The Simple Year Six

Hello! I’m Hannah and I am excited to announce that I will be your Simple Year Six blogger.

A Little Background: I’m originally a Midwestern gal, but I caught “Alaska Fever” back in 2010 when I accepted a job working in the commercial fishing industry.  Since then, I’ve grown to love the 49th state, and happily call it home alongside my husband, Cody, and our two dogs, Specks and Luna (you can read about our Alaskan adventures on my other blog – The Middletons of Nowhere).

Currently, we live in Pilot Point, Alaska. Where I live is going to be a very important part of this years project because if you search for Pilot Point on a map, you’re unlikely to find much. That is because my husband and I teach in a fly-in-only village in southwestern Alaska. Our village is located on the Alaska Peninsula and is home to less than seventy residents.

I believe that my take on The Simple Year will be a bit unique simply because of where I live. In many ways, our lives are more simple than most people could ever imagine. We do not have a place to go shopping nor a restaurant to grab food at on a Saturday night. In the ways that our lives are more simple though, they are also harder. We do not have access to medical care or quick access to anything more than the most basic food items. The difficulty of getting things into our village makes it important that we learn to participate in local subsistence activities, such as hunting, fishing, and berry picking.

It is because of our unique lifestyle that I first became interested in things like minimalism, zero waste, and mindfulness. There are many oddities that come with living in rural Alaska that will likely prove to be great obstacles in the overall successful of this project. However, I’m very excited to tackle it and spend this year working towards my goals.

My Simple Year Goals: My big picture goals are pretty straightforward…

  1. Reduce our food waste.
  2. Become less reliant on outside food sources.
  3. Reduce the amount of clothing we purchase.
  4. Find ways to reduce waste in the classroom.
  5. Live more authentically and take the time to slow down and appreciate the little things.

My husband and I have moved every two years for the last six years, and in that time we’ve lived in seven different houses. Our transient lifestyle has allowed us to stay fairly minimalist with much of what we own, but we still have a long way to go to reach our goals. It is my hope that this year we can make some big steps towards our eventual, long-term goals of self-sufficiency and simple living.

Looking Forward: I am so excited to be on this journey with all of you, the wonderful readers, this year! When I received the e-mail that I had been chosen to take over this project, I felt incredibly thankful. My plan is to post 1-2 times per week (hopefully more in the summer since I’ll have lots of free time), and I’m also hoping to host some guest writers in this space in the form of other families living in Alaska. Here’s to hoping that The Simple Year Six is a success!