So I have discovered that despite my best efforts to slow down and take each pre-holiday day with a smile, I am, indeed, behind the power curve and am rushing to put everything together last minute. Much like my previous statement, my days have been long and filled with lots. You, also, may have found yourself standing in line at the post office during your lunch break or re-visiting a store for another gift. I have tried to stay local this year, make baked gifts for neighbors and friends, and give gift certificates for local stores. But eventually, there is always a name-brand item on a certain family member’s list (no names mentioned here!) that brings me to the big-box store. So, how can I do this and still “stay green”? I would love suggestions, but for now, at the very least, I bring my own bags and a friendly neighborhood smile to everyone. Bringing our shopping bags to the grocery store is (or should be by now) a common practice for us – and bringing them into retail stores can spread that green message to even more people. I tend to collect my bags from various sources and especially ones with designs or pictures that start conversations. I have recently found one that is made locally, too. So even if my little girl’s present (oops!) isn’t made locally, at least I brought it home in a cotton bag made in NH. Enjoy the Holidays!