Wednesday, December 3, 2014

My Favorite Fair Trade Christmas Ornaments {GIVEAWAY}

This is our first year really making an effort to decorate for Christmas. In years past, we've spent the majority of December in Southern Oregon and so haven't set up a tree or started any of our own traditions. We've had a tree once in our seven years of marriage! 

The girls are really excited for Christmas. They see lights and say, "look mom! Christmas!" and ask, "Can we do Christmas?" So Saturday we're heading out to get a tree, and we'll pull out our rubbermaid of decorations and attempt to make this place more festive.

I also now understand why in my younger years our family ornaments were pretty much indestructible. We had the neat wooden figurines that were fun to make-believe with and other handmade baubles and hot-glued globs. I remember wondering why we didn't do a "fancy tree" like some other families did, but now I understand 100%! Little hands aren't so gentle with glass balls and breakables. 

Along with some vintage wooden ornaments passed down from our parents and some dollar tree balls, I ordered these ornaments from Trades of Hope during their Christmas sale, going on right now! Each ornament is made by a group of women artisans and the production supports themselves and their families. The fabric hearts are made by women in Costa Rica, the gold stars and silver figures are made by women in India, and the tin ornaments are made by women in Haiti. 

I love that we will look at these ornaments over the next decade(s) and know that they made a difference in a family's life. I also like that I will be able to share with my kids stories of empowering others and thinking about the way we live our lives and the way people have to fight for their living in less affluent areas. It will be neat to see how our conversation about these topics evolve over the years as they grow in maturity and understanding, and hopefully it will be one of the ways to plant seeds in their minds and hearts for seeing to the needs of others as just a way of life. 

Costa Rica 
India

Haiti
India

The Trades of Hope Christmas sale is going on NOW if you'd like to purchase your own set of ornaments. They also make thoughtful little gifts if the sets are separated, and each ornament comes with its own "artisan card" that tells about the women who made it and the area it comes from.

As a Trades of Hope "compassion entrepreneur" for the last year and a half, I've been able to make some side income while supporting women artisans and families in several countries around the world. I don't devote a ton of time to it, but Christmas time is definitely the most fun! If you're interested in learning more about becoming a Trades of Hope Compassion Entrepreneur, shoot me an email! This is the mission in a nutshell:

"Trades of Hope empowers women to create sustainable businesses worldwide. We want women to realize their potential as world changers, business owners, dream creators, and heroes of their own stories. We are looking for American women to rise up and be the voice for the women who have no voice, empowering them to rise out of poverty. Become a compassionate entrepreneur to change the world. Host a party to be a part of something bigger than yourself."

I'd like to give away the beautiful Haitian recycled tin snowflake ornament on the bottom left! 

Enter to win below and I'll get it to you in time for Christmas, and check out my Trades of Hope page for beautiful fair trade items: jewelry, scarves, home decor, handbags, stationery, and more! 

HOW TO ENTER: 

1. Tell me your favorite Christmas decoration from your childhood. Mine was our nativity scene! 

2. Visit my Trades of Hope page and tell me your favorite item, Christmas or otherwise. 

Leave separate comments for both entries to be entered twice! 



11 comments:

  1. My most favorite ornament is a wooden skier, who has a string attached between his legs and when you pull it his arms and legs go flying up sideways! It's on the tree now and the kids love it!

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  2. I think my favorite are the copper wire birds. Great idea about giving the ornament sets as gifts!

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  3. My parents collected nativities from every country they visited and I loved them!

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  4. My favorite are the copper stars!

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  5. I don't really have a favorite from childhood. We had a tree and Christmas every year but it wasn't always a happy time in our house. Since becoming an adult, I've taken ownership of what Christmas means to me personally and what I hope to pass on to my children. So my current favorite ornament is a handmade ceramic ornament celebrating my son's birth.

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  6. I'm loving the cobalt infinity scarf! Or maybe the reindeer believe ornament...

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  7. Barbra, I'm so sorry the holidays weren't happy times for you growing up, but how amazing for your children. Your experiences and the way you are "owning" your Christmas will certainly make their memories that much more rich!

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  8. How cool! I have a thing for nativities, too! I have three and will certainly be collecting more over the years :)

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  9. We found one of those guys too in our ornament bin, only it's a nutcracker. He's kept us entertained for sure!

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  10. Hi Barbra, can you give me your email address so I can contact you to send you an ornament?? :)

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  11. Wow, this is awesome, thanks!! blair9903 AT yahoo DOT com

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I appreciate your comments and conversation - please leave your email address when commenting so I can respond! If you want a direct response, you can also email me at meg(dot)kimmelshue@gmail.com.

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