As the holidays approach, giant Asian factories are kicking into high gear to provide us with monstrous piles of cheaply produced goods -- merchandise that has been produced at the expense of our country's economy. This year could be different if we give the gift of genuine concern for our neighbors.
Who wouldn't appreciate getting their car detailed? Small, locally owned detail shops and car washes would love to sell you a gift certificate or a book of gift certificates.
Do you have a big gift budget? Perhaps a gift recipient would like his driveway sealed, or lawn mowed for the summer, or driveway plowed all winter, or some rounds at the local golf course.
There are so many owner-run restaurants -- all offering gift certificates. And, if your parents, kiddos, friends aren't the fancy eatery sort, what about a half dozen breakfasts at the local breakfast place? This isn't about big national chains -- this is about supporting your home town neighbors with their financial lives which are on the line to keep their doors open.
How many people couldn't use an oil change for their car, truck or motorcycle, done at a shop run by a local working guy?
Thinking about a heartfelt gift for mom? Mom might LOVE the services of a local cleaning lady for a day.
Computers can always use tune-ups, it seems, and I KNOW there are young people majoring in computer sciences who need extra cash for tuitions or owners of small computer businesses where there's someone who's struggling to get his repair business up and running.
Do you REALLY need to buy another ten thousand Chinese lights for the house? Why not use those bucks to tip the mailman, trash guy or babysitter?