One thing has become obvious since I began homeschooling. I have a lot to learn. No, not my kids. Me. I have a lot to learn.

Over the last few weeks I’ve been slowly adding stuff to my kids’ curriculum. Lately I’ve been focusing on the practical skills I want my daughter to know before she goes off to college. Cooking, sewing, gardening, knitting. These are all things that can help save money. And sadly, these things are all falling out of fashion.

Knowing how to cook allows you to cook from scratch. This is far less expensive than popular convenience foods. Still, I fear convenience foods are making knowing how to cook less important. I want my daughter to know how to make pancakes from scratch, rather than from the recipe on the back of a box of Bisquick.

Sewing can make clothing go farther. Knowing how to put a cute patch on the warn knee of your daughter’s jeans can breath new life into them. Old pants can become capris or shorts. Knowing how to sew curtains allows you to transform a room with bargain priced fabric. The money saving possibilities are endless, if you know how to work a sewing machine.

Gardening…I probably don’t even need to talk about gardening. If you want bargain priced organic produce, starting a garden with your favorite vegetables is the way to go. Though not always less expensive at the outset, gardening year after year can save money in the long run.

And even knitting can save money. If you know what you’re doing, you can repurpose yarn from an old sweater into something new, by unraveling and reusing the yarn.

So this year, along with my daughter, I’ll be learning some of these skills. I know the basics of all of them, and despite my tendency to eat out, I do know how to cook. As for sewing, gardening, and knitting, I only know the basics. I’m looking forward to learning these new skills. The more you can do yourself, the more money you can save. It’s never too late to learn something new, and with the resources on the internet, learning is free.

Are there any skills you wish you had learned earlier? What are they?

Photo by tsuacctnt.