I’ve been thinking about the word “simple” a lot lately–and trying to figure out what it really means to me. I’m preparing a talk to give to a group at church about our consumer-free project and my sister loaned me several books about the Quaker faith to help me prepare. The books are full of simple, plain living wisdom from Quakers throughout the ages. My November issue of Real Simple magazine just came yesterday, also full of “simple” ways to improve your life, enjoy your holidays, find new uses for the stuff you own (Carter thinks this is the most ridiculous magazine–why do you need an ad filled publication to tell you how to simplify life? I can’t help it…I love that mag). And I’m a part of an organizing Yahoo! group called “Simple and Sustainable”, where the emails have been flying between different professionals discussing how they promote simple living with their clients.
There was a time when I thought a simple life would mean having lots of time to myself to do whatever I want. With two young children and a business, I can’t even dream about that definition of simplicity anymore. Simple could also mean living with very little, but I’m realizing that even without adding to all that we have, we still have plenty, and we kind of like our stuff! I’m just not a build-you-own-solar-oven, live-off-the-grid kind of gal. Simple could also mean doing very little–not getting involved in school activities or boards or volunteer organizations. There are days that I long for that kind of simplicity, but I just can’t control myself. When someone asks for a volunteer, my hand shoots up before I even realize. And I like to stay busy.
So I’m still struggling to figure out what a simple life would look like for the Kersh family. What is your definition of simple living? And more importantly, are you living it?