When I started writing this blog in December 2009, I had a couple of very simple goals. I wanted to write about New Mexico, land that I love (that phrase always makes me feel like I should break into song), and I wanted to record some of my thoughts for my kids. It seemed simpler than writing a memoir that might or might not get published. Mostly I just wanted to feed my need to write something every day.
What I didn’t foresee was how this blog would lead to acquaintances and friendships with so many people from so many places. I’ve ended up with subscribers from as far away as Scotland and as near as the next block, and on occasion I’ll run into someone at the post office who says, “That thing you wrote was so true! I loved it.” That unexpected connection has been an added bonus. It makes my life better.
What I also didn’t foresee is that I would learn so much about New Mexicans, their family histories, their businesses, their hopes and dreams. I never knew I would find so many hidden gems.
Just last week I received an e-mail from a reader, Juliette Martinez. This is what the e-mail said:
“Love, love, love your blog. Enjoy reading about your experiences and appreciate the fact that you love all things New Mexico.
My internet company has just launched . . . and I hope you will join . . . www.enchanteddeals.com. If you are familiar with Groupon or Livingsocial, then you will understand our business model. We will offer a daily deal on all things cool to do in New Mexico . . with an enchanted twist . . 10% of every deal will be donated to a local New Mexico charity. We are busy signing local charities and building our subscriber list.
Please join, check us out and let me know if there is a local charity you would like to see featured.”
I immediately went to Juliette’s site (www.enchanteddeals.com). It was well designed, interesting, and most of all, it was user friendly and already had a list of New Mexico charities that I wanted to support. I loved that “enchanted twist!”
You know me. You know that I love New Mexico and New Mexicans and their products. I feel true sympathy for folks that have had to move away from New Mexico and make their home elsewhere (been there, never plan to leave again). And Juliette’s idea of offering deals specifically from New Mexico businesses was perfect in my eyes. I wanted to be her new best friend and had already formed a hundred suggestions for daily deals in my mind – travel to Two Casitas in Santa Fe, Pick Up Sticks jewelry, dinners at my favorite restaurants, a weekend at Ute Lake – the list, as you might imagine, was long and detailed.
So I e-mailed her back. Told her I loved the idea. Told her I had already signed up. And then I told her I’d love to visit on the phone and get more info so that I could pass it along here.
Juliette’s mom is 12th generation New Mexican. She’s the real deal. Her energy is infectious and her love for New Mexico is obvious. She’s one of us, folks! And her partner in the business, Parm Turner, is also a native New Mexican. He’s from Carlsbad and shares Juliette’s devotion to all things New Mexican. Together they form the Enchanted Deals team that is truly going to make a difference for New Mexico charities.
Even though Juliette spent several years in the LA market working with non-profits as a fund raiser, she always knew she’d find her way home to New Mexico, and when she finally got here, she started making a list of her own, stating what her perfect job would look like. She knew she had a talent for marketing, but she also knew that the philanthropy end of what she had done in LA was what appealed to her soul the most. So she came up with Enchanted Deals . She decided that she and Parm could offer New Mexico products, travel and services at a discount at the same time that they promised to give 10% of every deal to New Mexico charities.
I’m in love with this idea. I can get stuff I know I already want, at a discounted price, and when I spend my money, a New Mexico charity benefits. Better yet, Juliette and Parm don’t charge the charities a single dime for this service. 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, charities can make money doing nothing. And if a charity you feel strongly about isn’t on the list, you can suggest it.
Yes, folks, I’m sold. And I’m telling you about it so that you can sign up as well. You don’t have to do anything or spend any money until the deal you want comes up. Juliette and her crew will send you an e-mail with the daily deal and you get to decide whether you really want that ski weekend at a potential 80% off (no brainer, right?)
I offered to do some blog posts in the future giving advance notice to my readers. I hope that works out – when they post a deep discount on breakfast at the Frontier or dinner at SantaCafe or a weekend in Taos, we all want to be ready to jump on it, right?
So sign up already. The deals won’t launch for a few more weeks, but when they start, you’ll be in the queue. With me. And we’ll be giving something back. Truly a New Mexico kind of idea, don’t you think?