In this current time of economic uncertainty where so many people are losing their jobs due to layoffs and the closings of entire companies and the possibility of rising gas prices ,we are all cutting back on certain luxury items, only purchasing what we need, not what we want or would like to have.
We have seen so many corporate bailouts with probably more to come. It can be pretty frustrating and depressing that is for sure. However, it came to me this morning that, not inspite of the economy, but because of it, that we should still take the time to be good to ourselves and to others. Yes, we need to make sacrifices, and sacrifice is good, good for the character and good for the soul. Still, from time to time, we still need to do something good just to make us feel a little better. I am not talking hedonistic excess, no way! But every so often we need to treat ourselves to that little piece of chocolate or that dinner out. There is still the friend or neighbor who could use a little pick me up, whether you offer to run errands for them, bring over a dinner, or stop by for a visit.
So, here comes my shameless plug. In spite of tough times and probably tougher times ahead, we still need to occasionally treat ourselves to something special or buy that birthday or mother's day gift, or get that invite to the baby or bridal shower. When these things come up, can I make a suggestion? Why don't you check out your local craftsman or artisan? Their work is quality and made with love, not assembled in a sweat shop overseas or by a robot. You will also find that these items of good quality are priced a lot lower, though not always, than what you might find at the big box stores. Either way you will either save money or spend it on something that will last, not fall apart right after the warranty expires.
In this year ahead, help out the little guy, and I mean myself too! and check out some of your local art and craft shows, who knows what deals you may find, and spend your money on a quality gift item for yourself, family member or friend. Check out the online venues of handcrafted goodies like Etsy or Artfire. Do a Google search, there are plenty more out there too. Also, check out your local bead store. Besides supplies, they also sell beautiful, one of a kind pieces of jewelry.
Please forgive my shameless plug. I am not advocating unrestrained spending. I'm just saying that when those things come up in the coming year, when you know you need to get a little something for someone, don't forget us little guys.