So, every year I do a little bit better, following my resolution to buy made in USA and sustainable gifts. While I can’t tell you all the details (sorry family! You still have to wait!) I can tell you my top tricks, tips, and picks as to where to go/how to look for deals. Extend the warm and fuzzies to everyone in our great country, and buy made in USA Christmas gifts!
For more specific store ideas, check out my Made in USA page!
I’ve said it before, and I will say it again. You can’t beat Etsy for affordable made in USA products. One of my biggest buys? Custom printed T-shirts. Who doesn’t like a funny and customized t-shirt? The very best place for Made in USA Christmas gifts!
Note: GneissSpice is a little spice company run by Beth up in western Maine, USA. I am very much a repeat customer! These racks and spices are beautiful, tasty, classy, and major space savers. A bit of a splurge, but a gift you can ensure will be appreciated, used, and well made. If you are short on cash, you can always buy the jars, fill them yourself, and install them on your fridge!
#2 Buy Experiences Instead of Gifts
This is something I’ve learned from one Jesse Liebman. Everyone has too much stuff in their lives. If you can’t find something that someone will appreciate, odds are your gift recipient will not thank you. Your crappy gift will wind up in their closet for about 10 years, until they finally sell it on the sly at a yard sale. Thus, if you can’t find a good gift, support the local economy and buy a little quality time instead.
Restaurants, theme parks, and more! Help your loved one get out of the house. Better yet, go with them, and give the gift of time well spent.
Find your local natural food grocery store, or whole foods. Odds are, they have tasty and fun cooking classes. Don’t give your mother a fish, teach her to fish/cook fish, and she’ll be thankful for a lifetime. (Yes mom, this comment was directed towards you!)
#3 Make it Yourself!
I can’t tell you how much fun I’ve had with my new sewing machine. If you don’t have one, or even if you do, take a look at these awesome and easy ideas. Homemade is the very definition of a made in USA Christmas.
Also, make sure to buy made in USA organic cloth and organic thread. I’ve purchased tons of local wool and cotton from this website, and they are gorgeous. The thread is wonderful too!
(The next gift idea I want to try is this really awesome hobo lunch bag! You know what my kids will be using now!)
#4 Sock Dreams
By Coast Guard Christmas party demand, everyone deserves a pair of USA made, epic holiday socks. Just make sure you select Made in USA, under collections, in the search options. The store’s name is Sock Dreams, located in my old haunt of Portland OR!
This week in updates: Whirlwind
So…. It’s been a bit of an epic week. It started off slow, which let me do tons of sewing and get super excited about a few holiday presents on my list. Then, there was a very long flight protecting fisheries on TH, and the holiday party on Friday. To top it all off, my wallet with… you know, like MY LIFE…. decided to take a holiday vacation. I ended up not only stranded at the front gate at 5:45 am, but also freaking out at the grocery store with a full cart of groceries. Lucky for me, my past self is not a dumb butt. I established a habit about four years ago, of having a back up wallet and back up ID. I haven’t been updating it, but I was able to run home and find my back up wallet, which contained 1/10 non expired credit cards. And that card worked! Holy Toledo! My non government passport was at work, and a friend who was there was a wonderful person and brought it to the holiday party.
Wait a second…. I didn’t use my passport at the holiday party. I finally look old enough to not be carded? Is that a good or a bad thing?
Anyway, Monday I am going to be spending about 6 hours at the DMV. Fun stuff. But, things could have been a lot worse. I have food, I have access to money, I don’t carry checks so non of my bank accounts needed to be shut down, and there was no fraud on any of my cards. All that I lost was a run that I was supposed to do, but lost out on due to the 1.5 hours spent calling 7 credit card companies. I’d call that a holiday miracle!
Oh yeah. And Cherise and Sexy Lexi were SUPER ADORABLE.
That is all.
The Recipe: Leftover Vegetable Stock
If you don’t know how to do this, you really need to get on board. About half of vegan dishes require vegetable stock, and you should NEVER EVER buy the stuff. EVER. Making it is as simple as a little forethought, a bag in your freezer, and a crock pot.
- Leftover vegetable scraps
- Whenever you are cooking with vegetables, take all of the stems and odd bits/ends that would end up in the composter, and put them in a bag in your freezer. When the bag is full, throw it into your crock pot.
- Fill that sucker up with water, and cook for 6-8 hours on high, or 10-12 on low. Don’t worry too much about the time though. You can’t really mess this up.
- Freeze the stock in jars in the freezer, to use whenever veggie stock is required in a recipe… AND start filling up that freezer bag of veggies again! It’s a never ending cycle of saving money. Enjoy!