My 39, Day 1.

Conventional wisdom tells us to proceed with caution at the very idea of mixing friends and business.

But then I watched my friends, all of us idealistic twenty-somethings eager to make our mark on a professional world none too keen to take us seriously, and I felt a change of heart.

When it came time to file my taxes, I was proud to support a lifelong friend, then an underling working his way up in an established accounting firm. Every year, I’m proud to support him, and even prouder of the fact that he’s built his own successful accountancy.

When we were newlyweds and had saved enough to buy our first home, we happily entrusted the process to a dear friend who through her own hard work and professionalism has made a respectable name for herself in residential real estate.

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My 39, Day 1: Support friends’ businesses.

Every time I put on my favorite arrow necklace, I think of my friend Madeline of Stella & Dot, and I’m so happy that I was able to support a small business owner who like the rest of us, is just a hard working soul trying to carve out her piece of the American Dream.

Whether it’s hiring a photographer for your family (shout out here to Jennifer Alexander Hagler and Cara DeArman Bellah, two women whose talent behind the lens is nothing short of astounding), selecting someone trustworthy to help you build your nest egg, buying the fun, whimsical things that make any house a home, or otherwise, spend your dollars where they will be appreciated the most.