Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Small business shopping

The blog has been quiet here for a few weeks. Between traveling again over Thanksgiving weekend and working a good bit more than I'm used to, my free time has been spent loving on my Isaac and unsuccessfully attempting to keep up with the housework. This is the first morning that I'm both at home AND Isaac is at Mother's Day Out, so once this blog is up and going, it's time to attack this filthy house. Call it nesting, but I plan on washing down the cabinet doors, cleaning the baseboards, dusting, vacuuming, and mopping.

Basically I'll be sore, contracting, and even snottier than I already am by the end of the day.

Is it too late to add a maid service to my baby registry?

To keep this post from being a total bore, I'd like to share with you a few of my favorite small businesses that I've either bought from or plan to buy from for Christmas gifts. I'm all about Amazon and their free-shipping, Prime membership, but there's also something really nice about giving a stay-at-home-mom the ability to stay home and make ends meet.

Check out these small business options, which can compliment or complete your Christmas list this year:

1. Christmas Cards via Etsy. There are hundreds of designers on Etsy that provide both printed holiday cards and digital cards that you can print yourself. For the last 3 years, I've ordered personalized, digital files that I print using Mpix. The result is generally cheaper than TinyPrints or Minted, is more unique than the options they offer, and supports these small businesses.

2. Father of Joy! Designs. I know I've mentioned Abby and her designs previously. This sweet gal is a fellow pastor's wife here in Texas and her store is full of great prints. This year, we ordered Isaac the set of 52 Verses Every Family Should Know as his "Read" option ("Want, Need, Wear, Read" is the concept I've adopted for all of his gift-able holidays) since he has a TON of books already... and only ever wants to read Curious George.

3. ICraveJewels. I ordered a set of her super cute, super sparkly earrings for my soon-to-be-12 year old niece. I think she will LOVE the bling... do people even say the word bling anymore? Either way, I kind of want a set for myself as well, as long as everything else in this great shop. Even better, she frequently posts specials and discount codes for her Facebook fans!

4. Food gifts. Personally, I think food gifts are perfect for that person on your Christmas list who already has everything. This year, I ordered several delicious things from Zingerman's to send friends and family. Chances are good you can find something delicious that will fulfill any vice your family members might have.

5. Direct Sales. I have dozens of friends who sell various products from different direct sales companies. Jamberry, Thirty-one Gifts, Stella & Dot, Pampered Chef, doTerra, Pink Papaya, Rodan & Fields, and so on. Maybe this one is a little more of a stretch, but these lovely ladies do earn a commission from their product sales, which is often either an income supplement or the means by which they stay home full time. Either way, these products make fantastic gifts!

I could go on and on, but that blasted housework is calling my name! What are some of your favorite small businesses?

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