Monday, February 2, 2015

Simplicity Movement of the mid 90's - Layout and Video

I thought at first this morning I would have to go off topic for LOAD today which focuses on a specific children's book and nighttime reading rituals.  I covered a little of that in a layout last year.  When I started through my photos though I had the perfect story.  It isn't childhood bedtime reading but in my early 30's.

In the mid-90's there was a bit of a simplicity movement.  People were finding themselves overwhelmed with all they had to do, the vast number of choices in activities and products to buy. We were all being pulled in lots of different directions. Sound familiar?

I guess this still applies. Doing the page about two of the many simplicity books I read - Simplify Your Life by Elaine James and Simple Abundance by Sarah Ban Breathnach - reminded me that my life has changed dramatically in 20 years but my need to appreciate the everyday and enjoy simple rituals has not.  I put the Simple Abundance book by my bedside and plan to read it again.

Here's the journaling:

During my early 30’s, the simplification movement hit full swing and it could not have found me at a more perfect time in my life.  I had achieved my lifelong dream of designing and building a house.  My job was stressful and I needed ways to relax in my new home refuge.  Along came two books that I read but every day sometimes in the sunroom but usually in the evening before bed – Simple Abundance by Sarah Ban Breathnach and Simplify Your Life by Elaine St. James.  Their messages of cutting out all the unnecessary parts of life to get to what really mattered resonated with me.  Some of the advice was extremely practical and other elements were more philosophical. I tried speed cleaning the house which didn’t quite work for me, created a master grocery list that did and I used one for years, reconsidered my travel wardrobe in a way that helped tremendously when I traveled regularly for business a few years later.  Many of Ms. St. James’ suggestions were things I was already doing such as saving half my income or using it to pay off my mortgage, drinking water, and packing my own lunch for work.  I loved the retreats to my parent’s vacation condo where I could think and recharge. I’ve reread Simplify Your Life a few times at different stages of my life.  I found the quotes in Simple Abundance inspiring.  I highlighted many passages of the author’s own words.  I think this is an excellent time to revisit this ritual and reread Simple Abundance.  My life has changed from when I read the book.  In my 30’s I had a corporate career, a mortgage and a husband working 65 hours a week.  Now I have greatly simplified my routines yet I face completely new challenges in caring for my retired husband and aging parents.  I wonder if I can find the same comfort and inspiration in these pages again.

For the page, I used a super simple layout style in keeping with the theme.  The sketch is shown below.

 Process video at YouTube:


More sketches are in the 2013 and 2014 Sketchboooks here.
This page uses a lot of cardstock. More on using cardstock on your layouts in the Creative Cardstock class here.

Thanks for stopping by today!


  1. Fantastic design and I really like your journaling too. I might have to look into those books!


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