Chicago, IL (RPRN) 5/06/2009–Mother’s Day is this weekend and if you’re like a lot of busy people, you run out and buy a card and some flowers the day of—on the fly—and hand it all over. What a surprise for mom! Why not take an extra minute or two and check out these tips that offer some different— and greener—gift ideas?

Tip #1 : Forgo the Traditional Paper Card. What? How could we possibly show our gratitude to mom without a card?! If your mom has email, this is the way to go. Not only is an eCard from Care2 FREE, for every eCard sent, a donation is made to an environmental nonprofit to save a square foot of rainforest! The eCard is a great idea for every occasion—here’s what would be saved if all the greeting cards sold each year were tree-free:

2.25 million trees
916 million gallons of water
196 million pounds of greenhouse gas emissions
Enough energy to power an average U.S. home for 3.8 million days.

Tip #2: Give a bouquet of plantable flowers. Why give Mom flowers that will be wilted in a week or so? Give her a potted flowering plant—a lasting cheerful reminder of your special, thoughtful gift.

Another option are these amazing notecards that grow wildflowers when you plant them. They’re made from 100 percent recycled paper and printed with soy inks. So, send mom the eCard and follow-up with a pack of these cards. Or, if you’re a mom, treat yourself to a package. I carry them on my website ( and shipping is free for orders $50 or more when you enter NEXT at checkout. A portion of our proceeds goes to the National Environmental Education Foundation.

Tip #3: Send organic flowers. If you think your mom (or wife) will send you out on your ear if you don’t show up with a bouquet of flowers, consider Organic Bouquet. Just a phone call away, sustainably grown flowers wrapped in eco-friendly floral packaging will be sent right to Mom’s front door. A portion of their proceeds goes to charitable organizations dedicated to supporting environmental causes.

Tip #4: Give a Green Spa Gift Certificate. Find a green spa in your area at Green Spa Network, a not-for-profit trade association. Why go green at the spa? The spa industry utilizes environmental resources for a wide array of water-based treatments, laundry services and disposable items used in spa service, making it a major consumer of water, energy and natural resources. Treatments that utilize intensive techniques and synthetically derived skincare products may produce quick results, but in the long run they might also cause damage to hair, skin and nails. Natural treatments are gentler and help ensure long-term health and beauty.

Tip #5: Give a green gift bag. Find a local shop that sells eco-friendly products and put it all together in an eco-friendly bag (or reuse a gift bag you have on hand). I compiled some mom-friendly green gifts, packed them into 100 percent biodegradable abaca fiber bags and sent them off to about 25 mom celebrities including Angelina Jolie, Gwen Stefani, Tori Spelling, Jennifer Garner and Angie Harmon. My hope is that these high profile women will instill eco-friendly living in their children, as I have with my son. If our children can understand the importance of taking care or the earth, and how that can impact their future, a difference will be made.

Read more about these celebrity gift bags at Hollywood Today. Available for purchase on, they’re a great value with just about everything you need to gently introduce mom (or yourself) to an earth-friendlier lifestyle. That’s me with the bag, wearing a Rain Tee—illustrated by a child living in an endangered rain forest. For every tee sold, a tree goes to a child involved in Kids Saving the Rainforests.

Tip #6: Dedicated to all you moms out there.
I told my son not to give me anything but the day off (meaning no meal-making, picking up after, kitchen duty, etc… and when I want something, please get it for me). Although I hope he makes me a card, this gift request could hardly be more eco-friendly: No trip to the store, no wrapping paper, no tape. And it’s a day you’ll be sure to love. Have some time to yourself — read the Sunday paper, go out for a run or yoga. And spend some time with your kids outdoors. Weather permitting, I hope to ride bikes around the neighborhood, have a picnic lunch, shoot some hoops, and/or eat dinner alfresco on our deck. Whatever we—I mean I—feel like doing!

Tip #7: Just have a Happy Mother’s Day!