How do I start Homesteading? Ever ask yourself that?
We have an answer for you….
On your mark…get set…GO!
What do these words actually mean? It means to find your lane, get in your position, and then off to the finish line.
What’s your finish line? Are you on your mark? Can you see your own finish line?
In this episode of Homesteady, we are focusing on the stories of people who found answers to the question “How do I start homesteading?
What’s stopping you? Whatever the roadblocks are, today’s episode is going to help you bust through those barriers.
We’re also trying a new set-up with this write-up. In the past, links to our guests, our sponsors, additional information, and products we love have been interspersed throughout the write-up. This time, there will be a list of links at the end of the post. Let us know what you think!
On your mark…
Our first guest, Mary Anne, is from Norway. Despite a 24/7 on-call job, Mary Ann draws on her Norwegian heritage and the stubbornness she attributes to it to motivate her to follow her own path. She weaves the story of her journey by sharing with us her family’s shepherding past, her father’s hobby farm, and her own connection to the wind, the beach, and the rich farmland she grew up with.
“It’s in my blood,” she tells us, “You bend your neck, and walk towards that wind.”
Mary Anne channeled her Viking stubbornness and sense of ethics and ingenuity to go, full-steam ahead, on her own path. When her job moved her across the Atlantic to America, she got to the point where she realized focusing exclusively on work wasn’t really living. For Mary Anne, finding that work-life balance meant bringing animals into her life.
“There were parts of me I loved using that I couldn’t really use in my daily job. I was feeling lacking not being able to use those parts of me.”
Mary Anne encourages us to fit our passions into our existing routine. It is hard work, and it takes time. The key is, YOU HAVE TO START. Even if you wake up one hour earlier each day to feed chickens or water the garden, it’s necessary to start somewhere.
What is holding you back? Identify your homesteading challenge and walk against the wind.
Need help getting started? We are in the production stage of a Ready…set…go! homesteading class. And did we mention it will be free? Become a test pilot and sign up on the big yellow button on our homepage now. Sign up for the email list to be notified about the release of this new course!
“There was only one four letter word in our family growing up. And that was ‘can’t’.”
Cody, or the Wranglerstar Youtube Channel, shares with us the “figure it out” mentality he was raised with that led him down his homesteading path. After starting small businesses throughout high school, he graduated from high school and bought himself an excavator. With a huge monthly payment, he was highly motivated to take on work, and made a name for himself for taking on the toughest jobs. Cody realized through his work in construction that he took good craftsmanship seriously.
Cody encourages us to do our best work, even if no one will ever see it. We should be proud of the work we do.
Cody introduces us to the concept of the “makers mark,” where each craftsperson had a mark they put on their products to identify everything they make. Tradespeople throughout history used their own personal marks to identify their products from the others in the marketplace.
Cody’s own journey is full of risks. He became a firefighter, and started his own online business selling auto parts. He had a successful business, and his dream home. His wife was making a six-figure income. They would work six days a week and drop their son off at his grandparent’s house each day.
One day, Cody came across a book written by a man who quit his high-income job and moved to an off-grid homestead in Montana. After visiting this homestead, Cody and his wife decided to walk away from their lifestyle and move into the wilderness.
“We were rowing in the same direction,”Cody says, “And together we made it happen.”
The values Cody holds dear make him feel that even though his bank account is smaller, he has much more. He values that 100% of all his efforts directly benefit his family. Cody and his wife are now able to work entirely on their homestead, with their son, and live debt-free. Every day, they inspire others to take a look at their lives, and see where they can make changes.
“If the deep end isn’t the right spot for you-that’s ok.”
Cody shares that he started with a 4″x8″ garden bed. His wife learned to can. Everyone starts somewhere. You don’t need to buy 60 acres to start homesteading.
So where are you right now? Are you feeling the motivation to make a change? Don’t let the feeling pass you buy.
Make the decision to walk against the wind.
Sit down with a pen and paper. List exactly what you want. What is your personal definition of success? How can you adjust your life to steer it towards your vision? There are steps that you can take, today.
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From the Suburban Escapee
This episode hit on so many important points. As a former runner myself, I remember those hours of practice on the starting blocks, waking up the next day with muscles aching I didn’t even know I had. Yet another metaphor for the homesteading journey. What muscles are inside of you, that YOU have never built up before?
The stories of Mary Anne and Cody are so important to hear together, because Mary Anne has incorporated homesteading and her passion for animals into her existing life, while Cody completely opted out of his former existence and has made homesteading his entire life. These stories, juxtaposed against one another, highlight again that each path is unique- our view on homesteading is about creating a lifestyle that is right for YOU.
I am a person who is passionate about her “day job,” and have a tool from my professional repertoire as an expressive arts therapist that can help set you on your path. I am going to encourage you to take Aust’s recommendation to sit down with a pen and a notebook one step further, and make a Vision Board. Here’s how you do it:
- Gather some supplies: a piece of paper, magazines, markers, pens, pencils, photos of people and places that are important to you. Have a computer and a printer available, if possible, to allow you to print pictures or quotes
- Create a quiet space for yourself, and your partner, if applicable, and ask yourself/yourselves the following questions:
- What does my ideal lifestyle look like?
- What makes me feel good?
- What are my values?
- Where am I now?
- What am I good at?
- What do I want to learn?
- Where do I want to go from here?
- Take your supplies that you have collected and create a collage with pictures, words, and images that capture your answers to your questions. There are several ways you can do this: glue the pictures to paper, use magnets or thumbtacks to stick them on a bulletin board. In the spirit of vulnerability, and encouraging the sharing of dreams, here is a picture of my current vision board. I used little clothespins and some twine to hang my inspirations and motivations:
I’m in the middle of my own transition right now. I just took the leap, with the support of the Homesteady Launchpad, into starting my own business, and transforming my life to match the vision of it I have in my head. Seeing images of my values- family, friends, education, fun, art-the forces that drive me-keep me focused when I feel scared. They keep me walking, one step in front of the other, against the wind.
What is your vision? How can we help? Let us know- and we’d love to see your vision boards in the comments below.
Thank you to our Partners for supporting Homesteady!
Support your livestock with top-quality products from Premier 1. (I am about to go get one of those chicken nipple waterers STAT.)
Get your garden going this spring with a seed subscription from GrowJourney. I got The Country Boy a subscription for Valentines Day and we’ve got some great broccoli rabe sprouting in our little greenhouse.
Links and Topics from the Go Homestead! Podcast Episode:
- Cool Runnings. If they can bobsled where it doesn’t snow, you can homestead.
- Mary Anne’s farm business
- Cody at Wranglerstar channel on youtube
- 10 things you may not know about Vikings
- Infant Swimming and a video
- Nirvana Nevermind Album Cover (PS, that baby is 20 now!!!)
- Share your #fencingfails at (657) 223-3276