Friday, September 25, 2009

Up for a good challenge

I haven't done any of the blog-sponsored challenges for awhile. I figure living a simple-green-frugal (aka alternative) lifestyle on a daily basis is challenge enough. But there have been a couple really cool "challenges" announced that sounded right up my alley, so I've signed up.

Here's the scoop on both:

Buy Hand for the Holidays Challenge - 2009
Buy Hand for the Holidays - In other words, get out of the mall and let creativity be your guide. Crunchy Chicken is host for this holiday challenge, offering just 4 guidelines for gift-giving this season:
  1. Hand-make your gifts
  2. Buy gifts that are handmade by someone else (like from Etsy or a local craftsperson)
  3. Buy it used either from a thrift store, yard sale, Craigslist, Freecycle, etc
  4. Barter for your gifts
Having stepped out of the mainstream shopping arena years ago, this should be an easy challenge. I have plans to give my homemade breads and jams, as well as some honey and salsa from the farmers' market. Maybe I'll catch a baking bug and make some of my homemade granola too...

I also make all our holiday cards by hand, rescuing gently used paper from the recycling bin. Sure. It takes a little time, but each card is unique and I have fun doing it.

100 Day Challenge - With only 100 days left in the 2009 calendar (as of September 23), Chile challenges us to make a pact of our own to push our limits. Chile challenges herself to eat for free, using up preserved supplies and strategic bartering to get her through the next few months. So far, other participants are working towards exercise goals, decluttering, and eliminating plastics from daily life. As for little ole me? Like Chile, I'll be eating for free (other than a few dollars a week for fruit) from my own pantry of home-canned supplies, bulk rice, and bartering opportunities.

Are you up for a good challenge? Perhaps you'd like to add a personal touch to this holiday season buy making or purchasing hand-made gifts. Or how about a 100 day challenge of your own? Perhaps to save a little money, simplify life, get that bod into shape, or switch to a vegetarian/vegan diet. It's only 100 days...

You'll find links in the side-bar to both challenges. Will you join me? What challenges are you participating in this fall/winter?


Melanie said...

I LOVE this idea! I'll have to think about what to do for the "hundred days" one, but my New Year's Resolution this year was to do a 100% handmade Christmas! I'm already knitting away for the fam (and also hoping to knit for a Christmas sale our church is doing). Thanks for posting these! I'll link back to your blog when I do my post this evening. As always, thanks for your encouraging posts. They always help me get through the day.

Heather @ SGF said...

Melanie - That's wonderful! You must be really talented to do all that knitting. I can crochet, but only one kind of stitch so the baby blankets I make look all the same (other than a variety of colors). What all are you making?

The Cooking Lady said...

It's funny you mention buying or making handmeade gifts. Due to finances, we have been making food baskets for the last few years and we do not feel bad about it.

I cannot tlel you how mnay articles of clothes we have from family memebers that do not fit or are not our style.

Who doesn't like fresh baked bread or a batch of cookies or homemade granola (OK, my in-laws, never ate their granola because it was something healthy, so we took it back and ate it oursleves), but all in all our baskets are a big hit!

Heather @ SGF said...

Cooking Lady - I think my family has like the home baked goodies too. I wasn't sure about the homemade cards, but they're just going to throw them away anyway...