How to Give Back this Thanksgiving

I’ve decided that I want to give back. Thanksgiving is in 3 days and it’s had me reflecting on all that I have to be thankful for in my life. I have my health, my family, people who love me and people to love. I have a roof over my head and food in my belly. I have the means to meet all of my children’s needs and that is a gift in itself.

The things I’m most thankful for are not things at all but people, my husband and children. Without him, this life would not be possible. Without him as my partner in this life, I’m not sure that I’d be who I am today. Since he came into my life, he’s been my soft place to land in the hard times, my biggest cheerleader in the down times and my constant supporter to go for my dreams. He’s given me the courage to be myself.

He gave me wings to fly in life. He showed me that I could do anything and be anything that I wanted and that’s a gift that I can never repay.

He’s the man who wakes up at 5 am to help me prepare Thanksgiving dinner and stays up until the wee hours of the night to hang streamers for birthday parties and wrap presents on Christmas ever. The man who learned how to decorate in fondant just so his 3-year-old could have the cake she wanted. The father who walks in the door exhausted from a 10 hour day and still gives the girls piggy back rides or pushes them on the swings until they say stop. The daddy who gets up at 2 A.M. just to rub away growing pains or de-lemur under the bed of a little person with a nightmare even though he has to get up for work at 5 am. He is a good man.

He lets me breakdown in those terrible hard moments of life and shields my wounded heart when I can’t. He always listens even when I’m rambling about absolutely nothing and never tries to fix me. He thinks I’m beautiful even when I feel my ugliest. He knows all of my weaknesses and never reminds me of them.

He always loves me unconditionally. He puts our family first even when that requires him to completely rearrange his life. He tells me he’s proud of me and I never wonder where I stand. He’s gentle, patient and understanding and I haven’t gushed about anyone this much aside form my children. I know that even if I had nothing else in the world, I have everything that I’ll ever need.

In 4 days is the biggest shopping day of the year, Black Friday, and I have so much to be grateful for that it’s made me want to give gifts that give back. Why not give meaningful gifts that make a difference not only in the lives of the recipient but also in the lives of those who produce the product. Win; Win.

Macy’s went to Haiti shortly after the January 12, 2010 earthquake and realized that despite the devastation there was an artist community that existed and was eager to bring their product to market. They launched a product line for sale at Macys.com and in stores, which employs 400 artists, paving the way to help rebuild the artisan sector of Haiti’s fragile economy by employing a Trade-Not-Aid system.

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Initiatives like Heart of Haiti and the work Macy’s is doing gives Haitian Artisans a sustainable income and fulfilling lives. These artisans are able to create beautiful, unique handcrafted items using only the scraps and materials they have around them.

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I have a few pieces from the Heart of Haiti collection that I have collected over the last few years and I can honestly say, they are some of my favorite pieces in my house. I am particularly fond of the metal pieces.

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If you’re going to be shopping anyways this holiday season, I would highly recommend that you consider buying a piece from the Heart of Haiti collection and not only feel good about giving someone you love a piece of high quality handmade merchandise but in knowing that you are giving an artist in Haiti the means to take care of their loved ones this season. Shouldn’t we all have something to be thankful for this holiday season?

Heart of Haiti can be found and followed on social media at @HeartofHaiti on Twitter and www.facebook.com/heartofhaiti on Facebook.

How will you give back?

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