The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Starting a microbusiness

Front garden

Perhaps our largest learning experience this year has been our microbusiness.  At this time last year, I was just starting to burn out on my job, but I was terrified to quit.  Everyone was talking about the economy tanking and I knew that jobs in our area were scarce.

Homemade chicken watererBut I did it anyway, and together Mark and I started marketing his automatic chicken waterer.  It took a few months for us to get our feet under us, but before long we were making more money and working fewer hours.  We had shed 85% of the stress associated with my old job, and we both felt immensely empowered by the experience.  Why did we ever want to work for someone else?

We have a lot of projects in the hopper for the next year, of course.  As I mentioned a couple of days ago, we want to share all of our deer deterrent secrets with the world --- we figure we owe the community something totally free.  Next on the agenda is finishing up the ebook we've been drafting to help other folks mimic our microbusiness success.

We don't plan to expand our gardening perimeter over the next year, just to keep bringing it closer to a state of equilibrium.  I want to keep exploring permaculture, and Mark has several new inventions on the drawing board (automatic bug feeder for your chickens, anyone?)

Most all, though, we want to keep feeling the power of the Walden Effect.  I hope you can all catch a whiff of the fragrance through your monitors.  Just as this year was better than last year, I suspect next year will be the best one yet!

This post is part of our Third Year of Homesteading lunchtime series.  Read all of the entries:

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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