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Wednesday, November 26, 2014

A Fair Trade & Handmade Christmas

I love giving gifts. It's one of my love languages. I love being able to give someone something that took thought, effort & resources on my part, & I love when people enjoy the gifts I give. This being said, during Christmas, I don't want to simply exchange gifts, I want them to mean something, & I want my money to make a difference. This leads me to being more purposeful with the money that I spend. I find that it's very difficult to purchase only fair trade for all of life. But with Christmas gifts, I feel I can make a difference.

Here is a link to help you understand what fair trade is

In San Antonio, we have two fair trade stores - All's Fair World Gifts, & Ten Thousand Villages. I love both of these stores. They have beautiful items, like home decor, jewelry, & accessories, & you can find out what country your gift was made in, which I know helps me feel a special connection to the person or people who made it (you can pray for them, too!).  I personally try to support All's Fair first, as it is owned by a local woman & doesn't have the large scale support & reputation that Ten Thousand Villages does. The prices are often cheaper, too.

There are also plenty of places online to make fair trade purchases. Here are just a few options:

Sseko Footwear (I have some of these!)
Global Stewards - list of more online fair trade shops

I also like being able to give handmade gifts. Unfortunately, I'm not very creative at all. On the other hand, there are plenty of handmade ideas that are super easy to make. Sugar scrubs, lip balms, body butter, & other body products are pretty easy to make with just a few ingredients. Instead of overwhelming you with links, just go check Pinterest for some DIY gift ideas.

I also love buying handmade gifts. There are so many options, thanks to the internet! Beautiful jewelry, home decor, etc. made by normal people just like you & me. Here are some to check out (as it turns out, I mainly check out jewelry & accessories):

Lisa Leonard Jewelry
Elisabeth Ashlie Jewelry
Splendor Shop Jewelry
She Does Justice

Consider making your money count this year. Consider spending time (& possibly less money) to show your loved ones that you care. & let's teach our kids to do the same, too!

Happy Thanksgiving!

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