Getting ready for tomorrow

I thought I'd write a post to introduce my main 2018 project of strolling through The Simple Home book. It's almost two years since it was published. Back then, I had plans to go through the book online with my old buddy Rose. Sadly, Rose became ill and died on 10 January last year and it's taken all this time to even consider the project again. 

Christmas day lunch with my family.

Non-fiction books, particularly those which propose change, can sometimes be confusing allies. On the one hand they might lead you forward with absolute certainty and on the other hand, they might create confusion, doubt and, sometimes, guilt. I hope that by walking with you through my book it helps clarify your ideas about simplifying and how to use the book to build or modify your version of a simple life. Together, I'm sure we can go through the year, month by month, looking at each topic and discussing not just my ideas but yours as well.

Above: spicy tomato relish was made to enjoy with cold meats on Christmas day.
Below: I used some of this summer's crop of elderberries to make cordial

I've said many times that my way of living isn't for everyone, it's just the way I do it. My way might suit you, it might not, so I'm hoping that this project will show you various ways of building a simple life that will suit how you want to live. There is no right or wrong way to do this. We're all different, even those who are at the same stage as you. At any age you can be single or partnered, have children or not, own a home or rent, go out to work or work at home, be in good health or have health issues, have money in the bank or live week-to-week, be interested in growing food and keeping chooks or not have time nor interest in it. There are so many variables and all of them alter how we live. We all need to work out where are are at, what we want and how to identify the changes we need to make to live the life we want. I am hoping that this project and the collective thoughts and ideas that come from it will help you discover how to live a happy and fulfilled life.

Christmas day desserts. (Photo by Sarndra Hetzel)

I hope to do a Simple Home post on four Mondays of each month. That will enable me to break each chapter down into manageable segments and establish a post where you can add your ideas or ask questions as we go through topic by topic. However, a year is a long time to make any sort of commitment like that so if I miss a Monday, the post might just come later in the week or I'll make up for it the following week. At the moment I can tell you that I'm having cataracts removed some time in February and I'm not sure if that will affect my blog writing. I don't think it will but at least you know it might. When everything is going well, a post will be there on four Mondays of each month.

Hopefully you will contribute too. I know it's easier to just sit and read but I believe that being part of a community gives us all the opportunity to become good neighbours and to develop and demonstrate generosity, kindness and productivity. If you see a question or ideas posted by another reader, get involved and help if you can by replying in the comments section. We all have our own points of view. What I say might help some people, what you say might help others.  So don't be shy, become more than an onlooker, connect with the other readers and we'll all benefit.
I'll see you tomorrow. 😊


58 comments

  1. Rhonda, what a wonderful idea, I will be sure to make some comments. Funny thing, I read your post and you said see you tomorrow, I thought, what? she said Monday not Sunday, Oh my it is already Sunday at your house and only noon on Saturday for me in Utah!! ( Mountain time ) I am looking forward to learning some new ideas to simplify my life even more. Have a good Sunday

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  2. Looks good and love reading post from every day people who loves life.
    Coffee is on

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  3. Looking forward to this enormously- your wisdom and good sense have been a great guide to date and your blog seems to attract generous and kind respondents so this promises to be a fruitful experience. My book and I are ready!

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  4. Looking forward to the blog. I've missed you.

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  5. I'm very excited to start this. I bought the book at the end of summer(USA) and have been reading the blog ever since. Breaking down the book will give me a better sense of what I can change. And any tips from others is always encouraging. Happy New Year!!!

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  6. Happy new year to you, Rhonda and Hanno. I'm looking forward to tomorrow! Meg:)

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  7. Happy New Year, Rhonda. Looking forward to working through your book. It is hard to believe Rose has been gone for almost a year now. I hope your op goes without a hitch.

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  8. I've discovered your blog recently and this sounds like a great series!

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  9. Is that mango on the cake in the bottom picture? It looks delicious!

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  10. Happy New Year and best wishes to your family and fellow followers. Hope all goes well with the cataract surgery. I found the Qld sun too bright! My husband nailed a sheet outside over the large sliding doors to keep out the glare.
    Looking forward to getting inspired!

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  11. Rhonda, looking forward to going thru your book with you. I just had surgery on my right eye Thursday. Am thrilled with result. Only thing is I haven't had my eyeglasses prescript changed so vision is still wonky. I was nervous to get it done, now I am looking forward to getting the left one done! Hope you are pleased with your result also! Thinking about you! Jean

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  12. I’m so excited to journey through the book with you and all the dear ones here!

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  13. Rhonda, l hope you and your family had a wonderful Christmas. Thank you for being so generous with your time and energy. What an incredible legacy you are passing on. I feel so fortunate that l found your blog - it's like having a personal lifestyle guru! Leah, England.

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  14. This sounds like something I would like to do.

    Thank you Rhonda for sharing your wisdom through your writing. Our dear Rose may be absent, but by going through this book will bring back lovely memories of her many times over. Rose surely is missed.

    See you tomorrow.

    xTania

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  15. I am so looking forward to these posts. Thank you.

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  16. Perfect 2018 project ����

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  17. I'm SO looking forward to this series.

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  18. Happy new year to you all.
    Can you please tell me what the red and green things are on the plate with the bananas. I was thinking they might be tomatoes. Claire in Melbourne

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    1. Hi Claire. They're are our home-grown Thai Pink Egg mini tomatoes in varying stages of ripeness.

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  19. HI Rhonda, I hope your surgery goes well. I'm sure you will heal very fast, because you have such a good attitude. Replacing my hips was life changing. I hope to purchase this book, too, and join the group. Thanks for everything. Let us know how your recovery goes...

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  20. Happy New Year Rhonda to you and your family. Looking forward to working through your book with you this year. Good luck with the cataract operation. Best wishes. Jean

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  21. I am really looking forward to this. Stay well.

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  22. Happy New Year to you and all the Family, Rhonda.
    This project will be so helpful to so many readers I'm sure. It's so exciting to be moving forward with you and all our friends, getting back on track after a busy Christmas time.
    Rose is in so many hearts and minds but she is still so sadly missed isn't she?
    Big Love, Sue

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  23. I am so glad to hear that you will be going through your book! I can't wait. Blessings to you and your family! Oh, and by the way, you and I have the same dishes, the Villeroy & Boch Petite Fleur. :-)

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  24. Good luck with your surgery, looking forward to working through your book each week.

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  25. I just bought your book last year. Before I had a chance to start it, my sweet husband of 33 years had a hemorrhagic stroke (only 59.) To say that our life has been turned upside down is an understatement! But, our faith has sustained us, he is doing well after almost 7 long months. Disability just started this month and we will be on a restricted budget. But we have always loved a 'simpler life' and so I look forward to many ideas for actively pursuing it. We still have 3 children at home (23, 19, and 12) and they are all on-board for doing what we have to do to cut back, but still have a fulfilling life. Looking forward to your posts!

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    1. Sending prayers your way, Lori!

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  26. Happy New Year Rhonda. Have just started reading the book again, they both are one of my treasured books so perfect timing.

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  27. Looking forward to the series :)

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  28. Happy New Year Rhonda & Hanno. I'm looking forward to being inspired to live more simply, sometimes I need a bit of help to motivate myself & get back on track.

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  29. I'm also looking forward to the series, I will get the book out in readiness

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  30. Happy New Year Rhonda, I'm very much looking forward to spending time here with you and everyone this year x

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  31. I'm looking forward to the series, have enjoyed reading your blog for a long time now and your books.

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  32. Hope you had a safe and happy christmas and new year, I am looking forward to expanding my knowledge base and learning from others in our simple life community.

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  33. See you tomorrow Rhonda, looking forward to it

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  34. Bought the book for Christmas, had previously relied on the library edition. Looking forward to going through it with everyone.

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  35. What a lovely idea Rhonda - I too am very much looking forward to this series.

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  36. Bought your book a year ago (uk reader). Really looking forwards to this!

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  37. I have missed your posts over christmas so I had an instant smile when I checked in this afternoon and you were back.
    Looking forward to following through with my book with you!
    Michelle

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  38. I am, and have been, so excited about this - ever since you first mentioned it! Happy New Year to you and your beautiful family! I love the photos! We are currently in a very cold spell here in Nova Scotia, Canada - lots of snow, and the temperature is -15, with a wind chill of -26! Australia certainly looks great right now!

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  39. So exciting I brought both books feb last year down to earth I use on weekly bases love it starting new book read threw once but will be following through on new journey always love reading your blogs

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  40. looking forward to joining in, dug the book out today & had a quick look through;
    happy new year to all the family!
    hope the eye surgery goes off without a hitch & you heal fast!
    thanx for sharing
    selina from kilkivan qld

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  41. I'm really looking forward to your series. I keep your books beside my bed to read a little each night. There are record low temps here in North Carolina right now - 4 degrees Fahrenheit last night. Brrr...so I plan to try to stay toasty warm while I enjoy your blog. Best of luck on you cataract surgery. I just had both eyes done in December and had no problems.

    Diane in North Carolina

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  42. Thank you for your writing and your inspiring blog! I have read it for a long time and it inspires me in my simple living journey.

    I live in Central London (UK) and thought for a long time that I needed to have a smallholding or move to the country to live by my simple living values. Then I decided to get started living those values where I am now ("bloom where you're planted") and am creating my little simple life right here in the city. I live frugally, shop at the markets, volunteer in my community, make fresh food from scratch and make my own washing powder etc. I started doing this when I didn't have children and managed to create a lifestyle that meant when I later became a mother I didn't have to go back to work full time because I had got my living costs so low; this is truly priceless to me.

    I love how your ideas and philosophy can be applied to any setting.
    You and your blog are so inspiring and keep me on track in my own journey! You have influenced so many people. Really looking forward to the new series and best of luck with your eye surgery.

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  43. I'm looking forward to this series. I just got the book so I could follow along.

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  44. Really looking forward to connecting and sharing ideas with the down-to-earth community. Its the final year of studying for me, therefore I don't have the time to read books other than research related. Following the blog on a Monday evening will be a treat. Thanks for sharing!
    Em from London.

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  45. Happy New Year Rhonda, I am so looking forward to your posts... I love your book

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  46. Hi Rhonda. I am looking forward to the coming months working through your book. I did go back through The Simple Home over the past few weeks during the breaks from the Ashes as a refresher.

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  47. I literally picked up my copy of the simple home and thought ‘right let’s do this!!’ and remembered about your blog and thought I’d reconnect. What a delight to find your idea to go through the book with us all. A big thank you in advance.

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  48. A gorgeous looking Aussie Christmas lunch!

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  49. A Happy New Year Rhonda. I am looking forward to your year of Simple Living posts. I try to live in an ‘old fashioned’ way as I cook from scratch, bake, knit and Sew but I realise not everyone has the luxury of time. My daughters both have families and full time demanding jobs and have to take short cuts sometimes.
    I feel sorry for the younger generation who have so many pressures on them.


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  50. Happy New Year Rhonda. I have both of your books. Looking forward to the simple living posts. I retired two weeks ago and will now have more time to enjoy my home.

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  51. Looking forward to this series. Need to pull out my copy of the book to follow along. Sharon in Kentucky, USA

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  52. Maureen O'RourkeJanuary 10, 2018 7:16 am

    Happy New Year Rhonda, Hanno and family. Hope this year brings you wonderful times. Good luck with the eye operation Rhonda. I had mine done about 4 years ago and couldn't believe the result. It's nice not to have to wear glasses every waking moment. Cheers Maureen and Kevin

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  53. I have borrowed this book from the library so many times. Finally I received a copy for my birthday so can return the library copy and let someone else have a turn. Now I've borrowed Down To Earth to read again. The first time I read it I felt overwhelmed by how far away I was from where I wanted to be in life. Reading it now I say happily to myself "Yep, I'm doing that. And that. And that. Oh, there's a new way to do this. Doing that, that and that." Life is so much better. No more panic attacks. It is certainly a lot more work making sauces and jams (in the midst of the season now) but so much more satisfying.

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    1. Thanks for your wonderful feedback, Meg. The Simple Home is a sister book to Down to Earth. It contains most of the things I couldn't fit into Down to Earth, the things we do here that make such a difference to our lives. It sounds like you're doing well. Keep on keeping on, dear. xx

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