‘Tis the gift to be simple


I remember that saying hanging in my mom’s house growing up.  It was cross-stitched, had a lacy edged and in a circular wooden hoop:

yeah, that’s right…total ’80s decor.

It had a picture of a little pear tree bent over with just one pear offering.

I always remembered that phrase.

‘Tis the gift to be simple:  It’s one of those saying that is not in Bible but sure the heck sounds like it should be.

On Mondays (only sometimes…not every week, cuz I simply cannot commit to anything, cuz that makes me stress, cuz that stress makes me hate everything…wait I am getting ahead of myself!)

On Mondays…periodically lets say…I will join with sweet Jamie at Brown Paper & Strings   to write about how 2014 will find this lady at manyslices is doing things simple.

When I think of simplifying my life in a relevant and practical way I immediately think about how I home school my two oldest girls.

I shocked the granny panties off of most my friends and family this past Summer announcing I was going to home school by big girls, in grade 5th and 6th {but letting my little one traipse off to our local public school in grade pre-k and 2nd}.

Of course, I obsessed over methods and curriculum!

Of course, I spent much too much time on the abstract idea of home school philosophy rather than the nuts and bolts of, oh, I don’t know, perhaps, what I actually would teach!

Of course, my lack of practical preparedness, so confidant and sharp-eyed on day one, dissolved into insecure burning red-eyed tears on day number two!

But at my low God showed up.

Like He always does.

I drove myself to a used book store, owned by home schoolers come to find out, and found shelves and shelves of cheap books to help me teach the nut and bolts.

In my desperation to NOT destroy my hitherto bright daughter’s mind, because I did not know what in the blue blazes of Hades I was doing, I got simple.

I asked myself:

What matters?

What do I think my daughter’s minds and souls and bodies need to grow and expand and overflow with good things?

The girls start with some sort of exercise DVD on their own, we do our Jesus Calling Devotion and pray together, then we get math done first and and out of way Monday through Thursday.

What’s left is what I simply love to teach.  What I feel is lacking in my children’s normal exposure that will sharpen and broaden, laying down tracks of logic, reason, and a Biblical world view.

What I am not good at, what I can’t afford to hire out, my mother in law volunteered to teach. Which ended up being Science, Art, and piano.

I told my husband with teaching, “I can’t keep on top of the credit cards (all paid on line..and more than I like to admit…hey no one’s perfect…that’s what grace is for…}so he does it.   We  work together on the rest of the bills.

I did not join a homeschool co-op.  Though I plan to…unless  I hate it…then I will drop out.

I guess what this post is shaping up to say…{ I seldom know what I am going to write about and where it is going to go}…is that for me, simplified living is mostly about letting go of society’s expectations and our own preconceived ideas of what ‘aughtta be.  Whether it is the perfect house, the perfect body, the perfect children, even the perfect marriage and perfect Christian walk.  Because right out of the shoot the lie is there…perfect. The unnecessary burden of finding perfect equilibrium and happiness from anything other than God Himself.

The truth is so plain isn’t it?   We ourselves, our kids, our mates, our bodies, our homes, is not..and never will be.

To think contrary is human vanity and Satan sublimity.

And yet we have this far off hazy image that it could be…

I am convinced that Simple Living is best perused by being Spirit Led.

Sometimes it looks like de-cluttering the home, {as I did like a Mr.Clean maniac for those ten days after Christmas and before school started again}, or doing less stuff at church, eating real food not convenient preservatives,  or not splurging on crap you don’t need but looks so shiny and pretty and doesn’t cost that much at Target.

When I stray from what is simply, what is best for where we are right now I feel this anxiety, this stress, and my joy sucks right out of me.

If 2014 finds you hearing the gently urges to do less, buy less, preform less for others… less, ect, ect.

I encourage you to join this link up

1459741_10151787811196139_1745923440_nclick here {not on the very professional and cool looking bloggy pic…I simply can’t do the blog button thing-ies… i blame my wordpress template, but its probably me}

to join up at Jamie’s site: Brown Paper and Strings to read about how other bloggers are doing Life:Simplified.



3 thoughts on “‘Tis the gift to be simple

  1. Leah, I love that you’re doing this! I even thought about joining in. Simplification is something I’ve been working on for awhile now. Still so much further to go, since I tend to hold on to anything I think I MIGHT need one day. But I also love the idea of simplifying the heart. I’m sure my physical tendencies carry over to my emotional and spiritual tendencies. And right here is so much wisdom: “I am convinced that Simple Living is best perused by being Spirit Led.” I so agree!! Alright, blessings, friend!


  2. Enjoy your homeschool journey- I absolutely adored the time spent homeschooling my eldest daughter. Unfortunately I haven’t the skill for my lil one yet but praying one day if it is His will it will be part of our journey again.

    I remember the time of “un schooling” & that took about 6 months to remove that school mentality & develop independent interest based learning. But well worth it 🙂


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