Thursday, January 8, 2009

Bartering: because sometimes, innoculating a goat is just too much!

Jonas and I listen to pod-casts while we eat our breakfasts every morning. This morning was "The Survival Pod-cast." Perhaps a bit alarmist at times, but not too bad, and very useful, I recommend it highly. The pod-cast today was all about becoming independent from different systems. For example, the healthcare system, the debt system, the commercial food system. Very enlightening and inspiring. One tip I'll pass on is the suggestion to learn something new every week that will help you become more self sufficient. For instance learn to unclog a drain, or some basic first-aid, or how to change brake pads. Those types of things. The pod-cast also contained quite a bit on bartering. Consider this the segue...
Bartering has been a pretty consistent theme in my life this past week. I've been trading homemade bread for eggs with my pal Ingrid for awhile, and now I'm branching out into other trades as well. It's very useful since we try to eat locally and love eggs, but cannot have our own chickens at this time. Another bartering venture I'm excited about is trading some of our lemons for oranges with another friend, Nikol. And our good pal Amanda is getting chickens soon and willing to trade seedlings and bread for eggs. I've decided someone in my network needs to get some cows so we can have milk. I know several people who are looking into goats, but don't know that I'll reap the benefits of that. I mean, how much milk does a goat give? I fell in love with the idea of having goats yesterday, but tried to contain myself since the likelihood of being allowed goats is nil. Hello, we can't even get chickens. I'm reading Farewell My Subaru in which the author acquires two goats. Hijinks ensure, including goat intestinal distresses and innoculations that must be administered in the back of the neck. No thanks. Were we allowed livestock I could probably man up and do it, but for now I'll just make bread, and hope for the best. This whole bartering system fascinates me. Very subversive. Mr. Survival Podcaster suggested bartering for something you don't even want just to stick it to the man. I wouldn't go that far, but definitely feel around and see what bartering options are available to you and take advantage of them. And it's not just goods, services are something to barter too. Supposedly there are internet groups to fascilitate and other fun things like that. I'll look into it.

But enough about bartering. I did not make it out into the garden today. The house was in disarray and suffering for a good clean so I stayed in and powered through it. It's gotta get done once in awhile I guess. I also spent a large chunk of time juicing lemons and freezing the juice in ice cube trays. That juice will come in handy in the summer when I'm canning tomatoes. I also zested the peels and froze that. Some of the peels went towards the organic pesticide I discussed yesterday. I barely made a dent in the crop. But I'm not complaining. It's an embarassment of lemony riches.

You'll forgive me if this entry is somewhat short (yeah right), a bunch of gardening books came in at the library and I'm leaving you to peruse them. One last thing. I realized today just how much advanced planning (and re-planning) I do for my garden, especially with this newest venture. If anyone out there is planning their impending garden and would like a list of what I'm growing for ideas just shoot me a comment. Or maybe I'll post it later just for kicks. I'd also appreciate comments on topics you'd be interested in hearing me ramble on about. That's all for tonight. Later!


siobhan said...

one of the reasons we were hesitant to get goats is because we didn't know what we would do with all of the extra milk. we only want DWARF goats and they still produce a quart or two of milk a day, which is a lot of milk for a family of non-milk-drinkers. i'm happy to know that i can trade goat milk with you, should we ever buckle down and get some!

we're all out of pomegranates, though. i wish i'd known you would have taken some! we had them coming out of our ears a couple of months ago and i was giving them away to anyone i could find. i don't know how i missed you! but i ventured out today (in desperate need of some vitamin d!) and anything that was left on the big tree was shredded by the birds. i'm trying to pretend that it was my winter solstice gift to them. or something like that.

our orange tree is still a wee babe and has only two oranges, boo. we had a HUGE orange tree and a lime tree in la and it was HEAVEN! we have an apple tree here, in addition to the two poms, but it's still small-ish and produces only a small amount. the girls usually get to the apples before we can, but how can you really complain about cute little girls sneaking apples off the tree?! mallory used to sneak carrots out of our old garden and while it was frustrating, it was terribly adorable.

Amanda said...

I'm really excited about this bartering system! In fact, when my mom found out I had made lemon jelly she jumped at the opportunity to trade me some of her home brewed beer! I love how you mentioned the phrase "stick it to the man" because I was just quoting it in my head as I drove home from my mom's after our trade. I think one goat makes enough milk to feed a nuclear family. A friend of our family used to have one and I seem to remember it being enough.

siobhan said...

amanda is brilliant! why have i never made lemon jelly before?! i have a whole cupboard full of peach and plum and triple berry jam and grape jelly, but no lemon! yum!

Amanda said...

Why thank you! Some parents can't get their kids to stop stealing from the candy jar, some can't get them to stop stealing fresh produce from the garden! Alas! I'll take the latter (when I have kids). So cute!