Hard times all around are causing those who still have a job to rethink everything from their vacation plans to their restaurant choices to their “must have” clothes. At the same time, those who have lost their job or have had their income severely reduced are learning to revive the lost skills of their grandparents. Maybe we should all learn some of that old grandparent know-how to save money and make extra money as well.
Those old skills are valuable assets that can help you fight your way through this recession and come out on the other side a wiser, more independent person.
More than just buying and storing extra cans of SpaghettiOs, effectively stockpiling food and supplies means knowing how long a product can last under different conditions. Whether that product is rice, canned food, or emergency supplies, squirreling away some supplies makes sense regardless of the economy. Just a reminder: you can also stockpile cash in a savings account!
Sew Whatcha Gonna Wear
One valuable skill that can last a lifetime is the ability to create clothing. It’s more than just stitching two pieces of cloth together, sewing can mean the ability to mend anything from socks to dresses. Back in 1983 I spent a summer in Guatemala and was amazed at the villagers ability to reweave my clothes that had holes in them from working in the jungle.
More Than Just Flowers
When one small plot of land and a few seeds can produce meal after meal for a family, is it any wonder that people learn to garden in a recession? Even just a few tomato plants, a couple of bell peppers, some herbs, potatoes, onions, garlic, and cucumbers can be planted in some pots on your porch or deck. Those few plants can significantly offset your grocery bill even if you don’t have much land to garden on.
Canning and Preserving Food
I don’t personally know a lot about canning, but my mother and my relatives used to can vegetables and soup every summer, then we would eat all winter! Many local community colleges offer classes on canning if you don’t have a relative or friend to teach you. Be sure and use good hygiene and follow all safety directions with canning.
Go Where the Jobs Are
Just like the pioneers of old, some folks are learning that moving to another area with better opportunities and less expense is a way to survive touch economic times. This is a HUGE decision and not one that should be made without a lot of research and advice. But, there are still some areas with job opportunities here in the US. Be sure and take into consideration things like moving expenses, utilities, cost of living, and other family considerations.
This recession is causing everyone to reassess their priorities and make every effort to become more self sufficient, and that isn’t a bad thing.
How have you become more self sufficient?