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Seven years ago I started blogging as a hobby. I loved to write, I loved to save money, and I wanted to document our journey to the simpler life. It was fun. I would write when I felt inspired or when I felt like I had something worth saying. I’d share a little piece of my heart from me to you.
We didn’t have any kids yet so I didn’t have much to distract me. I loved writing what was real and what happened in my life. I didn’t care about what anyone else thought and I’d write fun little articles like this one where I made bread and cookies (with white flour…GASP). And I shared “Pictures from the Prairie“, and silly things like my first attempts at making soap. Then along came son #1. For a while it wasn’t so different. Other than the fact that I was tired, not much changed in my writing habits.
The blog started to grow and grow and I learned more about “other bloggers”. Being naive I thought the internet was big enough for everyone and that everyone had fun, creative things to add and to say. So I would write an article like….”The 10 Best Ways to ___” and the next week another blog would have “The 50 Best Ways to ____”. Seemed a little odd to me if we were all just writing to write and share our stories and experiences but no worries, I always have plenty of things to say so I kept on writing and pushed that all in the back of my mind. I guess I’m just not one of those competitive bloggers. I’m ok with that.
The competitiveness though….I could write all day about that! But instead, I will just tell you now; my garden has weeds in it, my house will never make it in the pages of a magazine, and I buy most of our clothing from thrift stores and rummage sales. It shows in my life, it shows in my blog pictures, and I just don’t mind…that’s life for me!
And along came all of the wonderful “offers”. You know when you begin reading a blog post and think it’s going to be amazing, just to find out that it’s a sales pitch? Yeah, I hate that too. I decided a long time ago that I wasn’t going to be “salesy” here on Little House Living. Yes, I do write the occasional sponsored post because, you know what? I need to feed my family and I’m not ashamed of that. Have I turned down hundreds of offers over the past few years to write about companies that I don’t agree with and would be awkward about writing about? Absolutely. If I feel like something is beneficial for me and for you, it’s ok, if not, I’m not going to sell out for the money.
Then as the blog grew, along came the comments. Comments that continually beat down my style of writing, my projects, my lifestyle, and even my family. I’ve grown some thick skin over the years but I can’t say that some of them still didn’t hurt and even if I promised myself to forever about them sometimes the thoughts would creep back into my mind when I was working on something….“Oh so-and-so doesn’t like it when I do this or say this or do it this way….” I shouldn’t have let those thoughts back in but sometimes things happen.
Then came baby #2 and a book deal. I still can’t believe I managed to blog and write a book all while saying home with 2 children ages 2 and under.
Don’t do that ok?
The book brought something back to my life…my passion for writing from my heart. Not writing to be better than the next blog or writing to be on a certain schedule or writing because I felt like I didn’t meet my quota for the month.
What was all that about anyways?
Now my husband has started a business, and if any of you that have ever been entrepreneurs you know that it’s not something you can do in your spare time, you have to work for 70 – 80+ hours a week and just keep praying that it takes off. Of course, in the meantime I’m promoting the book, still blogging, being a stay a home mom of 2 under the age of 4, and picking up extra work after the kids went to bed because we all know a new business doesn’t exactly pay the bills.
I was and am tired. Not just physically and mentally, but my heart got worn out. My passion for writing was gone and I missed it. My creativity went right out the window. I was totally burned out and I will confess….
I actually bought bread….I bought bread instead of making it.
Not because I didn’t have time, I just didn’t want to, I wanted to be a rebel. And you know what? The world didn’t stop.
Then I found a friend to help me with the blog for a while and I’m so thankful for what she did and does for me. I always have plenty of blog posts scheduled in my queue so I didn’t need to write for a while and I just handed over the reins for a few months on certain things and let other things slide for a while. I figured, the world wasn’t going to end if I didn’t spend every spare second I had blogging. And you know what?
But I connected with my kids more, my creativity slowly came back, I sewed for fun, I baked for fun. I didn’t take pictures of anything besides moments I actually wanted to remember, and it was fantastic. My heart knew that this is exactly where I was supposed to be all along.
(After my creativity came back I made 25 busy bags for my kids…it was fun!)
Now I know what you are thinking about now (if I’ve managed to keep your attention through this long blog post!), IS SHE ABANDONING US???
Honestly I thought about my answer to that for a long time and I won’t lie, there were some nights (usually after a particularly nasty comment) where I told my husband that I was deleting my Facebook, not paying my next blog hosting bill, and forgetting about the whole thing. But then there is that nagging voice deep inside my heart…”you will NEVER stop writing” and that is the truth that I can’t deny. But that doesn’t mean that it will always be the same and I wanted you to know the details so you don’t spend your nights wondering where on earth I went off to. (Wow, I really hope you don’t do that anyways…)
Little House Living will still be here, always. Do you know how many articles are already on the site?? Hundreds and hundreds…probably over 1000…I can’t count that high (I write, I’m not a mathematician! j/k) 🙂 Plenty to keep you busy for a long time.
Oh and yeah….I have an awesome book that you should definitely check out if you haven’t already! I poured my heart into that book because as much as I would love to come to each and every one of your kitchens so we could just sit and chat and get to know each other…I just can’t, but if you have my book it will be kind of like that I hope. All you need to do is look at the book sitting on your shelf or (hopefully) open on your kitchen counter and know that I am there cheering you on and encouraging you, even from far away.
And in the meantime I will still be here blogging…maybe not on the latest topics that everyone else is carrying on about, maybe not perfect recipes, and probably not a lovely home decor tutorial where my house looks like a museum. Because you know what? I’m real and this is real life. I have a real family to take care of and they are my number 1 priority. After they are taken care of and I still have an article in my mind that just must be written, then it will get written. I’m personally looking forward to those articles because I know that writing with heart and passion behind it is the best kind of writing. That should be the kind of writing you want to see too, I hope. So make sure you check back often because you never know when the creative bug will hit me! Of course, I will still be sending out all new blog posts to our newsletter subscribers as well so that’s a great way to make sure you won’t miss a thing. You can sign up here.
(A massive butternut squash I grew in my garden last summer.)
I’m so appreciative for those of you that have stuck with me over the years. I know that this blog has gone through so many changes, just like me and my family have! And I hope you are looking forward to what the future has to bring. I know I am. 🙂