Saturday, October 25, 2008

When the Baby's Away

Miss Berry has stayed the night at my parents last night and Mr Berry and I had a brief reminder of what our life was like sans children. This is the first time she has spent the night away from us (and she hasn’t even missed us!). We went out into the city for dinner and walked along the harbour afterwards. This morning we are having brunch in a lovely cafe near home. Mr Berry is actually reading beyond the front page of the paper and I am on my laptop writing. It feels so foreign and I keep waiting for Miss Berry to start throwing food and yet this was a regular occurrence for us not long ago.

It wasn’t until after Miss Berry was born that we decided to make the transition to a simpler life. When we decided that I would not return to work, we needed to overhaul the budget and I stumbled across Rhonda’s blog and found it very inspirational and informative. Before that we often spent a weekend morning at a cafe, and we ate out the majority of nights. Our food budget was three times what it is now and we were spending most of our money each month on unnecessary things. I had not heard of the term simple living although we had de-cluttered the house a year before and I knew our materialistic lifestyle was not what made me happy. I was concerned about the environment but my knowledge of what I could do did not extend past turning off lights, having short showers and making sure I put paper in the recycling bin.

These past six months have been a huge learning experience and it has been hard to break old habits and learn to think before I rush out and purchase something. I now consider where a product has been made, the conditions of the staff that make the product, the energy expended to produce and ship it and whether we really need it. I believe we are happier and more content than we have ever been. We now have more time to enjoy being a family and most importantly we have the time and the ability to slow down and enjoy being with Miss Berry and help her grow and discover her world.

So, today will be split between relaxing and doing some things around the house that are difficult to do with Miss Berry around. I want to clean up a part of the garden that is really over run and we have a pile of pavers that need moving. I am also going to get onto the sewing machine and finish a couple of quilts that have been sitting there for ages.

In the meantime, I am going to shut down my laptop and finish my proper in-a-tea-pot-loose-leaf tea and reminisce about the old days whilst I quiz Mr Berry on the current article he is reading. That is much more fun than actually reading the paper myself; think of it as the CliffsNotes version of the Sydney Morning Herald.

On the way home....

We walked past a couple of garage sales and I picked up these goodies; for $6. All but 2 of my drinking glasses had disappeared so I was very happy to find this set in excellent condition. The skirt and bags will be great for summer and should come up well after a clean.

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