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Easter - The Green Way
The Easter holiday is about a religious experience but is also commercialized with plastic eggs, cellophane grass and chocolate. These things are fun but not environmentally friendly. Here are a few easy alternatives to make your Easter as green as the spring grass. 

As always, reuse and recycle this holiday starting with the Easter basket. Instead of buying a new one reuse from a previous year or find a second-hand basket. If you buy a new basket store it to be reused next year or passed on to a younger sibling or neighbor. And if you're crafty, try making your own Easter basket by using materials you have at home.

Eliminating the plastic Easter grass is an obvious way to go green. Use paper from your office shredder or use packing peanuts or decorative cloth. Again, save and reuse this material next year. 

There are alternatives to chocolate treats. Use coins or marshmallows, stickers or chalk to fill the prize eggs. Using plastic eggs can be done as long as you are also reusing them year after year. Plush toys that squish down are great alternatives or use books, garden tools, flower seeds and scarves to add trinkets to the basket and give a much longer-lasting treat. 

Make homemade bubbles and place them in older containers, small Tupperware or glass jars that you would have recycled anyway. Here is a homemade bubble recipe for non-toxic bubbles. 

1/4 cup natural dishwashing detergent 
3/4 cup water
5+ drops of glycerin 
Mix together in a small bowl, or add to a mason jar and shake gently. 

As we dye eggs for the kids to hunt, there are great alternatives to commercial dyes and kits. Here is an at-home recipe for several colors made from natural products you probably already have.

Robin’s Egg Blue: 2 cups coarsely chopped red cabbage and 2 teaspoons distilled white vinegar
 
Vivid Pink: 2 large beets, peeled and shredded and 2 teaspoons distilled white vinegar
 
Tropical Orange: 2 cups loosely packed yellow onion skins and 2 teaspoons distilled white vinegar
 
Spicy Yellow: 1 tablespoon ground turmeric, a big pinch of saffron threads and 1 teaspoon white vinegar
 
Deep Purple: 1 cup thawed frozen Concord grape juice concentrate, 1 teaspoon distilled white vinegar and
3 cups water

For blue, pink, orange, or yellow, combine the ingredients along with 4 cups water in a pan and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 20 minutes to extract the color and reduce the liquid. Let cool and strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl. Add cold water to bring the total to 3 cups if necessary.
 
Place the eggs in the dyes for 20–30 minutes. Using the slotted spoons, lift the eggs out of the dye and place them in the egg cartons. Allow the eggs to sit until dry about one hour before handling.

Happy Easter!