Despite having three cars at our disposal, the girls and I have gone for three days without using a car. That’s a fair carbon offset for Rob’s flights to Hong Kong last Sunday, right? Right?

While I know it is silly to think that my little experiment is going to save the planet, I know it will have other smaller, effects.

While we haven’t driven the car, all of our shopping these past four days (I’m including the 1st when we drove home from Blue Ridge), has been done on foot, other than the gas I bought in Blue Ridge and the magazine I ordered online.

Unfortunately, much of that shopping has been done at Baby Kroger. Baby steps here, okay? For each thing I bought at Kroger, I asked myself if I could think of somewhere else to get it if I had planned ahead. As time goes by, I hope to buy less and less at the Kroger, though I am sure I will never wean myself of if completely. Though it isn’t a locally owned business, it does make it so that I don’t have to get in the car nearly as often, and for that I am grateful.

greenes - 27 dec 2011

Some of the other places we’ve shopped include:

Greene’s: We bought candy as gifts and the girls used their gift cards. Greene’s doesn’t make all the candy there, but it is a locally owned business and they do make some of the candy there.

Little Shop of Stories – We bought a couple gifts this week. Of course LSOS folks don’t write, publish or print the books. But it is a locally owned business. The staff is always so friendly to us when we go in and even beautifully wrap the gifts for us.

Decatur-Atlanta Printing: Ordered return address labels and some “showbills”. I usually use VistaPrint for my small, personal printing jobs, but I really want to “go local”, and I’m still sore at VistaPrint for subscribing me to Essence magazine. DAP folks are REALLY friendly; despite not have “return address labels”, the designer worked with me to create what I wanted. Definitely more expensive than VistaPrint, but Camille got to see designing in action, which was WAY cool.

Sapori di Napoli: Camille and I went here for our traditional Wednesday lunch out. Locally owned. Lovely pizza oven. Don’t know how local their ingredients are, but I suspect they aren’t. Locally made elsewhere, perhaps.

So, though I’ve probably spent a little more money than if we had gone with Amazon and VistaPrint, going local has given us a personal experience in the neighborhood. We’ve talked with lots of people, gotten in lots of walking, learned about designing and printing and invested in our community.