I'm married to a wonderful computer science major: the Mister. He's also Tech Support Extraordinaire! A genius with math, numbers, and remembering TV and movie lines. He reads. A lot. And has helped me to acquire such refined tastes as Dr. Who and The X-Files. In exchange, I taught him to knit his own socks (actually, I think that was more a favor to me since now I don't have to knit them!). He's the talk of the town with his multicolored, handknit feet. He bikes. Everywhere, as long as there's no snow or ice. And he's funny - so, so funny! Also, I love him. He's a keeper.
Other things I love include, but are not limited to:
- Reading: blogs and books about simple living, housekeeping, knitting and sewing mostly
- Learning more about eating a traditional diet and healthy nutrition
- Thrift store shopping
- Korean food: especially good, spicy, spicy kimchi and samgyeopsal (grilled fat back)!
- Hanging out with mine and the Mister's families: we have fun relatives!
- Learning more and more ways to simplify our life and pare down our possessions
You can read a little about how we started paring down our possessions here.
We've really come to simple living pretty slowly, over time. It started with moving to South Korea and having to become more frugal than either of us had ever been (or, at least more frugal than I had ever been!). Having to scrimp and pinch every single penny will very quickly teach you to deeply value what you own and, also, to get creative when it comes to the things you need.
Living in South Korea also limited our options for American food, and being poor, we really had to make a decision to either eat every meal outside the house, or eat every meal inside the house (otherwise, one or the other was too expensive). Eating out was cheap, if we did it every meal, and eating in was affordable, but only if we did it every meal. As much as we LOVE K-food, we couldn't see ourselves eating it for every meal, so, I had to learn to cook from scratch, because, as it turns out, Korean markets don't always have the cream of mushroom soups I was accustomed to, or instant pudding, and they never, ever have plain, unsweetened yogurt.
The more I cooked from scratch, the more I began to read about how much junk is in our food. We didn't have cookbooks in Korea (too much weight and room in the suitcases coming over), so I mostly relied on blogs and websites for recipes. I found The Nourishing Gourmet (Kimi has a recipe for real food peanut butter cups -- so good) and Nourished Kitchen (Jenny has a simple, delicious meatloaf recipe), and began to learn about traditional foods and why liver and butter are good for you and canned soup isn't.
With our newfound consciousness about our food and nutrition, came a consciousness about everything else in the world around us. So, we ditched the paper in our tiny, Korean kitchen, and even in our bathroom (more on that some other day...)! We started cleaning with a five lb. bag of baking soda we were able to score at Korean Costco, and apple cider vinegar from the tiny mart down the road. We ditched bleach for vinegar and hydrogen peroxide, for all but the most mildewy of mildewiness (I do still use bleach, I just reserve it for emergencies).
Simplifying our possessions is definitely the latest step in our simple life and it has me excited all over again. I'm finally beginning to feel like a housewife, like someone who can take care of my home and my husband, without getting too easily overwhelmed.
Over the next weeks and months, I hope to post about ways that you can start a simple lifestyle, traditional food recipes for things like grain-free muffins, grain-free lasagna and stir fry with delicious sesame peanut sauce. I also want to delve into some of the sewing and knitting I'm doing, by showing you what I've been making (both things for my own enjoyment and to simplify our lives), and giving some tutorials to show you how to get started making a few things. Basically, I want this blog to encompass all aspects of simple living, simple homemaking, and simple crafting, all on a frugal, finally-going-back-to-college-after-eight-years student budget.
I hope you have as much fun reading as I have writing!