Food For Thought

Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX Enterprises Inc.

Here is some food for thought...regardless if you’re Canadian or American.

Every Christmas it seems that the gifts get bigger and much more expensive...and most of those gifts come from giant factories outside our native lands. Let’s be realistic...I know it’s impossible to buy 100% Canadian; without routine importing and exporting our country would shut down.

But, as a gift to our fellow Canadians (more so our local business men and women) maybe Christmas time is when we should resist purchasing anything that’s made in China, or some foreign land. At least consider spending some of our hard earning cash in our own neighbourhoods.  

Each month, and I suspect more so at Christmas time, foreign factories provide Canadians with monstrous piles of cheaply produced goods -- merchandise that has been produced at great expense to our Canadian small businesses and the national labour force.

I received sort of a chain-letter email that got me thinking about these issues, and it made absolute sense to me. I’m sure it will to you went something like this:

Make this Christmas more about our economy rather than other nations. With the other eleven months, I’m sure there will be enough spending to keep the foreign factories open.

This year Canadians can and should give the gift of genuine concern for other Canadians.

Doesn’t use the excuse of nothing can be found that is produced by Canadians hands. Because there absolutely is! It's time to use your head...think outside the wrapping of boxes, people.  

Here are some gift ideas that would actually help stimulate our local economy...

Everyone -- yes EVERYONE gets their hair cut...even our pets!  Why not purchase gift certificates from your local coiffure/barber or pet groomer?

Gym/fitness memberships, karate classes, ballet lessons, ball-room dancing. Skating lessons, or shinny get-togethers. These could be fantastic gifts...and for all ages. Everybody lately is thinking about some type of social and health improvement.

Who wouldn't appreciate getting their car fully detailed?  Small, locally owned
detail shops and car washes would, I’m sure, love to sell you a gift certificate or a
book of gift certificates.

Are you one of those extravagant givers who think nothing of plonking down
your dollars on a foreign made flat-screen? Perhaps that grateful gift receiver would like their pool professionally opened or closed, their driveway sealed, or the lawn mowed for the entire summer, or the driveway plowed every time it snows this winter, or my favorite; green fees paid at the local golf course.

There are it seems hundreds of owner-run restaurants -- all offering gift
certificates. And, if your intended isn't the fancy eatery sort, what about
a half dozen breakfasts at the local breakfast joint.

Remember, folks this isn't about big National chains -- this is about supporting your home town
Canadian with their financial lives on the line to keep their doors open.

How many people could use an oil change for their car, truck or
motorcycle, done at a shop run by the Canadian working guy?

Thinking about a heartfelt gift for mom? Mom would LOVE the services of a
local cleaning lady for a day, a month, or regularly every other week.

Computers are always in need of something, and I KNOW I can find some young person who is
struggling to get his/her repair business up and running.

OK, you were looking for something more personal. Local crafts people spin
their own wool and knit them into sweaters & scarves. They make jewellery, paint pictures, and pottery and beautiful wooden furniture. Contractors who’ll plant or weed your garden, or completely landscape your property.

Plan your holiday outings at local, owner operated restaurants and leave
your server a nice tip. And, how about going out to see a play or ballet at
your hometown theatre.

Musicians need love too, so find a venue showcasing local bands.

Honestly, people, do you REALLY need to buy another item from the store selling dollar items? When you buy any foreign product, how much of the price stays inside the community. If you have those kinds of bucks to burn, leave the mailman, trash guy or babysitter a nice BIG tip.

You see, Christmas should no longer be about draining Canadian pockets...Christmas is and has always been about caring. Encourage Canadian small businesses to keep plugging away. By doing so, it will prove we Canadians care about our communities, and the benefits will come back to us in ways we couldn't imagine.

Try and make this part of a new Canadian Christmas tradition.

Forward this to whomever you’d like - post it to discussion
groups – Blog about it like I did -

This is a revolution of caring about each other, and isn't that what Christmas is all about?

Add me as an associate, and let me know your thoughts on the subject.

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