But first, a story (you may recognize parts of this from Instagram, if you follow us there):
Four months ago, after a week away, I came home to a new roof. A new metal roof! I was so excited! I’ve dreamed of listening to rain on a metal roof. And we could stop rushing outside whenever it started raining with buckets (because of all the holes in the carport roof)!
Then I saw my herb bed. My herb bed that normally overflows with lemon balm, violets, stinging nettles, chickweed, and elderberry.
I was devastated. It completely overshadowed my excitement and joy of a new metal roof (and a carport that doesn’t leak). Never mind that all these plants are notoriously hard to kill. I just saw what I no longer had – lemon balm for tea to calm me at the end of the day, enough stinging nettles to tincture this year, most of the branches on my elderberry broken. This bed was made up of things I’d been gifted when I first started homesteading and they were memories of the women who gifted them to me. What if they didn’t grow back?!
I knew I could only move forward. I still have those relationships, those friendships, and because of NLHG, I’d be able to replace anything that didn’t grow back. I’d already harvested the elderberries, and we’d already decided they needed to be moved further away from the house’s foundation anyway. This is an opportunity, not a disaster, I tried to make myself realize.
And less than four months later …
All my worries for nothing. My plants obviously love their spot and planned on staying. They came right back up, even the stinging nettles (they were only a year old and I worried over them the most).
So that’s all well and good, but what does that have to do with NLHG and moving, you ask?
For the past couple of years, we’ve felt increasingly limited by Facebook. Our mission is to “share knowledge, build community, and grow friendships” and yet as time goes on, we find we have to be more and more careful about the knowledge shared in our Groups. Some things, if shared, risk the closure of all our Chapter Facebook Groups. It really came to a head in the last year, when Facebook stopped allowing posts involving the sales of animals (and posts of other homestead items would get caught up in the artificial intelligence net and blocked also).
We agonized over what to do. How could we keep our Groups open and not risk of them all being deleted? What could Chapter Leaders do to make sure these kinds of posts didn’t make it through? How can we support and promote NLHG Members’ homesteading businesses that involve animals?
But then we realized we don’t have to live with these limitations! We don’t have to grow in the wrong spot. There are options! And so we are moving forward to a new platform for our online communities.
When you grow a plant in the wrong location, it will limp along, sometimes sending up a new shoot or a flower just often enough to get your hopes up, and eventually it withers away. But in the right location, that plant will weather almost any storm and grow back as happy as ever.
This is our wish for you: That you find our new online community to be that perfect location where you find the knowledge and the support you need to further your homesteading dreams. Where you can build a community and grow friendships with other women who respect those dreams.
We know change is scary. (We certainly were!) We know you may not want to join another website or download another app. We know this seems like “just one more thing” 2020 throws at you. But we believe this is an opportunity, not a disaster. We believe our new online community is the right spot, the right home, where we can all grow as homesteaders.
We can’t wait for you to join us there to share your homesteading knowledge, to help us build a new online community, and to grow deeper friendships. So when the storms (or roofers!) come, we’re able to grow back stronger than ever.
~ Amanda Stephens, Communications Director
Share Knowledge. Build Community. Grow Friendships.