Revisit the idea of Living Life According to your Means

I wrote a post “Living Life According to your Means” back in January 2009 shortly after returning from visiting my relatives in Laos and Thailand. At that time our economy got hit hard, many were laid off from their jobs, restaurants and small businesses shut down in our area. It was a depressing time, and then I thought of my cousins in Thailand. They were an elderly couple, and they didn’t have a lot but they seemed happy. They had plenty of fruits and vegetables in their backyard; they lived according to their means.

This inspired me to want to grow and raise our own foods, at least the basic such as fruits, vegetables, chicken and eggs. It’s obvious that we couldn’t do it under our current situation, we live in a very restricted neighborhood, raising chickens in the bathtub is not ideal but we did try. I guess it would be more ideal to raise ducks in the bathtub.

Lee caring for the little chicks in the bathroom.

Since then I have been thinking about buying a bigger land, at one point even a farm. That’s all I was able to do, thinking and looking at houses. Each time I get closer to finding the right place, the thought of selling our house, and moving made me take a step back. I think it’s the fear of the unknown, if I can’t convince myself how can I convince Lee and Bo to move, and not just moving but downsizing also.

I think it was because I have not found the right place for us, then about 2 weeks ago I saw one that could work for all of us. We went and saw the house, Bo couldn’t see my vision at the time but willing to give it a try, and that’s all I need to hear. I worked as fast as I could and things are coming together nicely. This is a painting of the house by the current owner, it has plenty of land for us, the animals and the garden. I removed her signature for privacy purpose, and have no intention of not giving her credit for her beautiful art work.

This could mean that I won’t be gardening in my garden this Spring, and I’m looking forward to working on a new plot of land. I’ll have plenty of room to plant fruit trees.

Bo will have a place for his quails.

And these mail ordered birds.

We’ll be able to raise chickens and eggs.

And of course we will need this guy.

It’ll be a job moving the fishpond, but I think it’s doable.

Since we are downsizing, and moving further out in the country it will be cheaper for us to live there comparing to living in our current home. The commuting time to work is about 20 minutes longer but if you are looking at 10 minutes to 30 minutes is nothing comparing to those that have to commute over an hour to work. The new place needs a little TLC, and the current place needs a little work before putting it on the market so we’ll be busy in the weeks ahead. I’m excited and looking forward to a new chapter in our lives.


  1. Sounds wonderful Nye!! So happy for you all on this new venture – to grow, to plant, to create, to take beautiful photographs. Let us know what we can do to help. And be sure to plant at least 20 persimmon trees (again, that’s at least – with different varieties of course). I also recommend blueberries and blackberries (thornless – and I have plenty to share), make sure 2 dozens each, with different varieties as well. These will be our gift to your new place and will help plant them, if you like. Again, very happy for you, Bo and Lee. Wishing you all the joy and blessings to come on your new venture.

    • Thank you Dewey, the blueberries and blackberries gift sounds wonderful, we would definitely need your help and expertise in planting and caring for them. I’m looking forward to learning more about plants and nature. I don’t think Bo and Lee are as excited as I am, it hasn’t sunk in yet. 🙂

    • Thanks Lisa, it’s an open concept living area, so people can’t hide in the living room, dining room or kitchen anymore, it’s one open space. 🙂

  2. This is great to hear! And a wonderful post about living the simple life.

    My small urban backyard orchard is coming along. And I’ve finally got a hold of clumping bamboo. I also wish we had more backyard space for a fish pond. Just the price of land in California is crazy expensive, unless you go way out into no man’s land. 😉

    Btw, love the painting of the place in winter. So serene. I wish you and the family all the best on this new adventure.

    • Thanks Bree, we have a lot of work ahead of us but excited to finally be able to do more. I’m looking forward to be able to plant fruit trees and have a good size garden. The land in NC is still pretty cheap in comparison to elsewhere, and we live in the country anyway so moving further out won’t hurt anything. 🙂

  3. This new move sounds wonderful, Nye. I’m so jealous of what you’ll be getting, and it’ll be so exciting planning an even bigger garden! One of the things with living in the city is that you lose all that wonderful space. When I moved from the country to the city, the thing I missed the most was my garden, and all my fruit trees, and the personal space. In the city, there’s not much room for you to do that.

    • Thank you Katy, we’re excited and hope to be able to move a few items this weekend. It’s going to be a big change for us, and I’m looking forward to planting fruit trees this Spring. I’m looking forward to having a big garden, I’m glad the previous owner was a gardener also, but it looks like it has been abandoned for many years so there’s a lot of work to do. I’m up for the challenge. 🙂

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