Tag Archives: gifts

3 Things About Valentine’s Day That Are Less Fun to Criticize Than 50 Shades of Grey

My Facebook feed has been peppered with articles about 50 Shades of Grey in the weeks leading up to Valentine’s Day, and the discussion doesn’t seem to be stopping any time soon. I certainly do agree that the books and movie sound like they have some super abusive content, and that they might just signal a larger cultural problem that we aren’t deal with, but I also feel like they’re just a little too easy to criticize.

tumblr_np2wpmhbkl1uqpgcto1_500

Instead of preaching to the choir about the 50 Shades series, I plan to make us all feel guilty about the part of Valentine’s Day that is much harder to address: consumerism. This post will focus specifically on the three most common gifts associated with the holiday: flowers, chocolate, and jewelry.

1. Flowers

Did I ever tell you about the job I had picking flowers? It wasn’t actually as easy as it sounds.

The organization I worked for paid by the bundle. If you didn’t cut the stems long enough, or if you included any flowers that had already started to bloom, that bunch was thrown out and you wouldn’t get paid for it. At first, I kind of enjoyed the work. It was monotonous, so I had lots of time for thinking, and I loved being outside in the sun. Unfortunately, it wasn’t always sunny. When it rained my shoes would be sucked deep into the mud. Not to mention how being constantly bent-over made my back hurt. Often, at the end of the day, I would suddenly
realize that the money I made didn’t even equal out to minimum wage. As soon as I was able to get another job, I quit.

That experience was probably the first time I started to think about the history of flowers. Where did they come from? Who picked them? How far were they being shipped? Continue reading

Advertisements

10 Things I Wish I Knew Before Our Trip to Cuba

As you probably remember from last week, John and I just went on our belated honeymoon to Cuba.

cars

And yes, there were awesome old cars everywhere.

We only went for one week, but we had a blast. The beaches were just as warm and beautiful as I’d been picturing. There were cigars available everywhere, just like John had been hoping. And the architecture in Old Havana was just as beautifully eclectic as you’d imagine for a country with such a fascinating history.

The only problem was, I really didn’t plan out our trip at all. Our entire summer was one crazy adventure after another and this was our final journey, so I was too busy planning other things to do much more than book an all-inclusive. While we did love our little escape, there are a few things we learned along the way that I wish I had known beforehand. Continue reading

Fame Day: Christmas Traditions

It’s actually pretty hard to write a Fame Day post for Christmas since it’s now pretty much synonymous with materialism, something that most people agree “eats you from the inside out.”

But dang it guys! I really love Christmas! I love all the lights everywhere draining energy and creating light pollution. I love the repetitive Christmas music on the radio. I love giving and (gasp) even receiving gifts (though I try to only purchase gifts from businesses I feel happy supporting ex. fair trade, local, etc). So much about how Christmas is marketed goes against the things I want to be socially conscious about, and yet I can’t seem to help loving it. I think this probably comes down to the many fun traditions my family has had, and the way the season forces us all to drop everything going on in our lives just to spend time together.  

So I’ve decided that for today’s Fame Day post I’m going to share a few of my favorite traditions, and I would really love if you could tell me a little bit about yours. Continue reading