Here’s what I adore – the spirit of generosity that pervades the holidays.
Here’s what I abhor – billionaires making obscene profits off the backs of overburdened warehouse employees due to my generosity.
Hence, my 2022 guide includes gifts from either local businesses here in San Diego County or ethical businesses with a larger mission and purpose behind what they do.
Since opening in Carlsbad Village during the pandemic,
Barrio Glassworks has provided local glass artists with an incredible space to
gather and perfect their craft. This family-owned business is both a public
glassblowing studio and a retail gallery. Additionally,
they offer make-your-own
sessions aimed at introducing the participants to the world of hot glass by
having them create their own paperweight. Private lessons are available for those
who want to further their glass-blowing skills. @barrioglassworks
Cat & Craft
If you like cats and like coffee, this adorable café in
Vista is going to be your home away from home. Cat & Craft partners with The Rescue House to foster kittens and cats
in search of their fur-ever home. With a purchase of a Cat Lounge ticket, you
can interact with the foster cats for an hour. Since the café opened, more than
1200 cats have been adopted! They regularly hold movie nights and special events
that allow for interacting with the cats after hours. Gift Cards
are available for anyone trying to help someone else find a fuzzy friend. @catandcraftcafe
Their founder, Brad Fassbender, left the world of high
finance behind to serve coffee farmers in Honduras. Witnessing exploitative labor
conditions first hand, Brad began to visualize a direct-trade partnership between
himself and coffee farmers like Rolyn and Lorena Garcia in Nicaragua. This partnership
benefits farming families like the Garcias by guaranteeing higher incomes and
raising the quality of life. Meanwhile, the consumer benefits by getting smooth-bodied
Arabica coffee grown from sustainable farming practices. Their coffee is independently
rated within the top 3% of the world’s beans. Use the coupon code CatholicCoffee
to save 15% off your order between now and January 1, 2023. @guadalupe_roastery
To learn more about the difference between fair trade and
direct trade, read here.
Founded by Chicana
fashion designer, Claudia Rodríguez-Biezunski, this sewing studio opened in Barrio Logan nearly
10 years ago. Claudia proudly welcomes BIPOC and underserved communities through affordable,
edgy, and upcycled handmade goods. Her goal is for her business to be
completely sustainable by July 2023. A recent 2022 San Diego Tribune reader’s
poll named her one of the best retail shops in San Diego. Although she offers a
wide range of jackets and apparel, I am personally a big fan of her tote bags. @sewloka
When in doubt, a wonderful gift can always be a donation to a 501(c)3 for which your loved one has a passion. Happy Gift’ng!
Photo Courtesy of @isaacmartin_photography