Times are tough, and while we can hope they don't get tougher, it's smarter to prepare ourselves. The days of the secure job with benefits may be long gone, and it's unsure these jobs will return. Learning to make money at home is more important now than ever. How we process and harvest our food is also critical. Extremely toxic pesticides and genetically modified produce have shined the light on mass-producers of foods and household products, revealing them to be undesirable sources. It's begun to boil down to who we can trust with the resources we rely upon for our daily needs. In reality, most of the options we seek can be gathered and made in or near our homes. We're not so dependent as the societal machine that has fed on our blood, sweat, and tears would have us think.

The topics that are posted to this IB column tend toward independent cultural news and information that can help readers to make the most of what is available to them. If you have any recommendations to add to this and other lists, please feel free to leave them in the comments.

Two of the following resources are available in print (two also have digital versions):

The Green Manuals
Credit: (c)EthererDaz

The Green Manuals
This book covers a range of DIY approaches to off-grid living. The emphasis is green, so the methods used focus on how to make your own culinary staples, hygiene products, and cleaning products. The manual's peek at the second book in the series covers how to urban forage and what is available, vitamin-making, holistic radiation prevention and treatment, DIY ink and paper-making, and a bunch of other ways to make yourself and family completely independent.

The Art Of Shen Ku
Credit: (c) Zeek

The Art of Shen Ku
This is seriously a master guide that can appeal to anyone. It covers an ample amount of health, fitness, and survival subjects. Need to filter your water in the wild? The Art of Shen Ku has you covered. Need to avoid radioactive fall-out? Read the book.

Quit Your Day Job

Quit Your Day Job
It's taking some people as long as a year to become employed. Finding freelance methods that generate income is fast becoming a survival skill. There are a ton of sites with articles that cover different methods for people learning to make money at home.  This book compiles viable ways to make real cash immediately. It's only on Kindle right now, but a print version might emerge. You can read it with a smartphone app or Kindle for PC freeware if you don't have the physical e-reader.

Knowledge is and always has been power. The more you learn to become independent, the less you will suffer the very real effects of societal stressors it's entirely possible for you to avoid. Learn as many methods as you can to eat green for free, and make money at home.

Keep an eye on this channel for more DIY resources (currently being compiled).