I LOVE Kansas City. Not just in the way that I wear our sports teams’ shirts, I love KC in the way that I cry a little when we do something big. I love it in the way that I could never think about living somewhere else. I love it in the way that when something feels not right I ask how I can help. Kansas City isn’t just a place I live, it’s a place I *help* live. However, there are some...challenges...to living in the Midwest. This winter has been especially hard on small businesses and small businesses are, in my opinion, the lifeblood of a city. When weather sucks and businesses close they lose money when you’re not part of a chain and your one or two locations close for several days it can be the difference between being able to paying your bills and not.
When we support local businesses more of the dollars spent stay within the city, more revenue within the city helps grow our economic footprint. Shopping locally also helps you get to know your maker and how your products are made, in the age of ‘sparking joy’ with our belongings I find knowing the person who makes or sells something and why they do what they do makes my purchases more meaningful. Knowing your maker and supporting small businesses generally means your customer service is better and service experience on the whole is more personal.
I’m working on being more mindful with my money...because I teach yoga and own my own business but also, being more mindful with my money is part of my path to living more mindfully. I started really considering this shift when a business I enjoy posted they needed help to stay open. It’s one of those places I enjoy but don’t frequent for a million little excuses. In that one post the stark reality of what happens when we don’t support the businesses we enjoy hit me hard. I don’t want small businesses to go away. The number of chain restaurants and stores we have isn’t what determines the character of this city, the families who love what they do so much that they put it out for the world to experience are how I want my city defined. Then the ultra cool ladies at KC Local Eats posted about sharing your favorite businesses with #MyKCFaves and I realized how many wonderful places there are in this city. Which brings us to March. March is often centered around Lenten observance for me but this didn’t feel like it fits within those bounds. This is something different.
For a few years (and inspired by Faryle ) I have only purchased my holiday gifts from local companies and makers. But why limit myself to just that one time of year? My challenge to myself for March is to Live Local. For thirty one days I will only shop/visit places locally owned. A few caveats:
Obviously pay my bills to businesses owned outside of KC
I can purchase something produced outside of KC as long as it is sold in a locally owned store (e.g. I can buy Town House crackers but from Price Chopper vs Wal-Mart)
Buy local brands if/when possible, I see you Best Choice Brand
Talk about where I invest my money locally and ask others to do the same
How can you help?
Join me for a local day, week, or whole dang month. I’ll be posting using #LiveLocalKC and invite you to do the same.
Talk about the businesses you like on social media and in person, recommendations matter!!
Have a recommendation that I should check out? Add it HERE.