As you may have read a few years ago here, Matt and I try to acquire a new ornament each year for our Christmas tree. This year we had the opportunity to collect several:
Two ornaments are sparkly orbs we purchased at the school gift shop/candy store while we were teaching in Korat, Thailand this last May. The little girls were all too anxious to send us home with treats for our tree!
The third one spoke to me as soon as I saw it in our local Fair Trade store, Chalice Abbey. While Christmas shopping and enjoying our friend’s art exhibit in the adjoining space, we picked up this mushroom retablo:
This particular retablos was made by Manos Amigas. Ten Thousand Villages is one of its customers/distributors. More than 60 years ago Edna Ruth Byler, a pioneering businesswoman, began selling handcrafted products from Puerto Rico out of the trunk of her car to help eradicate poverty. Today a global network of social entrepreneurs works to empower artisans in developing countries. You can visit their website here: http://www.tenthousandvillages.com/