Way back maybe eight or nine years ago, I heard about a barter group. Basically, you signed up and stated what it was you had to offer -- services mostly, or goods that you produced yourself -- and what you were looking for. The service then matched people up. You didn't have to make a direct trade with someone else; your goods or services, when selected by someone in the group, would generate credits for you to use for bartering for someone else's goods or services. I thought it was a pretty cool idea, so I tried to sign up. It seems that there is very little need for "ESL teaching" or "proofreading/editing" services, at least within that group.
I was therefore delighted to find that one of the fiber listservs I belong to holds a weekly "trade day." Every Friday, any member is welcome to post a TGIF trade. The items offered for trade can be pretty much anything related to fiber -- I've seen people post yarn, fibers, spindles, books, magazines, you name it. And after offering my back issues of Rug Hooking magazine from 2002, I'm happy to report that I've just sealed the deal on my very first online fiber trade. My trading partner will get 5 magazines, and I will get 4 ounces of dyed mohair locks, 4 ounces of border leceister roving, 4 ounces of mixed wool roving, and a booklet called "Socks: The Next Step." All in all a fair trade, I think. I get rid of some magazines that were taking up space in my fiber drawer and I get some interesting new fibers to play with plus instructions on, among other things, how to make two socks on one circular needle; my partner, who has recently taken up rug hooking, probably feels about the same way on her end.
What a nice little no-cost Christmas present!
And speaking of Christmas presents...yesterday I finished four, yes four, gift bracelets. Three were photo bracelets, one for each of my daughter's grandmas and one for her godmother. They're cute little things, each one holding six tiny photos. I also made a bracelet out of small stone and glass beads for DH's friend Gina, who is up visiting from DC. Simple but pretty. Now I just have to finish knitting one more lace scarf, block that scarf plus one more (both gifts for friends of mine) and then tackle the elephant in the corner -- a large machine-knitted blanket for my cousins. The blanket should knit up relatively quickly since I'm doing it on the machine, but it's just a matter of getting started.
Oh, and then there's the little matter of decorating the house...and finishing wrapping presents...and HOW many days are there left till Christmas??