Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Noonday Giveaway!

We have a WINNER!

Big huge congratulations to Heather Kostecki! Heather, send me a message on FB (or comment again on the blog) to confirm your email address so Rebecca can send you your voucher!

Thanks so much everyone for being part of the giveaway! This was really fun! And if you didn't win, go back to Rebecca's site and buy yourself something pretty to console yourself. I promise this is the kind of splurge you won't regret later. :)

Over the past several years, we have been really paying attention to how we spend our money. I don't mean that we are always searching for the best deal, although I do try to save money when I can. I mean we are watching what our money does after it leaves our hands. Are the foods and clothing we buy results of child or slave labor?  Are employees and workers treated fairly? Is there evidence that a company values money over people? Have I contributed to injustice or oppression in making my purchase? I want to be aware of what my money does when I spend it.

Generally, there is a higher cost to great deals.  That cheap article of clothing is cheap for a reason.  There is a low-cost retail chain with a tagline of "Life is Better" (or something like that) and it makes me want to cry. Sure, it might be better FOR ME to pay less, but what about the assembly line worker who can't afford to feed his/her children or the child who is forced to work and unable to attend school because it's the only way to feed the family? A lower price doesn't necessarily make life better for everyone.

That is why we only buy fair-trade chocolate and drink fair-trade coffee. It's why I spend more on clothing now and look for fair-trade items. And I know there are lots of ways we fail in this area. I wish we could do more but for now we do the best we can.  I was so excited when I discovered Elegantees! It's really affordable, very cute shirts and dresses sewn by women who have been rescued out of the sex trade. Their staff is all volunteer so all proceeds go directly to the women they are serving. Love them!

I have this shirt but sewed up the sleeves.
It's my favorite!

Let me be honest. I'm no fashion guru.  Until last year I mostly wore jeans and t-shirts and I've just recently started really wearing jewelry. During our adoption process, I wore the same necklace every single day. Rob bought it for me in Swaziland just before we started our adoption and I plan to give the necklace to Amani's wife on their wedding day. He grabbed it the day I brought him out of the orphanage and he broke the chain - perfect timing! And after he came home, I wore a cross from Gondar every day. I've just started changing my jewelry every day!

And then my friend Rebecca (who also introduced me to Elegantees) started talking about the Noonday Collection. I was excited to find a cool place to buy fair-trade jewelry and accessories. And I'm thrilled that I have two Noonday pieces: a bracelet from India and a necklace from Ethiopia.

Here's how Noonday works: they partner with artisans in 3rd world countries, enabling them to sell their wares in a much larger market and at prices that allow them to feed their families. When you buy a Noonday piece, you also get the story behind it. My necklace is from the Mt Entoto region of Addis Ababa in Ethiopia (I blogged about the firewood carriers here).  The women who made my necklace are HIV positive and selling their jewelry enables them to afford their medication. You know, so they can stay alive. That's exactly what I want my money to do when it leaves my hands! And on top of that, my necklace is made of reclaimed artillery shells from past wars. It is fair trade and recycled, y'all! Can you hear my heart singing?

I rock it with my red TOMS... 'cause I'm cool like that.

So I thought Noonday was pretty cool. Then I started talking to Rebecca about doing this blog post and did a little research. Not only does Noonday invest in our brothers and sisters around the world to assist them in earning sustainable wages, but they donate 10% of their profits to adopting families!!! That means they are both helping families keep and raise their children as well as helping children who desperately need parents find their way home. I don't know how it can get any better than that.

Oh wait - I know how! How about a $25 gift voucher to Noonday so you can be a part of empowering others too? That's right! Rebecca has graciously offered me a $25 gift voucher to give away (she is that awesome, y'all!) on my blog! And the fall line comes out today! Lucky us!

So here's what to do: Go to Rebecca's Noonday page, scope it out, and decide what you would spend your gift voucher on if you won. Comment here and tell me what you picked. I'll pick a random winner on Wednesday, September 4st. Don't forget to leave me your email address; Rebecca will email the voucher directly to the winner! 

Want an extra entry? Share this post (on FB, Twitter, whatever) and comment (again) telling me you did!

Me? I'm saving my pennies for my next Noonday purchase!

Embellished Belt
oh love

And I am just a teeny tiny bit obsessed with these.
Made in Ethiopia of course.