A Sweet Deal


"Barter is a system of exchange by which goods or services are directly exchanged for other goods or services without using a medium of exchange, such as money." {from Wikipedia article}

The ole barter system has seen a revival as of late. Trading goods seems to have come back in fashion, with money tight and the ease of networking & communication--it's a great way to get things done, share skills, and meet people.

There are websites devoted to local trades (here is a great one for the Twin Cities), a trade category on craigslist, facebook pages for bartering, and articles devoted to teaching you how to do it better--like this one: How To Barter Anything--an article from Real Simple Magazine that shares four rules of trade "to ensure both sides get a sweet deal."

This is an example of a trade that is NOT equal. She gets to sit & play with Mama's necklace while he gets to do the work of applying tights to wiggly legs. 

I remember my mother bartering for my piano lessons and a hair perm, both of which I appreciated (thanks, Mom!) and thought it was such a great set up. I think she made some crafty sweatshirts/bows for Sis. C who gave me an in house perm and traded homemade bread for the piano lessons with Sis. W (am I right, Mom?). I am sure she did many more exchanges but those are the two that stand out to me most vividly.

Bartering is a brilliant way of swapping services/skills without having to pay money. I remember the first time I participated in an official barter (aside from a babysitting exchange or a service/gift exchange)--it felt AMAZING. It was so much more fulfilling than the usual pay with $ deal. Connections were made and time was spent by both parties to do a good job and receive in return.

I have bartered decorated cakes & photo shoots for services (computer work, babysitting, or a created project). 

Cake lined with piroulines...this is one of my favorites from my cake decorating portfolio

I bartered a missionary photo shoot for an overnight babysitting gig (remember that one Saturday that Mr. H and I went out & stayed over night?...oh yeah, that was only last weekend)

Most recently, my talented and thoughtful friend E surprised me with her gift of bartering for a photo shoot that I did with her cute family on Friday afternoon. As she shared on her blog (see! both parties are excited about bartering!), she remembered that these dinosaur tails were on my radar but I never made them. So, she made them for me in exchange. 

I love them so much and can't wait to give them to my trio of triceratops for Christmas. Shhhh! Don't tell. In the meantime, I've got to get to editing her photo shoot.

Isn't her baby girl a doll?

Little Miss E 

Have you had any adventures in bartering?

Every day in November!  NaBloPoMo: National Blog Posting Month. Write a post on your blog every day in November. For the 3rd year, I've decided to tackle this challenge & enjoy the opportunity to switch to writing mode. Want to join me? Leave your blog link in the comments so I can follow you too!


Emily Johnson said...

Love this post. It was a fun project for me to make the dino tails. I'm glad you're happy with them. P.S. Your cake with piroulines looks amazing.

Linda said...

how do those dinosaur tails work?

Dad bartered cutting wood for the actual chain saw he used to do it with...

At craft shows and yard sales, I remember at the end simply exchanging goods before we packed up...awesome!

I am sorry Janell is getting away before you barter some bread for one last piano lesson!