A simple life - what does it mean to you?

I have been pondering on what it means to live a simple life, and to be honest, I've not got that far in my thinking yet. Yes, there are elements of reducing expenditure, cooking from scratch, looking after our homes, families and bodies in a better way, but I think that there has to be more to it than just how I feed and clothe my nearest and dearest.

Does a simple life mean an easier life? Does a simple life mean a cheaper way of living? Does it mean a way of reducing our impact on the world around us? For example, to me it is easier and cheaper to go and buy a dishcloth to wash my dishes with than it is to make one. But making one would be seen to be a part of the simple life by some. At the moment, it is easier and cheaper for me to buy my fruit and veg from the supermarket rather than grow my own. But images of a simple life include growing your own food. Yes, a packet of seeds costs pence but when you factor in the hours of work and finances needed to prepare the garden, plant the seeds, tend to the plants, it works out way more expensive. But then I know where my food has come from and there is the added satisfaction of knowing that I grew it myself. However, there is also a certain degree of rebellious satisfaction buying prepackaged veg from the supermarket!!!

I think it comes down to the season of life that one finds themselves in. During this season of my life, I do not have the time to learn to knit, to plant and tend a veg garden, to make all my own cleaners etc. I do however use reusable nappies as I couldn't bear throwing so much rubbish away each week, I am a stay-at-home mum as I believe that this is the best option for my husband and children, I don't spend vast amounts of time shopping for needless items, I mostly cook from scratch and make sure that I don't run myself ragged trying to do too much. Sounds like a simple life, I have time for friends and family. Perhaps I'm not doing so badly after all...