Saturday, December 26, 2009

A Season of Simplicity, Week Two

On the first day of Winter, we were met with a lovely surprise of snow! Although it only remained for the day, it was the perfect element to bring in the new season.

While we read in the parlour, my brother did creative art...

Inside, I'm rooting cuttings of butterfly bushes--In a day or two,

I'll plant them outside and see what happens!
This is the time that we get flocks of migrating birds that fly was a spectacular sight, especially when they traveled over the fields. They're so loud, we can hear them from inside the Cottage!
Cooking by candlelight
I have been doing extra baking and cooking lately so that we could have a special Christmas Dinner. I prepared the meals ahead of time, so luckily all we had to do was warm up the dishes!
I added pecans to mason jars to hold the candles steady...
Mother gathering collard greens for dinner...
~Everyday I've been working to gather "stakes" for the garden(in the Spring). These dormant China berry branches will work great!
Adding more to the messy collection...
ps)That's our vintage (1974) Airstream in the background.
I'll have to share more about it one of these days :)

My brother helping me slice apples for tomorrow's pie

A snapshot of my sister preparing an early breakfast...


Christmas at the Cottage

"With Pomp, Power & Glory the world beckons vainly,

In chase of such vanities why should I roam?

While Peace & Content bless my little thatched cottage,

And warm my own hearth with the Treasures of Home."

*Beatrix Potter

Taking an afternoon walk down the lane...


On Pilgrimage: It was so quiet and still as we all walked together, it was brought up that we felt like we were on "Pilgrimage" (for our fellow Pilgrims Progress/Christiana readers )

A lone puddle, formed by the winter rain


Wagon (the cottage is in the background)

We all enjoyed the temporary pond in the woods...


New watercolor pencils...


These crocheted hearts bear a "Fruit" of the spirit

From left: Faith, Hope, Love, Peace, Joy.


100% cotton Crocheted washcloths


*With Gentle gifts and Grateful hearts,

We live in Simple Ways*


Christmas Sunset

This Season of Simplicity has been amazing...Here's what we learned:

Father: "This was an intentional way of spending good family time together. Candlelight made the mood more peaceful and I enjoyed watching the contentment of everyone. I realized how much of a blessing it is not to rely on outside forms of entertainment."


Mother: "Without artificial lighting & entertainment, the atmosphere was beautiful, time moved slower, and we felt more relaxed. I found we gathered all together in a central location [most often the Parlour] where there was light and a heat source. So all of our evenings were spent in one room where there was pleasant conversation, singing, games and even hobbies--all done by Candlelight."


My sister: "We don't need the outside stimulation of everything..being away from all the noise of the Season, Being with family made me realize how everyday matters. We read together, ate together, weren't separate in different activities."


My brother: "We learned how to keep things very simple. How to do things if there wasn't any and be a family. That's what I think."


Myself: "During this Project, instead of using the Internet to research, I had to use our home library as my authority on the "outside world" lol! If I needed recipes, gardening info, or tips on sewing, I was in a state of constantly running to the bookshelf. I learned how important it is to have really good books!"


To my Dear Readers,

I want to thank you for your "online friendship". Like many of you, as far as our area is concerned, we're alone in this [lifestyle] and we've made a transition to live in a simpler, back-to-basics way that doesn't seem to appeal to most. Y'all have been SO interested, and SO supportive and have asked the sweetest, and most sincere questions, that it has encouraged me more than I can express. Please continue to comment and email...each one is read and deeply appreciated!

Yours Kindredly,



Annie Z said...

My sister and I found your blog today! How lovely! Every post is interesting and inspiring!
I LOVE the 1800-1900's fashion! All the pictures are beautiful!
God bless you!

Anonymous said...

I am a Mom of 3 and we are all following your blog. I love the things you are doing and I have made the crochet hat myself. I am now working on the (vest) I can't remember the name. Very fun and inspiring to follow you and your family. God bless, Veronica in Oregon.

Catherine said...

I can't help but be envious of your family, Mia. :) The way you all work together toward a similar goal is so encouraging and inspiring! <3

Kateri Scott said...

I encourage you to get the book Back to Basics by Readers Digest. It is a staple book in not only my house, but my father's and my older brother's.

Cinnamon said...

What a beautiful and relaxing time this has been for you all. You have given me food for thought and fed my soul in your sweet photos and life.

Thank you for sharing~

~Mrs. Kerschner

Anonymous said...

Love love love your blog Miss Mia!
I kept checking your blog for your new post today, I just couldn't wait to read about your week!
Thank-you for sharing your week 2 of simplicity. I have been inspired to give it a try with my four yr. old.

oh the book Back to Basics by Readers Digest, is a great book! I use it almost daily!
Rhonda from Northern Minnesota

Tracy said...

Lovely, lovely, lovely update, Mia!

gail said...

Hello Mia,

What an inspiration you are. I am really enjoying reading about your lovely family, You are a great encouragement to others.

Blessings Gail

Kelsey Anne Hoppman said...

What a great experiance and blessing to do that with your family.
My Mom and I have loved following you through the blogger world. Thank-you for blogging! :)
God Bless you and your beautiful family Mia,

Miss R.J. said...

Hi Mia,

I don't know if you got this blog award yet but, anyways I thought that I would award you!

Follow the link here:

BTW: I LOVE your photos!

My other blog:

sarah in the woods said...

I enjoyed this post very much. Looks like you all had such a sweet peaceful time together. I love your candle jars. Merry Christmas!

Trish said...

I love your candle lit posts! I love that you stayed home and found so much rest and enjoyment with your family!

Just curious do you keep the sabbath?

AJ said...

~*~ Evenings by candlelight with those you love around you...How simply wonderful! ~*~ Thank you for your blog and all that you share. *Blessings*

jannza said...

Oh, Mia, you always bless my heart with your posts. I have loved following your family during this sweet time. The candlelight, the time spent together....all treasures.

Thank you!

Mrs. Bridget G. said...

I'm glad you enjoyed yourselves. It must have been refreshing to move at a slower (slower than you already do!) pace than the world. Were you excited to get back to the computer? Or could you live without it?

...they call me mommy... said...

Love these posts! :) Guess what I got for Christmas? An oil lamp w/hurricane! I'm soooo excited! Can't wait to knit and read by it! :)

Many blessings!

Miss Jen said...

It was wonderful to read your
thoughts on 'living simply' ;)
Sitting around the fireplace as a family reading
and engaged in wholesome conversation...
what could be more sweet!
That is what I hope to do with my family someday...
Awww the sweet joy of God's gracious gifts to

Bless you dear friend! :)

Love~ Jen

McKenzie Elizabeth said...

Snow!?! We are only 30 minutes away and we didn't get any! That is not fair! :>)

Your pictures are beautiful!

Hope to see you soon.


Anonymous said...

It's always nice to visit you here, Mia and catch up a bit on what you are doing. I think that you have fully moved beyond the 'aspiring' homemaker...maybe you should change that to 'inspiring' homemaker! ;-) Bless you, my friend as we approach this new year.

Molly Underwood said...

Hello Mia, my name is Molly and I so agree about good books!
We too have taken breaks from technology. It breathes space!

Anonymous said...

Wonderful good Mia!!!! The project looks to be a sweet and lovely success!!! I look forward to seein more on the Airstream (way cool:-)!). tammyp

Maries Cottage said...

A friend told me about your blog and I do believe it is the best blog I have ever visited. Thank you for being such an encouragement! Blessings from Missouri!!

Anonymous said...

What joy it must have been for your family - time spent together seemed to be the best gift of all!

Have a blessed and peaceful new year to you and your dear family ;)


~ Judy ~ said...

Always a JOY to come to your blog Mia!
I am glad that week two was enriching for your family.
May God bless your beautiful family with MANY days of JOYFUL SIMPLICITY in 2010!

Anonymous said...

What a great idea -- your family is such and inspiration. Oh and I love your candle holder idea -- I may have to borrow that one :0) As always a pleasure to read your blog.


Paige said...

Mia, I enjoy your blog tremendously. I especially love your music selection! Thank you for directing me to some really beautiful songs.

American Home said...

Once again your words and photos are a refreshing inspiration.
I wish every young woman I knew had a heart like yours.
God bless you and your precious family this year.
The American Home.

Jeanne said...

Mia, If nothing else, you've inspired me! If nothing else come from your blog I pray that your blog inspires all americans to live as your and your family do, We may be come the place that our ancestors wanted for us. A free lad with appreciated people who live simply and as Christ like as possible!
Thanks for being a true inspiration to all who is blessed with visiting your blog!

Homemaker Ang said...

Hi, my name is Abby. I am homemakerang's daughter (from Maple Valley Off-grid farm) and I recently heard about your blog and thought I'd stop by to read it! I was so excited to find a like-minded person off of blogger. You have a wonderful blog. I was especially excited to see you tried living without electricity for awhile too! I live off-grid and it is such a wonderful experience!! God's mercies are new everyday! I love nature and all the "homemaking" things as well. :) It'd be nice to get to know you more. :)
I really appreciate to meet another like minded person who loves the Lord!
~Abby~ age 16
(you have commented on my mom's blog before :) )

Lora Goulet said...

I just stooped by your beautiful website for some quiet peacefulness. Mia, you and your family are so amazing! God Bless all of you...