The economy, the economy, the economy….boo! That’s all we have been hearing about lately- it’s so depressing. Especially because all those “economic decisions” are made by the leaders of our country…right?

Nah. Changing the economy for the better is in our hands right now. And it can be really fun- it’s something called “shopping locally”.

 

 

Shopping…but I’m not asking you to break out the credit cards, or bust your budgets. I’m just asking you to shift money you would normally spend at a national retailer and buy from someone local- in your town, or even in your ‘hood!

Today I attended an open house of some of my crafty neighbors who make jewelry, embroider dishtowels and handbags, and basically be-jewel anything your heart desires. It was awesome. The prices were great, the quality was superb, and I knew my money would be supporting my neighbors.

I also placed an order from my favorite Cary chocolatier, Sugaree Chocolate Co., for some of these bad boys:

chocolate turkey

 

That’s right-chocolate turkeys (filled with caramel) that are about the size of a newborn’s fist! OMG! They are so funny (and delicious).

Then, I went to one of my favorite local events, the Western Wakes Artists’ Studio Tour. Artists from around Wake County open their studios to the public, for free,  to showcase their talents, answer questions about both their process and their art, and of course, sell some of their work. I purchased a print from one of my favorite local artists, Deborah Younglao. She “paints” on silk vibrant scenes from nature, and coastal life. (ps. This event continues tomorrow from 1pm-6pm)

Basically, I had a really fun day gabbing with neighborhood woman, checking out the local art scene, and checking items off my Christmas list for at least 4 people – (I say at least because I’m not sure I actually want to give some of my purchases away. I reaaally like it.)  And guess what- I spent under $50.

So, I’m not asking any of you to start making your own toothpaste, or mill your own wheat (though I admit, that is kind of awesome). Just shift your focus from the big box to your neighbor. Hit up the craft fairs, the farmers’ markets, and your crafty neighbors’ open houses. We will all benefit!

 

 

Now for some fun facts:

Buying locally can save you money, allows you to be more “original” in your gift-giving, and more importantly, keeps the money circulating in our local economy vs. having it get shipped out of the country.

(Click to enlarge)

Why Buy Local Infographic
Source: eLocal.com