Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Politics: Spend Your Money Where it Counts

In my more cynical moments, I tell people it doesn't matter who you vote for, it matters where you spend your money. I'm proud to say I don't shop at Walmart or Costco, although this is not only about the stores themselves, but also about not knowing where the former is and being intimidated by the parking lot at the other. I buy a good bit of my produce from local farms, and I'm working hard on being organic - particularly when it comes to dairy. The dairy case won because I went to a couple of talks sponsored by Stonyfield and I started panicking.

Connor's Dyna-Math homework (a Scholastic product) is typically structured so he reads a short story and then answers math related questions about that story. In this week's edition, there is a story about one of those programs where you can purchase a goat for a community. Connor was intrigued by this idea, seeming to dig the practicality of it all. Needless to say, someone on our Christmas list will be getting a gift from Heifer International this year. Goat, anyone?

I have another friend who encourages me to buy Punjammis every year. If I wore something other than an old t-shirt to bed, I'd probably take her advice. It's a great example of spending money on something that's easy to believe in. My friend loves hers - so it seems to be a win-win.

This morning, an email about "Maiden Nation" landed in my inbox. A friend has visited Haiti and vouches for the importance of this effort in creating a sustainable income for women in Haiti. The featured product right now is a Kiss Kiss bracelet made with paper beads by women in the Hands Together Cooperative in Haiti. I'm thinking the adjustable nature of the bracelets may mean that I could actually have a bracelet that fit - a rare thing on my freakishly small wrists. Anyone want one of these for Christmas this year?

Of course, probably the reason I'm busy thinking about politically minded spending right now is to purge the guilty feeling that comes along with a recent grandparent sponsored trip to the American Girl doll store and the Lego store at a nearby mall. Oh boy, do my kids love that stuff!


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