Slowin Down

I was cleaning out my inbox and stumbled across one of the newsletters from Handcrafted Travellers and  spotted this quote:

Slowing down takes trust – the trust in your own abilities and your willingness to adapt to an unconsumer (self-reliant) lifestyle. Of course, you must enjoy it too, so let your actions take meaning and be persistent in your endeavors, for the rewards aren’t always immediately apparent. You have to keep at it, day after day, to reap the many benefits of a simple life.

I have been so moved by your comments but realized through them that my blog was not the resource I had hoped it would be.   A few of you being new here did not realize I do not have a stove or a refrigerator.  I asked for some help and had a friend go through the blog to find the most pertinent stories about my journey both with the lack of kitchen appliances and how I made the decision to go car-free.

These are now organized and have a page dedicated to No Stove, No Fridge, No Car and one on how easy it has been to live in a studio apartment we’ve named How to Live in 300 sq ft.

I’ll be back soon with a before and after I think you will like.

Stay warm and know I miss each and every one of you.

15 thoughts on “Slowin Down

  1. I am slowing down this week Lois… I did most of my catch ups today on WP, and as I have some time off work this week and the weather promises to stay spring like.. I am not going to be stuck indoors….
    So if I am absent a while you will know I am out and about in the garden and walking… Much love and I hope you are well? thinking of you.. Hugs Sue xox

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  2. Hi Lois! This is such a great idea. I’ve been actually working on a compilation book myself because I too had scads of posts that new readers don’t always get into. I’ve put together my posts and will be putting the book on kindle and doing a POD (print on demand too.) Then I will sell it on Amazon and on my website. I think some people prefer to read things in book form and am believing that it will be a good thing. Go for it! If I can offer any direction just let me know…you have my email ~Kathy

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    • Kathy, I started to put together a book from the blog and became overwhelmed with the size of my blog. There are over 600 posts to weed through. Maybe one day. ;-) Leet me know when you have your book ready and I will be happy to help you get the word out. I may take you up on your offer as I feel there are many themes I’ve written about that need their own sections or even separate books which I may pick your brain on when I get to that point.

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      • Hi Lois, It does seem a little overwhelming when you have tons of posts…that’s why picking just one theme is so important. (I already categorize mine into 5 main subjects so that definitely helps. I will keep you posted but be sure and let me know if I can help. It’s just good to remember this is supposed to be fun and life-enhancing right? :-) ~Kathy

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        • Kathy, that is right. The thing is I really do enjoy writing my blog. But when I found myself overwhelmed it felt the only place I could cut back.

          Yes, I can see several main subjects from my blog. The one I feel may need its own book would be how to restore furniture and how to upcycle items into something one may need as opposed to what they have.

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  3. Dear Lois,
    I recently found your blog when I was looking a few weeks ago at how to take full advantage of my rice cooker. I so appreciate having found your blog and haven’t even read 10 percent of the wonderful things you have shared. I’ve learned so much more than just what to do with my rice cooker to prepare full on healthy meals.

    Your blog is a HUGE resource on all kinds of practical realistic ways to find solutions to small space living while being ecologically responsible. With some health and economic challenges in our lives the last few years my husband and I are trying to downsize from 2400 sq feet to 600 sq feet. It’s an interesting journey we take as we look to do more with less. As we simplify and pare down to the essentials for good living for our circumstances I find myself being more content. Thank you for sharing all the wonderful information that you have.
    Your blog blesses so many people with REAL information.
    Hope you continue to let us know about the new things you are discovering in the season of life you are in now. The overall take away I have come away in reading your blog is how positively you influence those around you in your family, your nearby community and the bigger internet community. Thanks for being a force for good!
    Best regards,
    Helen – a new reader who is amazed at all the good resources you have shared.

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    • Helen, thank you for commenting. I find your journey very interesting. To go from 2,400 to 600 sq ft must be quite the journey. I’ve never made such a drastic move in my lifetime. I’d love to hear much more about your move.

      I am so glad you find mu blog inspiring and helpful to you as you downsize your life. Please stay in touch. Lois

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      • Lois,
        Thanks for your kind response. It indeed has been a journey to go from that amount of space to a smaller footprint. We are now an empty nest after years of having children and parents live with us. What has been the most surprising to me, is the reaction of our family and friends. A have a sister who thinks we are nuts. We are not doing this out of austerity or not having means. It’s more of being responsible and good stewards of what we have and not wasting out of a sense of entitlement. The older we are getting we are finding the less you need. My mother comes from a Swedish background. The Swedish have a word that I really appreciate – “lagom”. Translated it means “just the right amount”. That’s what we are trying to find for ourselves. It’s not about having scarcity in our life or giving up anything. We actually have more time to spend with each other, spend less time taking care of things, can help others, more time for cooking healthy simple meals, have time for some hobbies and feel so much less stressed.

        There is something that I greatly miss. The biggest thing I’m missing right now is not the larger house, but garden space and my garden. I miss the planning of a garden and having space to sprout my plants. But I have plans to bloom where I’m planted this spring and grow what I can in the small little flower bed and back patio of our condo. We have a nice sunny 8 x 3 strip that should yield tomatoes, zucchini, squash and herbs. The condo by laws will let us do this as long as it’s attractive. I’m planning on putting some Shasta daisies in with our plants. I think it’s going to be quite cheerful. We have tried participating in a CSA the last couple of years. The older we get, the less we eat. A share was just to much for the two of us. I’m really grateful for our summer farmer’s market. I love the fresh local produce from our area. We can buy what is more appropriate for our needs.
        Hope you are having a good week!
        -Helen

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        • Helen, I so can commiserate with you on the reactions you get. I had some pretty negative reactions by my family and friends when I moved here as well. People looked at my space and tried to picture themselves in it. But I am very different from them. I don’t have closets full of clothes or shoes that needed to take up expensive real estate.

          I’m sorry you don’t have a large garden to work in, I am fortunate here to be allowed to use the back field in any way I want which is close to an acre of weeds. Total space is almost 2 acres but much of the extra is hilly or has a stream running through it.

          I don’t belong to a CSA as there is only one that delivers close to my town and they don’t offer organic foods! I was shocked when they said they do spray some of their food and don’t require the farmers they supplement their bins with to report what they use on their food \. I can’t see paying $45 a week for non-organic food even if it is more local. Like you I do shop the farmers’ market when open and have made wonderful connections with the farmers I do business with regularly.

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  4. Hi Lois, I like the links/info arrangement. Hve read most things, but it is still nice for me.

    Funny, or maybe just practical sort of story…When I read your comments about too many clothes, and no matter how many, well they have to be washed anyway…Made me recall a couple of times in my past..
    1)long ago, when I was first on my own, didn’t have much money. one summer was working outside. I had one halter top, and one blouse/shirt with long sleeves light fabric. I wore thse every single day. Each night I hand washed them in the bathroom sink. (no money spent on the coin op washer). By morning they were dry. As well as making money stretch, easy to find my clothes in the morning, as they were always hanging in the bathroom drying.
    2)there was a time when my son went to a school where the kids had to wear a sort of uniform. grey pants and white shirt. the pants had to be bought through the school store. every other parent I spoke with had several pair for their boys, as “don’t you know boys get dirty”..Me/we…he had one pair. washed each day after school. no biggy. That year he had a male teacher who really impressed me. Towards the end of the year, (as pants were getting small), he got a hole in the knee, fabric split. My son was pretty impressed to come home and tell me what his Male Teacher had suggested he / Mom do with this “holey” pair of pants. Teacher said..”oh, don’t spend money fixing / for a new pair. Take a piece of Duct Tape, and stick it on the inside of the rip. As long as they aren’t put in the Dryer, it will hold for months.” Teacher said he had done something similar. Son was tickled to do just this.

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    • Lynn, I don’t know if I would be happy with so few clothes as you had that one summer but I can imagine it was easy to do your laundry. It would have only taken a few minutes to wash and hang versus doing an entire load. Just another routine chore to do. Good for you. As for your son’s teacher, I have yet to meet a man who didn’t swear by duct tape. So did you duct tape your son’s pant?

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      • oh for sure, I duct taped the rip on the pants, washed them carefully each night. (as long as you don’t put it in the dry/very hot wash, duct tapes lasts well)

        also, I duct taped them, (besides saving the 60 dollars on a new pair for short time)…because, I was so impressed at
        the teacher thinking/recommending this (in a school where there were some rather hoity toity ones…so to speak)
        also, as my son was so tickled at the teacher’s recommendation…

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          • you know, Lois, I still smile when I think
            a) of the teacher recommending this
            b) how tickled/adamant my son was to do so
            c) how thrilled I was at the frugal / practical economy lesson the teacher taught him that day.
            d) he did it all with huge pride.

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