Sunday, October 17, 2010

Weekend Freakout

Apropos of nothing, I found this picture when my iPhone synced with my Mac Book.  It was taken at the Lego Store when we went to DisneyLand in August (how could it be that it's already been two months?!?!) and it makes me crazy happy.
It's been a weekend of extremes around here...
The Giants game was SO FUN on Saturday and SO NOT FUN on Sunday.
It was sunny and breezy on Saturday and cold and dreary on Sunday.
Saturday was a whirlwind of activity between farm visits and lunch with friends, errands, a visit with a dear friend for most of the evening and a late-night grocery store run.  Sunday was a nothin' doin' day, with the first fire of the season and whole lot of cozy-ing up around The Shire.

 Typical of this nutty weather, for the week before our drizzly Sunday, we had near-record setting highs.  Each morning, I would get up early and hang a load of wash on the line.  When I got home, everything was plenty dry, so Scotty and I would remove everything and start over again the next day.  I needed a refresher of clothes pins last weekend, so I chose to stop by a local hardware store, instead of a Target, to pick up a package.  I need a clothes pin bag.  I really do.  I keep them in a bucket that hangs on a hook on the back fence, and that's the reason why I needed new clothespins...the bucket pools water whenever there's precipitation, then the wood gets moldy or the springs get rusty or the whatever gets however and then, next thing you know, I'm down to a small handful of working pins.

 This cute and simple pin bag was at the local hardware store.  It was only $5.00 so the price was definitely right.  A little too right, if you know what I mean?  So I flipped it around and, sure enough, made in china was stamped on the back.

I started to wonder:  where, exactly, would I be able to purchase something like this that wouldn't have come from China?  How do I show my monetary support for products that come from fair trade practices, support local economies, and don't come with the social and ethical burden of being made in countries unhindered by child labor laws or environmental protections?

I went home and decided to just make one myself.  I used one of Scotty's old shirts, and basically just sewed up the bottom.  Nothing could have been easier.  Also?  It turns out?  It was free, which is actually cheaper than even $5.00.  And I love it, I do.  But I also recognize that I'm no closer to solving my original dilemma.

This turn to cold, fall weather, reminds me that our family needs a slipper refresher.  I found some adorable slippers at Satch and Sol and The Boys and I will get some (nothing there for Erik sad!) and you know what?  I will pay about $100 for the slippers.  I guess if I went to Wal Mart I could get three pairs of slippers for less than half that.  But I can afford it, in the sense that I have the money, but the real trick is that it's how I choose to spend what money I have.  Since I'm going to spend twice as much on these slippers, I'm not also going to have money to buy...what?  I'm not sure.  But whatever it is, I don't need it.

So.  Now.   I need to get rain coats and boots for the boys, and Scotty really wants an umbrella.  
And who can blame him?!  That's fun, right there.  But I find it so distressing that I can't even find these items made (locally) (in my state) (okay, I give up, anywhere in the country) even though I am ready and willing to pay 3 times what their cheap import counterparts command. 

I'm going to go wash my face and lie down.  Somebody fix this while I'm gone.  Thanks.


  1. I'll get right on that for ya. ;)

  2. Oh Mia, when you get this one figured out, will you please let me know? It drives me crazy that EVERYTHING at Target is imported from China. Just finding everyday items made in the US at a local store is just about impossible.

  3. @Carmen ~ Oh thanks, you do that! ;) Right in between crafting for the fair, teaching kindergarten, and everything else! haha

    @Laurie ~ I know! I haven't gone to Target in so long...since before Summer, I think? It's just a consumerism-suck money-hole in so many ways (though I do miss the convenience!) so I have tried to avoid it in general. Then there was the whole dust-up over the (owner?) pouring all that cash into Prop 8-like causes, and I I can't do it. Maybe that's over now? I'm not very up on the news, you know me! But I don't care, because I got into the habit of not going, and here I am, not going. :)

    @Michelle ~ Is that true?! That would be great! I checked on Land's End suppliers, and they say "most of them, over 250 suppliers, are located in the US, some in the British Isles, and some in the Pacific Rim." I wasn't sure how to take that; I'm not against people making a living, FOR SURE, but I don't support China's take on civil liberties, labor practices, environmental issues, etc., so I feel most strongly in that case. Then I saw their "Standards of Business Conduct" and I'm prety much sold. I'm impressed with how easy they've made it to research their position, if nothing else. I'll check out ll bean now, too. Maybe between the two of those (I prefer to shop online, actually) I'll be set!