Simple Living Month

August was simple living month at our house – an experiment (as you may have noticed, I have a tendency to approach life as one big experiment) in getting closer to the earth, further from the mall (the metaphorical mall, since our shopping is largely online), and figuring out what we need in our lives and what conveniences we’re unwilling to sacrifice.

Below is the month in summary form, but as it relates to Hyde Park, there were a few takeaways:

#1: Z&H suffered. Okay, they probably didn’t actually notice we were gone. But when I got an iced Clover this morning, I noticed how much I’d missed those morning walks to 47th street. Our walks last month were aimless, which has its appeal, but the appeal of Z&H is stronger.

#2: Treasure Island, the world’s most European/expensive supermarket, gets cheaper when you buy less food.

#3: The appeal of Hyde Park doesn’t lie solely in its retail establishments, many of which we forewent this month. We were still able to enjoy parks and people, the hush of some of the summer’s hottest days, and the beach (which, for the record, S hated).

It was a fun and interesting month that would have been harder if we didn’t have a free source of endless entertainment in S.


Snacks at the airport (toting a breast pump, a blazer, and folders for work does not leave reasonable extra hands/room for an empty water bottle or a pb&j)

Underthings (no explanation is needed here, right?)

A coffee table that is at least 50% less likely to cause our 6-month-old to lose an eye

Unwilling-to-sacrifice niceties:

Occasional takeout (ordering Noodles after a long and dramatic day at work is thisclose to being a necessity)

Anything for S (we flubbed when presented with Borders’ going-out-of-business sale, when we REALLY wanted her to try a sippy cup, and, most recently, when Target put out fall clothes (I can’t resist anything pink and brown)

Easier to get rid of than we thought:


Ice cream (though this took a few weeks to come to terms with…and we cheated…twice)

Frequent takeout (ordering in 2-3 times a week…just not necessary)

Better made at home than bought in a store:

Yogurt (easier than it sounds

Giardineria (even when you end up with 6 jars, it’s worth it to can them)

Bread (easier to bake two loaves and freeze one)

Pickles (yum)

Sauerkraut (gross either way)

Ice cream

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    All the home made things are delicious. Especially the giardineria. I think the thing I missed the most is Z&H.

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