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Baby step: Embrace ReGifting

Sometimes the hardest thing about living green is getting over long-held beliefs. Case in point: if the Emily Posts of this world have taught us anything, it's that ReGifting is TACK-Y. Yet, in truth, it's one of the most green things you can do since Reuse is the beloved middle child in the Reduce / Reuse / Recycle hierarchy.

I attended a baby shower for a dear friend last night, that Heather and I helped host. We stated on the invitation that second-hand baby clothes would be more than welcome, as the mom-to-be is a highly evolved EnviroMom and is quite practiced at handing down and up and all around. The whole group of shower participants seemed OK with hand-me-downs (you should have heard the story about the baby bath seat that moved through four of the families in attendance, and was once again returning to our guest of honor). Regardless, it still did feel a bit taboo to wrap second-hand gifts for the baby shower -- despite having posted recently on a green baby shower featuring "tried and true" baby gifts. Funny how hard it is to change old habits.

Yet, by shopping for shower gifts via kids' resale clothing shops, I was able to stretch my gift buying budget from the usual one especially darling and unbelievably tiny infant outfit to five -- and of course, they are perfectly spotless because most infant clothing in this country gets worn once, if that, before they outgrow it. Other moms joked that the five outfits will get through one day of infant wear due to all the spit-ups and diaper blow-outs. Ah, infancy. There were some other lovely hand-crafted and locally made gifts. And some new stuff -- I mean, who wants to use a used bib or wash cloth or teether? Eeee-yuck.


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