Happy National Pie Day!

It’s National Pie Day! I hope you made a pie to celebrate, because I didn’t.  In fact, I haven’t made a pie, a real pie, in almost a month. You would think that someone who makes a pie every week and writes a blog about it would make pie a little more often than I have lately.

Well, I’ve been doing other things with my time. More important things. Things that need some attention.
I don’t really make New Year’s resolutions, but when I turn the page on the calendar and begin a new year, I do tend to reflect on what the previous year was like and what I want to change. Mostly, I re-evaluate my priorities. And this year, my theme, if you will, is simplicity.
I know I won’t make everything in my life as absolutely simple as it could possibly be. But simplicity itself is not the goal, nor is it the point. I want to simplify the things in my life so I can focus on what’s truly important to me. Like my family.
Monday was a no-school day for my son. It was not for my daughter, but we made it one by skipping preschool at the last minute to spend a fun day together. We spent part of our time at the library. After my son checked out what seemed to be every title in the Star Wars: The Clone Wars series, as well as some “Fact Tracker” titles as non-fiction companions to The Magic Tree House series (“Jack and Annie books” as my son lovingly refers to them), we headed home to do a little reading.
This is one of my son's latest favorite reading positions.

(Mary Pope Osborne, I hope you’re reading this. I don’t want this to sound pushy, but I’m afraid it will. You already do a fabulous job at writing quickly. A new title every four to six months is most impressive, but do you think you could write even a little faster and turn out new Magic Tree House titles more often? Like the wind that spins the tree house at the start of each adventure, my son has now blown through nearly the first half of your series at warp speed, currently reading #23, Twister on Tuesday. He has tunnel vision on #47, Abe Lincoln at Last, and at this rate, he’ll probably be finished with the entire series by April. And then what will we do? Do you have a plan? Otherwise, we’ll have to start looking for another great series that turns history and geography and the wonders of the world into incredible magical adventures that engage children in text while teaching them almost everything they’ll ever need to know about almost everything that has ever happened since the beginning of time. I’m exaggerating here, but you know what I mean. You should. You wrote the books. So what do you say?)
After some time reading, we spent the rest of the day, I believe the coldest so far this winter, engaged in winter-themed indoor projects. We designed snowflakes out of toothpicks and marshmallows:

These marshmallow-and-toothpick snowflakes were inspired by Mom to 2 Posh Lil Divas.
We created snowflakes to hang in the window by folding and cutting shapes out of coffee filters:

And we made more homemade play dough, this time leaving it un-tinted and sprinkling in some glitter to make it sparkle like snow:
You can find our favorite play dough recipe at How Does She.
And none of this would have been possible if I had instead spent the day doing all the “extras”, like scrubbing the grout lines in the tile floor (I’d rather pay someone), cooking a gourmet seven-course dinner (we had leftover beefburgers instead), or writing a blog post about a pie that took another hour or more of my day just to make (leftover homemade oatmeal cake is just as sweet).
While simplicity has its advantages, I do realize it can also mean missing out on some things from time to time. And that’s why I won’t entirely give up the “extras,” I’ll just keep them in perspective and do them when it works for me to do them. But simplicity can also mean having more time to do some things you would like to do more often (like actually doing some of the fabulous projects with my kids that I find on Pinterest), because you refocused your priorities and simplified other areas of your life.
Like reading. I don’t get to read as much as I would like. I enjoy writing, too, but as Shelley Harwayne, one of my favorite authors on teaching writing, likes to say, I’m a better writer because I read.
My latest choice for reading is accompanied by a nice hot cup of pomegranate green tea. And by reading, I mean it sits on a basket in between me glancing through the table of contents and browsing a page or two.
While baking a pie every week and writing a blog about it has been mostly for me, I still have not placed myself high enough on my list of priorities. Mainly, I haven’t focused on taking care of myself in the ways I want to. I know that simplifying my life will allow me more time to do that as well.
So, Pie on Sunday is not going away entirely. I’ll still share the recipes with you, and maybe some stories, but I won’t be making pie as often as every week. I love pie, and so does my family, but quite frankly, we miss all the other treats I used to bake when I wasn’t making so much pie!
I hope you do get to enjoy some pie on this National Pie Day, on Sunday, or any time you get the chance. As for me, I’ll be enjoying more time with myself and with my family, on Sundays and every other day in between, and we’ll share some pie when it’s simple to do so.
Yours in pie, and in simplicity,

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