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    • SimpleLiving
    • By SimpleLiving 30th Nov 17, 11:27 AM
    • 20Posts
    • 482Thanks
    SimpleLiving
    A Simpler Life 2018
    • #1
    • 30th Nov 17, 11:27 AM
    A Simpler Life 2018 30th Nov 17 at 11:27 AM
    Every year at about this time, I get a yearning for a more simple way of life. A life that doesn't involve being bombarded with endless ads for x% off or buy a new sofa/kitchen/table/bed/car or your Christmas holiday will become a fate worse than death It really does get to me. I hate consumerism in general. It annoys me intensely that we waste so many resources making cheap non-essential rubbish that will end up in landfill a few months later. I think I must be some kind of grumpy, odd ball though as despite all the headlines about the economy and stagnant pay rises, the shops always seem to be rammed.
    Anyhow, I am planning to step back from it all in 2018:
    - no spending on unnecessary stuff. For example, I have enough clothes to last for years in one wardrobe and one chest of drawers. Books will come from the library. No fripperies!!
    - replace essential items where possible with good quality items preferably second hand, or british made or local where applicable
    - increase cooking from scratch. I buy too many things like biscuits etc that are far nicer and healthier homemade
    - make full use of garden and allotment for fruit, veg, preserves and wine.
    - forage for fruit, fungi, wood ....
    - spend more time outside, gardening, walking, enjoying nature to improve mental and physical well being
    - spend more time with my mum who is 76 and beginning to need me more
    - avoid pressure to conform!
    Anyone got any further ideas in how I could simplify life?
Page 3
    • Nargleblast
    • By Nargleblast 1st Dec 17, 9:08 AM
    • 9,434 Posts
    • 55,704 Thanks
    Nargleblast
    Can I join the Simple Life bandwagon? I have over the past few years taken pleasure from home cooking and preserving, and I look for any opportunity to have a declutter session. As I am married to the world’s fattest squirrel (don’t buy one gadget when you can buy two, it might come in handy) I have to be discreet about chucking stuff out but sometimes I catch him at the right moment and manage to collect a load for the recycling centre.

    Simple pleasures don’t cost much - good quality freshly ground coffee made in a proper coffee machine (an investment that soon pays for itself) after a walk in the fields with our border collie are pleasant routines. As is sharing food and laughs with friends. Designer stuff, celebrity magazines, reality TV shows, people posting inane comments on Twitface - you can shove them where the sun doesn’t shine.
    Debt free date.....3 August 2015
    Now building up a Doomsday Cash Stash
    • angela110660
    • By angela110660 1st Dec 17, 9:16 AM
    • 751 Posts
    • 1,865 Thanks
    angela110660
    Love every comment here and feel like I am amongst friends ! If only the people I know in real life were as committed. Have made a big effort this year to declutter certain things but this is ongoing. I cook from scratch most of the time and everyone seems to enjoy it. Hooray.
    Get fed up with the news stories being regurgitated day after day so now only listen to Classic FM as news is minimal and adverts too. Can’t stand usual commercial radio stations at all. Hardly watch tv news if I can help it although OH does then wonders why he gets moody! Reading more again which is great and borrowing from library or buying at charity or online secondhand to save money.
    Working part time now but lots to do in time off linked to family members so glad I can do this.
    Best wishes to everyone going forward and subscribing to follow and glean any more ideas.
    Free films - 2009: saw 7 films. 2010 saw 7 films. 2011 saw 7 films. 2012 saw 5 films;2013:Lincoln; Les Miserables; Cloud Atlas; The Big Wedding; Summer in February;Philomena;Saving Mr Banks;2014:Jersey Boys;2015estament of Youth;
    • SimpleLiving
    • By SimpleLiving 1st Dec 17, 9:45 AM
    • 20 Posts
    • 482 Thanks
    SimpleLiving
    Some great responses and ideas. I think the most important thing for me first is to declutter the house. Clutter really makes me unhappy and irritable. I have done a lot since redundancy but there is more to do. I have started to make an inventory for certain things. For example, we emptied the shed, tossed unwanted stuff (left outside the front of the house for people to help themselves) and then wrote down everything that went back into the shed. So now we knows exactly what we have and we don't end up buying duplicates! I will do the same for the loft, kitchen cupbroads etc.
    Jolly cold here today.....might make some soup...brrr brrr
    • Spider In The Bath
    • By Spider In The Bath 1st Dec 17, 10:19 AM
    • 1,015 Posts
    • 3,195 Thanks
    Spider In The Bath
    Hello,

    Another one joining in please.

    We have been following the simplicity lifestyle for many years (about 17) and about two years ago started getting interested in Minimalism and F.I.R.E (Financial Independence Retire Early). I am also trying to do Zero Waste, but finding this difficult

    We have made so many changes to our lifestyle over the last few years (jobs, money being saved, house layout etc) all due to following this new lifestyle. It has had a massive impact.

    Like others I cook from scratch, do not have TV, we don't do presents at Christmas we all meet-up instead, have no clutter and so on.

    I have lots of great links to podcasts and websites for Simplicity and Minimalism if anyone is interested?
    • SimpleLiving
    • By SimpleLiving 1st Dec 17, 10:22 AM
    • 20 Posts
    • 482 Thanks
    SimpleLiving
    Hello,

    Another one joining in please.

    I have lots of great links to podcasts and websites for Simplicity and Minimalism if anyone is interested?
    Originally posted by Spider In The Bath
    Yes please Spider
    • VJsmum
    • By VJsmum 1st Dec 17, 10:44 AM
    • 4,901 Posts
    • 70,612 Thanks
    VJsmum
    Me too please.

    i have strived for simplicity for years - often failing, but never giving up.

    the house is fairly decluttered - except that i live with clutterbugs.. DD in particular but we have managed to confine it to her room in the main...

    I cook from scratch (my only concession is an occasional box of fish fingers), use up everything. I try to be low (rather than zero) waste but it's hard.

    Also love a pot of freshly brewed coffee in the morning (a cafetiere pays for itself even quicker ).

    Entertainment wise - i do love the theatre and concerts and am not giving them up but mainly we walk and cycle - would much sooner spend a day in the hills than in the shops - and it's cheaper. we also rarely drive and go everywhere on foot or by train..

    The only thing is.... i do love my holidays. Can I still join??
    You're out with a friend in the capital, I'm a thousand leagues under the sea
    You're hovering worriedly over your eggs, And I'm pondering trees
    I'm wandering long, And I'm pondering trees
    For you and me
    Guy Garvey
    • SimpleLiving
    • By SimpleLiving 1st Dec 17, 10:50 AM
    • 20 Posts
    • 482 Thanks
    SimpleLiving
    Me too please.

    i have strived for simplicity for years - often failing, but never giving up.

    the house is fairly decluttered - except that i live with clutterbugs.. DD in particular but we have managed to confine it to her room in the main...

    I cook from scratch (my only concession is an occasional box of fish fingers), use up everything. I try to be low (rather than zero) waste but it's hard.

    Also love a pot of freshly brewed coffee in the morning (a cafetiere pays for itself even quicker ).

    Entertainment wise - i do love the theatre and concerts and am not giving them up but mainly we walk and cycle - would much sooner spend a day in the hills than in the shops - and it's cheaper. we also rarely drive and go everywhere on foot or by train..

    The only thing is.... i do love my holidays. Can I still join??
    Originally posted by VJsmum
    I love my holidays too. Almost always Devon, Somerset or Wales, although I made an effort to take ds abroad on a plane for the first time a couple of years ago.
    • culpepper
    • By culpepper 1st Dec 17, 10:58 AM
    • 3,892 Posts
    • 7,188 Thanks
    culpepper
    Love this idea.
    Have been reading quite a bit about the Danish hygge recently , which I think fits in quite well.
    Has anyone got any tips for persuading their OH's to embrace simple living too?
    • Shropshirelass
    • By Shropshirelass 1st Dec 17, 11:07 AM
    • 286 Posts
    • 3,385 Thanks
    Shropshirelass
    I used to love Christmas, but it was always a quiet day for a nice meal and visits with the family, not the frenzied weeks of planning, misunderstandings, and worry that every thing must be perfect that it became before we took a step back.

    I thought I had heard that several stores had decided on giving up the normal tortuous Christmas music they submit us to. Has anyone noticed any quiet shops this year?

    A few years ago we suggested omitting Christmas presents for the family, except for the Grandchildren. My family agreed with relief, but OH's looked horrified, so we struggle on with them. Strangely, they are the ones with smart jobs, home and lifestyle (and the bragging rights to match :-))
    • Spider In The Bath
    • By Spider In The Bath 1st Dec 17, 12:13 PM
    • 1,015 Posts
    • 3,195 Thanks
    Spider In The Bath
    ...A few years ago we suggested omitting Christmas presents for the family, except for the Grandchildren. My family agreed with relief, but OH's looked horrified, so we struggle on with them. Strangely, they are the ones with smart jobs, home and lifestyle (and the bragging rights to match :-))
    Originally posted by Shropshirelass
    We did the same last year (after wanting to do this for a while). I got sick of people buying me stuff I did not want, or need for me to then have to take it to a charity shop in the January.

    For OHs family how about start making them presents instead of buying? This will work if you are really rubbish at something. Like knitting gloves with 6 fingers, or making chutney that taste like wet dog and old socks. This might help them change their mind.
    • Spider In The Bath
    • By Spider In The Bath 1st Dec 17, 12:43 PM
    • 1,015 Posts
    • 3,195 Thanks
    Spider In The Bath
    ...
    I have lots of great links to podcasts and websites for Simplicity and Minimalism if anyone is interested?
    Originally posted by Spider In The Bath
    Yes please Spider
    Originally posted by SimpleLiving
    I have tried to put them into the different categories to make things easier:

    Capsule wardrobes:
    https://bemorewithless.com/project-333/

    http://lightbycoco.com/ (see her on YouTube - although she has now stopped making the videos)

    http://mygreencloset.com/

    https://www.youtube.com/user/signe2605n (Use Less - capsule wardrobe and now also beauty items)

    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UChxkFSjTE7nLCHsDk8_pRhg (Justine Leconte fashion advive - she is fab)

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V3CLRL32Mcw (10 item warddrobe Ted x talk)


    F.I.R.E - Financial Independence Retire Early
    http://thefirestarter.co.uk/

    https://www.choosefi.com/ (good podcasts and website although American centric)


    Minimalism / Simplicity
    https://www.theminimalists.com/archives/#all (have some good articles, but the podcasts are awful (they are a bit annoying). They have some Tedx talks too and a documentary which are worth watching

    https://www.becomingminimalist.com/becoming-minimalist-start-here/ - Great blog I recommend signing up for his email newsletters too - very inspiring

    https://zenhabits.net/ - a slighty more spiritual take on simplicity

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tXlNvlzd9M8 - Tedx talk by Colin Wright (he lives out of two bags and travels the world)

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CyKmpyYy14k - Tedx talk about having to get rid of parents stuff after their death

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Pb-hjqdjbY - Tedx talk about a woman who gave up her stuff and followed her dreams

    http://jennymustard.com/ - One of the most well known minimalists. Has lots of YouTube talks too - really nice lady, but a bit hardcore

    http://simplicityvoices.com/ - Links to simplicity articles from different writers.

    https://www.youtube.com/user/PuggleThis - Great YouTube videos - Start at episode 1 to she her progress. She has been clearing out SO much stuff. She is very funny and has some great words of wisdom too.


    Zero Waste
    https://zerowastehome.com/ - The Queen of Zero waste (she has some good Tedx talk too)

    Enjoy!

    Spider
    Last edited by Spider In The Bath; 01-12-2017 at 12:44 PM. Reason: To add zero waste info
    • Shropshirelass
    • By Shropshirelass 1st Dec 17, 12:43 PM
    • 286 Posts
    • 3,385 Thanks
    Shropshirelass
    Spider, sounds like a brilliant idea!! To be honest, if they were my family I would class them as 'toxic' and just ignore the nonsense, but as they are his I tend to be more careful!!

    Inexplicably, what they seem to like are purpose wrapped Christmas gift sets from one of the big stores, not my scene at all.
    Last edited by Shropshirelass; 01-12-2017 at 12:46 PM. Reason: Thought of something else.
    • One Bullet Five Zombies
    • By One Bullet Five Zombies 1st Dec 17, 12:46 PM
    • 3 Posts
    • 73 Thanks
    One Bullet Five Zombies
    I have lots of great links to podcasts and websites for Simplicity and Minimalism if anyone is interested?
    Originally posted by Spider In The Bath
    Thanks for the links Spider.

    For OHs family how about start making them presents instead of buying? This will work if you are really rubbish at something. Like knitting gloves with 6 fingers, or making chutney that taste like wet dog and old socks. This might help them change their mind.
    Originally posted by Spider In The Bath
    Haha!

    I love Christmas (even the buying and receiving presents part) but I always come out of it fatter, poorer and hungover with a desperate desire for things to return to normal. Once every two years would be more than enough.
    Last edited by One Bullet Five Zombies; 01-12-2017 at 12:55 PM.
    • Prinzessilein
    • By Prinzessilein 1st Dec 17, 1:23 PM
    • 2,094 Posts
    • 9,725 Thanks
    Prinzessilein
    I was talking to a woman aa few days ago....she has 3 grandchildren, all in one family, and bought each of them an Advent Calendar....their parents also get them one each...so that is 6 Advent Calendars in one family (parents get the kids a chocolate filled one apiece, grannie gives them each one with 'stuff to do' in each window)...PLUS the adults get one each (with beauty stuff for her and booze for him)...and if that wasn't ridiculous enough, the DOG gets one too with doggie-chocs each day!!!!

    Personally we love Christmas, and have our own traditions....I read Dickens' A Christmas Carol each year (spread out over Advent Sundays)...Mum always visits on a Sunday and does wool-work (usually crochet) whilst I read aloud - usually in German - and we choose something 'festive' over Advent, and we have home-made festive treats to nibble.......a more recent tradition has been that I do a Christmas Quiz for Mum , she does love a quiz!) ...(100 questions ..10 rounds of 10 questions each...Some questions in English, some in German...includes 'picture' rounds...am I ever grateful for the Internet!!!)...and nearer Christmas we will listen to Carols from Kings and a German Advent concert (Mum has the German channels for free on her satellite dish)...and as Christians, we will also spend time focussing on the Biblical meaning of Christmas.

    Which is not to say we go all 'spartan' for Christmas...we will enjoy a festive Christmas dinner...with enough leftovers for ONE extra meal each...I will have a small box of Turkish Delight...for Mum it will be fudge ...One batch of mince pies....and plenty of Stollen (both home made and from Lidls, who do the BEST 'everyday' Stollen)....but we do NOT pack the larder to the rafters with treats that let's face it no one really wants/needs!

    I have a family member who has multiple Christmas trees (because the children 'need' their own!!!)...and whose leccy bill must triple over December with all the festive lights they deem necessary.....me, I have a small tabletop tree decorated with no lights, and straw&wood decorations...one small wreath on the door...and some battery-operated candles (I can't use the sort you light with matches!)....and in my eyes, my home looks perfectly festive!...oh and I have a few hand-made decorations too - a couple of friends and I decided a few years ago to exchange hand-made decorations instead of presents.

    I lead a fairly simple life by choice AND by necessity....I do wish the shops would support me!....Once again our local supermarket has three stands dedicated to chocolate novelties...and yet no longer stocks bread flour, or any cheese other than cheddar (or some unidentifiable varieties marketed for children) ....and their milk refrigerator now has to find room for assorted festive creams and butters, with the result that all to often there is no room for milk!
    • SimpleLiving
    • By SimpleLiving 1st Dec 17, 1:43 PM
    • 20 Posts
    • 482 Thanks
    SimpleLiving
    Prinzessilein...that's 9 advent calendars for one family..gobsmacked. Love your traditions, sounds perfect
    • Shropshirelass
    • By Shropshirelass 1st Dec 17, 1:45 PM
    • 286 Posts
    • 3,385 Thanks
    Shropshirelass
    Prinzess I feel so old recalling Advent calendars where you just opened a door and read a Christmas text every day.

    On a brighter note the moon last night was a beautiful Christmas light all on its own, hope we have a cloudless night again tonight so all can appreciate it.

    Going to check out some of Spider's links now....
    Last edited by Shropshirelass; 01-12-2017 at 1:46 PM. Reason: Spelling
    • villagelife
    • By villagelife 2nd Dec 17, 7:07 AM
    • 1,145 Posts
    • 12,973 Thanks
    villagelife
    I would also like to join.
    I have been trying to declutter and recently it seems to be making a difference. There is more space in the cupboards so the house is tidier so I can put things away.
    I generally cook from scratch and DS2 has to cook twice a week as part of his rent and he will cook from scratch too.
    Almost 4 years ago we extended a tiny garden by buying some land behind the house and now grow a lot my own veg and have planted fruit trees and this year they produced some fruit and hopefully next year will have enough to store some.
    • jackyann
    • By jackyann 2nd Dec 17, 7:32 AM
    • 3,274 Posts
    • 6,901 Thanks
    jackyann
    I have found these posts interesting, and salute you all! Of course, we will all position ourselves at slightly different points on the 'simplicity' scale, and get there by different means.

    I have been thinking about the things I will keep:
    Our car is a necessity, with rural bus cuts and grandchildren care, we could not manage without, also we still camp (albeit in a luxury trailer tent so I don't have to sleep on the floor!)
    Probably the biggest luxury outlay is for one of the cheaper Sky subscriptions, that includes recording. We both love watching sport, and there are excellent dramas as well. The TV only goes on in the day for occasional specific events (usually sporting) but in the evening we use the record facility to decide what to watch and fast forward through the adverts. I find myself tired and a bit achy in the evenings, but use the opportunity to crochet blankets for Loving Hands.

    We too have a handmade advent calendar.

    I'm going to think about other things as they come up.

    We are very lucky as we live in an area that has a lot of talented musicians and actors. We can easily see something of good quality, cheaply, once or twice a month within a 10 mile radius. Our village hall social evenings are legendary as well! The village hall runs a weekly coffee morning - free, please put in a charitable donation - which is popular and well attended.
    • SimpleLiving
    • By SimpleLiving 2nd Dec 17, 8:25 AM
    • 20 Posts
    • 482 Thanks
    SimpleLiving
    I would also like to join.

    Almost 4 years ago we extended a tiny garden by buying some land behind the house and now grow a lot my own veg and have planted fruit trees and this year they produced some fruit and hopefully next year will have enough to store some.
    Originally posted by villagelife
    Sounds lovely. I eat seasonally most of the time. So no fresh tomatoes for me until summer. I have some in the freezer that I will use over the winter in soups and stews. Same with courgettes. Never bought one!
    • dingdongsaving
    • By dingdongsaving 2nd Dec 17, 12:06 PM
    • 374 Posts
    • 4,150 Thanks
    dingdongsaving
    What a lovely addition to the threads! This suits us down to the ground and I've only read the first page so far!

    We've always lived frugally, but things have evolved over the years. When we first met, tiptoed onto the property ladder and had our first child it was certainly due to means, but things have changed a lot over the last 15 years and currently it's healthy habits that suit us, planning for the future and an effort to be mindful/set a financial and environmental example for our kids that keep us on track.

    I also tend to feel out of control when we're not on top of things. We plan carefully so that our small folk only have to go to childcare 4 days a week and make sure every family moment counts. We've found that by cutting back to the things that 'count' we're able to enjoy life more and relish the slower pace of our days at home. We really benefit from our little personal and family rituals that signal comfort and relaxation. This has certainly been a long time coming though, and manageable has evolved into 'just right'.

    Our most recent challenge with posessions has been inheriting items from both sets of parents through bereavements and resulting downsizing. We've gradually been able to enjoy the sentimentality of going through things whilst recognising the positivity of passing things on for others to enjoy.

    I love spending time planning and cooking our meals, and our location makes it easy to stay away from the ridiculous retail fads. We rarely make the drive to the nearest city and both despise the forced 'pressure' retailers create. We love family walks and enjoying the outdoors, and I would have said that open views and woodland 'sealed the deal' on our current house purchase in 2010, but I'd be lying if I omitted the very pleasing fact that we're simply not near any shops, restaurants or take away options. I love being in the middle of nowhere.

    Our children haven't asked for anything for Christmas, and the morning and what it 'brings' is always surprise. DS is 10 and the only thing he's asked is if his grandparents are coming and if we can choose a new Christmas jigsaw to complete during the month. We enjoy Christmas day with family and a lovely meal, but beyond exchanging presents and hand/home made treats and some chocolate coins being scattered on the breakfast table it's just a lovely family day. It's the care, sentiment and memories that make it warm and fuzzy for me.

    Right, thank you all for warming my cockles this morning! I'm about to go back and enjoy the whole thread with a cuppa.
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