Shopping online is easy, fast, and you can find WAY cooler stuff that Wally world offers. I know that we already missed (on purpose) Cyber Monday, but most places online still have a few days left before it's too late to ship by Christmas. With all of those options, and assuming that you, like me, have no where local to shop, other than Walmart (God Forbid), here is something to consider: I have found that all of the cool things that I pine for online can usually be found at a site that gives back to the global community. Sometimes these are small businesses, sometimes they are charitable organizations. But if you're gonna spend online, why not make it count twice, right? So here are some of my favorite online places to shop, and some of the coolest stuff you can find... and incidentally, I know if I post these links, the ads on my blog will correspond. And that is awesome.
1) SEVENLY . This place is the bomb. Each week they feature a new 7 day "campaign", where $7 for each item sold goes to a specific charity or organization. I have done some research into the company itself as well as the charities it supports, and you guys, it's legit. It is staffed by volunteers, so shipping is historically sporadic, but during the holiday season they have ramped up and introduced a 1-2-3 shipping policy, where Day 1 you order, Day 2 they process, Day 3 item ships. Which means you've got a few more days to get your order in before Christmas. They have a slew of awesome t-shirts themed around the movements they support, including Autism Speaks, Mercy Ships, and Show Hope, this week's campaign, supporting US adoptions for orphans in Asia. As if all of that wasn't enough, you can also buy really really awesome products from companies like Krochet Kids, who provide work to impoverished families in Uganda and Peru, to produce one of a kind crocheted goods. I have this hat. It is RAD.
They also sell Giving Keys, which make really cool gifts-that-keep-on-giving, and Pendleton throw pillow covers. Need I say more? Sevenly is an amazing way to get your holiday shopping done AND give back.
2) Bravelets.com - this website is pretty awesome too. For almost any cause you can imagine, you can order a very cool looking bracelet and $10 of the cost goes to the cause of your choice. You can even set up your own cause... one that is near and dear to me is the Wildland Firefighter Foundation, so I ordered the braided leather bracelet, knowing $10 went straight to WFF. And I love bracelets. Especially cool ones that mean something. Who can't stand a little reminder to "be brave"? I know I can.
3) TOMS.com - talk about writing the book on charitable spending, Toms might be one of the best examples of how to do it. Not only is all of their stuff RAD, as in, I want it all, but for every single THING you buy, they give one to a child in need - all over the world. I mean, how cool is that? And oh, by the way, they have coffee now. WHAT???? BRB, got some shopping to do.
4) OK, so this one isn't a charitable organization, per se, but it is a very small business, and they sell SO MUCH COOL STUFF, including Krochet Kids knits, and other fair trade, locally sourced stuff. I found Pulp & Circumstance when I had a few hours to kill in the cute little town of Newberg Oregon. I could have spent hours in there. And then I found their website. I have been hanging out on there A LOT. Although I haven't ordered yet, this is the first thing in my cart:
I know that there a lot more amazing places to shop online, with a little bit of looking, and maybe the extra bucks you spend count for extra Holiday Goodness because you know they are well spent. I could keep posting all night, but honestly I got distracted by all of my cool links and need to go back to my browsing.