I mean, first off, why not? Your community is where you live, where the people you love live and where your family is building a life. I think supporting our own is one of the most important things we can do in life. We all need each other. Okay, so I get it. You may like to shop at Walmart because you can shop whenever you want and it seems convenient and you like to get good “deals.” But, seriously, let’s think about this. When you shop at chain you are more than likely buying imported products (sometimes from sweatshops) at what may seem like a saving to you but then where does that money go? I’ll tell you where it goes; to the corporate offices, with these big shots that are already rolling in money. You’ll never see the money that you work so hard for in your community again. And those savings? Pay attention to prices over time. Big chains always drive prices up, slowly but surely, as they control more of the market. A few years ago you may have gotten Walmart bread for 97 cents (they seem to have a thing for this number) but as the competition dies down they will raise the prices! But when you shop local the profits stay local. Your money is going back into your community. You’re helping that single mother down the street put food on her table or you’re helping a neighborhood family keep paying for their kids dance lessons and textbooks. Not to mention, products and services are local and you can walk out of a mom and pop store knowing that you supported your community.
And let’s just be real. If you’ve been in one Walmart, you’ve been in them all. All of there stores look almost identical. They’ve got these cookie cutter layouts that don’t feel personal at all. There’s nothing unique about them at all. When you drive through town isn’t it refreshing to see new local businesses, individualized with different layouts and decor. Each visit is welcoming. When is the last time you walked into a big chain store and they said ” Hey Laura, how are the kids?” We take a few kids with us every time we go to the Farmer’s Market. A few weeks ago we had our oldest with us and I loved seeing the look on his face when one of the vendors asked “How did you guys like the brussel sprouts last week?” Yeah, you’re not getting that from a big chain store. When you shop local, it’s intimate and makes you feel special.
So, one of the biggest concerns for most adults is jobs. We need more jobs….There aren’t enough jobs…etc. When you shop local you are helping to create jobs within your community. Did you know that local businesses pay their workers more than big chains do? They also employ more people. And I don’t know about you but I would feel great having my children work for someone where we personally knew the owners.
I haven’t always shopped local but it’s not hard to see the benefits. Whenever I shop now I just feel so much better about myself, my community and what I’ve bought. I encourage everyone to shop local, buy local and eat local. My goal for 2016 is to commit to this full time.
And my favorite reason to shop local is the awesome people and products I come across. Today at the Farmer’s Market I met Kim of TapRoot Tees. She hand paints these awesome t-shirts out of her old farm house. I only picked up a couple today but I’m sure I’ll be buying tons more as her designs really speak to the hippie in me. My favorite from today “Free Your Soul, Go Barefoot”