Gift Giving Guide for the Super Natural Relative or Friend

By Leah Kaminsky

Last week, we took a look at several eco-gift giving strategies for your decidedly non-green friends or relatives. But if you’re green-minded, you probably run in a green-minded circle, in which case you likely have a super natural friend for whom gift buying can be just as difficult.

The Profile:

The super natural friend transcends all demographics and locales. He or she could be:

  1. Your flower power father who’s been fighting for Mother Earth since the early sixties. Dad wears Birkenstocks and all-vegan clothing and is the sole reason the word “granola” is a synonym for tree hugger.
  2. Your green architect friend who lives in the Pacific Northwest and won’t hesitate to plunge her hand into the work trash can to fish out a food-stained take-away carton and transfer it to the compost. Where it belongs.

The Gifting Challenge:

If you’re environmentally conscious but not, say, the non-cartoon embodiment of Captain Planet, chances are whatever green gift you choose will be something your super natural friend has already heard of, bought and moved on from. Giving a green gift to a friend or relative who lives and breathes environmental consciousness is a bit like giving the first Harry Potter book to an avid Harry Potter fan; chances are, they’ve read that one.

The Solution:

There are only two options to giving a good green gift to the green god or goddess: buy the newest, most innovative product out there, or let the greenie choose for him or herself. Here are a few ways to go:

  1. Give the gift of giving. Does your recipient have a favorite eco-charity, like the Sierra Club or the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC)? Make a donation in his or her name.
  2. Promote eco-tourism. From wild jungles to barren deserts, buy your friend or relative an eco-tourist vacation – or at least a portion thereof. He or she will visit beautiful sites along the way with minimal impact and return with a new cause to fight for.
  3. Plant seeds for tomorrow. Your super natural friend will love a membership at a community garden or a share in a Community Supported Agriculture. Or put together a gardening gift basket, complete with seeds and tools.
  4. Watch your materials. From toys made of organic cotton to soy candles and free-trade chocolate, give a gift sourced from sustainable materials…and let your super natural friend know they’re there.
  5. Empower a green lifestyle with cool technology. Sure, your super natural friend or relative probably bikes to work already. But does he or she use a solar-powered pod to listen to music? Look for new and cool green gadgets, and you’re sure to impress.
  6. Give the gift of…choice. If you’re really at your wit’s end, just buy your friend a gift certificate to his or her favorite organic store or restaurant and call it a day.

It is possible to wow your super natural friend or relative. All you need is a little thought, a little creativity, and willingness to try something new.