Today is Small Business Saturday, but I am continuing my stay-at-home weekend, knitting and eating leftovers. I am passionate about supporting small business, but I do support them throughout the year, so I feel okay about staying in today. We have many wonderful shops in our beautiful little downtown, and I frequent the tea store, the bird store, the cupcake store -- smile -- the family owned jewelry store (for special occasions and repairs), and many more, including an antique and craft mall. I'd rather spend a little more and do my part to keep these wonderful little stores afloat. It's my small way of saying "no" to the big corporate takeover of individual entrepreneurs. I'm paid back with personal service, great conversation, and a sense of community. I highly recommend it.
But today I am working on a scarf that I'm going to donate to a local women's shelter. I'm a pretty beginner knitter, but I am trying to make as beautiful a scarf as I can. I won't donate anything that isn't the best I can do. Any mistakes are fixed, and made perfect. I think it's important to donate the best we have, not ripped or dirty or expired (in the case of food) items.
My mother-in-law once donated a number of beautiful suits to a local church rummage sale. She had them all professionally dry-cleaned before she donated them! She was told just to "throw them in that pile over there" when she went to drop them off. She refused, insisting that they be properly hung up. My own mother makes sure everything she donates is mended, if needed, and washed and folded nicely.
We show our respect when we do these things. We don't give away food that is expired or that we don't like. We give away the best we have. I try and remember this as I knit today, and make a scarf that I would want to wear, and even will feel some regret giving up.