Sunday, August 2, 2009

Pay it Forward More!

Critters have been a big part of my life for most of my adult life. The joy of having animals in my life has always made the good times better and the bad times less bad.

Now that I am semi-retired, I am a dog owner, birdwatcher, nature lover and consummate tree hugger. My partner and I take part in the National Wildlife Federation’s program for wildlife habitat, and our property has been a “Certified Wildlife Habitat” for several years now, providing the four basic habitat elements needed for wildlife to thrive : food, water, cover, and safe places to raise young.

Because I care about wildlife and nature, I am a contributor to several organizations that are working to protect wildlife and our fragile eco-systems. Wanting to do more, I started brainstorming ideas that might benefit at least one of my charities.

A few months ago, my partner and I opened an online shop with Etsy. We have begun to have some success, so we started kicking around the idea of “why not a critter site”? After much thought and looking through my many animal related collectibles that I’ve collected for decades (yikes - - that’s starting to sound like a long time!), we decided that putting up a sale site that was geared towards our love of nature and all the critters that share this world with us was a good idea.

So in July, dead in the doldrums of summer, we set up the new online shop and we are donating a portion of every sale to Defenders of Wildlife ( ).

Hopefully this will be a successful enterprise, both for us clearing out a bit to allow for a more Zen lifestyle, and for “Defenders”, who are in the trenches daily defending that which we love so much - - all those things that are so easily taken for granted until they’re gone !

“Pay it forward” has been a credo we try and live by, this is just a little added effort that we hope will contribute towards making a difference.

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