Sue Chancey didn't want to be wasteful: She didn't want to throw away her children's outgrown clothes and old toys, not when other families might need them.
That's how Chancey, a 32-year-old stay-at-home mother of two who lives in the Arden Arcade area, stumbled onto the growing swap movement. Called Peace, Love, Swap, the idea started in Grass Valley several years ago and has already spread to almost four dozen communities in 11 states.
"It's a way to create community and keep from throwing things out and being wasteful," said Chancey. "You can trade with another parent for the next size up, and you can meet other parents. And you can keep things out of the landfill."
Her third swap takes place Saturday at the Robinson's Taekwondo location in Carmichael at 5733 Marconi Ave.
"It's like a lickety-split yard sale," Chancey said.
The process is fairly straightforward. Doors open at 3 p.m., when participants can drop off items they want to donate – gently used maternity clothes, baby and children's items, toys and books – and purchase a ticket to the swap. (Tickets are $5 in advance, $7 at the door.)
At 4 p.m., after Chancey and her volunteers organize the swap merchandise, parents return to fill up one large grocery bag each with all the items they need for their children.
"Some people want to grab everything," she said. "We're not about that. It's about community. We don't let people grab everything off the rack.
"My first swap, I had a couple of bad apples. I'm naturally introverted, and having to confront them and say, 'There are other people here who want items, too' was really hard for me."
While the parents shop the swap, their children can attend a fitness gym at the taekwondo facility.
Chancey donates leftover items to local charities.
"I love the idea of recycling," she said. "I grew up thrift store shopping. I love saving money. We're such a consumer-oriented society, but I'd rather consume less."
For more information on the upcoming swap, e-mail Chancey at firstname.lastname@example.org.