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Living Simply with Children: A Voluntary Simplicity Guide for Moms, Dads, and Kids Who Want to Reclaim the Bliss of Childhood and the Joy of Parenting

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Raising children ranks as one of life’s most rewarding adventures. Yet between Mom and Dad working full-time jobs, endless carpooling of overscheduled youngsters, and the never-ending pressures to buy and consume, family life can be incredibly—needlessly—complex. What if you could find a way to spend more time with your children, replace unnecessary activities with meaning Raising children ranks as one of life’s most rewarding adventures. Yet between Mom and Dad working full-time jobs, endless carpooling of overscheduled youngsters, and the never-ending pressures to buy and consume, family life can be incredibly—needlessly—complex. What if you could find a way to spend more time with your children, replace unnecessary activities with meaningful ones, and teach your children an invaluable life lesson in the process? Living Simply with Children offers a realistic blueprint for zeroing in on the pleasures of family life: • How (and why) to live simply and find more time to be with your children • Activities and rituals that bring out the best in every family member • Realistic ways to reclaim your children from corporate America • Helping children of any age deal with peer pressure • Raising kids who care about people and the planet • How to focus on the “good stuff” . . . with less stuff Including sections on limiting television, environmentally friendly practices, celebrating the holidays, and tapping into the growing community of families who embrace simplicity, this inspiring guide will show you how to raise children according to your own values—and not those of the consumer culture—as you enjoy both quality and quantity time with your family.


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Raising children ranks as one of life’s most rewarding adventures. Yet between Mom and Dad working full-time jobs, endless carpooling of overscheduled youngsters, and the never-ending pressures to buy and consume, family life can be incredibly—needlessly—complex. What if you could find a way to spend more time with your children, replace unnecessary activities with meaning Raising children ranks as one of life’s most rewarding adventures. Yet between Mom and Dad working full-time jobs, endless carpooling of overscheduled youngsters, and the never-ending pressures to buy and consume, family life can be incredibly—needlessly—complex. What if you could find a way to spend more time with your children, replace unnecessary activities with meaningful ones, and teach your children an invaluable life lesson in the process? Living Simply with Children offers a realistic blueprint for zeroing in on the pleasures of family life: • How (and why) to live simply and find more time to be with your children • Activities and rituals that bring out the best in every family member • Realistic ways to reclaim your children from corporate America • Helping children of any age deal with peer pressure • Raising kids who care about people and the planet • How to focus on the “good stuff” . . . with less stuff Including sections on limiting television, environmentally friendly practices, celebrating the holidays, and tapping into the growing community of families who embrace simplicity, this inspiring guide will show you how to raise children according to your own values—and not those of the consumer culture—as you enjoy both quality and quantity time with your family.

30 review for Living Simply with Children: A Voluntary Simplicity Guide for Moms, Dads, and Kids Who Want to Reclaim the Bliss of Childhood and the Joy of Parenting

  1. 5 out of 5

    Ami

    I found this book to be a watered-down, generic, long-winded rant against commercialism with liberal lashings of pro-evironmentalism. And while I am not necessarily a fan of commercialism and I admit we need to watch over and care for the planet, I found this book sadly lacking in balance. The concept of the book is interesting. How can we voluntarily simplify our life and enjoy the fruits of that simplification? Yet, I felt the author didn't offer many specific details, lists, or definitions. Th I found this book to be a watered-down, generic, long-winded rant against commercialism with liberal lashings of pro-evironmentalism. And while I am not necessarily a fan of commercialism and I admit we need to watch over and care for the planet, I found this book sadly lacking in balance. The concept of the book is interesting. How can we voluntarily simplify our life and enjoy the fruits of that simplification? Yet, I felt the author didn't offer many specific details, lists, or definitions. There were many stories from "simplified" families that were offered up as examples of living simply. But the overall organization of the book seemed too random for what I was looking for. I also did not like how the author would use the phrases "experts say" or "studies show" in the most generalized way possible. What studies? What experts? My advice is the read the chapters that interest you and skip the rest. There are additional resources listed at the conclusion of each chapter. Make a note of the books that appeal to you and read those instead for a more detailed look at the aspects of life you may want to simplify.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Colleen

    Greatest parenting book ever in my opinion, of course, doesn't help you with breastfeeding or getting your kids to sleep, it is way better than that. I finally finally felt like there were other people out their like me in this material obsessed, must have everything by age 2, I won't deprive my child society of ours. Loved it, own it. I finally didn't feel quite so "weird". Hard to believe I know. Greatest parenting book ever in my opinion, of course, doesn't help you with breastfeeding or getting your kids to sleep, it is way better than that. I finally finally felt like there were other people out their like me in this material obsessed, must have everything by age 2, I won't deprive my child society of ours. Loved it, own it. I finally didn't feel quite so "weird". Hard to believe I know.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Amy (Bossy Bookworm)

    I had high hopes, but ugh. This was dry, overly deliberate, too moralistic. The arguments for simplifying are fairly obvious, as are the basics of how to do so. Therefore "How to Brainstorm," "How to Hold a Family Meeting," and a mention by page 25 of the events of 9/11 as a reason to simplify all turned me off completely. Turn off the TV, cut commitments from your family schedule, have family night. I've already figured that much out myself. Once I got to the suggestion of creating "simplifying I had high hopes, but ugh. This was dry, overly deliberate, too moralistic. The arguments for simplifying are fairly obvious, as are the basics of how to do so. Therefore "How to Brainstorm," "How to Hold a Family Meeting," and a mention by page 25 of the events of 9/11 as a reason to simplify all turned me off completely. Turn off the TV, cut commitments from your family schedule, have family night. I've already figured that much out myself. Once I got to the suggestion of creating "simplifying circles" with people in the community, I was done. I skimmed the book and feel fairly confident that I've thought through basic ways to simplifying my life almost as far as the author has. There were a few fun family game ideas, but that's my only takeaway. For an account of a more fluid, readable, and lovely reasoning and execution of living simply, I'll take "The Gift of an Ordinary Day" ten times over.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Amy

    This book turned out to be a little more hippy/liberal than I had hoped it would be, but still had some useful information. For the most part it was information I had already read in other sources - so I didn't read it word for word, but skimmed and only read the parts of particular interest to me. Chances are that if you already have the value of limiting childhood exposure to marketing, home-schooling, sustainable living, charity, etc. you will already have read/heard this stuff too. Though it This book turned out to be a little more hippy/liberal than I had hoped it would be, but still had some useful information. For the most part it was information I had already read in other sources - so I didn't read it word for word, but skimmed and only read the parts of particular interest to me. Chances are that if you already have the value of limiting childhood exposure to marketing, home-schooling, sustainable living, charity, etc. you will already have read/heard this stuff too. Though it may be helpful for some.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Cindi

    I really, really liked this book. It validated me in many ways and gave me new things to think about, one of which is becoming more GREEN. I just like the idea of slowing down the pace, something I've been intuitively trying to do but feeling guilt about, for a while now. It's hard to do things differently from other people. This book gave me the courage to do that and know that I'm not alone! I really, really liked this book. It validated me in many ways and gave me new things to think about, one of which is becoming more GREEN. I just like the idea of slowing down the pace, something I've been intuitively trying to do but feeling guilt about, for a while now. It's hard to do things differently from other people. This book gave me the courage to do that and know that I'm not alone!

  6. 4 out of 5

    Kelly Coyle DiNorcia

    I really enjoyed this book. It didn't really contain anything Earth-shattering that I hadn't heard before, but I think it would be a great introduction to the idea of Voluntary Simplicity. I also thought the resources that Sherlock provides are extensive and very useful, and plan to follow up on many of the books and websites she suggests. I really enjoyed this book. It didn't really contain anything Earth-shattering that I hadn't heard before, but I think it would be a great introduction to the idea of Voluntary Simplicity. I also thought the resources that Sherlock provides are extensive and very useful, and plan to follow up on many of the books and websites she suggests.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Carissa

    a good introduction to simplicity for those who are just considering it. Also some good suggestions for those who choose to live simply. I would rate it a great beginers guide and a good idea resource for others who have already began the journey to simplicity.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Samantha Newman

    Not well written, if you ask me, which you didn't, but this is my review, so there you go. I don't claim to know the rules of rhetoric, but I'm quite sure her arguments are flawed. She doesn't work very hard to prove the validity of her constant (somewhat laughable) references to "research," "recent studies" and "experts." This would probably be a very good book...were it written by someone else. Someone who was an actual expert in the field, who had done lots of actual research and knew a lot ab Not well written, if you ask me, which you didn't, but this is my review, so there you go. I don't claim to know the rules of rhetoric, but I'm quite sure her arguments are flawed. She doesn't work very hard to prove the validity of her constant (somewhat laughable) references to "research," "recent studies" and "experts." This would probably be a very good book...were it written by someone else. Someone who was an actual expert in the field, who had done lots of actual research and knew a lot about it. Or at least could make me think they did. The author here turned the entire book into a repetitive feast of trying to convince the reader that she is right, when it's a subject I am very interested in and would like to know more about. More specifics on application and not just personal opinion, basically. The book also frequently ventures into the territory of annoying - I find a lot of people who adapt this lifestyle to be annoying, and they shouldn't be, b/c it's a wonderful idea. People just take it overboard, are actually hypocritical, and get all high and mighty and seem to act certain ways only so they can tell others that they act that way. That said, "voluntary simplicity" and "downshifting" are ideas I am very interested in and think about often. And despite the book's flaws, it got me thinking a lot more about how I live my life, how others do, how I want to, and how I want to teach my kid(s). So it is worth a glance for that, for people like me. If you already live this way (like my husband does, or wishes he could be he's married to me), this book probably isn't worth your time. But again if you are on the cusp on living this way and want to adapt some of the principles, glance through the chapters. No need to read the entire book.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    I would love to simplify, but know that at this point, getting down to brass tacks wouldn't work for my family. The main thing I liked about this book was that it was full of ideas, and you could do with them what you wished. So, while retirement in our 40's is not going to happen for us at this point, easing some of the commercialism out of our kids' lives is something we can probably work on. There are a few times the book gets a little too on it's high horse (mainly when discussing work styles I would love to simplify, but know that at this point, getting down to brass tacks wouldn't work for my family. The main thing I liked about this book was that it was full of ideas, and you could do with them what you wished. So, while retirement in our 40's is not going to happen for us at this point, easing some of the commercialism out of our kids' lives is something we can probably work on. There are a few times the book gets a little too on it's high horse (mainly when discussing work styles - they can't seem to understand that people may need or choose to work a lot). Also, when it came to education, I thought they just scratched the surface. While they gave the pros of Montessori and Walden education, they didn't list any of the cons (or offer ways to pay for it, since they're really pushing parents to work less). The book is a pretty superficial look at simple living - if you were really going to dive into any one of the principles dealt with in each chapter, I'd urge you to check out some other resources to make better decision. Luckily, each chapter comes with a bibliography, and there's a thorough listing of sources at the end of the book too. This is a basic guide, and a good first step towards simple living. Many of the ideas are worth exploring, or at least considering, and summer can be a good time to make changes to children's routines. If you're thinking of ways to simplify your life, this can be a good resource.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Anna

    In a culture of excess, particularly when it comes to kids, this book is full of many great ideas on ways to cut back. I particularly liked the idea of coming up with a family mission and values statement. It helped to really look at these things on paper and then look at what we were doing as a family to live these values. At the same time I think that some of the ideas are too extreme. I think that it would be completely unrealistic to cut back to having both parents work part time, although I In a culture of excess, particularly when it comes to kids, this book is full of many great ideas on ways to cut back. I particularly liked the idea of coming up with a family mission and values statement. It helped to really look at these things on paper and then look at what we were doing as a family to live these values. At the same time I think that some of the ideas are too extreme. I think that it would be completely unrealistic to cut back to having both parents work part time, although I appreciate the idea behind it. I also am not big on limiting children's exposure to media and technology as I think that it would put them at a disadvantage socially. This book certainly made me and my husband think about what we valued as a family and how we might go about living in a way that would emphasize these values more in the way we raise our kids. For this fact alone I would recommend this book to any parents, even if they are not interested in simplifying to a large degree.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Sandra

    She lost me with the holes in the socks. This book has some good ideas and will make you think about just how much we consume as a society, but it offers up some pretty radical ideas about turning away from that consumerism that I think will turn a lot of parents off. And in today's brutal economy, where so many people are still trying to find a decent job, I don't think all the suggestions about downshifting and working fewer hours will prove practical for many people. And I sort of envision th She lost me with the holes in the socks. This book has some good ideas and will make you think about just how much we consume as a society, but it offers up some pretty radical ideas about turning away from that consumerism that I think will turn a lot of parents off. And in today's brutal economy, where so many people are still trying to find a decent job, I don't think all the suggestions about downshifting and working fewer hours will prove practical for many people. And I sort of envision the people who are big fans of this book looking like ragamuffins, wearing their socks that have holes in them. Everything in moderation - even living frugally. Still, if you go into this book with the idea that you don't have to adopt Marie Sherlock's worldview wholeheartedly, there are definitely some good ideas about trying to live more simply and authentically here.

  12. 5 out of 5

    C. Janelle

    Sherlock gives a number of practical suggestions for simplifying in general and simplifying with children in particular. Those who have already begun the process of Voluntary Simplicity will find a lot of the suggestions familiar, but Sherlock offers some family-oriented ideas that were new to me. I found the chapters on simple holiday traditions and creating family rituals to be particularly helpful. The TV chapter seemed a little preachy to me, but perhaps that's just because I felt uncomforta Sherlock gives a number of practical suggestions for simplifying in general and simplifying with children in particular. Those who have already begun the process of Voluntary Simplicity will find a lot of the suggestions familiar, but Sherlock offers some family-oriented ideas that were new to me. I found the chapters on simple holiday traditions and creating family rituals to be particularly helpful. The TV chapter seemed a little preachy to me, but perhaps that's just because I felt uncomfortable because I'm not ready to give up my TV yet. I was hoping for more tips on how to simplify with very young children (about birth to age 3), particularly how to get by without a car, but this book seems to focus more on school-aged kids.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Katie

    I sincerely enjoyed this book, not just because my life has become more complicated since becoming a mother, but also because of how eco-friendly it suggests we become. From de-commercializing Christmas & other holidays, to suggestions for how to start allowance systems in the household, this book is full of great tips for parents. Americans waste a LOT as a society. 😚 I loved the suggestion of having parents work less or work part-time so they can be home with their kids more. TV seemed less app I sincerely enjoyed this book, not just because my life has become more complicated since becoming a mother, but also because of how eco-friendly it suggests we become. From de-commercializing Christmas & other holidays, to suggestions for how to start allowance systems in the household, this book is full of great tips for parents. Americans waste a LOT as a society. 😚 I loved the suggestion of having parents work less or work part-time so they can be home with their kids more. TV seemed less appealing after reading what types of things you could be doing instead! Some principles mentioned in it can apply to anyone & everyone though.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Amy Brown (amylikestoreadalot)

    I really wanted to like this one. And I did get a lot of food for thought and good ideas, but some of it I didn't agree with (for me, personally). I don't see anything wrong with my kids wearing Thomas the Trains or Mickey Mouse shirts. Also, I love Disneyland too much to skip a trip for camping instead...at least right now with young kids. Maybe I'm not as "simple" as I try to be! But I am planning to go back and take notes on parts of it. Worth a read, but maybe get from the library first. I really wanted to like this one. And I did get a lot of food for thought and good ideas, but some of it I didn't agree with (for me, personally). I don't see anything wrong with my kids wearing Thomas the Trains or Mickey Mouse shirts. Also, I love Disneyland too much to skip a trip for camping instead...at least right now with young kids. Maybe I'm not as "simple" as I try to be! But I am planning to go back and take notes on parts of it. Worth a read, but maybe get from the library first.

  15. 5 out of 5

    meghann

    Not much new here. I didn't read the same sanctimonious/preachy tone that some other reviewers did, but since we've lived this way more or less for many years—it's the "with children" bit that is new to us—I guess it wouldn't feel preachy to me. I was a bit disappointed that there wasn't more here for me to take away & incorporate into my own family's life, but for someone who is on the hamster wheel & just looking to downshift, there is a lot of good information here to get started. (And I did Not much new here. I didn't read the same sanctimonious/preachy tone that some other reviewers did, but since we've lived this way more or less for many years—it's the "with children" bit that is new to us—I guess it wouldn't feel preachy to me. I was a bit disappointed that there wasn't more here for me to take away & incorporate into my own family's life, but for someone who is on the hamster wheel & just looking to downshift, there is a lot of good information here to get started. (And I did find one or two kids-related tips to file away for future use.)

  16. 5 out of 5

    Beth Gordon

    This book was a little too idealistic - i.e., creating Eco Teams in your neighborhood to focus on how to get the community to reduce, reuse, recycle in order to consume less. Some good tips, albeit some are far-fetched when your children are infants and toddlers (family vision statement). All that aside, consuming less is a laudable goal for many reasons, which the author detailed as I'm sure you could too if given a few minutes. The author obviously interviewed her friends in the simple living This book was a little too idealistic - i.e., creating Eco Teams in your neighborhood to focus on how to get the community to reduce, reuse, recycle in order to consume less. Some good tips, albeit some are far-fetched when your children are infants and toddlers (family vision statement). All that aside, consuming less is a laudable goal for many reasons, which the author detailed as I'm sure you could too if given a few minutes. The author obviously interviewed her friends in the simple living community for this book; the same people were discussed over and over again.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Natalie

    Overall, a great refresher on how to raise kids on a shoestring. The part of this book that sticks with me the most is that families should make a list of values and articulate those values with friends and extended family. Also, it should be obvious to all parents that children do not need a lot of expensive toys and electronics to live fulfilled, experience-rich lives. Simple objects from home, as well as the outdoors, provide families with ample opportunities for exploration and entertainment Overall, a great refresher on how to raise kids on a shoestring. The part of this book that sticks with me the most is that families should make a list of values and articulate those values with friends and extended family. Also, it should be obvious to all parents that children do not need a lot of expensive toys and electronics to live fulfilled, experience-rich lives. Simple objects from home, as well as the outdoors, provide families with ample opportunities for exploration and entertainment, and these experiences are usually cheap or free. Good for parents and parents-to-be ;)

  18. 5 out of 5

    Michael Fitzgerald

    Seems to link things together that don't need to be. I don't believe that living simply necessarily means being an environmentalist or a local food consumer. There were a few useful tips, but the Kim John Payne book Simplicity Parenting: Using the Extraordinary Power of Less to Raise Calmer, Happier, and More Secure Kids is much better. Seems to link things together that don't need to be. I don't believe that living simply necessarily means being an environmentalist or a local food consumer. There were a few useful tips, but the Kim John Payne book Simplicity Parenting: Using the Extraordinary Power of Less to Raise Calmer, Happier, and More Secure Kids is much better.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Jeffrey

    Not so much "simple living" as "anti-commercial living." Everything focused on avoiding marketing and not buying stuff. I admit that this is important to living simply, but it is not everything. There are lots of good resource sections (one at the end of each chapter) that are worth checking out. Just browse through the book, find the chapters that would interest you, and jump straight to the resources. Not so much "simple living" as "anti-commercial living." Everything focused on avoiding marketing and not buying stuff. I admit that this is important to living simply, but it is not everything. There are lots of good resource sections (one at the end of each chapter) that are worth checking out. Just browse through the book, find the chapters that would interest you, and jump straight to the resources.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Erica

    I came across this book several years ago and is one that I have held onto. It is a great reminder in how to raise children with the morals and values that you really want and not what society tries to force on them. It has put into words and gathered together a lot of my own outlook on parenting. It is a guide to living, as the title states, simply with children. The reason for 4 and not 5 stars is because the writing can be repetitive.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Eva

    I really enjoyed this book and even encouraged my husband to read it as well. Though we already do many of the suggestions in the book, I was encouraged to do more. I liked how Sherlock encouraged readers to communicate our decisions & choices to our children ... to include them in the process. It also helped me to know that I'm not the only one making these lifestyle choices. Each chapter had an extensive list of resources, which I found useful. I really enjoyed this book and even encouraged my husband to read it as well. Though we already do many of the suggestions in the book, I was encouraged to do more. I liked how Sherlock encouraged readers to communicate our decisions & choices to our children ... to include them in the process. It also helped me to know that I'm not the only one making these lifestyle choices. Each chapter had an extensive list of resources, which I found useful.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Lindsey

    I read this book halfway and then skimmed to the end. I really liked some of her ideas, but I got really sick of her "save the planet" rhetoric. I like the idea of simplifying raising children; focusing on what really matters and avoiding the rampant commercialism common in childhood and she provided some good ideas on ways to do that. I especially liked the chapter on simplifying the way we celebrate Christmas, which is think is way too commercialized. I read this book halfway and then skimmed to the end. I really liked some of her ideas, but I got really sick of her "save the planet" rhetoric. I like the idea of simplifying raising children; focusing on what really matters and avoiding the rampant commercialism common in childhood and she provided some good ideas on ways to do that. I especially liked the chapter on simplifying the way we celebrate Christmas, which is think is way too commercialized.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Akehia

    It was a good read for someone who is considering a simplified life. It might be eye-opening (or might be annoying) for someone who doesn't at least have an interest in downgrading a little. There's a bit of a hippie-ish tree-hugging slant, but it's not that bad, assuming that anyone wanting a simpler life at least cares a little about the planet. There are some motivational sections for those that need a little extra nudge to make the move toward a simpler life. It was a good read for someone who is considering a simplified life. It might be eye-opening (or might be annoying) for someone who doesn't at least have an interest in downgrading a little. There's a bit of a hippie-ish tree-hugging slant, but it's not that bad, assuming that anyone wanting a simpler life at least cares a little about the planet. There are some motivational sections for those that need a little extra nudge to make the move toward a simpler life.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Kristilin

    I love this book and it's one that I reread and refer to again and again. Some concepts in this book are a little extream, but it continually reminds me what my family's true needs are. I think there is too much wastefulness, indulgence and loss of value in this world. Reading this helped me put many things in perspective and change some things in my family's lives to better ourselves. I love this book and it's one that I reread and refer to again and again. Some concepts in this book are a little extream, but it continually reminds me what my family's true needs are. I think there is too much wastefulness, indulgence and loss of value in this world. Reading this helped me put many things in perspective and change some things in my family's lives to better ourselves.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Jess Gill

    well-organized, and filled with practical tips, although many are those which i've already read numerous times in other simplicity and simple living books. much is common sense, and a great deal is in synch with my own approach to parenting, so i enjoyed skimming through many parts, and reading certain sections more carefully. well-organized, and filled with practical tips, although many are those which i've already read numerous times in other simplicity and simple living books. much is common sense, and a great deal is in synch with my own approach to parenting, so i enjoyed skimming through many parts, and reading certain sections more carefully.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Allison

    Great book, great ideas. Sometimes the ideas were a little too far-fetched for me (we can obviously not have Steven working part time to stay at home more). She refers to, and encourages you to read, the book "Your Money or Your Life" so many times it started to get annoying (but I guess it worked because I got it from the library...). Overall it was really encouraging. Great book, great ideas. Sometimes the ideas were a little too far-fetched for me (we can obviously not have Steven working part time to stay at home more). She refers to, and encourages you to read, the book "Your Money or Your Life" so many times it started to get annoying (but I guess it worked because I got it from the library...). Overall it was really encouraging.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Amy

    Some good ideas about "simplifying" your life while you're raising kids. I liked the one idea about having an "International Sunday", where you get together with the kids each Sunday and study a different country and all their customs, music, food, etc. I think that's a great idea that I will have to implement in our family. Some good ideas about "simplifying" your life while you're raising kids. I liked the one idea about having an "International Sunday", where you get together with the kids each Sunday and study a different country and all their customs, music, food, etc. I think that's a great idea that I will have to implement in our family.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Sara

    I think this book's resources need updating. Also, the author mentioned "Your Money, Your Life" so often that it made me think I should have read that instead. Yet, it wasn't all bad: the author's insistance on self-reflection convinced me of the need to clarify for myself why I want simplicity for my family. And that's a good thing. I think this book's resources need updating. Also, the author mentioned "Your Money, Your Life" so often that it made me think I should have read that instead. Yet, it wasn't all bad: the author's insistance on self-reflection convinced me of the need to clarify for myself why I want simplicity for my family. And that's a good thing.

  29. 4 out of 5

    maddi1134

    Super repetitive. Skimmed the solutions to issues but never fleshed out ideas. Perhaps a bit dated to modern families who've already considered things like turning off the TV, buying less, homemade, and CSAs. Lingered too much on "soul searching" for why one should live simply (Lady, I'm reading your book, which means you're preaching to the choir. Tell me something new.) Not great overall. Super repetitive. Skimmed the solutions to issues but never fleshed out ideas. Perhaps a bit dated to modern families who've already considered things like turning off the TV, buying less, homemade, and CSAs. Lingered too much on "soul searching" for why one should live simply (Lady, I'm reading your book, which means you're preaching to the choir. Tell me something new.) Not great overall.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Jillian

    I agree with much of this book and will take a few solid ideas from it, especially regarding family meetings, allowances, media limitations, and holiday traditions. It just wasn't uniquely helpful or engaging enough to push it past three stars, and there's a lot of preaching to the choir. It seems most useful as a compendium of other resources on the topic. I agree with much of this book and will take a few solid ideas from it, especially regarding family meetings, allowances, media limitations, and holiday traditions. It just wasn't uniquely helpful or engaging enough to push it past three stars, and there's a lot of preaching to the choir. It seems most useful as a compendium of other resources on the topic.

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