Saturday, May 3, 2008
Made in the USA
In a time of such economic struggle for a country that is so flawed, but remains so beloved to me, I have been putting a lot more effort in to buying products made in the United States. Though it is virtually impossible for every single product I buy to be made in the US, I am putting in my best effort. For example: if I am at the store and debating between two fabrics that I like equally, I check the label. Is one made (or at least printed) in the United States? If so, I purchase that one over one made elsewhere.
I have also been buying handmade in the United States whenever possible (thanks, Etsy!). I see so many things I love on Etsy, but they're made overseas. I think to myself - is there an alternative to this that I can buy that is made by someone from my own country? The answer is almost always "yes." Of course, this is definitely not to say that there is anything wrong with buying handmade things from overseas. I have just made a promise to myself that in my personal life, I'm going to try to buy things made in the United States whenever possible, and I encourage others to try to do the same when they can. I know that buying things made in the US often means spending more money and that times are already hard.
Another idea to help keep money invested in my local economy is to start shopping at the local Farmer's Market whenever possible. During the school year, my classes interfered with the one that they held here on Wednesdays. However, it is now summer time (for us college kids), and I am free to head on over there every week! This week will be my first week to go, and I'm so excited. I was looking at their website, and there are so many neat things to buy there. For example: buffalo meat! Yes, buffalo meat! I have never had it before, but Brendan says it's amazing. It also has about 1/4 of the fat of beef, or so I understand. Besides being excited about buffalo meat, it's strawberry season! Man, there's really few things better than garden-grown fresh strawberries.
The thing that got me thinking of all of this is the arrival of our economic stimulus check next week. Unfortunately, most of the money has to go toward putting deposits down on our new apartment, utilities, etc for our upcoming move. I'm sure that most people are going to be using it to pay off their piled-up bills, so how much it will actually "stimulate" the economy is yet to be seen. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that things will start looking up soon for this beloved country of mine.
Buffalo photo courtesy of Lonesome Prairie Bison - Morrison, OK