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OPINION

GOOD MORNING: Key to Christmas sanity

Jerrie Whiteley
Herald Democrat

Folks, I don't know how to break this news to you so I will just give it to you straight — there are only six shopping weekends left till Christmas and that includes this weekend.

Jerrie Whiteley

To make matters worse, the rise in COIVD-19 cases and the responding chance that a lot of us are going to be sending gifts to people instead of hand delivering them means we have got to get it in gear if Christmas 2020 isn't going to be the total disaster that the rest of the year has been.

Experts are all over television talking about shipping deadlines, but then they warn that we need to avoid those deadlines because they could be moved up at any moment if those shippers fall victim to COVID-19 related shortages of product or personnel. 

While the mega retailers online are expecting a boon from this set of circumstances, I would have to urge people to shop as local as possible and give themselves time to ship those items or have them shipped by a local provider before the deadlines loom. Shopping local doesn't only mean that your money stays in this community. It means that money is put to work in this community. It means those small business owners get to have money to give their own kids a nice Christmas. It means those kids can look forward to things like dance lessons and sports teams in the coming year. It means a single mom who just went out on her own to make her own dreams come true can feel safe in this economy. That means, your present to your friend or loved one is also a present to this community.

We are blessed in Grayson County to have a large number of small businesses from which to choose to do our holiday shopping. It hardly matters what one could want to buy because most anything is available right here if one looks and asks around enough. 

So before we all make the giant retailers even richer off of this pandemic, lets all look around to see which of our neighbors have wonderful, well-made, long-lasting treasures we could use as gifts this season.  

Remember that just because you can find something cheaper on a mega website from some other country doesn't mean you are getting a better deal. That cheap knock off might break or tear or shrink or prove to be inferior in some other way to something made or purchased right here at home.

And if you are worried about getting out in this pandemic, I bet most local small businesses will be willing to work with you on that. Give them a call or shoot them an email. 

For those of you who are worried about the finances during this Christmas of COVID-19, I feel your pain. Remember not every gift has to cost a fortune. Try to think of ways you can give of your talents rather than from your wallet. 

But please do remember that so many people this year are feeling the pinch and everything that each of us can do to help will go a long way. If you are normally the kind of person who likes to drop some coins in the Salvation Army kettles at this time of the year, don't let shopping online keep you from enjoying that feeling this year. They have several ways to contribute online or digitally at the kettles that are already up around the county. 

And, one final plea. This year if we can all agree on nothing else, can we please agree that considering all of the dark and sobering news we have all had to swallow in 2020, we are not going to harass our friends who put their Christmas decorations up early. We all need all of the merry and bright we can get right now.  

Happy birthday to Mel Carruth of Denison.