If you are enjoying our blog and the information we are sharing, as many folks do, we have other ways to support us.
By showing support, you can help us spread this journey and message to others that are looking to make the transition from cubicle to living off grid in self built home and and help others learn from our experiences!
– Share, Follow & Contribute
One of the easiest ways to support our blog is simply by sharing our content. First and foremost, our goal is to spread our content far and wide in hopes it will reach numerous people that are interested in embarking on similar journeys. We know that this journey is daunting at times (sometimes we still have moments of fear and doubt!). By sharing our blog or individual blog posts, our journey can be shared with more people. You will find social media icons on every post that you can click to share our posts on most any social media channel. Great places to share our blog is on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, email, over coffee or wherever your friends are!
– Make a donation
While we don’t wish to rely on money from our subscribers, if you love our blog content and find it genuinely helpful and interesting, feel free to donate! Some are highly turned off by blogs that ask for money. We get that!
However we know that for some folks this may be the easiest way to show their appreciation. Not everyone shop on-line. We’ve listed many ways above that offer support without spending a dime. All proceeds will go to either growing our blog or improving the cabin. The email address to send the tip to in PayPal is www.paypal.me/StevenBarnes
So, What Exactly Does Maintaining Our Blog Entail?
For any of you that are curious, we spend A LOT of time on this blog! Our motivation for doing it is in hopes we can help others bridge the gap from being tethered to the grid to building a beautiful self sustaining home.
While building our cabin has been a dream come true… documenting, sharing and maintaining all of this information has not been.
We’ve experienced our share of off grid growing pains that’s for sure.
Here is an overview of how long various tasks take for the blog, and if you add them up, maintaining our blog is easily a part-time to full-time job!
- Composing Videos & Photos (2-6 hours / each): between starting and stopping work, finding the clips we need, and stopping work to talk about what we’re doing at various points in our journey.
- Editing our videos & Photos (2-4 hours / each): After we get the footage or photos we need, we need to drop the clips into Adobe Premiere Pro ($50/month membership) or Corel PaintShop Pro ($79.99) to turn them into a videos and photos you would want to see. This is usually done late at night after our work at the cabin is done for the day.
- Uploading video and preparing for YouTube (1 hour / each): Once we hit “upload”, we still aren’t done. There is a handful of things that need to be done to make sure we get the maximum amount of mileage out of our videos and Photos!
- Writing a blog post (3-8 hours / each): We write each blog post with our readers in mind and try to educate them as much as possible. We try to make each post easy to follow, engaging and entertaining. This takes a lot of time between multiple revisions, editing photos and more. not to mention pouring through all the measurements, product data, receipts and drawings!
- Publishing each post to social media (2 hr / each): We have various channels where we share our content but getting content “shareable” takes additional effort between writing post snippets, providing video, sharing individually to channels, and more. Between Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Twitter, Flicker, Google +, and Instagram… we’re swamped.
- Responding to comments and emails (5 hours /week): We don’t respond to blog and social media comments because we have to, we do it because we want to engage with you all! While we love doing it, it does take a significant amount of time and with 120K fans so far… that’s a lot of emails and comments to address!
- Site maintenance (10 hours / month): As you know, there are more spammers than ever before on the internet! We constantly have to maintain our blog, keep it updated, and keep it virus-free. There is always a problem that needs attention to keep our site as “clean” for you as the day we started it. And we always will.
- Team Coaching and Training (1-2 hours / day): While we continue to grow our own solar business, we’re also helping hundreds of other people just like you who are getting started building their own personal business from home. We want to give every one of these people the time they deserve.
Financial Cost of Our Blog
While The Off Grid Cabin takes a significant amount of time to properly research, document and post it also has some cash expenses as well.
Here is roughly what we’ve spent once or on an ongoing basis to keep our blog running!
- Nikon D5200 Camera ($500): This camera allows us to take professional-quality video which is a great basis for producing great video!
- GoPro Camera ($300): This doubles as both a water-proof camera as well as a backup camera in case camera #1 fails.
- Camera accessories ($500): This includes tripods, external microphones, batteries, SD cards, backpacks, etc.
- Hosting ($85.00/month): Our audience is growing so rapidly (Thanks guys… for real!) that we are continuously upping our hosting plan! Every visitor takes up bandwidth, so the more users we get, the larger bandwidth package we need. We frequently get slapped on the hand by our hosting company for blowing over our hosting plan.
- Domain name ($25/year): This is for the name www.theoffgridcabin.com
- Staying in touch by email ($150/month): Many of you are subscribed to receive our email updates. Believe it or not, Facebook tries to force pages into paid advertising so they really don’t show our updates to many people! Email is the most reliable form of providing updates to our followers! Also, a number of our followers aren’t on social media so this is their preferred method of communication.
- Adobe Creative Suite ($50/month): We use Adobe Photoshop to edit all of our photographs and Adobe Premiere Pro to edit and render all of our videos that are then uploaded to YouTube.
- Corel Paintshop Pro ($80): We use Corel Paintshop Pro to edit all our photos and to add the special effects such as text, arrows, highlights… etc to all our photos.
- Google Sketchup ($560): All our cabin designs are hand made by me using Google Sketchup and that software is not cheap.
- External hard drives ($100): We have so many photos and video footage collected throughout our journey that we reference in all of our videos, and it’s critical that we don’t lose it! Since we would fill up our laptop in a heartbeat with all of our footage and video files, we rely on multiple external hard drives to store things for us. Ideally, we would save it to a cloud but there is no cloud that holds the amount of info we have.
- Wish list / upcoming expenses: As our following grows, so will our monthly expenses such as hosting and email communications. We also need additional backup storage solutions because one hard drive failure, all of our footage ever taken could be erased! Our primary camera is also getting old and our camera phone it no longer the best option and so we’re hoping to add a better camera as funds allow. To keep the quality of our videos up, we really can’t rely on our iPhones.
THANK YOU For Supporting Our Website
We will keep posting here on our blog and all over social media to help anyone and everyone who wants to learn more about the off grid lifestyle and what it takes to build your own off grid cabin or tiny home.
Proudly in your service,
Steve, Mireille & Clara Barnes