Yesterday’s post was about why ‘Clean Up!’ by Nathan Bryon is my pro-environmental kid’s book of the year, and to find out about the great new lending library initiative by Oxford Poetry Library and The Children’s Allotment, the ‘Many Voices Collection’.
Mammal Society council member Merryl Gelling and her two children, aged 2 and 6, have reviewed a small collection of the latest children’s nature-themed story books – LINK.
Introducing some nature-themed gifts which are Not on Amazon
I recently joined a group on Facebook group called ‘Not on Amazon’. The group was set up by independent business owner Jamie Rackman as a way for small independent businesses to connect with customers during Covid, without having to resort to selling on Amazon. His rejection of Amazon was in response to the online retail giant’s record profits under lockdown and regularly newsworthy unethical practices (which you can read up on here, and Amazon Prime’s environmental impact here). The group now has 90.2k members and is a great way to lose a LOT of time browsing for lovely things to buy directly from makers.
Is this post promoting consumerism? Yes and no…
This post is written in the context of acknowledging that first and foremost, reducing consumerism is key to avoiding emissions
If you don’t buy a new thing, you avoid the emissions from production and transport of goods, and those created by waste at the end of its life.
You may recall this post from the beginning of the year, inspired by a John Vidal article in which he said we need to “starve the beast of consumerism” to really change our direction on waste and emissions (‘The solution to the plastic waste crisis? It isn’t recycling’ The Guardian 14 January 2020).
In that blogpost, we suggest keeping a year-round present list of items you actually need, and buying gifts that are not associated with physical waste (e.g. tickets to a show, vouchers for a massage), or at least to buy second hand (our city’s Oxfam Superstore and other charity shops are awesome!).
However, if you are still keen to find a physical gift for some children in your life, nature-themed, practical and made from recycled materials by clever independent makers is a good place to start.
Some treasures to be found via Not on Amazon
Browsing the Not on Amazon page, I’ve discovered UK wildlife fact/flashcards (here and here) to encourage that all-important nature love; pricey but beautiful tablecloth playhouses made from upcycled materials; funky leggings made from deadstock material (‘deadstock’ is something leftover by the fashion industry which is usually sent to landfill or burned, both being detrimental to the environment); monthly eco book-inspired activity boxes; and even a book about mushrooms, written by a little boy, with all profits to a wildlife charity.