There are a few things in my life that make me smile every time I see them.
Lately, it’s my cutting board that creates this joyous response.
I love my cutting board. It’s made of solid teak. It’s durable and hardy. Its wood pattern is an ever-changing work of art. Its carved handle is smooth and satiny.
I smile every time I use it because even though it was made in Bali, Indonesia, I bought it in the small Saskatchewan town of Grenfell. After using my incredible Balinese cutting board for several weeks now, I have vowed to return to The Village Merchant in Grenfell and buy every cutting board in stock to give as Christmas gifts.
My daughter’s fleece-lined leggings also come from Grenfell, as do my favourite leggings and my best bathing suit. There is not much that CR Trenz department store in downtown Grenfell doesn’t have, from yarn to socks to shower curtains to swim gear.
Then there’s Wawota—have you been to Wawota lately? Front Porch Interiors is packed to the rafters with stylish furniture in sumptuous fabrics and towering works of art in moods from rustic to modern. There are also lotions and potions and purses and pillows.
And what about Indian Head where one step into Sherry’s on Grand will not only net you a super salad with everything from crab, capers and candied almonds in it, but also gifts galore—the be-jeweled jewelry, the teapots, the fashions, the flowers.
In my own hometown of Montmartre, Sask., I can get fashion-forward jeans, designer boots and a glittery Christmas blouse at Sisters Boutique while on my way to pick up my daughter’s new crayons and a birthday present for her friend at Pharmasave.
If you look around your rural town, I’m sure you’ll find the exact same thing: the pharmacy that also carries jewelry, craft kits and Christmas cards and the gas station that happens to stock Rider gear.
This Christmas, as the box stores continue to bring in their big boxes with cookie cutter Christmas gifts inside, I encourage you to take a look in your own town, or the town down the road, for a local gift.
When you buy something in your hometown, you’re not only taking home a present, you’re taking home a story, and quite possibly something you will smile about for years to come.
For me, it’s my teak cutting board from Bali that I bought in Grenfell, Sask.
What will this holiday season inspire you to buy in your own neck of the woods?
I’d love to hear what you bought and where you bought it—email me at Lcfroese@sasktel.net and I just might share your story in an upcoming column.
Email comments to LCfroese@sasktel.net and follow Christalee Froese’s 21days2joy Blog at 21days2joy.wordpress.com