Friday, May 14, 2010

Simple Living

A couple of weeks ago, I was telling Matt about how practically every drop side crib out there has been recalled. We breathed a sigh of relief that drop sides never appealed to us much, and when I got pregnant we purchased a simple, stationary crib from Ikea. This got me thinking about my previous post about our vacuum shopping, and about how we employ this approach to a lot of our buying decisions. Simpler, for us, is better. We tend to look for things without a lot of fancy buttons, features and tricks. We want our camera to take pictures, or vacuum to pick up dirt, our cell to make phone calls and our crib to house a sleeping infant.
Then, a few days after that, we watched the film Food Inc. Now, I wouldn't necessarily spend a supposed-to-be-relaxing Friday night curled up with this movie for fun (like we did), since it is really intense, but I do think it made some extremely important points. And, really, it boiled down to this: simpler eating is better. Instead of prepacked, convenience foods and processed meats, a healthier, more humane and environmentally-friendly diet is one made up of vegetables and meat - locally grown or organic. So we've decided to really change our habits in this arena and think twice about what we eat. We've been shopping at the farmer's market more, buying grass-fed beef and trying to make simpler choices.
And THAT, got me to thinking about our lifestyle in general, and what values we hold. We both joke about how we're not very career-oriented people, but that just fits into this same philosophy, I think. We value doing a good job, but we hold in higher priority our family and friends. A good day to us is a walk to the park with our son and a home-cooked meal shared with friends. We have no desire to work tons of hours to make a lot of money to buy the latest high-tech gadgets or go on fancy vacations. I don't enjoy having a packed schedule, always being busy. I just want simple, calm living.
This last weekend was a testament to that. My son turned 1, and we had a big party planned. We had rented out the park near our condo, but in true midwest-spring fashion, it was wickedly cold. So, we threw it indoors. There were 37 people crammed into our small space, but it was so much fun. We ate delectable cupcakes homebaked by my talented sister-in-law, blew bubbles and put party hats on the toddlers, caught up with old friends and held new babies. There is no simpler pleasure than seeing the smile on my son's face as he experiences new things.

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