Sustainable Saturday - Consumerism and Your Christmas List

Black Friday has come and gone.  Tomorrow is Small Business Saturday.

I did end up participating in Black Friday this year, but more on my terms.  I ordered a few things online and went out with family at 6 a.m. to pick up a few must have deals (theirs not mine).

I will echo what many have said before, that we are a society of consumers.  We are a society that turns wants into needs or so we think.

As you think about your shopping list this year, perhaps think about where things come from, how far they have to travel to get to you, what they are made of, etc.  Sure we will purchase some toys for our children, clothes and gifts for others from both big box retailers and online, however we will try to be mindful to not overdue it.  We will try to remember the difference between need and want.  We will most importantly remember to think of others who have not.

I guess I feel today like I've been slapped in the face with consumerism.  Not sure I can change the way the majority of people feel, but at least offer some suggestions: 

Keep it simple.  Sometimes the best gifts are handmade or homemade.  We traditionally give many on our list cookies that we make together as a family.  I think people appreciate that you thought of them, not the cost of the gift.

Keep it local.  Check out local retailers that offer either locally made products or even products that you might purchase from an online retailer or big box store.

Remember the difference between need and want.  Children don't need every new toy that is out there.  Last year's winter coat can be worn for more than one winter.  You don't need to get someone something just to get them something.  Take a few minutes to write a nice card or give something you've made and put thought into.

Most importantly, remember the importance of the holidays.  Christmas is about the birth of Christ and we all seem to forget that in the consumerism that we are constantly surrounded by.

Merry Christmas & Happy (Simple, Local, Need-to-have) Consuming!

Photo Credit:  Digital Trends

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