Friday, March 25, 2016

The Simple Life

The simple life. A phrase we hear often, but what does that really mean?  What does it mean to live a simple life?  I think the meaning can vary from family to family, and I also think it's quite personal.  I know I've mentioned several times on this blog and to people in person how badly I want "the simple life" and how I strive to get there.  

 

For me the simple life means living life more fully, on purpose, and at a slower pace.  I want to recognize and treasure the purpose and meaning in each moment of each day before I wake up one day and my children are grown and I ask myself, where did the time go?

 It's difficult.  It sounds like such an easy thing to do, but in today's world it's difficult.  I have to remember and make decisions each day based on how I want to live my life the way God intended, and not based on how the world encourages me to do so.


Our society makes us feel that success comes from our level of income, how much stuff we accumulate, what kind of car we drive, how many extra curricular activities we cram into our children's schedules, and more. The list goes on and on, but you get what I'm trying to say.  With so much pressure to conform to what the world says makes us successful and important, there is very little time left for anything. Anything that truly matters.

 

It's been nearly two years since we purchased our farm.  One of the things I loved most about the opportunity to raise our children on a farm was the idea of living the simple life, and having so many teachable moments scattered through out a typical day.  Our first year here was a whirlwind and anything but simple.  While our children adjusted well and never skipped a beat, I on the other hand was a basket case.  I couldn't rest a bit until everything was done, and that turned into way longer than I planned.  Is anything ever truly done when it comes to a house? Nope, who was I kidding?

  

Fast forward to today, and we are finally feeling settled.  More progress has been made on the farm, and I'm slowly getting the hang of farm life and all that it involves.  Our house, while far from "finished", feels like home and I've learned to be content and thankful for what I have today instead of constantly dreaming and planning the next thing.



Obtaining a simple life takes effort and a complete new way of thinking.  We have to decide what our goal is before we know where to begin in obtaining it.  For me, aiming for a more simple life means I want to be available for my children.  Less hustle and bustle all the time, and more time to slow down and smell the roses, ya know? Since when did that become a bad thing? Why are jammed packed schedules the thing to do now?  

It's important to me that I am the one, along with my husband of course, raising my children. I want to be the main influence in their life right now.  I want to be available to attend field trips, school parties, and gymnastics classes.  I want to be the one waiting at the end of the driveway each afternoon when the bus comes.  I want to be the one preparing their after school snacks and dinners at home as a family.  Those things are important to me.

  Does that mean less income for our household because I'm choosing to invest my time in our home and family? Yes, but I would much rather be investing in my children, than driving around a brand new car. God blessed us with these children, and we intend to do our very best at pleasing Him with how we raise them.  My husband's job doesn't allow him to be available as much as we would like right now, so we feel me being a stay at home/work from home mom is the best choice for us.  I'm so thankful for God's grace because while I strive to do my best, I know I make mistakes daily, but I'm quite sure there is no such thing as a perfect parent.  We just have to make decisions the best way we know how, and trust Him to guide us.  We are thinking about making the transition to homeschooling, but we are still uncertain if that's the path we are meant to take.  I'm praying for clarity.

I realize that these ideas are not ideal for everyone, and that's okay!  We don't all have to be the same! I'm just sharing our goals and priorities for our family, as this blog has become sort of my journal.  I know many working moms that are amazing mothers and do an amazing job with their kiddos. Some of the moms I look up to the most are mothers who work outside of the home, but again I'm only sharing what we feel is best for our family and our situation.

 

In addition to simplifying our schedules, we have also simplified our home and our finances and I can't tell you how freeing it is.  It's like huge weights have been lifted and I can actually breathe again.  I'll go into more detail on each of these in separate posts, because we are still on the journey!  I've read a couple of books that have really inspired me in these areas.  I have a brand new way of looking at our home, all our stuff, and the way we manage our money, and I can't wait to share that with you. I'm planning to do separate posts on these topics very soon as a follow up to this one.

 

For me a fresh mindset, a simplified schedule, a simplified home,  and simplified finances equals more freedom and time to focus on what matters the most. What do you value most and what are you doing to make those things a priority? I would love to hear your thoughts! Let's encourage one another!

Have a BLESSED day!

2 comments:

  1. 10 years ago when my children were 8 and 4 I quit my job and began homeschooling my children. Now I have a freshman in college and a freshman in high school. Fastest ten years of my life, and I will never regret the extra time Ive been able to spend with them!!! You will love homeschooling :):)

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    1. Thanks so much for sharing that Laurie! I love hearing from other homeschooling moms! We are excited but also nervous. My daughter will be 8 in June, and my son is 4. :) We have discussed it as a family and our children are both super excited about it as well. We will see how it goes!

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