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Wednesday, February 12

Learning New Skills #1

Since I've been learning lots of useful new skills lately in a variety of fields, I thought I'd begin sharing as I go along. Recently I read that if you read an hour on any subject every day for 7 years you'd be an international expert on that subject. To be honest, this "new skills" series is mostly for me so that one day I can look back and remember the skills I studied and when.

There are so many things we don't know about simply because either our technological society doesn't require it OR we just don't care.

So here are the things I've been learning about in the last week...

1. Making a wattle fence. Shockingly easy! Basically free for use as shelter, protection, and of course, a fence for your garden or small livestock. Check out this video.

2. Elimination communication. Essentially, potty training your baby. At first, I was totally skeptical but after reading rave reviews from Shoshana Pearl Easling (owner of the Bulk Herb Store and daughter of the Pearls) I decided to check it out. Diaperfreebaby.org and this video explain.


3. Foraging/Edible plants. This is a very useful skill if you ever get stuck in an emergency situation. The SAS Survival Guide by John Wiseman is a great resource, plus there are entire books about edible plants. Foraging goes beyond just mushrooms and into roots, berries, and leaves.

4. Raising Rabbits for Meat. For some people, the thought of eating Thumper is just gruesome, but rabbits are delicious, easy to produce, and healthy meat that can be raised in a small, even urban area. I initially got interested in this after a cousin started raising rabbits, then I read about it in The Backyard Homestead. This is a great video on raising/breeding them while this video shows how to kill and butcher rabbits.



5. Pine Needle Basket. You can make a basket using only pine needles, a needle, sinew, and a straw. This tutorial is decently good but the process seems time consuming. In an emergency situation the basket could be used to catch rainwater.

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