I have many relatives who may be horrified by my confessions about my Christmas shopping habits, but here goes.
First of all, these confessions come from a reformed shopaholic. I used to be deep into retail therapy and loved browsing in every shop I could fine. Christmas was an orgy of presents and chic wrapping paper. But of late I've come to dread the whole thing, in fact, in these recessionary times, love has turned to hate. I hate the thought of sending jobs and dollars overseas, I hate the service that you get in most stores, I hate the crowds and parking hassles, i hate feeling guilty about the gas I'm using and the money I shouldn't be spending. So I've decided to give in to my better instincts and make Al Gore proud. .
I start all my shopping at the Swap shop -- aka the Durham Solid Waste Recycling center which epitomizes the notion that one woman's junk is another woman's treasure. It is always filled with treasures like old decanters and interesting containers for herb vinegars, spiced nuts and all the other things I produce in my kitchen, as well as picture frames that can get painted to match my friend's decor.
Next stop is Goodwill, where I get to feel good not just because I've found a wonderful bargain, but I've kept something out of a landfill, AND helped put a fellow American back to work. (Did you know that once every 42 seconds, Goodwill puts someone back to work? and yes, in full transparency, they are a client, but I was shopping there long before they decided to benchmark their social media success)
This year I got a gorgeous set of wine glasses ($.99 each) some really interesting decanters (1.99 each) and on my way out found a to-die-for pair of black heels ($5.99) that I put right on my feet and wore to the next speech.
Next I spent 2 hours trying to find LED lights for my tree, until I realized I was spending more in fossil fuel than they'd ever save.. so I returned home to finish my shopping. I still need to put in a few hours on line, but essentially the rest of my "shopping" I'll do from my shelves of home made jams, jellies, pickles etc.
I'm feeling better already.