Group of people at Christmas market borrowing items from the Library of Things

Magic moments that don’t cost the earth this Christmas

Published: 05/12/23 | Categories: Uncategorised, Author: Russell Todd

Russell Todd, Cardiff Co-ordinator for Benthyg Cymru, explains why they will be encouraging people to think about ‘moments’ and not ‘things’ this Christmas.

Christmas should be magical right? That’s what we all want.

We want it to be perfect: delicious food, gorgeous place settings and a house dripping in tasteful décor and twinkly lights. The perfect outfit for the big day, the works night out, the annual friends gathering, Christmas jumper day, etc. The perfect tree, the perfect presents, and Bing Crosby gently crooning in the background as the family sit around, opening presents, laughing and loving all they get.

But we all know Christmas isn’t really like that. With many families struggling with the ongoing cost of living crisis, arguably this year more than most we need to be looking at alternatives to getting caught up in the frantic panic to buy, buy, BUY! and spend, spend, SPEND!


All too often there is a danger that in striving for the perfect Christmas we forget what Christmas is all about. We’re talking about the importance of the celebrations as a time for peace, unity, kindness, and time with those we love.

When we work, spend, and stress about the ‘perfect’ Christmas, there’s potential that the ‘perfect day’ may pass us by under all the pressure to keep up with the Joneses.

So, this year Benthyg Cymru is calling for people to recognise the importance of ‘moments’ not ‘stuff’ with our Magic Moments Don’t Cost the Earth campaign. Relaxed, happy, fun times with the family, making memories rather than accumulating stuff, and debt. Follow the hashtags #SpendTimeNotMoney | # GwariwchAmserNidArian on social media and share with us your tips for a more memorable, less expensive Christmas.


At Benthyg we’re all about sharing resources, and across Wales we have 20 libraries of things within our network that have items you can borrow to help create those magic moments with loved ones.

From popcorn makers and projectors for big Christmas Movie nights, to karaoke machines for the works do – from baking trays and cookie cutters for baking sessions with the kids, to fancy dress costumes.

By borrowing, we save money, save waste and save carbon. The cost of borrowing from a Library of Things is significantly less than buying second-hand – let alone buying new – it means that this Christmas, by borrowing rather than buying, we can spend time, not money and have magic moments, that don’t cost the earth.


You can find your nearest Benthyg library of things here and it only takes a few seconds to sign up as a member and start borrowing. If you are interested in a conversation with us about helping you set up a Library of Things in your community head to our website where we have a toolkit that can set you on the path to saving money, saving space and saving the planet.

For readers in Cardiff, with support from the National Lottery Community Fund we will also be hosting a weekly pop-up each Tuesday in December in the run-up to Christmas (5th, 12th, 19th) between 10 am and 12.30 pm at Llandaff North and Gabalfa Hub.