Wow! I can't believe I am already in month 6 of my year-long adventure to reduce my impact on the planet. Some months have been more successful than others, and some changes haven't worked out so well,.... but others have already become second nature. This month I will be working on choosing local. I am already a big fan and supporter of local food and goods, but I often find myself choosing food or goods that are not local, or going to a chain store because it is cheaper and more convenient than shopping locally. I know that I will still sometimes go to Fred Meyer, JoAnn, or other chain stores. There just isn't a way around it. However, I am going to do a better job of supporting my local shops, local brands, and local foods.
As the end of summer is approaching, and with it the end of the farmers market, local foods will become more scarce, and it will take more work for me to eat seasonally. Last winter I managed to eat mostly locally, but I did have a couple of splurges for mexican grown tomatoes or zucchini in the middle of winter. This winter I will try and keep my produce consumption to the western coast of the United States whenever possible.
I am also going to try to shop at local, non-chain stores more. I know you often pay a higher price at these places, but quality is often higher as well. If I pay $35 for a pair of shoes that both Finn and Phoebe can wear (because they last) and it supports my local economy, that makes more sense than buying Finn and Phoebe each a pair of cheapo shoes for $15 that were made in China and will be worn out before they grow out of them.
But, I am also realistic and know that I won't always be able to support only local. If I can get fabric for $3 a yard at JoAnn, it is mighty hard to go to the fabric shop down the street and pay $15 for the same thing. We just don't have the extra cash to do that.
My vow this month is to choose local whenever possible. If it costs a little bit more, I am willing to pay that little bit and get a little bit less of it. If it is less convenient because I have to go to several stores instead of one big one, than I can deal with that. I will try and save my trips to the chain stores for when it is a must, and put more money into the hands of my neighbors instead of into the hands of big corporations.
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