I’m a gift giver by nature. I’m constantly on the lookout for things that I think people will appreciate wherever I go.. especially on my travels. That’s just how I like to to express my love and gratitude. But lately I’ve noticed a permanent crease on my forehead from constantly furrowing my brows. I’m going to bed stressed, having stressful dreams, and then waking up stressed. It’s not solely the thought of holiday shopping that’s causing this, but it undeniably adds another layer of stress.
Jacob and I wanted this year to be different. We talked to our folks back in Atlanta and decided as a family to collectively opt out of buying gifts for each other and give back to our community and worthy organizations instead. After all, if we really think about it, we have everything we could ever need or want. Since we’ve been moving every year, it also helps us want less because we can see exactly how much we accumulate. It’s definitely not fun having to move lots of stuff around.
Where We’re Giving Back as a Family + Giving Tuesday Ideas:
We have some friends doing incredible work back in Atlanta by running an after school program. We feel privileged to call them our friends, because they are our heroes. Watch this video to learn more, and be a part of what they’re doing by purchasing something on their wish list to help provide for these kids.
This is also run by our friends who do the after school program above. They’re amazing peeps.. I’m telling you. This jewelry business supports Refugee families. If you want to learn more about it, we blogged a giveaway earlier this year. You can help simply by purchasing some jewelry from their store.
It’s a way to give loans to small businesses and entrepreneurs in the developing world. You can loan the money out again after you get paid back, so it’s a gift that keeps on giving. If you’re not signed up already, please sign up using my referral link, so that kiva will contribute $25 towards my next loan. :)
This organization was started by Seth, another friend of ours, and he and his team work hard to provide clean water all over the globe. We take having clean water for granted, while others around the world are suffering from water-born illnesses. As little as $20 can provide one person with safe drinking water for over 20 years. How awesome is that?!
We adopted Mika and Sebastian from the Furkids shelter. We were especially happy to get their latest Thanksgiving update. “Our cats and dogs are enjoying a great Thanksgiving feast today! While these loved ones await their very own home for the holidays, we give them every comfort of home possible. The cats enjoyed Friskies Turkey and Giblets and the dogs enjoyed a mixture of turkey, rice and green beans.” They need your help to provide that love and care, so please consider making a donation here.
We’d love for you to join in on any of these, because these are some of our favorite people doing great things. We’d also love to hear about the organizations you love supporting.
*Side note: Just to be clear, we’re not saying giving to charity is better than giving gifts. Giving gifts can be a wonderful thing especially when it’s thoughtful and meaningful. We were simply inspired by some friends (thanks Feits!) to try something different this year, and hope you might too. If you need gift ideas, we have that too! I would love for you to check out these gift guides on our blog:
- 25 Gifts for Travelers // A Travel Gift Guide
- 5 Experience Gifts Ideas All the Guys will Love
- Backpacking Gear List – Gifts for the Backpacker
Also, perfectly timed.. today, Dec 2, 2014, is National Giving Tuesday – a global day dedicated to giving back and encouraging and celebrating generosity!
How are you participating in Giving Tuesday?
Who or what cause would you like to support in the future?