BeCumming more local

I got an e-mail from a room-mom who asked us to sign up for various items for a Valentine’s Day party next week. Being the cheapskate budget-conscious person that I am, I signed up to send in 20 napkins. I figured I’d just do what I’ve done in the past and take a handful of napkins that we’ve bought in bulk in and throw them in a baggie to send in.

But something made me pause.

I didn’t want my son to be embarrassed of the napkins I sent in. What if the people who signed up for plates and cups sent in cutesy Valentine’s Day themed plates and cups? This IS the south, people. I’ve got to start learning their ways! What if the full-on party paraphernalia would be paired with our see-through cheapy-cheapy, white, buy-them-by-the-million napkins?

My next skinflint frugal idea was to run to the dollar store and pay $1.07 for a package of napkins.

But again, and this is SO uncharacteristic of me, I just didn’t feel right with that option either.

Since moving to Georgia, I’ve been trying to intentionally get to the know the town we live in. One way I started to do that is by using a website called Cumming Local that helps direct me to locally owned stores and services. I’ve even checked out a few local businesses and written articles for the website.

Cumming Local offered a challenge for 2012 for the residents of our county to pledge to become even “more local” in the new year. I didn’t formally sign up for the challenge, but I’m taking it nonetheless. They asked residents to commit to trying at least one new local business each month.

I searched the site and found that Party Depot is locally owned. So I typed the address into my trusty GPS and headed out with Taye in tow.

I’m so glad I did! I got to meet the owner, whom I recognized from her picture on the store’s site, and tell her that I found her store using the Cumming Local website. Win-win!

I appreciated the absolutely pristine store (we always have to use hand sanitizer before and AFTER being in a Dollar Store–“blech”, as Taye would say!) that was organized, bright, happy, and I was thrilled at how competitively priced it was! And Taye loved looking at all of the balloons around the perimeter of the store. Lots and LOTS of great balloons!

I found exactly what I needed–a package of frilly, heart-y Valentine’s Day napkins for the girls and a package of Georgia Bulldogs napkins that the boys (and Liam’s teacher, who is a big dawgs fan) will get a kick out of. Win-win-win!

Yeah, I spent a few dollars more than I would have somewhere else, but I think the importance of affirming local entrepreneurs trying to start and keep a business going in a really tough economy is well worth those extra two bucks. I am also all for pulling together as a community and supporting the businesses that are going to give back to the community that we live in.

I’m already excited about my next local business beneficiary, apparently there is a new donut shop in town! And since I didn’t try a new local business in January, I have some ground to make up…

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7 thoughts on “BeCumming more local”

  1. Great job trying local businesses. That would be hard when you want to get the most for your money; sometimes… Sometimes, it’s not as cost-INeffective as we think it may be.
    I’m just going to have to totally chew you out for using hand sanitizer, though! You’re killing your kids immune system w/ that stuff. Plus, it’s not getting dirt off. It’s just a false sense of security that is actually compromising their immune system, not helping it! (Okay, off my soapbox now…)

    1. Amy, I have to admit, we don’t use hand sanitizer very often. It was my writer-y way of trying to kind of nicely say that the dollar store near us is disgustingly dirty. LOL!

      1. I didn’t think you were a germ freak, but I always get on people about all this anti-bacterial crap that our culture is so into. People think I’m a freak, but I am sooo against it. I don’t know what I’m going to do next year when my son goes to school. Schools seem to be sooo into hand sanatizer, and I don’t want Ewen using it at all!

      2. Yeah, our school uses it to excess, so much so that one of my sensitive skin kids always has chapped cracked hands. Maybe tell them he’s allergic to anti-bacterial sanitizer and has to use good, old-fashioned soap and water to wash his hands 🙂

    1. I have looked at your site many times–your stuff is bee-yoo-tee-full! As soon as we save up a little money to do some decorating around the house, I will be by!

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