What are People For? by Wendell Berry

What are People For? by Wendell Berry My rating: 5 of 5 stars This was another of the books my husband got for me from the library for Christmas. I put it on my list about a year ago when I was reading back through the materials from Northwest Earth Institute’s Voluntary Simplicity discussion course,Continue reading “What are People For? by Wendell Berry”

Living Our Values as Parents (or By Choosing Not to Be Parents)

Years ago, long before I became a mother, I was riding in my boss’s car along with several other co-workers on our way to an off-site department lunch. “So, Cheryl, do you have any children?” one of my co-workers asked my boss. “No,” replied my boss. “Children were never on my to-do list.” I’ve always foundContinue reading “Living Our Values as Parents (or By Choosing Not to Be Parents)”

Possession Identity

“Between what a man calls me and what he simply calls mine the line is difficult to draw. We feel and act about certain things that are ours very much as we feel and act about ourselves.” — William James This is today’s Moment of Happiness from Gretchen Rubin’s The Happiness Project. I remember times inContinue reading “Possession Identity”

Simplicity Parenting: The Book Review

Simplicity Parenting: Using the Extraordinary Power of Less to Raise Calmer, Happier, and More Secure Kids by Lisa M. Ross My rating: 4 of 5 stars I loved this book for both the practical suggestions (backed by both formal research and informal observation) and for its tone. Since I began reading this book, I’ve madeContinue reading “Simplicity Parenting: The Book Review”

Living Simply with Kids: Knowing When to Say When

This weekend, our family watched the movie Babies together. In the opening scene, two toddlers sit playing, focussed and quiet. In front of each is a large stone onto which each boy bangs and grinds a smaller stone. Seeing these two boys playing in such a focussed manner with a couple of rocks, a questionContinue reading “Living Simply with Kids: Knowing When to Say When”

Book Review: Duane Elgin’s Voluntary Simplicity

Voluntary Simplicity: Toward a Way of Life That is Outwardly Simple, Inwardly Rich by Duane Elgin My rating: 5 of 5 stars My husband and I took a “Voluntary Simplicity” discussion course back in 2000/2001. The course was from Northwest Earth Institute and was based on Duane Elgin’s book and scads of other terrific writingsContinue reading “Book Review: Duane Elgin’s Voluntary Simplicity

Simplicity and Awareness in Joshua Ferris’s The Unnamed

The Unnamed by Joshua Ferris My rating: 4 of 5 stars So, I read this at the same time I was reading Voluntary Simplicity by Duane Elgin, and a lot of the same ideas come up in both books. No, Voluntary Simplicity does not encourage people to chuck it all, take a walk, and notContinue reading “Simplicity and Awareness in Joshua Ferris’s The Unnamed

Uni-tasking With Children: The Impossible Dream?

I’ve been making a point of Doing One Thing these past several days. It’s been nice when I can manage it. I’m feeling more calm and dishes washed by hand shine a lot better than they do when they come out of the dishwasher. Buoyed by this relative success, I’ve begun to try to extendContinue reading “Uni-tasking With Children: The Impossible Dream?”

The Complex World of Simple Living

Ironically, many of the things that people do for the sake of simplicity actually make life more complicated, at least in the short run. There are blogs that rather glibly assert that the way to live simply is to move to the country, work from home, go car-free, grow all of your own food, andContinue reading “The Complex World of Simple Living”