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Black Friday Green Future

November 23, 2012

The rush for Christmas gifts is on. Many were shopping yesterday, many more packing stores today to get just the right gift or latest gadget. There are major companies advertising to lure you to their products, to get the best shelf space in the store and to get your hard earned dollars.

We have unique items at our Cafepress store (with all original artwork!) and direct. From aprons to beautiful shower curtain and stadium blanket featuring our sunset scene that has long been a means of comments, and items for adults and kids this is one way to get something different and benefit the farm’s bottom line.

There’s also ebooks, photos, craft items and more. There’s farm shares, food packages – what can be more useful than food? Many give cheese and gift boxes, fruit baskets and other items – a gift certificate from SlowMoneyFarm lets your recipient choose.

There’s a variety of options that are “green” – even memory trees. There’s a little bit of a difference with us, and it’s a core view that many say they’re looking for. This morning Connor said we’re stingy with money and, to a degree, he’s right. We don’t buy the latest gadget just because. We don’t rely on keeping up with the neighbors but strive to provide for our future not just in the money aspect but in food. The gift of a full pantry and freezer is overlooked until weather, job or other disruptions mean finances are in trouble. There is a wide range of things that could be done if we just “buy at the store” but there’s a disconnect too. And relying on companies, other people – the last few days shows how precarious that is. Wednesday we were supposed to get a never-fail payment. Well, access to it was denied – no Thanksgiving tradition here. Oh we had enough to eat…more than many. But there are millions who have never experienced that. They’ve never gone days without food because of not having it, or the gratitude of the shopkeeper who will allow them a small credit for food. Large companies won’t do that. The focus on Small Business Saturday is, hopefully, a reminder to everyone that without those community businesses there’s less community. There’s less hands available for a hand up when needed. Big corporations lose the personal touch and service.

And we all lose when that happens. It’s hard to explain to a teen who has not, seriously, had to do without. He can’t conceive of any way but the getting a job and working for someone else, get the 401k and have a life free from the drudgery of providing food and essentials for living. There are millions like him…as adults. And over the next few years, life skills include showing another way. Tough times are coming, we believe, and we’re preparing for that. We can’t make people agree, but can sure share what we know and offer.

It’s about community. Treasure it. Nurture it. Finance it this Small Business Saturday.

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