A Maine Morning and an Egg-selent Swap

Riddle:  How do you turn a wool spinning batt into breakfast?

This morning I carded some wool together into a batt (two- two ounce batts really).  The colors have been swirling around in my head for a few days, but last night just before bed I finally worked out the right combination, and this morning put them together.  Dark brown, medium brown, dark blue, light blue, light gray and bright green.  Mixed together they remind me of a morning in Maine, all blue and brown and gray/green.  These photos are really a bit darker than in real life.

This one is pretty close to accurate:

Since the last time we went to Farmington (about 25 miles from where we live, but the closest “big” town–which means they have a Walmart) I have been thinking about this riddle.  On the way home last time we stopped at this house to buy eggs.  You know the houses:  a cooler at the end of the driveway with a sign advertising eggs for sale and an honor box inside the cooler for the money.  This is where the best eggs come from.  Free range, well fed, happy chickens.  A dozen is usually between $2 and $3.  A great deal.  Considering right now in our area, a dozen of factory raised, antibiotic fed, poorly housed, and over a month old eggs are $1.99.  Anyway….I know that the woman that lives there is a spinner.  How I know that is a longer story that we will skip here.  But I know she spins and I thought that maybe we could work out some sort of trade.  I wanted to trade a batt once per month (we really only get to Farmington about once a month) for some eggs.

I knew that we were going there today, so I made this batt in hopes that she would be agreeable to this.  She was in fact home, and was very excited to trade wool for eggs!

I am just so thrilled!  We have worked out that I will bring a 4 oz. batt once per month, and she will give 4 dozen eggs for it.  (This is 4 dozen in the pile, but one of the boxes is underneath the other, so you can’t really see it.)  Each of us thinking we have received the better end of the deal!  She liked the idea that she would receive a “mystery batt” each month, and I am so pleased to get really fresh, beautiful eggs from a farm and someone I know and not from a factory half way across the country.

This is just the thing that I have been wanting to do.  I want to have a different system for getting what I need and want other than using money.  I really hate that everything is so expensive and I have so little money.  There has to be a better way.  For a creative person, there has to be a different way.

When I thought about this swap, I realized that I could work one hour at my job (that I don’t love) to earn enough for this amount of eggs, or I could spend one hour at my drum carder mixing colored wools together into something really cool and personally satisfying to me and to someone else and still get the same amount of eggs.  This would not work for everyone, of course, spinning is so specific.  Not many do it, and of those not many who do it, no one I know who lives near me does it.  But I can do other things, and if I put my mind to it, I could probably come up with another swap or two that would be just as good as the one I made today.  I think a time will come when those of us that can do and make and grow things will be doing far better than those of us who can buy things.  I think now is the time to lay the ground work for those connections.

Thank you Diane for the eggs!  And I hope you like your fiber.

11 thoughts on “A Maine Morning and an Egg-selent Swap

  1. Life is a spiral/circle … the bartering system from before “money’s” time is making a comeback, just as the size of electronics and headphones is returning to bigger is better rather than seeing how small they can go. Funny how things come and go like the tide.

  2. I love your creativity. You’ve inspired me to keep my eyes out for trading options around me. Have a great day!

  3. Standing ovation from the South (well….South-ern Maine.) When you think of it, how impersonal it is to march to a check out counter with your little box eggs. You have managed to weave in creativity and a new human experience. I love it when humans get “human.”
    Let us know your next experience.

  4. Sorry – I wondered but then figured since there was a reblog button that did it without waiting to be approved it was okay. I removed it and it won’t happen again.

    • Thank you. I do appreciate your interest though. I think adding a link back to that page would be fine if you wanted, but not the reblog.
      I bet lots of people trade their handiwork for other things.

  5. Hi Becky! It’s your cousin Lisa. What a great trade…I just found a local woman who has a dairy cow and sells raw milk, butter, cheese, etc. She’s agreed to take fabric in trade when she can 🙂 We have lots if places nearby to get fresh eggs, and they’re so good. I hope you are doing well and having fun with all of your projects!

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