I consider myself an independent woman. I can write communications strategies for global organisations, I know what nutrients my body needs and what food to find them in, and I haven't hit snooze in months.
However, late last year a button fell off my favourite (and only clean) work shirt. Attempting to mend it myself failed drastically. I wondered, how could I not complete a menial task that surely everyone knows how to do?
With this realisation came a self-imposed resolution. I have decided to take one for the (generation Y) team by not allowing our parent's generation's essential life skills to die out in my lifetime.
For Christmas, I didn't ask for a Coles Myer Voucher, a fancy bottle of bubbly or a fake purse; I strongly pushed for a sewing machine. And during my first lesson (thanks Mum), I realised there is a long list of essential life skills that my parents can do, but I can't.
If you are worried about food rations, near-future wars, or if you need to pinch some pennies, join my crusade and help me help you by learning at least one of the below.
It is just not trendy to knit anymore. It isn't taught in schools and you were lucky if your grandmother taught you when you were little.
I plead you to not smile ignorantly at the Baby Booming yarn bombers decorating poles in your local hood... pick up the needles, learn to cast on, and make your own crooked scarf with holes in it.
You just saved yourself $15 this winter, by the way. You're welcome.
My legs are vertically challenged. Every piece of clothing I purchase I have to have taken up. When I try garments on, I have to visualise what they would look like if I wasn't standing in a puddle of fabric.
Enter my fancy new sewing machine. After several (painful) lessons, I can now successfully hem my own skirts, pants, and sometimes even sleeves.
Apologies to my local tailor-shop friends, but I am saving $14 a pop by doing it myself.
Washing a car
When I was 14, my teacher tasked us with creating a profitable business. My team missed out on the Bunnings Sausage Sizzle, so we delved straight in to the world of car washing.
It was fun, it was summer, and our neighbours paid us! And then we realised that they re-washed their cars instantly when we were finished.
Coin-eating, self-service car washes don't have the whizz-bang cloths, the different products for different panels or the special wax stuff.
I have chosen to not learn how to wash my car correctly by doing just that... not washing it. But watch out YouTube tutorials and Toyota Yaris, I'm coming for you both.
Cooking from scratch
I think I am an AMAZING cook. Like, how hard is it to buy steam-fresh veggies and microwave them?
Pasta sauce? Tick. Roast chicken pre-stuffed? Tick. Making my own cakes/bread/pastry/pasta? Cross. Big fat cross.
Cooking is a combination of mathematics and science. Neither are my forte and neither did I have any interest in learning.
I am now determined that if the time comes that I am stuck on a deserted island with only a bag of flour and eggs, I will be saved by neighbouring ships at sea who have been enticed by the smell of my delectable, fresh carbonara.
There is an echo in my house every morning. It sounds like this: "I need new clothes, I have no clothes, I have nothing to wear."
In fact, I have a wardrobe bursting with options, they are just all wrinkled. I literally only wear things that don't need to be ironed.
I do own an iron, I just don't own an ironing board. If I did, I wouldn't even know how to unfold it.
How to save money by ironing 101: Call your mother, who probably still irons towels, and ask her how to iron a collar. Your wardrobe will grow exponentially, trust me.
How amazing does lavender smell!? How good is fresh basil in tomato sauce!!? How easy is it to stick a cutting of an existing plant in some dirt and grow your own!!!?
Oh wait, no it's not.
Please stick around for a little longer sunshine, I'm sure the dead twigs in my pot plants will start to sprout... any moment now...
Changing a tyre
Most people learn by doing. So do that. When your tyre goes flat (and at one point in your life it will), learn to change it yourself. Read the manual and pull out the jack. You never know when you will be stuck in a no-service area and roadside assist can't be found on the other end of your phone.
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