Wednesday, July 13, 2011

The Good Life

There are moments when we walk away from hearing something that really stays with us. Things like the phrase "carpe diem" from a movie as a teen really struck a chord with me. Recently, I had one of those moments. You walk away thinking, if I can quote the Cake Boss, "that's what I'm talking about, baby!" By the way, the pics in this post are from last weekend, just for fun.

I have been reminded of a movement I learned about in passing many years ago. It was talked about in some of my favorite shows on travelling. Italy has a Slow food movement. It is about "dolce vida" or enjoying the good/sweet life. Slow foods are home grown, hand made foods that are, well , slow. They are ate in season and enjoyed in a relaxed manner. There are groups out there to join about the "slow" movement. In fact, there have been groups out there endorsing a "slow" life since the industrial revolution. That is why I love the arts and crafts movement, it is about highly- crafted hand made items in life that can't be massed produced. I have been part of an informal "slow" life for years.

I may have told you I am not a "joiner." I just like to be part of these ideologies in my life with out the formality of being a member. It is a big deal to me to even be a member of my local church. So joining a chapter of "slow foods" isn't for me. Nor is joining a master gardening group, going to a quilt guild meetings or being a part of a formal music program, it just doesn't work for me.

Instead, I have informally practiced this concept of slow living for years. It is about enjoying the simple things. It is about preserving a heritage of gardening, handmade items and living simply for my overall health. It is about being content in this over caffeinated, high speed, well- connected world. I have found times where I was rushing around to get nowhere only for the sake of rushing around, because that is what a modern progressive person is all about, right? Wrong.

Don't get living "slow" confused with being slow and unproductive. It is about being simple, organized and focusing on the moment. I love the simplicity of chores, weeding and sewing a seam because it is all a necessary part of the process. I can enjoy all of it. I still like to buy pre-made bread and pasta. I like using a computer and having a cell phone, but when I want to use them. 

 I will never be a die hard "slow" living person who does everything from scratch and totally organic, or not using modern conveniences. It is the ideology of rejecting all or part of modern technology  to see the beauty of simple, "slow" living. That includes continuing to have my veggies in my little patch of garden in the back yard. Quilts that are pieced one block at a time. Living a low maintenance lifestyle because I choose it to be that way. I am not joining a group, but I am refreshing these ideas for my life.

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