How to Save Money with Bartering in 3 Easy Steps

savemoneybarterYou’ve probably heard or read about bartering to save money, but you aren’t sure where to start, or how it works. I’m here to demystify it for you!

I barter all the time! Thankfully, a lot of my friends have large vegetable and fruit gardens, fruit trees, or chickens produce eggs. I trade my time and services that I can provide for these things. I love to trade my ability and skill with sewing for farm fresh eggs. The price of eggs in California is insane! A dozen eggs can be almost $6.00, depending on where you shop.

Here are a few tips that I recommend you try in order to stretch your budget with the use of bartering:

Step One: Make a list of the skills you have. Can you sew? Can you babysit? Do you have a lawnmower and some free time to mow lawns? There are lots of things that you can do the people need help with. Maybe you have a great eye for organization and you could help a friend or a neighbor organize their pantry or their garage. Maybe you Love to clean? You can use that skill to either earn money or to barter for goods and services that you need. Maybe you have an overflowing garden or hen house!

Step Two: Make a list of stuff that you need. Do you need help sewing, cleaning house, or do you need to stretch your grocery budget a little bit further with the help of homegrown fruits and vegetables, farm fresh eggs?

Step Three: Ask! Ask your friends or if you’re feeling shy post on your Facebook page or whatever social media that you use. If you’d like to get a broader reach you can even post on websites like craigslist or fiverr.com.  You’d be surprised at what kind of offers you get!
I’d love to hear about the types of things you barter for!

It’s Yum Time- Easy Frittata!

Whomever coined the term “morning sickness” either had never been pregnant or couldn’t tell time. I’ve been really nauseous lately all the time, so I’ve been cooking a lot of dinners that I haven’t been eating. Most of my evening meals have comprised of cold cereal and a splash of whole milk.

However, I made an awesome, easy Frittata last night that smelled so good, I actually ate about a quarter of it.

I love making Frittatas. They are super easy to make, and you can use basically anything in your kitchen. Veggies, cheese, and protein of any type. Frittatas are gluten free, and can be made vegetarian (but not vegan, since they do have eggs as a major ingredient).

Here is the recipe that I cobbled together. I didn’t write anything down, I just rummaged through the fridge and pulled out stuff that looked good together. I chose the yellow potatoes because when they cook, they have a rich, creamy texture without adding tons of empty calories (Potatoes are high in potassium, which his mama needs to keep the charlie horses at bay).

Easy Frittata (serves 4-6)

Ingredients:

  • 6 eggs
  • 3/4 cup Milk (use whatever kind you normally use- soy, cow’s milk, whatever)
  • 1/2 lb turkey sausage (or your fav. breakfast sausage)
  • 2 T. butter, divided
  • 8-10 small yellow potatoes, chopped into small pieces (you can leave the skin on)
  • 1 16oz bag of peppers and onions
  • 1T minced garlic
  • 1 ripe tomato, roughly chopped
  • 1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, shredded (If you are watching calories, opt for a low cal. cheese)
  • salt, pepper to taste
  • Olde Westport’s Gold Coast Garlic Shake or your favorite garlic powder to taste

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk the eggs, milk and salt and pepper. Set aside.
  3. In a large oven proof skillet, cook sausage per package directions. Once sausage is cooke, remove from the pan, chop into bite size pieces and set aside (You can also use pre-cooked sausage- just heat it up and cut into bite sized pieces).
  4. Deglaze the pan with a scant 1/4 c. water. scrape the yummy brown bits off the bottom of the pan.
  5. Add the potatoes and 1 T butter. Cook the potatoes on medium/low until the potatoes are “al dente”.
  6. Add the remaining butter, garlic, and the onions/peppers. Continue to cook on medium heat until the veggies are soft, about 10 minutes.
  7. Remove from heat, add the sausage back into the pan.
  8. Pour the reserved egg mixture over the veggies, and sprinkle with a touch of garlic powder (if desired).
  9. Top with the chopped tomatoes and cheese
  10. Place the entire oven proof skillet in the oven, bake for 20-30 minutes, or until the eggs are set.
  11. Serve right away with a small green salad or with fruit. I love frittata topped with fresh salsa and a little plain greek yogurt or sour cream.

And here are some shots before we demolished it. If you can’t eat it all in one meal, you can always stash the leftover in the fridge and eat it cold, or re-heat it in the microwave. It’s good for breakfast too!

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Notice all the yummy veggies!!

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