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Homesteading is a way of life. You never stop learning, and that is an appealing part of homesteading for the educator inside of me. Skill development is just part of your daily life.
Years ago, I had no idea how to tend a garden. I had no idea how to grow radishes or how to prune brussel sprouts. I learned. My husband, Andrew, learned how to tend to a flock of chickens and enhance his woodworking skills.
Learning skills can come from personal experience or mentorship with someone more experienced. Andrew fixes our vehicles almost exclusively after years of working alongside his father.
The other way to learn skills is through reading books. I am a book fanatic. If I could fulfill one dream, it would be to have a complete, personal library with every book I could want to read. You probably can imagine I have read quite a few homesteading books, whether on an e-Reader or a book in my hands. Here are my 5 best and inspirational homesteading books.
- The Backyard Homestead by Carleen Madigan
Years ago, I needed inspiration. We only live on one acre. What could I possibly do on ONE acre that would make a difference for our family? Carleen convinced me that I can do more than I ever imagined. She gives plans for people who only have 1/4 of an acre! There is no reason why you can’t find ways to homestead on any sized land.
- The Encyclopedia of Country Living by Carla Emery
Everyone needs a resource that they can use to find answers. Because we believe in being prepared, I prefer to have a resource in my hands. Carla Emery answers every question you probably could have. From canning to butchering, you can find answers in The Encyclopedia of Country Living. Plus, it is budget friendly and HUGE. The size was surprising to me when it arrived.
- The Weekend Homesteader by Anna Hess
Many of us have real jobs outside of homesteading. Anna Hess gives real, applicable tips for every month of the year. She talks about skills like choosing mushrooms and growing a no-till garden. I like books that are divided by months. It gives you tasks to think about and focus on during that time period. I find that I am more driven and inspired.
- The Made-from-Scratch Life by Melissa Norris
I recently finished reading the Made-from-Scratch Life and I loved it! I am a long time listener to her podcast and the book was fantastic. First, it is Christian based and I loved how Melissa incorporates her faith throughout her book. She has excellent recipes and advice, especially about preserving and gardening. If you pair the book with her podcasts, you will gain a lot of knowledge. I sure have.
- The Homesteading Handbook by Abigail Gehring
I purchased The Homesteading Handbook on my kindle. It is a fantastic resource! There are hundreds of ideas, from building doghouses to learning about solar energy. Homesteaders need these types of research and resources so we can make the best decisions. Abigail even includes a fantastic chapter about making candles that I found very helpful.
If you take a look online, you’ll see that there are dozens of books about homesteading, along with hundreds of e-books and websites. There is more information out there about homesteading than ever before.
Do you have a favorite homesteading book? Let me know about it. I need no excuses to add more books to my shelves.