22 December 2009

Christmas Time!

So my plan for Christmas was to make most presents. What I didn't make I wanted at least handmade, preferably local, but handmade in general. And what I didn't get handmade I at least wanted made in the USA, definitely not Made in China.  This worked mostly. In the above picture you can see what I made for my mother in law, Lynda. G's family is so hard to buy for. Segen wants everything, Bill doesn't really want anything, and Lynda buys everything she wants. So what do you make/get the lady who can buy it all herself? Bags to help with her purchases. I thought it clever. I have also made sock monkeys, finger puppets, and etched glasses and I'm planning on making today or tomorrow some bracelets.

The last part of my resolution, the whole all USA nothing China part, was really freaking hard! I honestly believe that the ammount of items we buy that are imported is a large factor in why our economy sucks so much. Why do we send our money overseas? Why don't we help our own people and buy local more? G was talking to his mom about it and she made the point that our country is programmed this way and me trying to shop local (US local) isn't going to make a difference.  I'm not going to the change the world. Here is my disclaimer: I am not planning on changing the world. I am not trying to change the world. I'm trying to change myself and teach myself and hopefully my children in the future smarter shopping habits. It's the same reason I recycle and save things I can't recycle to use in crafts. It's the same reason I'm trying to become less materialistic. Why do we have so many things? And why are a large majority of these things Made in China?

As it stands Amber's present was made in Germany and I got some Lego's for Russ (couldn't help it) and a game made in Mexico. And, 3 days before Christmas, we have 6 presents left to go AND we need to get something for my sister for her graduation, which was last week, yes I suck I know. But we are getting there.


  1. G's mom is partly right - I believe that Unions have priced the US worker out of the market. Not all their fault, each of has to answer for wanting big wages and for making those wages go further towards buying "stuff" by purchasing the cheaper stuff made in China - out sourced because the manufacturer couldn't afford to produce in the USA - due to the high wages demanded by unions - or, if priced to make a profit (essential, btw) no one would purchase their product at the higher price. Vicious circle.
    You have the right idea - if we each do what we can, eventually you'll raise a generation that will be less materialistic - not an easy task in today's world - I don't envy young parents.

  2. You are right and G's mom is wrong. The reason everything is made in China is because the labor is cheap. So we are essentially using overseas slave labor. Meanwhile, the cheap crap flooding the market means that they don't have to pay people a decent wage in order for us to live. But the real cost is that we are all working at crap wages and getting crap products. All this crap is screwing up the environment. Do we need all this cheap crap? Wouldn't it be nice to go back to a paradigm where people were paid a decent wage, and made a good product that lasted?

    See The Story of Stuff if you want a real understanding of this issue. Also interesting book on the subject is "Cheap".


  3. PS - Good for you for trying to avoid made in China. Unfortunately it is also made in a lot of other foreign countries. :(