Happy New Year to all of our followers and to anyone who is new to the site! We hope January finds you warm and well and psyched for whatever it is you have looming on the horizon for 2018.

For those of you who are veterans of the site we want to say thank you for sticking with us through our annual winter hiatus.

Last year when I wrote this post Kelly scolded me after the fact because I apologized for us not posting during the holiday season. She said it drew too much attention to the fact that we hadn’t posted in almost 2 months, LOL. I told her she was right and I stored that little nut of criticism away like a squirrel so that I would have it with me when I went to write the first post of 2018. But, when I dug it out last week to sit down and write this post I didn’t like the look of that nut as much as I had when I stored it away.

The thing is, I think it is important for folks to know why we aren’t around through the month of December. It’s important because it speaks directly to the life we live as members of the upstream echelon, and it speaks to the type of life we encourage our readers to explore.

We live in a world where instant gratification is on demand and over abundance is the expectation. Here in the United States, as with many other areas of the world, we are expected to put our careers above everything else in our lives, including the necessities like sleeping, eating, and moving. We are expected to spend more than we make, work more than we sleep, eat quickly and cheaply, be super thin but not use precious time to move on a regular basis, and let others handle all of the day-to-day chores like cooking, cleaning, raising our children, and interacting with one another.

Hibernating dormouse curled up asleep in nest, Sussex, UK-Image courtesy of BBC

You may have guessed that we disagree with this lifestyle in a pretty serious way, especially around the holidays. It’s no coincidence that the holidays fall at the turn of the seasons, when the cold weather is beginning to settle in and our animal instincts are telling us to slow down and rest. This is the time of year when animals begin hibernation. They come together, often with their families, get close, stay warm, and slow down and save their energy for spring.

Here at Life, Simpler we like to practice a small scale hibernation with our staff. The reality is that we live in a world where it is impossible to survive if you take the whole winter to rest and recharge, however, that doesn’t mean we can’t take a wee respite and start the year off fresh in January. Does this mean we stop working? No, not really. It’s not so much that we stop working here at Life, Simpler, but that we work on other things in order to reduce the holiday stress for our contributors. We also use this time to evaluate our year and plan for the new year to ensure that it is a great one. We have flexible hours and we let our staff hibernate through the holiday season so that they can enjoy it rather than letting it become a point of stress. We believe in starting the new year with a bang and you can’t do that when you have spent the last month running around like a chicken with your head cut off.

 

Last week we had one of the coldest January weather we have had in a very long time. This Christmas was the first year we have had snow on Christmas since I can’t remember when. Cold days and snowy nights are meant for sitting in front of a fire, snuggling under a cozy blanket, and enjoying the quiet with your loved ones. They shouldn’t be ruined by worrying over deadlines, checking your pocket screens for Facebook updates or last minute emails, or by sitting in a freezing cold office worrying about your stats. At least that is what we believe.

 

Image courtesy of Pittsburgh Magazine

So, that is why we are not around much during the time from Thanksgiving through New Years. Kelly was right, we shouldn’t be apologizing, not because we don’t want you to notice this gap, but because this practice is something we really believe in. There is nothing to apologize for.

Thank you all for sticking with us year after year. Your readership is so important to us and we really appreciate that you are so understanding of the unique way of doing things around here.  Happy New Year!

Elizabeth Leonard
About Elizabeth Leonard

Health, Lifestyle, and Creavity Coach. Writer. Food Life Photographer. Peaker, Cooker, Eater. Whisky and tea lover, plaid and Outlander addict. https://www.instagram.com/tinkerpippibeth/

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