This weekend, I had some pretty cool bartering opportunities and with everything changing so quickly, it occurred to me that we have not talked much about barter around here and how you can build it into your lifestyle, as well as why you should consider doing so…

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LFTN Highlights this week

Tales from the Prepper Pantry

  • Shopping in the neighbor’s freezer
  • Shared Neighborhood Pantry concept
  • Putting up tomatoes and beans this week
  • Increasing efforts on forage 
  • Ball Jar and Lid shortage – will put the word out when they can be ordered again

Featured Forrage: Wild Sumac

The waving red berry tops reminded me of this wonderful wild forage – wild sumac. This is definitely a plant you want to cultivate in your food forest.

Edible uses:

  • Young chutes and fall roots
  • Berries to eat and for tea

Nutritional

  • Source of tanic acid, iodine (What if you could not get iodized salt?), calcium and lots of other important minerals that your body needs

Medicinals

>>A word on poison sumac<<

Operation Independence

  • Did a barter this weekend that added at least $500 to the independence fund. And the result us less dependence on shipped in energy.

Main topic of the Show: Barter Builds Community

How can we set ourselves up for stability no matter what the powers that be decide? How can we be ready for the coming economic downturn or depression that is certainly coming our way? How can we help those in our community make it through tough times?

These questions have been rattling around in my head as well as my email inbox from all of you for weeks. 

Right now you cannot buy ball jar lids anywhere for a reasonable price. But last spring, we did an LFTN bulk buy and some of us have lids, so we have been offering a few dozen to people who need them at a reasonable price or for trade.

There have been som significant crop failures this year and with the oligarchy shutting down trade to a trickle in some parts of our trade system, this will mean price increases in the future — unless you do not need to buy those crops, or unless you find another way to weather the spare time.

Our money is limping along, trying not to inflate too rapidly or deflate suddenly through lots of strings being pulled by those in power. And it looks more and more like they really do want to crash our economy.

Scary isn’t it.

Yet here we are, with a powerful community of doers, all communicating, getting things done despite what is happening, doing our best to build the life we want to live on our terms.

So back to the question – how can we increase stability in our network. Well, why not barter more. The monetary system can go screw if you don’t need money to get what you need or want.

Buying $5 in squash gives me about 5 squash. Buying $5 chicken eggs gives me about a dozen eggs. Trading 5 squash for 12 eggs, then is a wash, no matter what inflation or deflation does to their value. If a year from now the $5 amount becomes $20,000, a direct barter is still a squash for eggs trade, no matter what we decide to call the value.

But barter is much more than a more stable way to exchange value for value, it is also a great tool for building community.

So many times people ask me how to build community. They see what we do here and want to have that in their life. A strong community takes effort, trust and strong relationships. When I can really trust you, it is easier for me to want to invest my most valuable resource, my time, into interacting and transacting with you.

If you think about it, the same goes for bartering. If I do not trust you, how do I know you will live up to your end of a barter agreement? Especially if we are trading non-tangible things like video production for web development work.

Now sure, the crypto world has some create tools to address the trust problem. But here we are at LFTN. A solid community that over the years has developed strong relationships. A strong community where one or another member has stepped up to posit new ideas then run with it.

Just last week over on the mewe group, I say Amy and Ken get all organized about creating a listing of all the LFTN businesses so that we can do business with one another. I mean, if you are going to buy spices, why not get them from Melissa, right? So now there is a growing spreadsheet with folks listing their businesses and side hustles.

So why not add to that momentum through barter? Why not add a columns that says “takes barter?” in the spreadsheet so that folks know if that is a conversation they can have with that person?

How Barter Furthers Independence

  • MINE
  • Develops Trust (Relationship futures)
  • Avoids Government Intervention where they should not be (Vaccine paranoia stories)
  • Makes you establish the true value of your labor and products outside a shaky monetary system 
  • Builds confidence
  • Builds a country economic network that is hard to break up during hard times

How Barter Furthers Community

  • Established Trust among individuals
  • Established trust in a community
  • Brings new people into the network
  • Highlights shared interests

Why this matters to you:

  • Lately we are seeing how unstable our economies and society really is — and investing time into having a network is more important than ever (It always was)
  • Barter can help you know what you will need vs what you have so that you can fill any gaps you discover
  • Confidence (you do have something to barter if you think about it and that just might be your stable income source if we get a bad crash)
  • Many of you are very unhappy with how regulations are set up — tool to step around some regulation (Do your research)
  • You are helping yourself while helping others (Barter to actual free markets)

We have a good thing going here with our community and we can see what is happening in the world around us. And Barter is a tool we really have not much explored to help all of us stay stable through life’s ups and downs. 

I mean sure, if what you are bartering is electrical work and you need to use money to buy parts, perhaps your agreement is that the person buys the parts and barters the time. But that is the glory of barter: You can do with it what you want. You can set it up how you want. And as you do this, you are building trust with another person. A person who may become part of your inter circle network. A person who just may drive out to your homestead to make sure you are ok when that tornado hits and you lose all comms in the region.

And it also lets you take full advantage of your creativity and labor. Because no one is there to take a piece from you in most cases. It is aaaaaal yours. And this make barter even more beautiful.

Think about it next time you decide to do something – ask yourself – is this the time I want to barter. And if it is, see if the other person is interested.

Make it a great week!

Song: Every Way by Sauce

GUYS! Don’t forget about the cookbook, Cook With What You Have by Nicole Sauce and Mama Sauce. 

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