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What Happened to Moderation?


moderation
I spoke to my editor earlier this week and she let me know that the division that published my book, Living Simple, Free & Happy less than a year ago has changed direction. They had a solid presence in the category of home organization and simple living and are now focusing on “gritty preparedness.” Moving forward their titles are going to be fear-based preparedness books such as Build the Perfect Bug Out Bag: Your 72-Hour Disaster Survival Kit.

Survival? We need to know how to survive, pioneer-style in modern day America? This is trending now?

Going to Extremes

The man who makes everything that leads to happiness depends upon himself, and not upon other men, has adopted the very best plan for living happily. This is the man of moderation, the man of manly character and of wisdom. PLATO

Have you noticed that society is really trending towards having things done for us. In the newspaper two days ago there was a photo of a man shoveling and the caption read something like – So-and-So goes old school, shoveling his side walk. Physical labor is “old school?” Below was a less antiquated photo of a man using a snow blower. Thank heavens!

So as a people we are increasingly reliant on machines and other people to do our pesky tasks, but at the same time we are preparing for raw survival, should the end of the world come. Whaaat?

New Year, New Skills

I’ve held back about talking about New Year’s Resolutions. Now I’m going to say it. Eve’s New Year’s resolution is to lean new, practical skills. This doesn’t include learning how to gut a rabbit. I’m talking about middle of the road, moderate skills that are needed to sustain a moderate lifestyle.

Basic life skills like sewing, making a healthy meal and maintaining a clutter-free home are things you’re used to seeing here. They are things you can count on from Eve of Reduction. Things that I’m going to expand on and improve throughout the year – and will be bringing to this blog are:

1. More repurposing ideas for clothing and furniture. Using what you have to make what you want never gets old and is always useful for the environment and our budget.

2. Mindful relaxation. Being able to cope with stress is an extremely important life skill. One that could save your life. Because, I dare say, stress will find you faster than the apocalypse.

3. Fixing and salvaging. This is a relevant example of moderation. When something breaks, the easiest thing to do is throw it out. The hardest thing to do is make a new one (time, resources). The middle ground is fixing it. This takes skill.

4. Frugal tips and tricks. Being smart about money is a mind over matter skill. As a Reduction Rebel we don’t get duped into spending money to make ourself feel better. Sometimes this requires creativity. Eve is here to help!

In honor of moderation in the new year, I’ve created a new Pinterest board dedicated to learning practical life skills.

What life skills are important to you?

Eve of Reduction Free Seasonal E-Newsletter; Extra tips and wit on Facebook; Reduction Beauty on Pinterest ; The debut DIY lifestyle book (includes 10 upcycling tutorials); and the guide to creative streams of income ebook (only $2.99).

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I’m Cristin Frank (AKA Eve). I love all things frugal and crafty. My mindset is always on upcycling, repurposing, reducing waste and saving money – and Eve of Reduction is my roadmap. You might also want to check out my book, "Living Simple, Free & Happy."

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8 Responses to What Happened to Moderation?

  1. Claudia January 10, 2014 at 5:34 pm #

    I think “Fixing” may be the new trend of the year. Luckily my husband is very handy with electronics, so he can fix lamps and even turn a battery only thing into something run by electricity.

    The practical skill I want to learn is soldering!

    • Eve January 17, 2014 at 1:07 pm #

      Claudia, wow what great skills! How I hope you’re right about fixing being a trend. That would be awesome!

  2. J.P. Choquette January 31, 2014 at 7:58 pm #

    I’ve noticed this trend too, while browsing in a bookstore and later online. But while I think it CAN be fear-based (Zombie prepping for instance) there is also a lot of great information to be had. Maybe it’s not an either/or situation–either way you look at it, following your steps or disaster preparedness methods–one will become more self-sufficient. And isn’t that the goal? I see it as simply different levels of the same ladder. And I love it all!
    J.P. Choquette recently posted…Humor for Your FridayMy Profile

  3. Sophie Walters February 5, 2014 at 7:46 pm #

    Having just come inside from four hours of shoveling my driveway after a massive winter storm, the description of the old-school snow shoveler made me laugh. I shovel my driveway with a snow shovel, cut my grass with a push mower (and, whenever possible, I use an old non-gasoline one from the 1950’s. Total workout!) And let’s not forget the leaf-raking that ends up lasting about a month. Yes, all of this involves physical labor, but it’s also great exercise and gives me a real sense of accomplishment. My next practical life skill involves improving my sewing and knitting skills. I’ve inherited my mother’s 1952 Singer cabinet sewing machine, so I’m hoping that this will motivate me to start sewing again.

    • Eve February 6, 2014 at 9:44 am #

      Sophie, I’m so happy to have you here; you’re a true Reduction Rebel!

      • Sophie W. February 18, 2014 at 8:04 pm #

        Thanks! I really enjoy your website and blog (and your book – I think I’ve checked it out of the library five or six times now.) My family and I live in the country, and I was lucky to learn a lot from my parents, both of whom grew up during the Depression. Frugality, salvaging and upcycling came naturally to them, and I know that my dad would be so happy to see so many people revisiting and using these skills. My latest adventure involves melting snow as a temporary water source until our water delivery man comes by tomorrow (we have an in-ground cistern.) Having a finite amount of water really teaches us how incredibly precious this resource is. (And yes, I have been known to shovel snow into the cistern to squeak by a few more hours until the four feet of the stuff on the ground melts!) Hey, life is an adventure!

  4. Laura August 9, 2014 at 11:24 pm #

    Well now, I don’t know… I like having access to both the mild and the gritty. Growing up on a farm with DIY family around me, some skills I take for granted are not common to other people my age. Now that I’m a city dweller homeschooling 3 kids, I don’t always have the time to do EVERYTHING from scratch, but I love all of it, and aspire for an even more sustainable lifestyle. So I appreciate the whole gamut – from simple reminders to brand new back to the land skills. It’s all inspirational, and you never know when you’re going to need a new skill! Even here in suburbia, I make my own Apple Cider Vinegar from our tree apples and my latest project is learning to make homemade wine! I’ll be posting on my blog about that in the next few days! Just read your book cover to cover btw, a great read – thanks!
    Laura recently posted…Folk Music FestivalMy Profile

    • Eve August 10, 2014 at 11:12 am #

      Hi Laura, I love that you make your own apple cider vinegar – good stuff! I’m so glad you enjoyed my book, thank you!

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