Thursday, December 6

for the grand mananers : shop local this holiday!

I shall warn you - this is long. At least skim! haha.

I write a lot otf shit on here. I write a lot of real shit. I don't recall ever lying or not speaking my mind when writing about something but I have definitely avoided writing about certain topics to avoid conflict with people I respect and definitely with people who might bring some negativity up in here (run on sentence, mcgee) That's sort of my style. I like to stay pretty low on the radar and while I do love my blog and it would be great if more people read it, I wouldn't want to write about something that brought a bunch of bad vibes into my space.

A few weeks ago there were some goings-on at home and while I have many thoughts on what happened, I prefer to keep them to myself. For those of you from home, you know what I'm talking about, for those of you who are like "wtf'ing".. Im sorry. Basically, it has to do with the industry at home (lobster fishing) and people being concerned about the money not staying on Grand Manan to the point where extreme measures were taken.

I totally understand this. I understand people worrying about their livelihood, their families, their island. I get it. Whether I agree or disagree with what happened is unimportant but I do understand the concern behind the events that took place. I often worry about my hometown and what will become of it. Since I was young I've seen many businesses shut down or new businesses start and not last. I've also seen a crazy amount of families move away because it's becoming harder to survive living on Grand Manan - the opportunities are limited . The amount of people who have decided to go back to school is growing and growing because it appears our main industry is falling apart.

Whether what happened was right or wrong, there are other ways to try to keep the community running and successful that don't involve crazy measures being taken. I suggest starting by shopping local to attempt to keep the money in Grand Manan as much as possible. And what better time to do that than Christmas?

I wanted to remind everyone of  all the places you could shop for the holidays on Grand Manan. This post got so long so I didn't even mention many of the options. You don't need to go away or order online - check out all the gifting opportunities right at home! Will this turn Grand Manan into a metropolis with a booming economy? No and it won't fix all the problems BUT it's extremely important to the economy that we try.

So in no particular order...

Primitive Wishes : Owned by Angela Russell at 847 Route 776 in Woodwards Cove
This is one of my most favorite shops of all time and it is extra awesome at Christmas. There is literally no woman who can walk in that store and not be charmed by it! If you haven't checked it out yet you don't know what you're missing. You can definitely find things for many if not all the ladies in your life at this little shop. Check out her Facebook page - she keeps lot's of pictures of items in stock and go down and check it out asap. You will not regret it and your heart will be melting. She has gift certificates as well - always a plus!

Boys and Girls Club You know where it is.
The Boy and Girls Club hosts the Farmers Markets which I believe are going on biweekly right now and it is SUCH an awesome way to support small, local businesses. It's basically the mother of smaller businesses all in one room (seriously I don't even know some of these businesses exist until I go there.. I'm like..who are you? And I mean that in the nicest way possible) You get to support the local B&G club and some small businesses at the same time which is a plus. The Christmas Market is also a great way to support - hope everyone got out to that. So sad I missed it

The Harbour Grille and Gift House Visit website & Facebook page
Terry from The Harbour Grille and Gift House put a great piece together for me when I mentioned my blog post. It sounds like they have some really great stuff for the holidays so read on and the go check them out! Gift cards would be great here as well especially for the fishermen in your life who may need a quick coffee or meal early in the am or through the day!

"We have been gearing up for the Christmas season and in hopes of meeting the shopping needs of our Grand Manan customers - here is a glimpse of what's available now at The Harbour Grille & Gift House.
  • We have added to our already wide array of Yankee Candle products. We have a number of Holiday Gift Sets, which are a great value and a great gift!
  • We have Christmas themed giftware, wreaths, garlands, tree ornaments, giftwrap, and Christmas cards (boxed and singles.) New this year is our Maritime potter - Right Off The Batt offering among other things, chowder bowls and wide bottom mugs which are fast becoming island favorites.
  • We have a wide variety of lotions, body washes and bath salts along with bath accessories. Have you seen our new "old" jewelry display? It does a great job of showing off our beautiful sterling silver, beaded and hand crafted Italian glass jewelry. You need to check it out.
  • We have the latest styles in Women's sweater dresses and cardies, along with leggings, cami's, t-shirts and blouses. There is a wide selection of scarves, including cashmere scarves for both women and men.
  • New this season, a strong selection of kids books, story book Christmas and Bible collections, cookbooks, puzzle books, general interest books, and of course, you gotta have a Lang calendar for 2013.
We have mentioned some but definitely not all that we have to offer. We are proud of the products in our store; we believe we offer great products at fair prices making shopping at The Harbour Grille & Gift House a good value. We are confident that Grand Mananers will not be disappointed when they come into the shop. In fact, we challenge all islanders to shop local; not just this Christmas season but at times of the year.
All that said, we are most proud of the items we have available that are Grand Manan originals. These include mats by 30 Fathom Doormats, Dulse Candy by Pamela Charters, soaps and bath salts by Wilcox Natural Treasures, hand crafted Christmas and all occasion cards by Heather Brown, prints by Eric Allaby, notecards by Selinda Van Horn, and watches by DragonFly House (breads also available on request)

*All underlined are other awesome local businesses - glad she mentioned them! 

PS. They are having Midnight Madness Thursday, Dec.6th 7PM-Midnight and Mens Night Thursday Dec.20th 7PM-10PM

PPS. My mom is making fudge for the Midnight Madness event.. and it's good. So.. you should prob go just for that.

Robyn Guptill Photography Visit her website here. 
Robyns work is amazing - if you are looking for family or couples portraits she is your girl, I love her photos. A photo session may seem like a different gift but it's one I've totally considered. If you see her work you will want to book her yourself! 

Winter Bensons Cupcakes Check out her blog here

I have been following winter on Pinterest for a long time and drooling over the cupcakes she makes. I dreamed of the day she would turn this hobby into a business and ladies and gentlemen - that day has come! Check out her Pinterest Board of cupcakes that she has tried - amazing!! Why not order some cupcakes for your work christmas party or your family dinner? You can order me some too if you're feeling the giving spirit! You can contact Winter through facebook if you live on Grand Manan! I'm not about to give out her number on my blog..she might not like that  :)

Seawind Beads Owned by Ineke de Vries 178 Route 776 North Head
When I was 13 I worked in this shop briefly and the jewelry is adorable! My mother informed me that she DOES sell through the winter so check out her website here for more pictures of her jewelry and contact information.

Grand Isle Drug Store
Can we say stocking stuffers? They always have tons of awesome Christmas Candy and products galore! Hair products, Skin Care, Make Up, Make up Tools, Hair Accesories, Etc. Grand Isle and The Save Easy are great for picking up stocking stuffers from the beauty deparment - I literally can never have enough products.

Tina's Island Market
 I love Tina's Market - I'm a huge supporter. Awesome, tasty, fresh veggies and have you ever tried her bread mix? Obviously this business is more rockin in the summer but keep it in mind!! Absolutely love this one!

Home Hardware 4 Allison Avenue The Source Grand Manans Facebook Page
If you can't find something for someone here - they are probably the hardest person to shop for ever and you will just have to buy a gift card(they sell gift cards to a variety of other stores that we don't have access to on the island). This is an especially good place to shop for the men in your life. Gift cards to HH are my go to for my father - he saves them up and buys something nice when he needs/wants it. The source is great for Christmas - Cameras, Phones, Laptops, etc - why go off island for those things? When I told Bethany I was writing this post she said "You can order things online and get them to come into the source. Home Hardware -not as easy, but you can always tell me the number of the item you want order in and I can do it for you" That's a pretty sweet deal (and pretty great service I might add).

*Moonlight Madness will be on Dec.6th 7-10PM They will be open every Sunday until Christmas with events on those days. 

&; for the complicated person to buy for - gift cards never fail. Many of these businesses have gift cards along with Hair Shops on the island (think products!!), restaurants, estheticians, the fitness centre (may seem offensive but I dont mind a free month of anything!), Irving (yes please!!) etc. I'm not sure about this but I bet you can even set up credits for Yoga with Trish Toll, Pilates with Michelle Outhouse and Zumba w/ Raima Green! Some people go faithfully to these classes and how awesome it would be to have a month pass. Why not buy someone a credit for a kayaking trip or a whale watching trip? I've been living on Grand Manan my whole life and I still talk about how I want to do those things every summer. It's not that far fetched!

 This is the longest post I've ever done. I know I have left out so much but this post is MASSIVE and hopefully it will get you thinking enough to try other places without my (pretty useless) help. It is almost 5am and The Moo wakes up around 6am.. he is gonna be like WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU DOING? and then he will try to convince me to stay up all day. I will decline. But seriously.. I'm sorry this was so long and I'm talking to myself because no one made it through.

I do hope I sparked some ideas in peoples heads though and I truly hope people try to stick to Grand Manan businesses as much as they can this Holiday season. I would love to see Grand Manan perk the hell up a bit! I personally can't wait to get home and do some shopping around  for last minute gifts (you know...the gifts you buy after you've already spent your life savings and everyone has more than enough gifts but you just can't help yourself)- hopefully you guys dont buy it all before I get there.

Big Love,


  1. love your post! I have been shopping like crazy on the island this season and they have awesome stuff- just got Mike's b-day gifts at HH yesterday, and seems like I have brought home a package from a different store every day- love it!

  2. so glad you wrote this and mentioned hair shops-I am sure you were thinking of your favorite aunt-xoxo


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