Make it last, make it local and make it matter.

by Claire Rae
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I always try and live by the good, better, best rules.

Here is what I define as the “Good, Better, Best rules when it comes to shopping:

Good- You got the product or service you needed /wanted at a good price from a local retailer who employees workers and supports the local community. 

Better- You got the product or service you needed /wanted at a good price from a local retailer who employees local workers, supports the local community and is manufactured in locally.

Best-You got the product or service you needed /wanted at a good price from a local retailer who employ’s it’s people at a fair living wage, supports the local community and is manufactured locally from local or fair trade and ethically sound companies ( paying people a proper living wage for the things used to make the product)

It’s not always easy changing habits, especially when it comes to convenience. We have become so busy that it’s hard to keep track of all the ways that our lives effect our community, country and world. It’s hard to make good choices on the best of days, let alone everyday.  

I’ve been trying to be more conscious about how I spend my money and although this is actually harder than you’d think to look into companies and how they do their work, I want to say it does feel good to make the effort. As someone who has always been an innovator, and entrepreneur I know how hard it its to compete with companies that under cut and under pay their employees. But the truth is whether you turn a blind eye to this or not makes no difference in terms of how true it is. Most of the products you get from countries like China and Bangladesh are using slave labour ( they pay their employees so low they can’t enjoy a living like we do here). We may think we are getting a deal but the truth is those dictators and large corporations overseas are only coming into our country and buying up our land, real estate and companies and trying to make our land like theirs, a place of communism and oppression. We are on the verge of communism ourselves if we don’t do our part and support our locals. I do believe where we spend our money says a lot about who we are and what we believe in. Our neighbours depend on us to live, let’s not fail ourselves and our children. What you do matters!


This year the holidays just seem different. I can no longer just go to my local “Big box chain” store and just grab the deals when I know what I know. I was at Winners the other day and looking at all the great deals on sweaters. I found a few that I just loved and as painful as it was I just couldn’t do it when I looked at the tags. All I could think was each time I’ve grabbed those deals someone somewhere was working for pennies and I have people working hard right here in my back yard trying to make a living for their families. It’s such a catch 22. On one side we all like a deal but on the other it means someone else suffers. It’s so hard on me and I know maybe I put too much thought into things and many people won’t even take a second thought to this but I am going to do my tiny little part this year and promote some of my favourite brands in this post and hope that maybe you will think before you buy something this year also. 

I want to start with a few of my favourites and I likely will be adding to this post throughout the Christmas Season as I find cool things. The more I’ve looked into Canadian made products the more I find that we are full of amazing, high quality products for almost everything you need. 



This year I have spent quite a bit of time taking care of my health and recovery from a snowboarding accident last year. Can I tell you that bedding and comfort has never been more important to me than it is right now. I wasn’t in my own bed when the accident happened and being that I was in transition to a new job and home it really wasn’t an ideal time. By the time I finally figured out how important my bed was for my recovery many months had passed but now that I’m back in my own bed, I just can’t be happier and feeling way better. Thank God for good bedding. Also such a great gift for anyone who doesn’t treat themselves to good pillow or bedding. 


Giving the gift of health and wellness

Again, being on the mend I have come to learn about lot’s of health and wellness brands in Canada. Sangster’s, house brand is made and manufactured in Canada but like Sangster’s, there are actually so many brands from Canada that I will likely be adding to this list soon. 

The wellness gift can come in many forms including a gift certificate for training with me;) haha, I had to add that. Really though, I think everyone could use some coaching or help just dealing with stress and personal health these days. 


I always think people should have instruments in their house. I grew up playing piano and now enjoy strumming my guitar. I find it so relaxing. Maybe you know someone who doesn’t have their own instrument. You don’t have to be good to try and enjoy playing. 

I spent quite a bit of time playing my guitar after my concussion. Music helps increase brain activity and is said to create smarter people. If you have a child, consider getting them going on a musical instrument. 

Canadian made Honolua

House and Home

I found a ton of great stuff on but I still like to find great gift ideas from my local farmers market or just from word of mouth. Some of these are just what my friends make and sell and if I can support them in this way then great! I love seeing people’s dreams come true. I know there’s already a few of these things on order for my christmas list this year. 


I think many people forget that when they buy overseas they rob jobs from people right here. We have amazing, talented people willing to do great work and deserve a good pay for it.  When we support local we actually feed our country and our neighbours that we love.  

Let’s support our friends and family this year. 


Happy local Black Friday shopping my friends. I hope you choose something local this year, and if you know of a brand, business or service you’d like me to add feel free to message me. 


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