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A Recipe for a Simple Life

When I first started Daily Apple, I was bright-eyed, bushy-tailed and ready to change the way people lived, one macrobiotic meal at a time. One wedding, two knee surgeries and one insanely busy child later, I still have those big dreams, but have tailored them a wee bit, made them slightly simpler and definitely a lot edgier. So it’s time to change the focus of the blog and make it truly paint the picture of the life I lead…and the lifestyle that anyone can implement with ease, enjoyment and inspiration. And best of all, my dreamy husband has decided to join me in this next chapter. Lucky me! So welcome to the new Daily Apple…where we will show you how to get back to basics!

Today’s post is a recipe…not for the ultimate oatmeal cookie or best banana bread (maybe next week…) It’s a recipe for a simpler way of living…a Polaroid of our life here…and hopefully a few helpful ingredients to make the day-to-day a little less hectic amidst the chaos of an overbooked schedule in an overcrowded city. Tried, tested and true by the Daily Apple clan, this formula has definitely lightened our load and will hopefully help smooth out the bumps for you on the road ahead.

The Simple Life

What’s In It:

A warm, inspiring place to come home to at the end of a long day

A huge refrigerator (or two!) for fresh ingredients

A small cupboard for a few staples and packaged goods

A beer fridge

A couple of good quality pots and pans

A nearby farmers’ market or good grocery store where you can get quality produce in a stress-free environment

A list of the people in your life that bring you joy, laughter and support

Time to see the people in your life that bring you joy, laughter and support

A good pair of running shoes

An eclectic “mixed-tape” of music for all of life’s moods (or one that would make John Cusack proud)

A wide array of quality board games (Operation is always a classic..and takes a very steady hand!)

The discipline to start each day off on a new foot

How to Do It

It doesn’t matter where you live, or what size your dwelling is. As long as it makes you feel comforted, safe, secure and happy. If it makes you feel stressed, anxious and overwhelmed, then it’s a house…not a home.

Eat without a label (hence the big refrigerator). And eat more plants (Michael Pollan says it so it must be true!). Wash and chop your veggies and store in food-safe containers for fast use. Create easy, healthful, plant-based recipes using just a few ingredients to save time and make you and the planet healthier.

If you can’t pronounce it, don’t eat it.

Clean out your cupboards. If it’s older than a year or has expired, toss it. Even herbs (six month shelf life). Toss and start fresh.

Enjoy a glass of wine or beer…even every day if you want. But just one. Use smaller glassware versus giant goblets so you trick yourself into thinking you’re getting more!

Get to know where your food comes from, either by directly interacting with your farmers or by developing a relationship with your local store owners. Food tastes so much better when you know its origin.

Make a list of the people you want in your life and why. Seriously! And if some people aren’t on your list who are in your life on a regular basis, spend less time with them or weed them out completely! In all seriousness…life is too short to spend precious time with people because you HAVE to as opposed to WANT to.

Time – that’s what people think is hard to find. But it really isn’t. Just re-prioritize. Do you really need to shop more? Do you really need to watch 3 hours of tv? Do you really need to be on your blackberry 12 hours a day? Likely not..and it likely doesn’t make you TRULY happy. So cut it out – or down at least and free up some windows to hang with your peeps!

Take your running shoes and move. Simple as that. However you like to do it, and whenever you can. Just move…all the time. You’ll never need a gym.

Have different playlists or radio stations on for all parts of your day. We do news in the a.m., classical as background at home, retro in the car, jazz in the evenings…and then of course there’s New Music Fridays, Saturday Night Dance Party, Sunday Morning Oldies and Sunday Night Big Band Hour. Makes for a fun twist to the everyday.

Turn off the TV and play a game, either an old classic or a new favourite. My husband is a huge CRIBBAGE fan. And I’ve promised him that I would learn to play. This fall, I’m going to make good on that promise (although if the math gets too much I’m bailing!)

Write down the worries of the day before going to bed each night. Get them out of your head and out of your life. Train yourself to start each day anew, without the baggage from the previous one. Makes for lighter and easier travels.


For the aspiring surgeon…

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