Well, there isn’t exactly one answer. I was recently asked why I called our life “simple.” “It seems pretty complicated and hard to me,” they said. Well dear friend, you’re right. Sometimes homesteading can be complicated, and it definitely is a lot of hard work most of the time.
So then why do us homesteaders say we want/have a simpler life?
Because we yield our own goods…
Does this mean we want to hand make all of our own clothes or trade a horse and buggy for our cars? Not at all. It means that we see consumerism. We are consumers of many things, but for some items, we just want try our hand at being producers. There is great satisfaction in creating/growing/rearing your own products. The feeling I get when I sit down to eat a salad comprised entirely of vegetables out of our garden isn’t anything I can get from a store. Not to mention the fact that fresh truly tastes the best.
Because we’re not caught up in the things that honestly don’t matter…
Whether you’re in a small town or a big city, people typically have a social group. Obviously each group’s agendas, events, fellowship, etc. varies, but human nature rules them all, no matter their differences. I’m not saying that being an intricate part of society is entirely a bad thing. I am saying that everyone (most everyone) appreciates when they get to unwind, away from social gatherings and norms. We homesteaders choose this “unwind” feeling every day. Yes, we still attend events and engage with our friends, but we’re living in our own little micro-world. Our days are filled to the brim with feeding routines, maintenance chores and homemaking. Our lives revolve around the seasons, our livestock and gardens. We don’t have the time or the energy to give to gossip or frivolous societal expectations. We’re just trying to get everyone in our household- human, animal & plant – fed and watered every day.
Because we like hard work…
If we didn’t, this life would suck. There is no better feeling than the exhaustion you feel after a productive day of work. Non-homesteaders wonder where you get the energy to do all that you do and why you would choose to do the work that you do. But you’re tired. You’re satisfied. You feel accomplished and ready to take on the next task, after a little break of course. Husband and I never ask each other, “Did you have a good day?” We ask, “Did you have a productive day?” Because production in the direction you want to take, in any form or fashion, is something to feel good about, especially if it requires hard work.
Because we want to get back to basics…
You know there’s a reason people pay to go to petting zoos and for farm tours. They want to see for themselves and share with their children the animals and the plants. Raising animals and growing plants for food are some of the very basics of life. Humans have been doing it for thousands of years. There’s a bond you create with nature when you put your heart and soul into your garden and caring for your animals. This bond cannot be fabricated. It’s created with the time you spend and the knowledge you gain. We want to pass a yearning for this bond down to our children so that they may experience this basic, fulfilling life too.
This is by no means an extensive list of why we call the homesteading life “simple.” I could pretty much go on forever. At the end of the day, our simple life is pretty straightforward. We find the homesteading way of life meaningful and empowering. We like it and its complexity within simplicity. We know not everyone understands, but that’s okay because we’re just over here doing our own thing.
6 thoughts on “Why Do We Call Homesteading The “Simple Life”?”
Love this- especially, “did you have a productive day?”!! You hit the nail on the head!! I love the feeling of a good days work accomplished!!!
Yes, I also like the productive day quote! Well put as far as simplicity concept goes and being a producer as well as consumer (of your own efforts).
You hit the nail on the head! It’s not simple because it’s easy, it’s simple because it’s straightforward.
Amen to being a producer more than a consumer.