95 Homesteading Skills – the 2018 version


Year 3 of the Homesteading Skills List is here!!!

In 2017, this was our list, and the year before that, this oneSo for 2018, I’ve updated and improved ours! Due to upcoming plans for life changes with family and domicile, we have consolidated and/or replaced a few of the open goals for the next 12 months, I’ve checked off more things that were completed in the last year or in years prior, and I’ve also renamed it ‘urban &/or country’ as this list mixes in a few new, possibly less viable projects (i.e., processing meat chickens in a city where you can only keep a few birds isn’t exactly viable, but it is in da country…). Finally, to help myself be more accountable and share more specifics, I’ve included links from my Pinterest page to many of these projects!

The goal is to really help us make that transition in our new semi-country life later this year. I call our plans ‘semi-country’ because we aren’t offgrid or farming or having serious acreage or an hour’s drive from a grocery store or anything that badass 🙂

(BTW, readers please feel free to use/copy from this list if inspired to make your own – we were inspired by several lists we found and created our own! And of course, if you have questions about any of the items we’ve checked off, ask away!)

95 Skills for the Urban &/or Country Homesteader

  1. Bake bread from scratch
  2. Cook a whole chicken in a cast iron skillet √
  3. Cook beans from scratch (& stop buying canned beans) √
  4. Make a Quilt √
  5. Knit/crochet a scarf, blanket and/or beanie
  6. Repurpose an old t-shirt (made 2 baby onesies from tees of ours)
  7. Darn a sock
  8. Make homemade organic vanilla √
  9. Build a beehive, keep bees & harvest honey √
  10. Catch a swarm √
  11. De-bone a chicken
  12. Dehydrate Foods/Herbs/etc √
  13. Grow mushrooms
  14. Use scrap wood to build a structure √
  15. Install solar panels
  16. NEW! Learn slab pottery techniques (& make a mug!)
  17. NEW! Build a dining room table
  18. Build & use a compost bin √
  19. NEW! Compost meat & other non-traditional compostables via bokashi
  20. Make broth in a crockpot √
  21. Make Jam / Jelly / Preserves from berries we grow √
  22. Cure & store garlic √
  23. NEW! Build a root cellar
  24. Make English Muffins, Croissants and Bagels √
  25. Make our own body wash/hand soap
  26. Make sourdough bread and maintain a starter
  27. Make our own laundry soap
  28. NEW! Dry and crush bones to make bone meal fertilizer
  29. NEW! Raise & process meat chickens
  30. Render lard & tallow 
  31. NEW! Build a greenhouse/hoophouse.
  32. Preserve using a pressure cooker – I need to of course buy a pressure cooker…
  33. Learn to make the perfect pie crust √
  34. Use cloth diapers on our baby – assuming a birth mother chooses us this year!
  35. Learn basic First-Aid and CPR √
  36. Learn home canning √
  37. Set up a pantry √
  38. Learn basic metalworking skills √
  39. Learn basic plumbing maintenance skills √
  40. Learn how to use a sewing machine – of course we’ll need to buy one…
  41. Build our Earthquake Preparedness Kit – while we bought earthquake insurance in 2016, now I have a shopping list for this in case Cascadia hits…
  42. Make homemade cough remedies √
  43. Barter & trade for goods/services with neighbors √
  44. Brood day-old ducklings √
  45. Build a cold frame √
  46. Build a small fence √
  47. Host a yard sale √
  48. Butcher a whole pig into primals & sub-primals
  49. NEW! Make our own herbal teas (i.e., no more bags!)
  50. Change a tire and motor oil
  51. Cook over an open fire √
  52. Dye yarn or clothes from plants √
  53. Forage locally for wild edibles √
  54. Give an injection √
  55. Grind wheat, etc., into flour for baking
  56. Split and stack firewood √
  57. Pay off credit cards and student loans √
  58. Become mortgage-free!
  59. Make butter
  60. Make basic cheeses √
  61. Make herbal extracts/infusions
  62. Brew cider &/or beer
  63. NEW! Install a tankless water heater in our next home
  64. Grow hops √
  65. Make our own salves (DIY baby butt balm from beef tallow & EVOO)
  66. Make our own body lotion
  67. Grind & stuff our own sausage
  68. Make our own deodorant √
  69. Make bacon and other cured/charcuterie meats √
  70. Make apple cider vinegar √
  71. Plan and grow a veggie & herb garden √
  72. NEW! Make more advanced cheeses (mascarpone, gruyere, etc.)
  73. Properly handle & shoot a gun √
  74. Plant & prune a fruit tree
  75. Save seeds (tomatoes, peppers, flowers) √
  76. Know crop planting times, season length, and when to harvest √
  77. Season a cast iron skillet √
  78. Sharpen a knife √
  79. Sharpen a saw, mower blade & other outdoor tools
  80. Build and use an outdoor clothesline for laundry  √
  81. Propagate plants from cuttings √
  82. Build a coop & run √
  83. Keep ducks for eggs √
  84. Set up & use rain barrels √
  85. Set up a greywater recycling system (from laundry, shower, etc) in next home
  86. Store apples and potatoes (successfully) through an entire winter
  87. Homeschool/”worldschool” our kiddo (assuming we are chosen this year!)
  88.  Make tortillas from scratch √
  89. NEW! Can minced garlic
  90. Build a meat smoker
  91. Use lacto-fermentation to preserve foods √
  92. NEW! Build a laundry hamper out of repurposed materials
  93. Make organic “pesticide” √
  94. Catch, prepare and cook a fish we caught
  95. Get & use a dehydrator √

13 thoughts on “95 Homesteading Skills – the 2018 version

  1. That’s a brilliant list. I’d love to make a quilt one day. I have caught my own fish – and my Grandad taught me how to prepare it. That was quite satisfying.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! Yeah I was fortunate on the quilt part because my great-grandmother had left a couple of cute tops to me and I learned the easy way of how to attach them through knotting two backing and then just had a seamstress I know help with the borders… I gave one to my brother and the other is completely my Linus blanket now 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I am currently getting to grips with sewing. I have a tailor for a brother and a quilt-maker for an aunt. You’d think these creativity things might come naturally, but no. I can knit though 🙂


        1. Hey the fact that you can knit is much further than me! All that quilting required was tying little knots with string, so beyond that all I can do is sew a button haha – my goal is to eventually get over the fear of sewing machines!


        2. Ohhh yessssssssssssss I understand that fear!!!!!!! I have been lucky. Anything I needed doing, too big for me to do by hand, I used to smile sweetly at brother and grandmother. Now? They are 270 miles away but my brother has given me one of his computerised sewing machines. I have a silly pedal for it (works the opposite of how I expect) but it is not as scary as I imagined. And it’s not as complicated as I thought it would be! It’s rather fun!

          Liked by 1 person

  2. You are well on your way! Quite a list. I remember my mother teaching me a lot of those skills, sewing never took I am afraid. I even donated her sewing machine when she died. Can’t knit either. Cooking okay and gardening took very well. Happy 2018 to you and your goals.


  3. I love your list! I am totally going to borrow some of these ideas to up my homesteading skills game! Also, is that your Flow Hive? Do you love or at least like it? I want one terribly – it seems like a good jumping off board into more traditional beekeeping, especially for a person who is working to overcome a bee phobia 😛

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I’d look at the Instant Pot (yeah, yeah, yeah – it’s trending hard right now) for your pressure cooking needs – you can also do yogurt and broths/stocks in it as well, and it’s very easy/safe to use. I’m using mine to make yogurt (saving the whey for bread making or some lacto-fermentation at some point) + it’s great with beans, for starters. Well worth having!

    Liked by 1 person

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