When we moved, we decided not to move St. Francis. He was large and heavy, not to mention his unstable head. My husband has missed having St. Francis around and we have plans to get another large statue for the yard.
Meanwhile, I have found a lovely plaque of St. Francis. Doesn't he look inviting on this tree? There is a creeping hydrangea (well, that's what we call it) at the foot of the tree which will grow and bloom around him this summer.
I have always been a promoter of shopping locally whenever that is possible. I pay more money to buy books at my local bookseller when I could easily order them more cheaply Online. But I NEED my local bookseller. And the only way to keep local business in business is to purchase from them.
I have now expanded my definition of "local" to include bloggers I follow. One of those is Helen Ellis, the owner of an online (and in-store) boutique and that is where I purchased St. Francis. From her blog "Wings and Things," you can access the Online boutique. Here is the direct link to the Online store: http://shop.backyardboutique.com/. Helen is a wonderful photographer and sells her photographs and cards at the boutique. But there is much more. There are all sorts of nesting boxes, birdfeeders, birdbaths, and garden art work. I urge you to check it out.
The St. Francis plaque is made by Carruth Studios. One of our local shops sells Carruth Studios art, but I feel that buying from Helen is like buying from a friend. Her prices are better too.
Here is another Carruth piece I've had for a while. I have it hanging at the end of a kitchen cabinet. It amusingly gives the "raspberries" to our guests.
If you know a fellow blogger has a store or an Etsy site, browse there for your next gifts. If he or she has written a book, buy one. Let's keep it in the blogging community whenever we can. Just as we need our local stores, we need our friends in the blog world.