Thursday, June 13, 2013

To Volunteereth Or Not To Volunteereth? Well, That's A Silly Question...

Today Hubs and I are celebrating our 3rd anniversary! :) Initially I considered sharing with you all the story of why he had to change his pants immediately before our ceremony. Go ahead, I'll let your mind wander on that for a minute... But instead I'm going to share with you how I got him an awesome anniversary gift for FREE!
Since I'm endeavoring to live cash-free I've been really perplexed about what to do for him today. In the past we've always celebrated our anniversary at the Idaho Shakespeare Festival, but tickets are like $40 each, at least. Hmmmm.....
So last week I sent an email to the Festival box office asking them if I could possibly volunteer in exchange for 2 tickets to tonight's show. I explained that it has been our annual tradition (all two previous years) and that we'd like to continue that tradition, but I'm not allowed to spend any money, per my current experiment. I received an email reply just a few minutes later stating that they would love to have us volunteer and help us maintain our anniversary tradition. One catch, she didn't have any availability tonight, so we're going to a show next week instead. Hey, FREE Shakespeare tickets, I'll take it! Plus, this means Hubs still has to take me out tonight, so now we get to celebrate twice. ;)
Often our time is just as valuable, if not more so, than goods or services we have to trade. So next time you want to hit up an event, offer to volunteer. Give of yourself first, and it is sure to be returned to you in equal measure.

Happy Anniversary Babes, love ya!

Recommended meditation:
(cuz I'm in a lovey-dovey mood)
Attract Love

Sunday, June 9, 2013


It just occurred to me today that Babins has precisely 2 settings: utterly awesome and total shit. I don't so much mean her moods or personality, as I mean her perception of her world. Things are either super great, and she's in awe at every new thing she encounters and learns. Or the world, as she understands it is, with all certainty, heading toward oblivion. No middle ground. No grey area. She's either super stoked, or totally bummed. As I believe babies are the closet thing we have to the windows of our souls, our most true self, I'm trying to figure out what the lesson is here.
I mean, we tell our kid's to be patient. She's not. We tell them to be temperate and cautious. Nope. We tell them to seek moderation and the middle ground. Uh, no chance. So what does her soul know that mine forgot? Persistence.
Should we, as adults, approach life in fits and rages when we don't get what we want instantly? No, maybe not that. But perhaps we should be a little more persistent with our requests of ourselves and The Universe, hold it out there until it is yours. When she's hungry she's not going to stop screaming until there's a boob in her mouth. When you have a valid and life affirming need, don't stop praying for it until it is provided. God wants nothing more than to do this for you. His minutes might be bigger than ours; I'm sure mine are bigger than hers. She doesn't scream out of anger or despair, it's just her mode of communication, her prayer toward her need, and I answer it as soon as I am able. God, The Universe, does this for us as well. Make your request. You need not scream. As we grow we find other modes of communication, but set your prayer in your mind and give it over to The Universe. After all, what Mother wouldn't feed Her child?

Recommended meditation:
Living Prayer

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Latch On Like Ya' Mean It!

There are times when Babins is crying and in the busyness of all my other responsibilities I don't get to her as quickly as she'd like. By the time I do (we're talking minutes here, not hours) she's now so distraught that she can barely focus enough to latch on and partake of that for which she wails. My point? I think we grown ups do this as well. We expect life to be a certain way, or we expect set outcomes from our activities. When our goals don't materialize as quickly as we'd hoped we jump into freak out mode. So much so that when an opportunity does present itself, we're so busy throwing a hissy fit, of grown up proportions, that we don't notice it or can't latch onto to it. So calm down, take a step back, breath it in, and THEN, latch on like ya mean it!

Recommended meditation:
Deep Stress Relief


That Time I Traded My Newborn For Some Photos

It's not quite as bad as it sounds. Ok, it's actually not bad at all. ;) It was a Saturday afternoon in February and my friend had a booth at a Valentine's Day Expo for her esthetics's services (hit me up for a referral and discount if you're in the market for said services, I will hook you up!). So I hauled my grossly pregnant self down there to be supportive, but mostly to eat all her Valentine's candy, and also for the free facial. While I was there being ultra-supportive, this sweet, bubbly lady approached me from across the room and asked me when I was due and if she could borrow my baby upon birth. After feigning shock and offense, "What?! You think I'm pregnant?! Haha, just kidding, yeah, this kids is gonna pop anytime," she proceeded to lay out her proposition. Turns out she is a photographer wanting to offer me a FREE newborn photo shoot because she needed some practice with newborns, as well as shots for her growing portfolio. I had been thinking about newborn photography prior to this, but couldn't think how I was going to be able to afford it, so her offer was a fortuitous and welcome surprise! As the Universe would have it, I went into labor that evening. 10 days later Babins and I were in her studio getting this awesome gift of gorgeous keepsake photographs, and she was getting some great practice in preparation for her soon-to-be-born niece's upcoming photo shoot. So I guess the lesson here is get pregnant and people will offer you free stuff!  Ok maybe not. Perhaps just be open and receptive. You never know what that stranger approaching you has to offer, and in being open to that energy you're helping them in return. Don't you just love the generosity and reciprocity of the Universe?

P.S. For all your skin care needs contact Angela with Pur Escape Skin Care @ (208)794-8046
P.P.S. For beautiful family photos contact Lindsey with Feather Blue Photography @ (208)869-8513 
Recommended meditation:
Flow & Synchronicity – Subliminal Messaging


Friday, June 7, 2013

I'm Embarking On An Experiment...And I'm Taking YOU With Me

I would like to live cash-free for my family's need for which I am responsible (groceries, activities, education, etc.). By cash-free I mean I'd like to barter or trade for goods and services vs. paying cash. At this point it's not practical to do this for ALL of our expenses (sorry Hubs, you still gotta work...for now), but maybe someday soon! For now I want to see how many of our family's needs and wants I can meet via trades. I've already started doing this for activities and "extras" and have met with success (I'll be sharing those stories and examples soon). My current goal is now to bring my grocery bill to ZERO. Please comment below if you have creative suggestions toward this end. Currently I'm looking to barter/trade for eggs, milk, grains, beans, fruits, veggies, meat, etc., the more local the better. In exchange, I can offer for trade the following services: seamstress/tailoring, herbal body wraps, organic sunless (spray) tanning, dreading hair, tutoring, childcare, and misc. light manual labor. Let me know if you have anything you want to trade! Stay tuned for strategies for sucessful bartering and cash-free living. Peace.

Recommended meditation:
Manifest Prosperity

Hello World!

Hello world! My name is Julie Browning. I am a homemaking wife and mother of 3 children. We homeschool, live on the go, and are always in search of innovative ways to combine our naturally-minded values with modern living. My hope with this blog is to share our family's story, while bringing other families together for our mutual benefit. I'd love to facilitate a community of like-minded Mamas who are all about sharing, helping, and trading our talents, ideas, goods, and services with one another for the betterment of our families and communities. You're also invited to share your funny, sweet, and sacred stories of your kids and family experience. This is community, after all, so let's share our craziness instead of drowning in it! ;)

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