Don't give in to the endless consumerism and freak-out frenzy of the "shopping season." Instead, give them what they really want: chances to eat and drink great stuff with the people they love most! Consider purchasing a gift certificate for a local restaurant or deli and know you are supporting locally owned businesses in our community. You could also go for something they'll savor all year round, like a beautiful bag of loose-leaf tea from Wilwand Tea Co. and Healing Arts in Atascadero. These ethically sourced teas come in many specialties and flavors, including "magical and wellness" ... Cambria's Christmas Market continues through Dec. 23 and offers artisan shopping opportunities galore. Plus, with incredible, twinkling lights and laughing children all around, it truly beats the ambiance of a crowded strip mall (cambriachristmasmarket.com). Δ
Hayley Thomas Cain is shopping locally and eating globally. Send bites to firstname.lastname@example.org.