This morning as I am sitting and taking some time to write the opener for this newsletter, I am looking out my window at a cool, wet morning. The leaves of our big pecan trees scatter across the lawn and puddles of water stand calmly in the ditch waiting to travel to its next destination. It is a remarkably calming sight that stands in stark contrast to the busy and often hectic Christmas season. Shopping, traveling, cooking, more shopping...it all seems a bit crazy at times, but we all tend to embrace it and relentlessly pursue it year after year. I wonder what would happen if we didn't? Would the world economy collapse? I wonder what would happen to our economy if the gifts we gave all came from local merchants and manufacturers. In a time when we hear about the loss of local jobs and the needs of many of our neighbors, wouldn't it be great if the gifts we gave actually benefited our local economy? What about giving the gift of an oil change or yard work, all supplied by a local shop or yard crew? There are hundreds of artisans who sell everything from paintings to textiles who would benefit from the money you have set aside for the chia pet or Snuggie. However, if you need to buy something that was not made locally, it could still be made in America. Think about it, if the things we bought came from here, we would not only help our local economy grow, we would have done our part to help save the American economy in countless ways. By the way, a great gift for your neighbor might be to simply rake up their leaves...the gift of kindness is the best gift of all.
I hope that each of you have a Blessed and Merry Christmas!