Honestly, this post is mostly for me. I need to get thoughts and ideas out of my head and onto the page so that hopefully I can get my ducks in a row. But if there’s anyone else out there who may be trying something new and feels overwhelmed, this is for you too.
You see, I have no clue what I’m doing. I used to do a blog, but it was just a way to upload pictures of my kids and tell about what was going on in our lives so that family could see it. I’ve never even thought about doing an actual blog that strangers might read because, well, there was nothing even remotely interesting happening in my life.
I’m a stay at home mom with no crafting or DIY skills. I hate cooking and know nothing about gardening. I’m no style guru. I’m just a regular person! I love to sing and read and watch TV shows.
And then something happened. My in-laws came up with this CRAZY idea to buy a bunch of land WAY out in the country, get some animals and start growing stuff. Let me just tell you, my husband’s family does nothing by halves. It is usually one extreme or another. They currently own no animals and although my mother-in-law says she loves gardening, I have never seen her do it in the 8 years I’ve known her.
Even though it seems completely insane, my husband, Dan, and I are both really excited about it! We have a TON of ideas for how to make this thing work and what it will look like once it’s up and running, and we’re starting some projects so that we’ll be ready to start planting next spring (we literally just closed on the land a couple of weeks ago and there are no structures on the land yet, so we still have to build a house on it!).
But how on earth do you start a huge project like this? You make a list of things you need to do to start a huge project like this!
- Get ALL your ideas down on paper Write everything down. Big, small, crazy, conservative, it doesn’t matter. Any idea you think of that would be cool to have or do, write it down. You’ll be surprised how many more ideas will come to you as you start to write. When we started talking about what crops we wanted, it started out small with things we eat frequently-broccoli, carrots, asparagus, that kind of thing. And that will probably be where we start, but the more we talked, the longer our list got and it grew to include things like flowers and herbs that we hadn’t thought of at first.
- Start researching The more research you do, the more prepared you’ll be once you actually begin. Pinterest is your best friend. Other search engines are great, but you can’t beat Pinterest when it comes to saving and organizing information. There are so many awesome tutorials on any topic you could possibly think of. At the same time, this can get a bit discouraging because it starts to feel as if there is nothing you could possibly add to what is already out there. Which leads me to…
- Have a firm intention and have faith in yourself! Starting any new venture is stressful. It is difficult to put yourself in a position to fail. It is easy to get overwhelmed, flustered, and frustrated when things start to get hard. But if you have a firm grasp on what you want to accomplish and why, it can help you power through the tough times and stay on track. Don’t give up. Trust your instincts. We all have something to offer the world and the people around us. Don’t forget that! When I first started talking about starting this blog, my husband asked me (scoffing) “Oh yeah? And what exactly are you going to write about?” This took me aback for a minute, but I’m glad I had that initial opposition to the idea because it gave me a chance to really think it through and gain confidence and faith in my idea. And the more I talked, the more excited and supportive my husband became. Don’t let anyone’s negativity get you down. Use it to fuel your fire.
- Start prioritizing Once you know where you want to go, it’s time to figure out how to get there. Go back to your list. After you’ve done your research, it’s easier to figure out what things are feasible at the beginning and what will take extra time, money, and probably even extra research. What things do you absolutely need and what can you live without? What can you afford? I mean, I would absolutely LOVE to have a super adorable chicken coop and a chicken run that goes around our garden (just like the one I saw on Fixer Upper last week) but that’s probably NOT going to be in our budget right away and is going to have to go on the back burner, sadly enough. But my father-in-law has tons of wood in his shop, and there are tons of easy DIY plans for chicken coops on Pinterest.
- GET TO WORK Making lists, prioritizing, and researching are all super important, but if you never do anything with that information, what good did it do you? None. It is easy to spend hours on the internet reading and pinning and planning and plotting, and I know for myself, most of the time that’s where it ends. I spend tons of time looking at things and thinking about things that never happen. DO SOMETHING! It doesn’t have to be perfect. But you are MUCH more likely to follow through on something if you simply start it. Take this blog for instance. I know Jack Diddly Squat about writing a blog and promoting it and making pinnable pictures and all that jazz. But I’ve spent hours reading and thinking about it. It is not perfect. I still have a LOOOONG way to go before it looks and functions the way I want it to. But it is up. I am writing. I am figuring things out, very slowly but surely. I speak from experience-just do it.
- Keep going This is where I am right now. Well, between this step and the last actually. If we’re talking about this blog, this is the step I’m on. But with all things farming, I’m definitely still on the last one! My mother-in-law and I just planted some seeds on Saturday (Which I need to take pictures of and blog about), but that is only the very first step. Make plans. Get a calendar and start planning exactly when you’re going to take each new step and then hold yourself accountable. Put it where you will see it every day.
Trying new things can be scary, but it can also be really rewarding. I’m really excited for all of the crazy ups and downs this next year (and beyond) will bring, and I’m excited to share it with you. What crazy adventures are you thinking of taking this year? Let me know in the comments!