Tuesday 22 October 2019

A Smaller and Simpler Life?

I was asked the other day about my new Smaller Life

 In what way does it differ from my old 'simple' life and is it better?

Oh, it's better ... so much better. 

I feel like I'm me again!!

I'm not doing anything I don't want to do

 I say no politely

 Then not quite so politely

 Then if you won't take the nice version of me, you get told in no uncertain terms what to do

Well you shouldn't have pushed

Should you!!

I have taken back my life

And it's given me time to think

Time to get on with living simply

And for me living simply means 




Eating simply

Gardening small-ly

Sneakers and jeans

Television and books

Walking in nature

Taking time to live

Whenever it is possible

Our old duvet  was re-purposed into two cosy dog beds

One thick and multilayered and covered in the softest most teddy-bear like fleece

For Suky to snuggle into and keep warm

On cold caravan nights

And the other thinner, longer and snuggly on the back seat of my car 

For sleepy journeys to and from the Van.

Both seem to be appreciated.

I was never perfect

Sometimes I wasn't even good

But now that I've relaxed into me

I'm better


  1. I can’t remember if you have had a winter in the van, do you keep warm?

    1. I was there last Winter. Yes I keep warm, there's central heating for when I want it, but I like my room to be cool, cold even for sleeping in. Of course I'm cosy under the duvet and top quilt so I wanted Suky to be cosier too.

      In the mornings she joins me for a snuggle on the bed, lying on her own little 'Suky bed' as we call her little blanket, on top of my quilt. While I read and drink my coffee and she snoozes after her breakfast But I've never been one for animals actually sleeping in bed with me.

      During the day I let any sunshine stream into the Van through the windows and only turn the heating on if I really have to.

      I'm never deprived, I just have it as I want it.

  2. Hi Sue, lovely post, this is me, or rather who I really want and need to be.
    I am feeling so low at the moment and exhausted I just need to get off this roller coaster, we are working hard and saving hard and it's exhausting, this time next year I want to be writing about my simple life.x

    1. Try not to get yourself too low. Instead of trying to do everything at once try simplifying all those little areas that take time, but that once done make you feel like you've achieved something good.

      Try going through little drawers or pots of clutter when the adverts come on television, use the 3 minutes of consumer driven madness to throw things away, add to the car boot sale box or put away into a more sensible place etc. I still find myself doing this if I'm feeling 'stuff' trying to take over again.

      Take time in the fresh air to rejuvenate yourself, it's amazing how a short, brisk walk can put colour in your cheeks and take worry from your mind.

      Above all else never expect more of yourself than you would from someone else.

      Here endeth today's lecture 🤣🤣

    2. Thankyou for your wise words Sue, I think I am forcing things and doing too much at once, if I take a few days off I can probably get motivated again. I think i will write a bit more about the decluttering when I have had a few days off from it. You are an inspiration! x

  3. Utter contentment is a fantastic place. I am so glad for you.

    1. Oh ... I still have my moments, don't be fooled by my poetic words ;-)

  4. You are such an inspiration to me Sue, thank you for sharing your thoughts and your journey. Xx

    1. Thank YOU for reading ... and for taking the time to comment ♥️

  5. How do you escape the politics of family life etc though? I have a nice life but being the eldest of two I get caught up in dramas with my recently bereaved mum, my brother, my children etc etc. I know you have family so how do you escape it all to live such a peaceful life? I'm even already dreading New Year because we are expected to attend a party I hate but feel obliged to go to every year 'to keep the peace'! I know I should say no, and this year I hope to summon the courage to say NO, but I fear pressure and guilt will bow me once again. x

    1. I don't escape the politics of family life at all as I am also the eldest of two. My brother is so completely different to me and we rarely see eye to eye about anything. Indeed at times I find it hard to be civil to him as he can be so intolerant and rude. I escape by being able to draw a line and walk away from most situations.

      I have two sons, three grandsons, a granddaughter on the way this December and a great grandson. One son is blissfully in love and the other flits from partner to partner. But I always remember it's their lives, their mess and although I'm here as an ear for their woes, as a sounding board and at times a money lending service, when push comes to shove I can walk away whenever I want knowing that I have done my best but enough is enough.

      I simply say a very firm NO if there's somewhere I don't want to go or something I don't want to do ... and I don't do it. Simple as.

      We have one life, it's the real deal not a dress rehearsal or a practice run, and after losing people so precious to me over the years, I know that we owe it to ourselves to make the best if it that we can ... and that includes letting go of unnecessary guilt or recriminations.

      Why keep the peace, go off, book a holiday, do YOUR thing this New Year. Make this YOUR year ♥️

    2. Perfect answer, Sue. I hope Marksgran finds the courage to say no. I shall be visiting my family before Christmas to hand out their monetary presents. I refuse to trawl the shops for them, they can get their own.

  6. I so love this post, thank you Sue♥ For me as I've aged I dance to my own tune which at times is extremely hard because of the guilty feelings and pressures from people. I can so relate to Marksgran feeling obliged, in the past 5 years I gained strength and no longer do what people expect from me. Good luck Marksgran I hope you find the courage to say NO. Linda xx

    1. I think reaching 50 was a huge turning point for me, you suddenly realise there are less years ahead than there are behind, and the things you've learnt start to gel and make sense. God I'm going to be unstoppable next year when I turn 60 🤣

      I hope Marksgran can work things out too. Guilt really is a hard thing to let go of, but my God once you do it's liberating

    2. You certainly will be unstoppable Sue:) Loved your reply to Marksgran in the past we would fly to the UK for Christmas to get away from Family obligations, sadly it wasn't always an option and as you say I feel liberated when I say NO:)

  7. I love your "we have one life, it is not a dress rehearsal" phrase. So very true.

    God bless.

    1. It's something that resonated with me from the first moment I heard it, many years ago. When you hit your middle years (yes I'm going to live to be 120) it suddenly takes on even more meaning.

  8. Hi there, sorry I cannot believe I have been absent for longer than you!! We finished our summer contract at the end of September and seem to have been here and there ever since. I am so glad you enjoyed your holiday in Sark, I have never been but it sounds just our cup of tea! During the last three weeks we have been chasing our work for next year; I now find it very exciting as we never know where we will end up until we are offered, and accept a contract. Having been reading blogs for so long now I have 'virtual' friends all over the country so I never know who I will be living fairly close to. Unfortunately, whilst I wanted to be either closer to my family in Hampshire or around Shropshire way, we have been offered a lovely job in Pickering, North Yorkshire. We are familiar with the area as we worked at Scarborough for 4 months about 6 years ago, and cannot wait to start another new adventure. I completely agree with your comments about family politics, we seem to have had many issues over the years (second marriages/step children etc) but I was nearly 50 years old before I finally went off and did what we wanted to do. It is still not easy and have to bite my tongue sometimes and handover money at others, listen to rants and tears, but by being a little further away I find it easier not to get over involved. It is my life, and I intend to enjoy what is left of it. Here's to 'van life' (although with our new job we get to live in a really cute 2 bed bungalow). Xx

    1. Ooh a new adventure, your way of live sounds wonderful and very 'you'. I'm glad that we are of similar mindsets with family life. Things can get really complicated … if you let them. But it seems that we have both got it pretty sussed at the moment. Of course there are always 'shit hits the fan' moments that need dealing with occasionally but when, by and large the boat is steady a few big waves can never upset things totally.

      I love the sound of a cute little 2 bed bungalow too, watch you don't expand your belongings too much though. Which is exactly what we did when we moved into a bigger place. :-)

  9. I know exactly what you mean about getting older and quite rightly thinking of yourself more. I speak up a lot more now, if I think something needs to be said. I've still got to work on saying no a bit more, but I'm a bit of a softie at times, particularly on the little things.

    1. I think you have to don't you, if people see you as a 'walkover' when you are a bit older they really will take advantage.

  10. I thought your replies to some of these comments are absolutely wonderful and inspirational to people and to be able to converse with like-minded people makes us feel not so alone with our troubles and worries. I feel we to are going through our fair share at the moment, in fact for the past 12 months and I keep waiting for some happiness or something good to happen. I always remember my father saying to me many years ago 'life is not a rehearsal', So true, and whatever happens, we must try to make the best of things and work out where that happiness is hiding.n It's lovely that you take the time to reply to people, it's really special - thank you.

    1. I think we are a good little community here in Blogland, all equal and all sharing our good ideas and supporting each other through bad ones. None of us are alone when we can switch on our phones, tablets or computers and find people we 'know' only a click away, usually waffling away either about something that resonates or something that makes us smile and chases those woes away for a few minutes.

      Don't wait for happiness, look for it. It's in the tiny, insignificant things at first, then you find it in bigger more obvious areas.

      Do something that makes you smile every day … even if you end up trawling through a million YouTube clips, old editions of You've Been Framed, cute puppies and kittens on Facebook (after all that's what the internet was made for) etc etc to find the one that makes you laugh the loudest.

      Replying is the least I can do … after all you all read my waffle ;-)


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