Shop Wiser – Part 1

shopwiser day 1

Last year, I did an entire week of Shop Wiser and I want to encourage you to go back. I’d full recommend all of those gifts and ideas again this year. Shop wiser is just going to be two days this year.

What does “SHOP WISER” mean? It means we are going to shop every Christmas – and I want to be wise with my time and money. Be intentional with the companies I support each year.

Links from last year.

Shop Wiser Day 1 – Shop to GIVE

Shop Wiser Day 2: Shop to EMPOWER

Shop Wiser Day 3: Shop to TRAIN HEARTS

Shop Wiser Day 4: Shop to CONNECT

Shop Wiser Day 5 – Shop to SUPPORT WOMEN


For this year, I am offering up my thought process for shopping.

As I am planning for my own gifts, I want to think harder vs spend more money. I want to spend less, yet touch more hearts. And that frankly requires more brain time. If we want to reach the hearts of our family – it take a minute to think about that.

Let’s shop wiser – in a way that makes a gift stick around. A gift that reaches the heart isn’t fleeting. It means something to the recipient.

Start with these three groups as you make your list.

what they need.

whey they love to do.

what they need to hear.



I think it’s so fun to meet a true need during Christmas. Is there a NEED in the classroom for your teacher? Can you give a gas card for that teenager that drives so far to babysit? Can you replace your mom’s bakeware she has used for 20 years? Or does your Compassion child need a way to feed his/her family or need medicine? Sometimes, our friends or family will mention a need in passing and we can meet it and blow their mind that we listened. I know it feels good to me – when I know someone really thought of me and knows my needs.





My Ella simply loves loves loves to play school and her favorite birthday gifts were school supplies – REAL teacher supplies. One friend ordered her pencils with “Miss DeFeo” on them. One friend went to a teacher store and got her real teacher stamps and testing booklet and more. She was beaming. I believe if we take just a minute to think about what the gift recipient “LOVES” – we will come up with something that will truly light them up – and it often doesn’t have to cost too much.


My husband simply needs to HEAR he’s doing a great job. He works hard. He leads well. I could get him a devotional – and that could easily send two messages.

1) You need to get your act together spiritually. Step up.

2) You are already doing a great job – thought you’d love this!

I am such a fan of the note. The personal note. We can take an ordinary gift and make it SOAR to the depths of a person’s heart – when it includes our words.

REMEMBER – it doesn’t have to be all of these! Just let ONE of these categories – spur you on to make your gifts more meaningful. Let’s shop wiser!


Come back tomorrow – I will link over to some of my favorite gifts and companies. Those that give back and empower others.



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  1. Hi Courtney. Can you refresh my memory of the lady’s name who who has a website for writing affirming notes to people? I thought I wouldn’t forget but oh that age thing kicked in. I went to her web page from a link you posted a month or two ago. She laid out how to concentrate on valuing a person even giving adjectives to get you started. I hope that is enough to go on. Btw I am grateful for you and your blog and all that encouraging you give to moms! Happy Thanksgiving!

  2. Courtney, I loved your series from last year. I tried to get our whole family this year to only buy gifts for one another that would fit the shop wiser category but that kind of fell flat. They all thought it was a Great idea but not what they wanted to do this year. No big deal! It spurred a friend and I on to host a first ever alternative Christmas fair at our church next week. We will be hosting fair trade, ethically made and local vendors. Cool huh?!?! Thanks for this series. I always find myself coming back to it.

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