|Posted by Charmed by Heather on November 21, 2011 at 12:50 AM|
The holiday shopping season is upon us! And I have to admit, I love that part as much as I love the smell of clean pine, fresh pumpkin pie, apple cider, and Mamma’s homemade dressing. I love the lights, the decorations, the stockings hanging from the mantle, the Christmas music and nativity scenes, but I also love to shop and I really love to shop for the people I hold dear. There is just something about ferreting out that perfect gift, landing the perfect find, meeting the challenge, watching those eyes light up when they pull off the bows and unbox that special treasure.
Christmas Tree Pendant by CityRusticJewelry on Etsy
Over the years, I’ve learned to temper my spending and my shopping. Because as much as I love it, it can get out of control. Plastic toy after plastic toy, piling up and useless! Needless home decor for a house that already has it all. Hitting the sales, trying to get as much for as little as possible. At one point, it took our family 8 hours to open gifts and another 12 to unpack and find room for them in our home! We set limits, $100 for a child, but that’s10 toys. Really? How long is the attention span of a 2 year old? Is it really long enough to open ten gifts from one aunt? Not to mention the other 2 and grandparents, great aunts, etc?
Wine Cork Star by CorkyCrafts on Esty
Finally realizing that all of this “Made in China, Hecho in Mexico” stuff means sending my hard, and in this economy, I mean HARD, earned dollars across the border and over seas. It meant filling my home with useless items that are forgotten after a month or two. It means guilt for all of the excess when I know my own countrymen, many of them friends and family, are in need, while I wallow in excess. Useless, worthless, excess!
Stack and Count Bowl Set by ApplenAmos on Etsy (I bought this set, LOVE IT!)
Don’t get me wrong, I love my large lovely house with TVs in 3 rooms so I can find at least one quiet place to sneak off to occasionally. I love my blue ray player and my Payless shoes (although I do own considerably less pairs of shoes than most of my friends ;). But I’ve turned a new leaf in the shopping and accumulation department. NO MORE JUNK!
I’ve learned to shop at home! And by that I mean, I’ve learned to shop local, small, and American. I’ve completed about 65% of my shopping so far and I’ve done 60% of that in local businesses or on Etsy.com. I know I can’t go 100% but I’ve made a pledge,if only to myself, that my money (or at least, 85% of it) will stay at home this year. I’m spending the same amount, I’m buying a little less, but I’m supporting my local economy and American craftsman at the same time. My child, nephews and nieces do not need 10 cheap plastic toys each. They can’t even focus long enough to open that many gifts. So they are getting American made, handmade goods this year and the money I spend is going to American craftsman, not Chinese sweatshops.
Personalized Tumber by ThePoshDiva on Etsy
I hope that you will all take a look at your own shopping habits this season and take some time to browse Etsy, the largest market for American handmade goods, browse your local shops, and consider the impact your spending has on your local economy before you lay down your hard earned dollars. Sometimes it’s better to buy less for more.
Next Saturday, November 26th is Small Business Saturday. Many of your local businesses and several Etsy shops will be promoting for the event, having sales, offering discounts. Check out SBS here: http://smallbusinesssaturday.com/ ;
Paper Flower Ring by ValVAlVoom on Etsy
So what if it’s sponsored by American Express, at least they are helping to bring all the little guys together. I’ve seen signs and posts all over my small town promoting it, and it feels good!
Copper Heart Necklace by Charmed, by Heather on Etsy...hey, that's me!
On top of that, visit your local shops, shop Etsy, and buy quality made, American made this year, rather than spending a fortune at Wal-Mart! Sometimes, less is more! So this year, I CHALLENGE YOU!...BUY LOCAL, BUY HANDMADE, BUY AMERCIAN! At least try to set a goal to do part of your shopping at home this year! Don’t send your hard earned dollars overseas; support American craftsmen and local businesses instead.
Pottery Necklace by NaturesAdornment on Etsy
Personally Charmed will be presenting it's wears on Nov. 26th in Heather's home town, Munday, Tx, at https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10150376342922611&set=a.103242842610.103662.539487610&type=1&theater" target="_blank">Fundays in Munday. Can't wait to bring my handmade goods home for the holidays!