As a business venture it didn't work. I went all out to try and use social media as an advertising tool, Facebook, Twitter and this blog. However the products I was trying to sell just weren't really appropriate to the market nor did my target audience have much money to spend.
In the meantime, I've come to see that it's quite important that people share about this kind of parenting. We need to support each other and we need to promote these choices as valid and indeed fulfilling choices.
So when the domain backrods.com came up for renewal I let it slide. I wasn't so bothered about branding now, just about keeping the blog etc. going. The main website is now at http://twinklebob.co.uk/backrods and it'll probably stay there for the foreseeable future, this blog is now at http://backrods.blogspot.co.uk and again, it will probably be staying put.
In terms of branding, I've changed everything from "BackRods.com" to "BackRods Parenting". This is a way of life for us, this is our parenting technique, we're doing BackRods Parenting.... :-) Intentionally making rods for our back in the interests of our children!
The existing shop at SpreadShirt will be closing down. The designs aren't that great, the products aren't all eco-friendly, the printing process almost certainly isn't.
In future I will be finding other ways to monetise the site, but I'll be linking to existing great products and businesses that are absolutely inline with BackRods Parenting. If no one ever buys anything it won't be the end of the world because...
We'll be becoming more personal
I've tried to keep this site free from my personal life and kept it generic. I've left out my wife and babies name. But this is a very personal journey, not everyone's BackRods Parenting would look the same as ours. We'll be talking more about our choices, our struggles and our experiences. I'll also try and get Lucy more involved in this blog.
Be prepared to see more pictures and hear more about us. I hope it will bring the site to life and add flesh to the bones of our parenting ethos.
And what does our BackRods Parenting look like?
- We baby-wear (use slings, never a push-chair or pram)
- We breastfeed (or at least Isaac and Lucy do, I don't get involved in that bit...)
- We do Baby Led Weaning (to us it seems the most gentle and natural way to introduce food)
- We don't use (and won't be using) the words "good" or "bad" or "naughty" to describe Isaac or his behaviour
- We won't be punishing, either using physical violence or timeouts
- We will be respecting our children's rights to have their own opinions and feelings
- We will be unschooling, probably radically
There's probably more, but that's a good start!
I'll be continuing the series on what Gentle Parenting is (probably looking at some of the above points as part of that), and how it affects us and I'll also be updating the main website in the next few weeks.
If you're still reading, thanks!