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The Simple Things

The Simple Things November 2020

The Simple Things is a beautiful, useful, quirky and fun magazine about taking time to live well. We cover mindfulness and microadventures, eating and growing, forgotten wisdom, home life and slow moments. It's for people who love their lives but want to take the pressure off and remember what’s really important. We like tea & cake, learning stuff, being outside and the satisfaction of a job well done. Do you?

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Country:
United Kingdom
Language:
English
Publisher:
Iceberg Press Limited
Frequency:
Monthly
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12 Issues

in this issue

1 min.
a could-do list spark

Light up your garden with solar-powered lights to enjoy evenings outdoors Sign up to an online course, a workshop or a lecture series Have a ‘dark night’. Turn off the lights and enjoy an evening of candles and firelight instead Spend a Sunday batch cooking for the freezer (or biscuit tin!) Plant tulip bulbs in pots; a promise of colour to come next year Let your mind wander and jot down any sparks of new ideas. Maybe a novel plot, a recipe or an idea for redecoration... All you need is a spark. A spark is an idea that you can kindle and grow. It takes time and tending but your warm glow, when it catches hold, will come from within. And the calm month of November offers the slow-burn space needed to think and create.…

3 min.
november almanac

Project Sew a notebook November is National Novel Writing Month, the ideal time to procrastinate wildly by stitching your own notebook in which to get scribbling. YOU WILL NEED: A big stack of paper (or lined, squared, or whatever you like) Some pretty patterned papers Some card for the cover Bulldog clips Sewing machine Some good scissors or a Stanley knife and cutting mat A bone folder tool (or a butter knife works equally well) 1 Decide what size you want your pages to be and double it (each sheet will form two pages). Cut out as many as you need. Fold each in half and use the bone folder tool (or butter knife) to smooth along the fold to give a crisp edge. Stack all the pages inside each other. 2 Stick your patterned paper onto card to make the cover.…

2 min.
november

Recipe Fancy jackets Bonfire night hasn’t started until you’re eating a jacket potato out of foil in the garden. Here are our favourite fillings you might not have thought of. • Garlic and herb butter with prawns• Sautéed chorizo and broad bean mash• Apple and walnut coleslaw with Wensleydale cheese• Bacon, Blue Vinny and shallots• Savoury mince topped with mushy peas• Feta, olives and sundried tomatoes• Smoked salmon, sour cream, capers and dill• Your favourite curry with raita and crushed poppadoms• Welsh Rarebit A few books that feature fire. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury, written in 1953 and set in a dystopian 1999 when ‘firemen’ burn all books they find. Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng, which opens with Isabelle Richardson burning down the family home. In Burning Bright, Tracy Chevalier takes William Blake…

6 min.
nature’s table

AUTUMN The tang of spent fireworks hangs in the air, mixing with woodsmoke and the cidery The r c scent flavours of fallen of apples. The days mushrooms are short and and many of us will light our first ch s fires n t i of the s year ti . Any excuse for cosiness tart pair u should well with bethe grabbed. This tangy is also dressing oneon ofthe the most warm walnut, squash rewarding tilt of n times s l d to just walk. It’s cool enough that you need to wrap up in your favourite knitwear to go out, but you can also get a good striding pace up without getting overheated. The trees are protecting themselves from the worst of winter to come by shedding their soft leaves,…

2 min.
fill up your senses

From the softness of a warm pillow to the sound of laughter or the smell of impending rain, when you actively engage your senses, you start to notice and appreciate the little things that might not normally grab your attention. These sensory moments help you to tune in and focus on the world around you instead of hurrying around on autopilot caught up in your thoughts without really noticing anything. Use the following prompts for ideas on how to awaken your senses and you’ll soon be listening, seeing, touching and tasting things with a new awareness as you rediscover the richness of your world. Plant life Live alongside plants. Take care of them. Note growth. Appreciate their contribution to your life. LISTEN UP Set your alarm for five minutes. Don’t look at the clock,…

2 min.
magical creatures

Here they come again. Like a bunch of rowdy teenagers in a children’s play park, a gang of immature starlings invades the garden, all bolshy banter, swagger and swank. They hog the feeders and bully smaller species off the bird table. They’re raucous, rude and greedy. Even my mother, a lover of birds, would greet the arrival of Sturnus vulgaris with a scolding “shoo!” Young starlings are an unremarkable mouse-brown, but, as the autumn evenings fold into the long nights of winter, their plumage darkens. A closer look reveals black feathers slicked with an iridescent sheen – purple, green and gold – like drops of engine oil on the surface of a puddle. And, at this time of year, the birds’ bodies are speckled with little white stars. Is this how…