Reduce, Reuse, Recycle for the holidays--Please add to this list any tips you'd like to share about doing this for the holidays.
*Have one person assigned to picking up the "trash" while unwrapping presents. This is always Uncle Jeff in my family. I have no idea how he became nominated, maybe because he was married into the family. ;) He gets a big trash bag for all of the paper that can't be reused--this will be going to the recycling bin. The gals in the family sort through the ribbons, gift bags, boxes, and papers that can be reused for the next holiday or another gift opportunity.
*If your host family does not recycle, offer to take it for them when you leave.
*Have a compost bowl or bucket you can use while prepping food. No fats or animal products of any type. If you have a worm farm, watch using onions, egg shells, and breads.
*Put a bowl in the sink for rinsing vegetables or collecting water that is running off of vegetables for use outside.
*Make sure the leftovers do not go to waste. Ask relatives to bring their own take home bowls so that they can leave with food. Don't forget to save the ham bone to freeze for your traditional New Year's recipes (in our house they are black eyed peas boiled with the ham bone and cabbage rolls). The turkey or goose carcass makes an excellent soup the next day. If you are vegetarian, save the vegetable peels that have been rinsed thoroughly to make a vegetable stock.