What were you doing this “Black Friday”? I was at home, warm and dry, not being pushed, shoved, or trampled, and avoiding any form of crowds other than the small crowd in my small kitchen as we prepared a yummy Thanksgiving meal! (My husband was on call Thursday, so we opted to eat on Friday instead.)
I understand that some people love the thrill of the hunt and relish the annual Black Friday shopping ritual, but personally, I just don’t get it! I enjoy the thrill of a discovering fabulous gifts locally. The more locally sourced and produced, the better.
When you shop locally, you give your local economy a boost, ease the burden on the environment, and reduce clutter and stress in your life.
- Local products are less likely to come wrapped in layers of packaging which causes frustration and then clutters up your home before heading to the landfill.
- Local handmade products are often sturdier (as opposed to inexpensive plastic toys or electronics). Plus, if something goes wrong, you’re more likely to get timely and satisfactory customer service from a local business.
- Local products usually won’t be found amid the crowds and noise of the malls and big box stores. Shopping locally is a calmer and quieter experience, which is a gift in itself!
In Bellingham, we have many wonderful local retailers and artists. Here are some of my favorite ways to connect with them:
- Sustainable Connections – search for local businesses, including food and farms
- Fairhaven.com – businesses in the Fairhaven historic district
- Downtown Bellingham
Holiday Craft Fairs
- Etsy.com – “eBay for local handmade stuff”
- BidLocalFirst Auction – Sustainable Connection’s first online holiday auction
What are some of your favorite ways to shop locally and reduce holiday gift-related stress? Comment or send me your ideas!