putting our money where our heart is

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Honey Bees for Christmas

For $30 you can buy a gift of honey bees

For $30 you can buy a gift of honey bees

Yesterday I collected Christmas lists for my neices and nephew.  My sisters asked what I wanted and I suggested they make a donation in my name.

I said, “Doesn’t have to be much. Anywhere you want. I really like causes in Africa. Do some online research. It’s educational. That’s partly why I like suggesting it. It’s good for people in Africa. It’s good for me (makes me feel good), It’s good for you as you’ll learn something and be philanthropic, It’s good for your kids cause they can learn from it too. Everybody wins!”

My sister Kimberly responded with this, “Hahaha, really? That’s what you’d like? That’s a really selfless suggestion- and it almost made me teary. Almost. But I’m made of stone.”

We talked about it a bit more and by the end she was really excited.  She thought it was a great idea.  What a relief!  I said I was glad she liked the idea because she might get something similar for Christmas from me.

I told her that I’d heard you could buy Honey Bees for someone in Africa and make your donation in honour of a loved one.  To this she said, “That is incredible! Ok! I’m seriously stoked.”

I had no idea it would go over so well!!!  And to my other sister, Jennifer, I explained that I’m turning into one of those little old ladies who just doesn’t have any room in her apartment for more stuff.  To this she replied, “Tell me about it. I have no room for anything like my impending second child. Literally.”

So, Honey Bees for Christmas – here’s what I found online:


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Black Friday Blues


I’m not participating in Black Friday. I’m saving my money for Pink Monday – a day of thinking about the needs of others.

I really wanted to go shopping today but lately I’m trying to shift my focus.  Trying to think more about how I use my “disposable” income.  Not to mention, since I took out a loan to pay my credit card bill, I’ve been trying to live within my means which, on my salary, doesn’t include much for new clothes or boots.  That’s my weakness – shopping.  That and going out with friends enjoying nice dinners, good wine, tickets to shows.  Oh and travel.  And of course, nesting! My husband and I still have the same self-adhesive brown floor tiles stuck to our wall in place of a proper kitchen backsplash.  It’s been like that since we moved in and I for one am obsessed with renovating that little corner of our abode.

It’s easy to obsess about all those things we “need” when everyone around us is doing the same thing.  I just want to try and remember once in a while what life is like for other people in this world.  I try to remember the people who don’t live in my city, my country or even my continent.  I only ever see them on television or in photographs but they are out there living every day with much less than what I have.  The last thing on their mind is color coding their decor.   They’ve probably never even heard of the  Smart TV with 3D.

So, I’m using Black Friday as the day to begin to write about something that I think about a lot, that has meaning for me and is the one area of influence I would be proud to say I’d had on another person’s life – giving back.  If Black Friday is about door crasher sales, buying new appliances at a discount and getting  a start on the most consumerist-driven time of the year (Christmas) then Pink Monday will be about sharing a bright new hope for the needs of others.