Category Archives: Plants/seeds

Mom’s Clothing and Gift Swap, and Potluck, SE Portland, December 16th

What:  A Holiday celebration for Moms that includes Potluck finger food snacks, music, raffle prizes, clothing and gift swap, and fun! This event is sponsored by members of the Portland Mama’s Free Items Group Facebook page

Where:  St. Peter and Paul Church, 247 SE 82nd Ave, Portland, OR 97215

When: Sunday December 16th 4pm-8pm, but can arrive after 3pm to set up donations of snacks, swap items, mingle etc.

RSVP how many you are bringing by text to 971-401-7899 or join the Portland Mama’s Free Items Facebook group and click ‘going’. This event is focused on Mom’s, but if you need to bring kids please be responsible for them.

POTLUCK and FREE SWAP: Can arrive any time after 3pm to set out items, Potluck and Swap begin at 4pm.  (Free swaps usually last about an hour, so arrive early for the best selection.  However, even if you arrive later, there will be others arriving later as well and adding items, plus the raffles take place from 4pm -8pm.  Must be present to win the raffle prizes.)

Potluck: If you can bring a finger food dish or snack to share, or a new item to donate for the raffle, that would be wonderful, but not required. Everyone who attends will get a free raffle ticket!

Free Clothing and Stuff Swap: Go through your house and storage, find in-good-condition items you no longer need/use love, wash them up, make sure all the pieces are there, and bring them to the swap! Bring giftable and wearable items in good condition to swap including: holiday decorations, kid, baby, and teen clothes, mom and maternity clothes, toys, books, household and kitchen items, games, fun and pampering stuff teens and mom’s like – basically anything clean and in good shape that is giftable! When the swap begins, feel free to take what you will use or give as gifts. Please be kind, generous and courteous. All remainders will be donated to bless families in the community.

In between snacking and swapping, there will be music from 4-7pm. Relax, visit, and chill with other Moms! This is a chance to de-clutter, find new-to-you items, enjoy a visit and food with new friends, listen to music, and refresh yourself!

If you are a Mom, you can also join the Portland Mama’s Free Items Group Facebook page


RSVP for the 2018 Holiday Gift and Toy Swap December 8th!!

stuff swapAs of 11/18/18  the 2018 Holiday Gift and Toy Swap is full.  However, volunteer Christine is still taking people for the wait list. If you find out that you or someone in your party can’t make it to the swap, please let Christine know so she can tell the next person in line.  Thank you!

RSVP for the 2018 Holiday Gift and Toy Swap! This has become a FAVORITE Holiday tradition!  Combine house cleaning, gift shopping, philanthropy, and free frugal fun!

The 2018 HOLIDAY GIFT & TOY SWAP is Saturday December 8th, 2pm, in the Evergreen Community Church gym.  You must RSVP (reserve your spot) and get your entry ticket by December 6th!

Gift Swaps are tons of fun – watch here to learn more!

The gym is unheated so dress warmly. Since kind women, men and teens are invited, YOU MUST READ ALL INSTRUCTIONS AND HAVE AN ENTRY ‘TICKET’ TO GET INTO THIS SWAP (see below).


To attend this event, you and your guests need to read and abide by the Free Swap Rules, and What To Bring (below). To get on our Reservation/entry list, email volunteer Christine’s special 2018 Gift and Toy Swap RSVP email and in the subject line write the total number in your party. Due to volume, Christine may not be able to respond immediately, but she is able to track the order in which they are received, so she asks everyone to be patient and she will get back to you. When Christine has you on her list – your name, number of people, and email address – she will email you back your confirmation.  THIS CONFIRMATION IS YOUR ENTRY TICKET. Get on the list before December 6th to secure your spot!  Only 150 spots available!  Due to space constraints, you will not be allowed into the event unless you and your guests are on the list, so it’s important that you fill in your subject line info and send it to the correct email address.  We can’t be responsible for RSVP emails sent to any address other than .  If you or one of your guests can’t make it, please email Christine as soon as possible so she can offer the spot(s) to the next in line.


  1. No selling anything you received at a free swap. If you get it free and decide later you don’t want it, you agree to give it away (not consign, sell, eBay etc.). All remainders are given to charities that will give them away, not sell them, so your philanthropy keeps good karma and fun flowing for yourself and others this holiday season!
  2. Kind women, men, and teens are invited to this swap. Please leave babies, toddlers, early grade school children, and pets safely at home with a sitter – that way you can shop for them! Plus, the gym won’t be echoing with excited whoops or cries. Carpooling is recommended.
  3. Be generous. Be respectful of each other. Only take what you will personally use or give as gifts.
  4. If you feel the above 3 rules are too difficult or don’t apply to you, don’t come. Those who follow these simple rules will have a great time!


  1.  Scour your closets, garages, and home for things in gift-able condition. Please do not bring anything that is broken, dirty, or junky. We are all volunteers and don’t have the money to pay to dispose of junk, and the gym floor is carpeted and needs to be kept clean. All remainders immediately after the swap will be picked up and given to Bethlehem House Of Bread Free Store in Tigard, so other families can play spreading free holiday cheer!
  2. Between 1:30 and 1:55 bring in and put your items with like-minded stuff in rows. After you’ve put your items out, go to the walls of the gym so people coming in have room to put their stuff down in the middle. Leave a walkway down the middle of the gym so it’s easier to move around. (See photo at top of this post.) You decide which category/row your things would best fit.
  3.  No pre-shopping (scooting stuff into piles, or taking things before the swap coordinator says ‘go’). To make it fun and fair for everyone, we all wait until the swap leader says go, and then all start at the same time (this is NOT Walmart:). Since there will be possibly 100+ people we ask you to be responsible for yourselves and your guests. If you are an experienced swapper and see someone with wide eyes (the typical newbie stare of disbelief at all the amazing goodies) introduce yourself and answer any swap questions they may have.
  4.  Before we start, we’ll ask that everyone go stand next to something that looks interesting – but don’t pick it up yet – so there’s no mad rush before we begin. Feel free to mention which item you are going for with neighbors. That way if two people are going for the same teapot, you have some negotiating time (i.e. if person A doesn’t have a teapot, and person B has a teapot collection, obviously person A should get the teapot, and this gives person B a chance to go stand next to something else that looks interesting). When the emcee/coordinator says ‘go’ shortly after 2pm, then you can shop!
  5. Stuff in the middle in rows is free, boxes/bags of stuff around the walls of the gym is somebody’s stash.
  6. Bring a bag(s) or box(es) to take what you’d like home. Please be kind, courteous and generous, and focus on what we have in common: celebration of kindness and free frugal treasure hunting! If you find tons of stuff, and the person next to you only has a few items, allow them to have that item you both have your eye on:)


Search your house, garage, and storage for gift-able items you don’t need/want/love. Make sure the items are clean, in working order, and all the pieces are there. Nothing too big to fit in the backseat of a car, nothing illegal or toxic, and nothing that can’t be washed at home (i.e. no mattresses, large furniture, couch pillows, gasoline, etc.).  Would YOU like to receive it as a gift?  Then bring it!

  1. TOYS AND GAMES:  New and lightly used toys, dolls, stuffed animals, gag gifts, board games, puzzles, etc. with all the pieces still intact.
  2. MOVIES, BOOKS, CD’S DVD’S: Books in good condition, music on CD, DVD movies that are still in great working order. Computer games can go in the techie area if the book area is crowded.
  3. CRAFTS, FABRIC, ACCESSORIES: Scrap-booking, beading, knitting, sewing patterns and clean fabric, the gift towels that were the wrong color for your décor, holiday clothing accessories that are one-size-fits-most such as scarves, mittens, gloves, and hats. If an item is holiday related (i.e. Christmas sweater, holiday socks, Santa necktie) bring them. Please save non-holiday clothing for a designated clothing swap or we won’t have room for anything else!
  4. HOLIDAY AND HOUSEHOLD: Seasonal decorations, stocking stuffers, blender, dishes, potholders, coasters, fondue set, non-expired and non-opened holiday food items, table lamps. If you’d give it as a gift, bring it.
  5. TOOLS, TECHNOLOGY, GARDEN, PETS: Clean ratchet set, clean sports equipment, clean bicycles/tricycles in great shape, computers, cameras, gaming systems, computer games, clean garden pots and tools, viable seeds, clean pet dishes and toys.
  6. BREAKABLES AND COLLECTIBLES: jewelry, antiques, fancy glassware, collectibles, candy dishes, artwork, that collectible pirate ship or doll, perfume used once, lotion used once (i.e. still looks new – isn’t half full and doesn’t have gunk running down the side of the bottle).
  7. MISC. OTHER STUFF: Items you don’t know where else to put, plus this is an overflow area if other areas are too full.

If you have items you’re not sure where they go, just put them in a row that in some way makes reasonable sense…or put them in a row that isn’t too crowded.


Saturday December 8th, 2pm at the Evergreen Community Church (in the Gym) 935 N.E. 33rd Avenue. Portland OR 97232.
 Two blocks south of Sandy Blvd. on 33rd (the west fork in the road), at Pacific Street, in a small modern red brick building. There is a parking lot behind the church. The gym is directly across from the playground. Get there early to grab a parking lot space…late comers will need to park on the street. Also consider carpooling. We will have volunteers with clipboards holding the RSVP list at the door. Those on our RSVP list can sign and go in.

This is one of our most well-attended and magical swapping events of the year. It’s a lot of fun to clean out your house for the holidays, knowing that you’re making other people very happy by recycling things that you no longer need/use/love, and getting a treat or two for yourselves and your loved ones. As you can see by the video at the beginning of this blog entry, Free Swaps are for kind, generous people who know how to manage themselves in appropriate ways. No hoarding, no stampeding, no grabbing stuff…just fun, thrifty, kind people. Thank you for being a part of this fun-filled celebration of thrift!

Please support our mission by enjoying the swap as a place to GIVE and get free stuff, and if you part with your new-to-you swap items, we ask that YOU do it in a free way too!  Everyone who participates is a philanthropist!

If you don’t see a free swap in your size, interest, or neighborhood, how about starting one?  Find out more here.  RSVP above, and we’ll see you in December!

Thanks for being a part of the FREE swapping community!

RSVP NOW for the 13th Annual Spring Stuff Swap!

stuff swapRSVP NOW for the 13th Annual Spring Stuff Swap coming up April 14th 2018!  Combine spring cleaning, sustainability, philanthropy, treasure hunting, and free frugal fun with like-minded friends! Your home will be less cluttered, your in-good-condition stuff will be loved by someone else, you’ll find new-to-you items you CAN use…plus, all remainders are given away to a local charity that GIVES them away, not sells them! Be a part of the saving$, recycling, treasure hunting, philanthropy, and good karma flowing around:) If you’ve never been to a free gift or stuff swap, see one in action here.

Due to space constraints YOU MUST GET ON THE GUEST LIST TO RESERVE YOUR SPACE AT THIS SWAP (swap RSVP email below in blue), and read and agree to the swap guidelines below so everyone knows what to expect and can have fun.

Kind and courteous women, men, and teens are invited.  Please leave babies, toddlers animals, and grade school children safely at home with Continue reading

NEW! Seed Swap, The Dalles Oregon, February 17th

1st annual Seed Exchange, Open to everyone, in The Dalles Oregon!

When: Saturday February 17th, 1pm-4pm

Where: The Dalles-Wasco County Public Library, 722 Court St. The Dalles, Oregon 97058

Join us for the 1st Annual Wasco County Seed Exchange! Come by to pick up seeds for your 2018 garden, and bring any seeds you have saved from last year (don’t worry if you don’t have any!). Get local gardening tips from Master Gardeners – and share any you might have with us 🙂  For more information, check out our facebook event page

Hosted by The Dalles-Wasco County Public Library and the Wasco County Master Gardeners. We can’t wait to see you there!

First Ever Sandy Library Free Seed Swap a Success!

20180127_114855We had 93 people come enjoy our very first seed swap in Sandy January 27th 2018. It was a huge success.  The pre-planning meeting I had with the volunteers the week before made the set-up on the day of the event run smoothly.  I was very proud of the way the gardening experts helped the new gardeners with their questions. I watched throughout the event as people would take the time to tidy up the seed packets to make everything look nice and make it easy for people to find what they were looking for.

Continue reading

Heirloom Seed Swap, Sandy Oregon, January 27th

The Sandy Seed Library, partnering with AntFarm, will host their first ever SEED SWAP  to provide the opportunity to exchange non-GMO, non-hybrid heritage varieties of vegetable and flower seeds.

Sandy’s very first Seed Swap is Saturday January 27th, from 11am to 2pm at the AntFarm Cafe–  39140 Proctor Blvd, Sandy, OR. This will be in the back conference room.
You are welcome to come anytime within the 3-hour period.  Here is how it will work:
1. You will sign in at the Welcome table at the entrance to the back room.
2. You can distribute any seed that you are contributing to the swap.  Look around the room to find the signs for the type of seed you are bringing. Please be sure that your donations are very well marked and have all the information that people will need in order to grow your seeds; including notations as to if the seed is hybrid, GMO, organic, open-pollinated, etc.
3. In the middle of the room will be a table of supplies (pens and empty seed packets).
4. You will “shop” for seeds.  We recommend taking 2-3 seeds for each plant that you intend to grow this season.
5. You will package your chosen seeds and mark your seed packets with the information you need to grow your plants. There will be yellow dot stickers that you can add to your package to indicate if your seed is hybrid.  Remember that hybrids will not remain true to the parent, so you will not want to save any seed from your hybrid plants for next season.
We will have several volunteers on hand if you have any questions, including some Master Gardeners.
We encourage you to chat with other gardeners and compare growing tips. Stephanie Stuart, from the Oregon Food Bank, will be handing out recipes and samples of a veggie quiche.  You can enjoy music by Sharon Sandgren & Friends, and purchase treats from the AntFarm Cafe.   Most importantly — HAVE FUN!!

Seedy Saturday is an heirloom seed exchange held the last Saturday in January.
For more information, contact Susie Jenkins of the Sandy Library at 503-668-5537 or

January 2018 Free Swaps

Happy New Year!!!  These are the free swaps we know about so far for January 2018.  Please let me know if you have any additions and/or changes.

01/06/18  Women’s and Teens All Size Clothing Swap 6pm at the Rushing Water Yoga Studio in Downtown Camas WA.  This is an All Size Women’s swap, so please pre-sort your clothes so they can be separated into piles small, medium, large, plus, and accessories. Takes place the first Saturday of the month September through June (No swaps July and August).  Please RSVP to Dorothy at

01//06/18 Community Potluck/Brunch at Yonder House in NE Portland, (usually first and third Saturdays) starting at 11:00am. Bring food to share, eat, enjoy yourself, and meet like-minded kind people!  Contact Bert Fitzgerald 574-213-5468 for more information. Check out the Yonder House facebook page at facebook/yonderhouseon15th for details.

01/07/18 Family Clothing and Footwear Swap (N Portland), Quarterly on a Sunday, 2-4pm at the Kenton Church 2115 N Lombard street Portland OR 97217, in the basement. Everyone is welcome. All sizes of Men’s, Women’s, and Children’s clothing will be exchanged. No donation is required in order to receive clothing. Frequently asked questions about this swap  This quarterly swap usually takes place March, June, September, January. Contact Ginny for more information at

01/13/18 Women’s Size 6-12 Clothing Swap in NE Portland at the Evergreen Continue reading