The Winter issue of YES! explores Sustainable Happiness: One family's daring experiment: Christmas with no presents, 12 secrets to happiness, and our favorite gift ideas.
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Building a Just and Sustainable World   December 2008

YES! Magazine Cover issue 48
just $17

Sustainable Happiness

Dear Reader,

I always look forward to the holidays with mixed feelings. I love the time with family, the light-filled decorations, and the homemade gifts. But I dread the stress.

That's one of the reasons I so enjoyed reading Colin Beavan's story of his family’s adventure with a “no impact” Christmas. Colin found the holidays were more, not less, meaningful and fun when gift giving took a back seat.

The good news is that scientific research backs up what Colin and his family found, and what spiritual traditions and common sense have long told us—we can live even more rewarding lives without the consumerism. Doing so can relieve some of the strain on this fragile planet and on our wallets. The Winter Issue of YES! shows how a wide range of people are finding their own ways to happiness.

We invite you to check out this issue online, and to consider giving gift subscriptions to YES! (printed on 100% post-consumer-waste paper). YES! is a frugal and low-impact gift, and it reminds your friends or family year-round that a better world is not only possible, it is coming into being.

Students at a voter empowerment session   Mark Bittman   Laughter Yoga
All the best for the holidays,
Sarah signature
Sarah van Gelder
Executive Editor,
YES! Magazine
Highlights from the Latest YES!
Colin Beavan and his daughter

No Presents?
Colin Beavan and his family love their new tradition: Christmas without all the stuff.
Woman with fall leaves, photo by Anssi Ruuska, iStock Be Happy Anyway
The economic boom didn't bring us happiness. So maybe there's an upside to the downturn.
Tina Su 12 Secrets to Happiness
Our real life happiness-in-action heroes show how to live the good life.
Frances Moore Lappé Voices Carry
Frances Moore Lappé on why having a voice matters.
:: Listen to an interview with Lappé
Jarid Manos Life Reclaimed
In the city, he drank and sold drugs. Then Jarid Manos moved to the prairie.
14 Fabulous Green Gifts
Gift Bow, made from YES! Magazine paper
Our Ultimate Green Gift List
YES! staff members share their favorite sustainable gift ideas: A new twist on going local, how to give a gift twice, …

:: KEEP GIVING AFTER THE HOLIDAYS: 37 Ways to Join the Gift Economy
YES! Monthly Cartoon Caption
Captain YES! Cartoon Write a caption for this month's YES! cartoon. Winning entries will be posted online, and the funniest will be printed in YES!
YES! Ears Cartoon
If this form doesn't work for you,
please email your caption to YesComments[at]

We needed that ethanol yesterday!
The best captions for this cartoon.

YES! Posters: Our most popular graphics are now available as posters. Just $2
YES! Magazine logo
How to Get More YES!
YES! Development Coordinator Jess Lind-Diamond with the NEW YES! Tote Bag

Signs of Life
Woman distributing posters for the Week of Nonviolence in Iraq
Good News—Quick Takes
Week of nonviolence in Iraq; 8,000 safe banks; The nation’s first carbon cap-and-trade program; Call for a Corporate Minimum Tax.
:: NEW: Iraq Photo-Essay
YES! Web Picks
Dee Williams' tiny dream house Dream House
Finding happiness in 84 square feet.

Land of the Thunder Dragon
Let the people of Bhutan lift your soul.

Bhutan, photo by JenFu Cheng

YES! Music Pick for December: Songs for Tibet Musical inspirations while putting out this issue: from Joan Baez to Ferron.

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