I just discovered 100 Mile Diet website. The goal of Alisa Smith and James MacKinnon, creators of this diet, was to eat foods and beverages produced within a 100 mile radius of their home. Their website has lots of great resources, especially if you're just starting out. I liked their 13 reasons for eating local. I find it exciting that the concept of eating locally keeps popping up in various media. The more voices that talk about living a more earth friendly life, the more likely we are to be heard!!
In non-envrionmentally friendly news, I find it somewhat torturous to listen to radio and tv this time of year. Just reading a newspaper peeves me. Everything this time of year is about consumption. It starts with the inherent gluttony associated with Thanksgiving smattered across sales fliers, pushing everyone into a grocery store frenzy. I defy you to find an empty parking space or a free shopping cart in a grocery store today.
If we stop to breathe and think long enough, we might remember that Thanksgiving is about being thankful. It should be a time for families and friends to gather together and enjoy each other's company, not a time to empty the shelves of the local grocery store.
Tomorrow morning we will be assaulted with advertisements that have become the Macy's Thanksgiving parade. Don't misunderstand me, I really enjoy the parade itself. I even like the silly, at times obviously scripted, banter between the hosts. I just can't stand the number of commercials that one must endure during the parade. I can't stand the obnoxious way kids make demands in commercials. I can't stand the fact that we are expected to spend, spend, spend. If you're short on cash, not to worry, those nice folks at visa, mastercard, disover and american express will help you out. Grrr!!!
The other day at school my daughter's teacher announced that it was impossible to be an Amercian and not be in debt. My daughter took exception to that comment and informed the teacher that her parents were not in debt. She told her teacher we didn't have car loans or credit card debt. Her teacher refused to believe her. Leen got indignant and told the teacher all we have is our mortgages. The teacher was gleeful, essentially saying I told you so. Leen was so pissed off.
"So if you were renting you wouldn't be in debt??" she asked me. I told her technically not, but you'll alway need to pay for the place you live in and we're less than 9 years away from owning both houses outright. That doesn't sound like traditional debt to me. She shook her head and said something like, my teacher doesn't believe people like you exist.
The entire holiday season caters to people who don't believe you can be frugal and happy. No wonder Leen's teacher couldn't fathom our lifestyle choices. So.......
I will not go to a grocery store today.
I will not be taken in by the slick commercials that bombard me tomorrow morning.
I will not become inpatient with my children, especially the younger ones, when they begin to get the screaming-I-wants after viewing the parade.
I will not be made to feel guilty about not participating in the "let's get up at 3 am to wait in the parking lot, coupons in hand, until the big box store opens so I can get a great price on ____."
I will make my Thanksgiving meal using foods already in my home, many of which were locally grown.
I will enjoy the company of my family and friends.
I will encourage my family to take holiday buying down a notch.
I will enjoy creating handmade holiday gifts for the people closest to me and I will encourage and help my children to do the same.
Happy Thanksgiving to All!