Wednesday, September 16, 2015

The Dance of Homesteading and Running Your Own Business (and how I learned to love them both)

Today has been a great example of the dance of homesteading and working from home.  For the first couple of months or so, I struggled with this.  I felt as though I needed to be working solely on the business, and doing the housework, keeping up the house and the animals were all taking away from that.  But recently, as I reexamined what it was that I had hoped to achieve with the business, I realized that one of the things I wanted most was self sufficiency, creating a homestead in our little slice of the world.  And to do that, I needed to also focus on how much money I can save by being at home, which creates a more self sufficient and environmentally friendly household.

I think it is engrained in us that we should work, pay bills, buy stuff, repeat.  And I knew deep down that was not what I wanted.  I wanted to break that cycle, which is where I thought starting my own business fit in.  The first steps were very hard.  Depending on just the hubby's income to live, still having bills to pay, and still very much getting caught up in the hustle and bustle and expectations that we should be making more to do stuff and buy stuff with.  And just the doubt that comes along with the slow growth that happens when you start any business.

I began to think about getting a part time job to supplement and I began to crunch the numbers.  Since we live a little outside of town a few things became apparent.  My being at home allowed me to make almost all our meals from scratch, which saves us a lot and keeps us healthier.  Us having one car cut down on expenses and gas, and if I had a job, too, we would, at the very least, have to pay more for gas, and at the most, would have another car to keep up, pay for and insure.

It started to dawn on me that part of what I love is being able to provide good meals, grow food (when the critters of the area aren't eating them), put food up for later, and generally take care of the homestead that we are building.

And it is a dance.  All this could easily be a full time job, so fitting the business in at the same time can be tough.  I'd say, in all honesty, that I can't give 100% to either.  But I think that is okay.  The business (or the vegetables) may grow a little slower, but I am building on a bigger vision.

And so, today has been a great example.  This morning I got the hubby off to work, then fed the animals, took the dog for a walk and watered the garden, including our new batch of greens I have planted in pots and have covered in wire.  (Humans 1, critters 0.)

After everyone else was taken care of, I started dough for some french loaves, and got the crockpot all ready for potato chowder, with several vegis from our CSA box from Talley Farms.

Then I set to work.  I have an exciting project we are doing with Birch Fabrics for this year's Quilt Market.  Only a littler is going to be a cozy quilt from some brand new Birch fabric.  But more on that soon.

At lunch time, I set to soaking some dried beans for future meals, and baked up that bread.  Then it was back to cutting fabric for work.

After the brain felt nice and melted from cutting as close to perfectly similar quilt pieces, I figured I'd share a few (or more...hehe) thoughts with you.

I hope for all of you starting something new in your life, you allow yourself the time to grow into it.  It is hard, and if you ever need to talk about it, don't hesitate in emailing me here or leaving a comment below.  But if you are anything like me, things will start to fall into place.  Believe me, it is still going to be hard.  But I am learning so much, and am finally starting to really enjoy the ride. (Well, except the dishes.)



  1. awesome post! if you learn any secrets on how do to all of that AND have time to clean the house too...please pass them on! Also...i do the same thing with my beans...soak, par cook, freeze. they are so handy especially when I don't remember to soak the night before.

  2. Thanks!! I will definitely let you far I have not been able to conquer the house cleaning except for the essentials....and I have fewer animals than you!

  3. Replies
    1. Thanks, Nicole! It was going to be a completely different post, but as I started writing, realized that I needed to say this. Funny how that happens!