Fall Pastimes

For some reason I haven’t written yet about the coolest part of Our Simplicity Project. I don’t know why. So here goes: Life is awesome! I really enjoy life now. I didn’t before. In the midst of the rat race with mortgages and car payments and noise and ignorance I didn’t know what it felt like to really enjoy life. I used to think pizza and beer and televised football on Sunday afternoon was a good as it gets. It aint.

Because our lives are intentionally uncomplicated, there are many things I took for granted in the past as “things I have to do,” that I don’t do at all anymore.

This morning I woke up, spent an hour cooking breakfast for my family, drove four miles to the trailhead of one of the most beautiful trails in my state, hiked about two miles, drove an extra three miles to cross the bridge over the lake I live near just to enjoy the view, came home, and started writing this post.

My wife’s picking up walnuts. We’ll sell them and make a few dollars. Not enough to justify the time spent picking them up, but she’s not doing it for the money. It’s a gorgeous, sunny, autumn day with temperatures in the mid 50’s. It’s quiet and peaceful, except when the kids are helping. The air is clean and crisp and she’s happy. She’s enjoying the moment.

The last few days we’ve harvested the last of our tomato crop. Gallons of them. Mostly volunteer cherry tomatoes. We have about three dozen quarts canned so far. We won’t necessarily save any money. Metal cans of tomatoes are cheap enough. Jars of spaghetti sauce are cheap enough. But we didn’t spend all the time we spent cultivating, picking, cleaning, and canning tomatoes to save money. We did it because it was fun to plant them and fun to see the results of our labor. We’ll make many, many meals with tomatoes we grew ourselves. They’re good for the environment, better for our health, won’t hurt our budget, and we enjoyed being outside playing in the dirt.

Breathing clean air. Appreciating nature. Growing and eating good, real food. I’m happier than I’ve ever been. It’s an uncomplicated life.

I haven’t watched a football game in over two years. It’s not that I don’t like football anymore, it’s just that I have better things to do.

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