Every time I see interviews with survivors of the tornadoes, hurricanes, earthquakes and floods… and more recently the devastating wildfires… I am reminded once again that the people dealing with these disasters now have one huge thing in common.

Suddenly their most fervent wish is to somehow be able to go back to the life they had “before”… back to that very ordinary life they probably took for granted and perhaps even felt dissatisfied or unhappy with. Facing the possibility of losing everything changes perspectives and priorities in a big hurry, and I often think that this stark realization of what really counts is a feeling we should all try to hold on to.

This chipmunk is so cute to watch… I just wish he didn’t dig holes all around my hostas

Isn’t it sad that we sometimes have to face a catastrophic loss… or the prospect of a catastrophic loss… before we can fully appreciate the value of these ordinary but so terribly important parts of our life?

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I’ve just been jumping around reading various posts and am struck by the obvious…you are a wise woman with much to offer the general public in how to live well. It would probably complicate your life but I think a book of your revelations would be in order. It would be an inspirational manual for those who are still trying to escape the ‘rat race’. When I was young, ‘An American Bible’ was an inspiration to me. Your posts are every bit as sensible as these wonderful American philosophers with lots of practical information as well; and of course more relevant in today’s world. Thank you for sharing your life and philosophy.


I have only today found your blog. This is wonderful. I will need hours to peruse through your post. It’s really ironic — we’ve decided to “Simplify” our lives. From our “stuff” we don’t need or use to our mind set about how we go about life — we want to declutter and make life simple. I’m excited to see there are others…


Being close to the hit areas in Ohio and seeing all the stuff out in the open, I am struck with a further need to purge items we don’t really need. It’s hard enough to pick up your life after such devastation. I imagine the more you have around to loose, the more heartbreaking it might be to see it all in a jumbled mess.

I don’t really know, but it seems it might be psychologically easier to have less to loose.


Through different situations, I’ve lost everything and had to start over. You do change and require far less than you thought you needed. One thing that simply went away was the need to create “collections” of any particular item. And, live a much simpler life.


As Dorothy said in The Wizard of Oz, “There’s no place like home.” (Be it ever so humble.) Each night I thank God for the day behind me and each morning I thank Him for a new day ahead of me –whatever it may entail.

I know, it may sound “corny” to some but an attitude of gratitude, being thankful for life’s small blessings, is one way to cope with some of life’s sorrows when they come along.


Well said…


I, too, am happy with my simple, ordinary,, minimalistic life. Things are constantly changing in anyone’s life. We have to learn to go with the flow to be content, to “make lemonaid”. Isn’t that what faith is all about?


I like this very ordinary life of mine. I am content and happy. At the same time, I know there are people right now, at another place on this planet who are suffering from the numerous natural disasters that have and are constantly occurring. My heart goes out to them.

Lady Laurie

How very true. We lost our home in Hurricane Katrina, and life is referred to down here as the “new normal.” Granted, things will never be the same, but God has watched over us and we still have the most important things ~ each other.


This is a great reminder that it is the people you treasure not the things that surround you. The China earthquake was so heartbreaking as so many people lost their only child. We are so fortunate every day we wake up in our bed with our family close by.


On Christmas morning, 2:30 AM, my daughter’s apartment caught fire. The three days following the fire, she and I were able to pick through what was left in the apartment, pulling out those things that were salvagable. What really happened was that she and I both had a total smack in the face in regards to how materialistic we had become. Thus began my journey on choosing voluntary simplicity. This has not only affected my physical environment. I have lost 33 pounds, realizing that the extra weight is, also, a form of consumerism. You are so correct that disaster often forces us to change. For me, disaster helped me to see a better way of living and relating to others.

Thank you for your blog. It has been a great help.

Mindy V.

Such a sweet photo! I just found your blog yesterday afternoon and I am blown away. It is such a find and I am enjoying it so much. I can not believe the wealth of information and wisdom here. You are one special lady.