Today I'm beginning a new series "thinking fruitful" that will hopefully inspire you to look at things through a new lens and give you ideas to make the every day things shine! Today, we tackle gift giving.
Guess what season it is?
Yes, it's apple season, but also gift season!
It's the time of the year when I start a running iPhone list of Christmas gift ideas for my family and friends.
And I'm here to get you "thinking fruitful" about this gift giving season.
You see, gift giving is a BIG deal in my family. We all live across the U.S. in various places, so we have to plan at least a month ahead to find or order a gift, wrap it and package it to send to the birthday person. In our family, we love taking lots of time to consider our gift, picking the perfect card that says just the right (hilarious or tear-jerking) thing and presenting it in a pleasing way.
This isn't just commercialism, people. This is about using your time, energies and resources to show love and care. In a tiny tiny way, for me gift giving is a picture of what God's given me and the world.
I won't get too more philosophical, but as you can tell, I am one of those people who is still supporting the greeting card/stamp industry. Call me old fashioned, if you wish, but I hope all in all it's thoughtful.
Also, I often find gift giving to be a wonderful challenge to take what I know about a person (hobbies, interests, sense of humor) and combine those things into one useful yet fun gift.
There are quite a few places, local and online, that help me give unique and fantastic gifts (I hope) to the ones I love for holidays and birthdays!
Fayetteville Square photo courtesy of Fayetteville Flyer
Down the road a little (on College Ave.), you'll find The Handmade Market, a local shop that sells amazing foodie goodies (like jams, pesto, syrups and nice kitchen tools) as well as other unique gifts. Next, walk a couple of doors down to Ozark Natural Foods for more treats for the person in your life who loves natural/local/organic goodies.
West Elm photo courtesy of www.forum.hr
West Elm- If your loved one is into fancy, modern touches for their home, West Elm is the place! And I'm a big fan of their clearance sales.
Anthropologie- This is the place for girly and fancy things to pamper you and your friend or family member with. I have some of their bowls and teacups which I love.
FashionABLE- This company is doing amazing things to help women in Africa by giving them jobs making beautiful scarves and leather products. I love doing good for others when I buy gifts!
For more Fair Trade items, check out Living with A-Holts, an inspiring fashion blog written by my friend from church, Grace Holt. She has a "Fair Trade Friday" series that will help you find some great gifts.
Also, look through this list of 12 Holiday Gifts that Give Back...and have you seen TOMS new marketplace?!
Where are your favorite places to shop for gifts?