- Soup swap - Depending on how many people involved, simply make enough soup to go around. Last winter, I participated in a soup swap with four other moms and we each made 4 1-quart containers to swap. I came home with four different soups. I promptly put them in the freezer and I had some new dinner ideas. I just added a side salad and some homemade bread and dinner was served. We chose to make quart containers because we all have families with small kids, but you could increase the size. Make sure to set guidelines in case there are food allergies or issues.
- Cookie swap - I just received my invitation for this year's cookie swap with a mom's group that I belong to. We are each making a dozen cookies and there are about 6-8 mommies involved. If a dozen is too much, make it a half-dozen. I'm going to stick all of the cookies in my freezer and take an assortment of the cookies to a family holiday party. Again make sure to set guidelines in case there are food allergies or issues.
- Babysitting swap - Wouldn't it be nice to get some holiday shopping done alone, without the kiddos? Or how about just going to the grocery store or maybe a trip to your gym or a date night with your spouse? I would love it. Do you have a good friend that you trust with your kids? She might be looking for a sitter too? Set up an arrangement and take turns watching the kids. This gives you some free time without paying a sitter and the kids get some social time with friends.
- Clothing/Toy swap - Speaking of holiday shopping, presents and winter clothing don't have to be brand-spanking new. How about gently used or maybe even never used? Gather your friends and have everyone bring children's and/or adult clothes, toys, books and other items that are laying around our houses and taking up too much room in our closets. Have everyone "merchandise" their items and then everyone picks a number from a hat. Starting with number 1, everyone gets a turn to pick one item. Keep going through the numbers until everyone is done picking what they want.
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