinating thread to create a bag that's both stylish and eco-friendly.
Create a Recycle Center
Make it easier to "go green" by setting up a foolproof recycling center in your home or garage. Reuse old buckets, trash cans, or bins. Designate a separate container for paper, plastic, aluminum, and glass, and be sure to attach labels.
Set an Earth Day-Theme Table
Carry the Earth Day theme to the family dinner table with this eco-inspired table setting. A simple linen runner makes a texture-rich table cover, while fresh veggie on each plate adds a natural touch. Even if you're hosting an outdoor lunch, be sure to wear masks and practice social distancing.
Start Seeds Indoors
Prepare Items to Donate
Take advantage of the holiday and support sustainability by cleaning out your closet and preparing items for donating. Get the kids involved to teach them about recycling, reusing, and giving instead of tossing.
Repurpose an Old Board
Salvage an old wooden board and repurpose as a shelf to lend rustic character to any room. Here, reclaimed timber is put to use displaying art. As an alternative to a basic shelf, drill holes into the face of the board and attach vintage doorknobs or hooks for an interesting way to hang jewelry or coats.