Phyllis Theermann

Some great ideas thanks to Catalogue Choice – the folks that encourage us to reduce waste every day.

– Wrap creatively. Use comics, old maps, sheet music, fabric/wallpaper scraps. Use fun tins and food boxes you have recycled for gift containers.

– Give the gift of time or talent. Take someone to a play, concert or movie. Make your own gift certificates. Offer your talents like photography or financial planning.

– Help your friends go green. Give planet-conscious gifts like compost bins, can crushers, water timers, programmable thermostats, rain barrels, bird feeders, light timers or bat house.

– Don’t wrap oversized gifts. Hide them and give clues. Make gift-giving into a treasure hunt.

– Plan previously-loved or homemade gift exchanges. Books, a restored piece of furniture or a rebuilt bike can be cherished for many years and by many people.

Got more, please share!


Phyllis Theermann

If all decorative light strings sold in America this year were ENERGY STAR qualified, we would save over 700 million kWh of electricity per year and reduce greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to those from about 100,000 cars!

LED holiday lights now have many of the same features as the incandescent strings, including chasing, blinking, flashing, and replaceable bulbs. There are even solar-powered LED light strings that can be programmed to turn off during the night.

The Town of Wellesley has first-hand experience with the benefits provided by LED lighting. In May 2011 the MLP completed the retrofit of 525 ornamental streetlights from metal halide to LED bulbs. In addition to reducing electricity consumption by 84% for each fixture, the LED retrofit was the primary contributor for the Town’s $86,000 annual savings in streetlight costs.

Ready to make the easy switch but wondering what to do with your old holiday lights? Some companies will take back old incandescent light strands in return for a discount on a set of LED lights. See or for more details.


Phyllis Theermann

Sustainable Wellesley is thankful for all that this community has accomplished!

With the holidays coming, we have decided to gift us all with a fresh, new look. Since a healthy environment is on the top of our priority list, we have moved to natural, organic imagery that represents a nurtured earth & bright sky.

All of the valuable content from before and even more will be provided in an easy-to-navigate manner on

This new site will continue to empower you with a great deal of sustainable knowledge, and a sustainable feeling as well.

Many of you already subscribe to the Sustainable Wellesley newsletter. For those of you wishing to join the conversation here in Wellesley and beyond, sign up here for SW Delivered to get the latest news, valuable solutions for lower impact living, event information, inspiration from locals and much more.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!