Last week our living room was described as looking like "a Christmas Bomb had gone off". Along with a Christmas tree we have foil/plastic decorations hanging from the walls and rows of plastic stars around the door; so I can see what they mean.
You might be worried and shocked that I have so many plastic decorations but none of them have been bought by us and none of them are new. The foil/plastic colourful banners and stars are all salvaged from my old primary school who were throwing things out years ago and the decorations got rescued to my parents house and stored away, until I rediscovered them this autumn. The only new decorations for our tree are a set of lights (which will be carefully stored and reused for many years) and two pieces of tinsel. I'm sure there must be a more ecofriendly alternative to tinsel but I can't find it online and I currently can't imagine giving up tinsel yet.
There are other ways to recycle at Christmas. All those bottles, cans and cardboard boxes definitely need to go into the recycling box over the festive holidays-it'll give you a good incentive for cutting back your vices in January when you see it all piled up too! Food can be recycled and with lots of leftovers there's no end of new meals you can create from old. I'm sure we'll be having turkey curry, cheesy turkey, turkey sandwiches and turkey stir fry all in the week between Christmas and New Year.
Unwanted presents can be regifted (not straight away! give it a few months) but remember who gave you the present in the first place to avoid awkward moments later in the year. You could even use recycled wrapping paper (either reusing last years or buying new which is made from recycled paper) to surround your beautiful presents.
Finally don't forget if you have a real tree to compost or recycle it after Christmas so that all that leafy goodness goes back into the earth.