Sunday, December 11, 2011

Gift Giving From The Heart

Gift Giving From The Heart

            Do you ever feel stumped, overwhelmed, and exhausted this time of year?  Exhausted from the constant brainstorming to come up with a creative, simple, economical gift that can be given to the friends, family, and teachers that bring us joy all year long, overwhelmed by the thought of squeezing one more task into an already full schedule, and stumped on what to give!!  Please tell me I am not alone in this.  I used to be excited to make my giving list and come up with what I wanted to do.  Now between my three kids at different schools we have 20 teachers and little time to spare I am not feeling so jolly!!! 

            I love to introduce fair trade chocolate and tea with holiday gifts.  It is a wonderful, inexpensive way to open up the conversation of how what we buy can create change. My eyes were opened this year to the success stories that come as a result of fair trade and income generating opportunities especially for women living in dire circumstances.  When visiting Amani Ya Juu in Kenya I was seeing living proof of the power of our purchases.  Wearing the dress I bought that day just feels good—and we all know when we feel good we look good!!  There are many organizations and businesses that promote fair trade and ONE has brought many of those items to their website.  So this year I am gift giving from the heart and I invite you to do the same!!

            The ONE store website has now expanded to include some really great stuff.  My fashionABLE scarf is ONE of my favorites.  In the fall I was wearing it as a belt and now I am wearing it to keep me warm!  This link is worth a visit.

            For all of the teachers on your list--buy them Beads for Learning from  The Leaky Collection donates 100% of the profits to pay teacher salaries.  I wear my bangles almost everyday!!

            If you like African bead work, then you must shop !!  When we met Anthony Mulli in Africa I was in awe of his confidence.  This 18 year old has it together and his talent for beading is incredible!!

            Of course my friends all make fun of me for the amount of product(red) items we have at our house.  For several years in a row the kids would all get a new (red) shirt from the Gap at Christmas time (of course my husband and I would too!)  Grandparents bought us the product(red) ipod and the list could go on.  I love supporting the Global Fund!!  This year I am buying product(red) coffee from Starbucks for all of the coffee lovers in my family.

ONE has many partner organizations that are offering some “gifts that give back” this year.  So as you are finalizing your list be sure to check these out too…….

 A free download of “Joy to the World” by the David Crowder Band:
A CARE package from CARE:

L.I.F.E. (coffee) Jacket from Comfort the Children:

MAC Cosmetics or Fidelity Denim’s Special Edition Women’s Jeans via the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation:

A 4 pack of holiday ornaments from Save the Children:

Childrens’ toys, books or holiday cards from the U.S. Fund for UNICEF:

The Jam Box for Charity Water:

So after writing this post I am feeling my old self come back.  I know exactly what I am doing for my holiday shopping and I hope you do too.  I am wishing you all a holiday full of love, laughter, peace, joy, and warm hearts!!

Together as ONE,

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