The Simple Life
It was just a yard sale we'd turned into, right? As we started
browsing the tables, we realized that it was much bigger than we'd
thought. It was a sale, but turns out it was made up of storage
shed items that people had abandoned and never picked up bought at
auction. There were boxes of family photos, and every other thing
you can possibly imagine. At some point people thought they needed
extra space for these items that they could not live without. But
they are managing to live without them, and quite well, I imagine.
Donna and Harry have two children and wanted to get away from
the `big city' life, but high paying jobs made them think twice
before moving, but they felt like slaves with long hours and
commuting. Harry found a job that paid not quite half as much, but
they also found land at a low price covered with pines. They set up
a several year plan. They cut the pines and let them dry well.
They studied log home plans and found a design they could build
themselves. They did everything possible themselves on weekends and
vacations without hiring help unless absolutely necessary. They cut
frills, dedicating themselves to their plan. Several years later
they had moved, had a very small bank loan and very few expenses.
They have a big garden and eat very healthy food. Meals are cooked
from scratch and they don't spend their time shopping for things
they don't need. For entertainment, they go for walks, visit museums
and go camping and fishing. When they visit their `city' friends
they know they made the right choice for them. Their city friends
are also thinking about making a move.
A grandmother moved from her large old Victorian house in town
to a small little beach home. Her friends advised her that she was
making a very drastic move and she would miss her `stuff'. The
dining room table that had been in the family for years, the
mementos from vacations all but forgotten. Family heirlooms were
given to family members with a one-year condition that if she
changed her mind, she could have them back.
That winter as she and her granddaughter sat bundled against
the wind looking at stars, she realized that she hadn't left
anything behind she was just making new sets of memories.
Each day is what we make it. It is not made up of things, but
what we reach for, and the memories only time can erase. We all
choose what makes up our lives. Simplicity is not just moving to
the country or living without electricity, but finding peace in your
lifestyle. Frantic living is not simple. Simple living is finding
satisfaction at the end of each day.
* * *
"Normal is getting dressed in clothes that you buy for work, driving
through traffic in a car that you are still paying for, in order to
get to the job that you need so you can pay for the clothes, care
and the house that you leave empty all day in order to afford to
live in it." ~~ Ellen Goodman
"What is at the center of your life? Carefully examine where you
spend your attention, your time. Look at your appointment book,
your daily schedule
. This is what receives your care and attention
and by definition, your love." ~~ Wayne Muller
"There can be no joy of life without joy of work." ~~ Thomas Aquinas
* * *
TACO CORNBREAD PIZZA
8 1/2 oz. pkg corn muffin mix
1 lb. ground beef
1 envelope taco seasoning mix or your homemade mix (with water
called for in
8 oz. pkg. shredded cheddar cheese
Prepare corn muffin mix according to package directions. Spread
batter in greased
12-inch pizza pan. Bake in 400 degree oven for 8-10 minutes, until
Brown meat in skillet until no pink remains; drain. Add taco
seasoning (if using dry
mix, add water as directed--2/3 cup, I think). Cook meat mixture 2
to 4 minutes
more. Sprinkle 1 cup of cheese over crust. Top with meat mixture.
Sprinkle rest of
cheese over meat. (OR--put meat on crust & sprinkle all the cheese
over the meat!)
Bake 4 to 5 minutes, until cheese is melted. Serve with sour cream,
shredded lettuce, chopped tomatoes and chopped onions.
In the Garden
Is it just me, or is it kind of sad to be tilling in the garden
to prepare for spring? It seemed to come too fast this year.
Pulling the cornstalks and tomato vines from the ground that gave us
beautiful tomatoes and juicy ears of corn almost seems like
betraying your friends. But, in a few months, the fun of planting
will begin again, and tiny seeds will turn to plants bearing fruit
for our canning jars and tables.
Any preparation you can do now for spring is good. Getting the
weeds turned under in case of a wet spring is great if you can.
Keeping it Simple,