I’m so happy to be back!
I have greatly missed writing and interacting with my readers. Having some of you as Facebook friends just hasn’t been the same as regular interaction on comments and on the Facebook business pages at CTF and at Intentionally Domestic.
When I stepped away from blogging, I didn’t know if it was for a season or if it was a permanent change. The truth is that I was exhausted by the pace of writing constantly, producing subscription-based items, and having to keep up with social media. Despite being sick I was working 60 hours a week consistently, and some weeks up to 80 hours when things would go wrong. I had found solace in distracting myself from my illness through writing and creating recipes, and then became a slave to it.
But ultimately the pressures faced from others in the same industry was the final straw. My emotions were raw. I found myself having large amounts of time spent, away from the time my family needed me, to deal with the questions and provide help to the people who were seeking answers for their health. Real people were being caught in a battle of profits combined with bloggers who falsely claimed expertise instead of a basic working knowledge and it turned my stomach.
Bloggers who knew little in the area but could turn big profits cutting and pasting a company’s ad without revealing they were paid for posting it and didn’t even write it, and readers were being hurt in the process. Real lives affected for a little piece of digital turf and a few dollars.
The root of the problem for myself was that I was relying on my own strength to fight these battles instead of depending on the Lord to use me to fight for these people who needed answers. And it burnt me out. When God gives you strength, it is a supernatural strength that continues to come from your toes and is continually refreshed. When you do things of your own strength, you eventually become weary then burn out. You can’t continue.
I was so badly burnt out that not only did I walk away from blogging, I walked away from the traditional foods movement in its entirety and lost all joy in cooking and being creative in the kitchen. I was incredibly sad because cooking and food had been such a great source of joy and had been my passion my entire life.
I quit cooking entirely, allowing my husband and kids to take it over for a season. I was so burnt out that I didn’t even want to eat, to be honest. Food became a utility instead of a source of joy.
I regrouped and decided to set food aside for a while, and discover what other things might catch my attention and grow into a passion I could enjoy.
I took a season off from pretty much everything to just focus on building my It Works business and working on my own health as my children were enrolled in a private school. I rested during the day and was wife and mom in the evenings. That Fall, my kids returned home to homeschooling. I began the process of re-centering myself as a wife and mom. And I was so happy to find my stride and reclaim the joy found in homeschooling and parenting.
This past school year has been a new normal for us. I focused on family and worked It Works for 20 or so hours a week, but the bulk of my focus was on reclaiming my health and spiritual growth. I began working with a practitioner to better my health and get the lingering issues resolved. The work we have accomplished has been nothing short of amazing.
Gradually, the burn-out has lifted. I have spent time at rest, allowing my body to heal. I have spent time finding my joy and re-firing my passions. I have rebuilt my health and found I have an amazing amount of energy. Finding joy in food and cooking again, especially as my body has healed and I have regained foods that had been off-limits for years.
And the landscape of our home has changed quite a bit. This Fall I have one entering high school. We have joined two new homeschool co-ops and developed a love of martial arts. We have embarked on a huge home remodeling project. And hubby has launched two new businesses that he is passionate about. We have been focused on high quality education for all four of us combined with finding their passions so they can launch their own businesses and launch themselves into the world of young adulthood and beyond.
Having a teen and an almost-teen has been a delightful season for us. I have thrived on having their energy, their creativity and their boundless curiosity. We have been on some pretty amazing adventures as a family with more to come!
A few weeks ago while I was praying, the Lord directed me to return to blogging again with a new direction AND to assist my husband by blogging for our new family-owned business, Forever Bright Lighting.
As you can see, the look of the blog has changed and we will soon have a new URL to call home. An URL that will reflect a new direction. Instead of just being focused on food and home, we will be focused on a whole-life adventure that includes family, homeschooling, health, home, women’s issues, travel, faith, food and freedom.
I am energized by the new look, although I’ve still got a little clean-up work to do, and the new direction!
I hope you will come join me on this adventure!