December 2012 – Homestead Revival

Homestead Revival is the Featured Website of the Month for December 2012!  When you read Amy’s posts, you just want to move out to a homestead!  She makes it all look so easy…although she will tell you that it isn’t.  Amy is always challenging herself and her family on her homestead.  And hopefully, you will be challenged as well as you learn a little bit more about Amy and Homestead Revival.

One last thing, I added a few extra questions for Amy about her pictures.  You can’t help but notice the professional pics she takes and uploads!

Peace,
Todd

Summarize the focus and purpose of your website.– The mission of Homestead Revival is to encourage readers to return to the basics by living closer to the land, embrace being a keeper of the home and strengthen the family through homemaking, encourage the next generation to continue in these homesteading skills, and to build community through sharing. I know that’s a lot, and it doesn’t technically cover preparedness, but to me, prepping goes hand in hand with homesteading because traditionally, homesteaders prepped as A WAY OF LIFE! It meant survival!

What made you decide to start a website? – There wasn’t just one thing that led me to blogging, but rather a series of things that prompted me to give it a try. I had wanted to write a book for a long time, but was struggling with getting my thoughts down on paper when a friend recommended that I just write and write a lot! At the same time, I was looking for a way to reach the younger women in our church and community with homemaking and homesteading skills. Coming to a class wasn’t working for many young moms who didn’t want to get out much, so I turned to the various social media platforms that seemed to be where they were already hanging out, which included blogs. Finally, I just needed a creative outlet and blogging was a good fit. Over time, I’ve found it’s met other needs as well and so I continue to blog on!

How long have you run your website? – My current blog goes back to February of 2009, although I blogged on another site for about a year before that.

How much time do you spend dedicated to your website? – While it typically varies, I’d say I average 4 hours per day over the course of a week, but that includes all related management including research, answering emails, connecting with social media, editing photos,etc. Blogging well takes time and I view it both as ministry and as a business, but I try to always keep it in perspective with my most important role as a wife and mother while still living the life I write about! Once in a while, I just have to back off the blogging a bit and take a mini break. I find it actually helps with my writing and gives me more to blog about.

What is one thing you really like about your website? – I love doing the graphic design and I’m pleased with what I’ve learned to do myself over the years, especially given the fact that I’m technically challenged and I use Blogger which has some limitations (and some advantages) for graphic design.

What is one thing that you want to change about your website? – The graphic design! I always think there is something else to tweak.

Tell us something about yourself that no one else knows. – I’m a neat freak except for one area. There’s no such thing as a junk drawer in my house… everything is organized (unless another family member leaves it less than perfect). BUT… my desk typically looks like a tornado hit it! I wish I could claim it’s due to my “creative side”, but I suspect it’s more because I’m too distracted by what’s on the computer screen when I sit down to research and write I continue trying to clean it and keep it that way, but I haven’t won that battle for more than a  couple of days at a time.

Other than your site, what is your favorite non-preparedness websites to visit? – Does Pinterest count? I’m so visual… it’s like eye-candy! And I get a ton of great ideas there including prepping tips. But a warning to those who haven’t been there yet… plenty of stuff you don’t want to see as well. I selected a few people who have great pins and I only view their stuff. Protects my eyes (and heart) that way.

Do you have anything (projects, special posts, redesign) in store for the future of your website? – I recently added my oldest daughter as a regular blogger on Homestead Revival. And I can’t tell you how much that blesses my heart! Her passion for homesteading is greater than I ever imagined! Blogging is never static, so expect changes over time, however I typically implement them slowly as time allows.

What were the three books you last read? (Be honest) – Hmmm… I’m not sure I ever completely FINISH reading a book (being a busy mom and all), but I am an avid reader and typically read MOST of the books I start. Currently I’m reading How to Grow Winter Vegetables by Charles Dowding, The Accessible Pet, Equine, and Livestock Herbal by Katherine Drovdahl, and Understanding Holistic Health by Jessie Hawkins (I’m taking her Family Herbalist Course from Vintage Remedies). I also read from the Bible (almost) daily… before my feet hit the floor.

You post some great PICS on your website.  What kind of camera and software do you use and do you have any formal training? – I’m a total photography amateur and I struggle with the technical aspects of the art, but I love experimenting with light, framing the right shot, and trying my hand at macro photography. My Canon D50 is almost always on the ACTION setting as well as automatic, however, I’m also taking a basic photography course to try and improve my technical understanding of the art. My goal is to move away from the auto setting!

As for software, I only use iPhoto (Mac program) and Photoshop Elements 8. These two programs along with my camera are what really make the difference, but someday I hope to learn more professional techniques.

What would you like to say to readers at the Prepper Website? – What a blessing to know I’m not alone in my prepping! Building community with other preppers is becoming my newest passion. God designed us to live in community for a reason and we need to resist the temptation to pull away in fear. That doesn’t mean the world needs to know all our business, but I constantly come across “closet preppers” who were afraid to let anyone know they were compelled to be prepared and thus, felt very alone. It shouldn’t be this way! The time may come when our relationships with each other are more important to our survival than all the food we’ve stored. Second, make prepping a WAY OF LIFE, pacing yourself over time. Don’t let it be just a fad based on current world events. And finally, prep to share! Don’t just think of your own family, but your neighbor as well (Matt. 22:36-38). Keep an eternal perspective as this life will someday pass no matter how much you prep.

 
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