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Nov. 16 forum to discuss bringing meaning back to holidays

November 9, 2011

Staff Report

Holistic Moms Network of Rockford is hosting a forum from 7 to 9 p.m., Wednesday, Nov. 16, to discuss how to bring the meaning back to the holidays and spend less money. The meeting will be at JustGoods, 201 Seventh St., Rockford.

The Rockford Chapter of Holistic Moms Network is a support, education and social network for parents interested in green living, alternative health care, and gentle, responsive parenting. Visit www.holisticmoms.org for more details.

No matter what holiday you celebrate in December, you may puzzle about how the holidays have grown so commercial that they have become more of a burden than a joy.

Betsy Taylor, president of the nonprofit Center for the New American Dream, said post-holidays, Americans should be able to feel “refreshed and reconnected, instead of depressed and overspent.”

Yet, as the credit card bills roll in, depressed and overspent is exactly how many of us feel. According to the American Consumer Credit Council, the average American spends $935 on Christmas each year and carries an average credit card debt of $8,562.

The Center for the New American Dream aims to uphold the traditional values of America: life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, not the pursuit of materialism. They have provided the public with ideas to de-commercialize the holidays on their website, www.newdream.org.

As with the center, authors like environmentalist Bill McKibben, are calling for a more meaningful, less wasteful holiday season. In his book, Hundred Dollar Holiday, McKibben traces the history of the commercialization of the holidays and gives useful ideas of how to celebrate with more meaning and less money and waste.

From the Nov. 9-15, 2011, issue

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