30 August 2010
June 2010 Newsletter
The simple life: warm bread baking in the oven, laundry drying on the line, veggies fresh from the garden, chickens contentedly exploring their yard, finches and grossbeaks at the bird feeder, cut flowers placed in a vase by the bed, cats curled up in the sunshine.
Idyllic, yes? And yet the simple life is not necessarily easy, if by easy we mean requiring a minimum of work. Simple means both easy, effortless, and natural, unadorned. When we daydream of "the simple life," I think we are longing for a life stripped down of pretension and complication, a life of connection and meaning. But because simple also means effortless, we don't consider how much work is required to "live simply." Unless we have servants (at which point the work is deferred to someone else, but it hasn't gone away), we need to make the bread dough that's baking, hang and fold the laundry (which smells delicious, as good as that baking bread!), tend the garden and the chickens and the cats, cook meals from scratch, and so on.
Of course, there's the saying that "Work is love made visible." Some of us feel deep satisfaction and pleasure in doing the work of creating and tending. There's a connection to Source that comes with these labors, if we can remember to be aware of it.
My own challenge comes with this month's tip: to make time for fun. I get so caught up in the daily chores of my simple life that I forget I'm choosing them, I forget that connection to Source and to enjoy my life. And so my response to the tip is two-fold: one, to recall the joy in the work of simplicity and two, to go play!
Anyone want to join me for a play date on the Trinity with Redwoods and Rivers Rafting?
Tip of the Month
As summer approaches, simplify your time commitments so that you have time for fun, whether that’ s reading a novel, BBQing with the neighbors, or swimming in the river. Declutter your time the same way you would a room, by looking at each activity and asking: Does this make me smile, or is it useful (supporting my goals)? If not, let it go.
Quote of the Month
Making the simple complicated is commonplace; making the complicated simple, awesomely simple, that’s creativity.
– Charles Mingus