So you can enjoy the outdoors without harming the planet
As Game of Thrones comes to a close (I’m not crying, you’re crying!) winter is no longer coming, and we’ve all finally made it to the first official backyard barbecue weekend of summer.
If you’ve forgotten what green grass looks like after being cooped up all winter, don’t worry. I’m here to ease your transition back into the season of outdoor parties by laying out everything you’ll need to throw a good one.
Take advantage of the good weather and good vibes while taking good care of our planet with these warm weather essentials!
First things first, you’re going to want an apron to protect your outfit from errant spits and sputters while tending the grill.
Here’s a great one from Fair + Simple that’s rugged enough to stand up to anything you throw at it. It’s made from a renewable heavyweight canvas fabric, criss-cross straps, and metal grommets, so it should last and last.
The large pocket on the front holds anything you want to throw in there, including grill tools and maybe even a bottle of beer.
As your party stretches into the evening hours, think how pretty these solar string lights will look dangling from a tree in your backyard. Magical!
Or, if you want to opt for something a little more patriotic, try out these color-changing red, white, and blue inflatable solar lanterns. For a limited time, purchases of this product will benefit Operation Gratitude and help to send care packages including these lights to active duty service members. Definitely an appropriate pick for Memorial Day!
Ditch the paper napkins and assign everyone their own cloth napkin. They’re prettier, more environmentally friendly, and they won’t fly away when the wind picks up! That’s a win-win-win.
After the party, all they need is a quick wash and they’ll be ready to go for you next dinner party.
This blue and white tablecloth can transform an ordinary picnic table into a beautiful place to eat. Dressed up with some red plates, napkins, and accessories, it can look quite patriotic, too.
The Radha tablecloth is made with organic cotton and handwoven by artisans in India that are paid a fair wage. And, it will last much longer than those flimsy plastic or vinyl types.
Whether you’re serving a signature cocktail, lemonade, sweet tea, or just ice cold water, you’re going to need a pitcher to serve it in.
This gorgeous handmade ceramic pitcher is the perfect choice. It is made and painted in small batches by a local Moroccan artist, and large enough to hold plenty of drinks for everyone to enjoy.
You might want to keep it away from the kids’ table, though.
If you have more guests than cups and you need a disposable option, these compostable cups from Preserve do the least harm.
They come in a variety of colors (including red, white, and blue) and can handle both hot and cold beverages. They’re made in the USA out of renewable plant materials and can go right into your compost pile once the party is over.
Preserve also makes compostable straws, plates, and bowls so all you’ll need to wash is the silverware if you go with these options!
GoSun Solar Oven
I know the grill is usually the star of the show, but hear me out.
Even if you use the grill for burgers and hot dogs, you can still have a side dish or two cooking right alongside, using only the power of the sun.
Once you set the GoSun up, you don’t even need to tend it, so it’s a great way to make sure the hosts are enjoying the fun too, rather than being chained to the grill all night!
As the efficiency of the solar oven shows, the sun is powerful. Take care to protect yourself when you’re outside for more than a few minutes!
There are plenty of eco-friendly and sustainable sunscreen brands to choose from, like bu, Babo Botanicals, and Beauty By Earth. They each have different formulations and ingredients, so in the end it will just come down to personal preference.
And don’t forget to reapply!
A freelance writer working with bighearted businesses who want to better our world.