Skip to main content

Happiness is Simple



The Art of Happiness, 10th Anniversary Edition: A Handbook for Living

We've been reading "The Art of Happiness" again, it's just nice to remind ourselves of what the Dalai Lama has to say & this has led us to sign up to "The No Impact Experiment", which starts on Sunday January 2nd.

No Impact Project » The No Impact Experiment

We already live by most of these principles, but it's good to continue challenging ourselves to live with less & think about ways of improving how we do things. This is what makes us happy! We got very excited before Christmas when we received a letter from Ecotricity (our electricity provider), saying that our usage has halved over the last year, so our monthly direct debits are being reduced & we got a refund for an overpayment! We've also cut our heating oil consumption too & have all got used to wearing extra layers when it's been really cold.

Yesterday, was our local rubbish & recycling collection day & it never ceases to amaze us just how much "stuff" our neighbours put out... Just wished we'd had the camera! Houses with just 1 or 2 people put out between 6 & 8 bags of rubbish - that's just in a week!!! We recycle as much as possible & put out 1 bin liner of rubbish, which is never full. Next week, we aim to just recycle & have no rubbish at all!

Sal & Ryan, our eldest & her boyfriend, made all their Christmas presents this year & they were fantastic; Hand painted treasure chests containing delicious chocolate truffles, jars of cookies, jams, chutneys & face cream - really inspiring. Next year, we will definitely find the time to make more...  We also wish to make more effort to bottle & freeze foods, eat according to the seasons, stop buying canned foods (baked beans & tomatoes) & get back into making our own beer (which we haven't done for months)!

These are the books we're going to buy for inspiration:


Green Seasons Cookbook: Seasonally Inspired Recipes from Demuths Restaurant
No Impact Man: The Adventures of a Guilty Liberal Who Attempts to Save the Planet, and the Discoveries He Makes About Himself and Our Way of Life in the ProcessThe Dalai Lama's Little Book of WisdomEnough: Breaking Free from the World of MoreThe Moneyless Man: A Year of Freeconomic LivingTwelve by Twelve: A One-Room Cabin Off the Grid and Beyond the American DreamThe Self Sufficient-ish Bible: An Eco-living Guide for the 21st CenturyThe Everything Guide to Living Off the Grid: A back-to-basics manual for independent living (Everything Series)

Our only guilty pleasure is owning a car & using it more than we should... Though after this next road trip, maybe we'll rethink our future holidays. We quite fancy walking more of the Cornish coast or doing a long distance footpath, so perhaps that will be the next trip, but we haven't flown since 2000 & we're very proud of that!

We're really looking forward to 2011 & know that there will be lots of exciting times ahead - yipee!!!

Happy New Year!

Kay & Simon xx
2 comments

Popular posts from this blog

Preparing For Our Next Adventure

Here are some photos of the barn we are moving into at the weekend.



We will be sharing the main barn with folks on working holidays.


The view from the barn across the land.

The barn is made from straw bales.

The end of the main barn and the smaller attached barn used for holiday lets/retreats.

The outdoor solar shower.
The compost loos.

One end of the main barn with our bedroom on the right.



The other end of the barn -  with kitchen, dining and living space...

And this wonderful large stove which is perfect for us.


We are very excited to be on the moving on to a new adventure and closing the door to the little house by the sea.

Love Kay and Sime xx


A Year Of Wonder

What an incredible year we have had...


We downsized to spend 12 months in a sweet little house with the most stunning views of the sea.

We were treated to an amazing holiday in Canada, thanks to our kind and beautiful friend Richard...




It was fantastic to spend time with Richard and his fabulous family...  We adore them all very much and will always be grateful to him for his incredible generosity!
We had lots of new work opportunities come our way, which have kept us extremely busy and have enabled us to continue living here - The price for a bit of luxury!
We now work in more stunning properties and we also spent the summer season at the youth hostel with a lovely team...



All the kidlets are happy living their alternative lives...  2 of them own a caravan, 2 of them live in that caravan, 2 of them gave up their flat to do a long term house sit and all of them have exciting plans ahead.





We have come to realise that for us, our sea view isn't worth the hard work and what we both …

Rural Life

We live in a small hamlet of 14 households - all on one lane, but spread out & mainly detached, apart from the 3 barn conversions across from us. There have been a number of changes in the six years we have lived here, people moving in & out, houses renovated & extended, but for us - the worst thing is that the last few newcomers are city people. They have all spent thousands of pounds modernising their homes & turning them into fortresses. Fences & gates have been erected, security lights & alarms fitted...
I suppose most folks will think that they are being sensible, but it's changing the way our little place looks & feels & to me it seems that these modern extras will invite unwanted attention - it suggests there's something worth taking.What was once a simple, quaint little hamlet is fast becoming yet another exclusive part of rural Cornwall.  Only 3 of the 14 households are Cornish & they are all related, the rest (apart from us) are well …