Notes From a Blue Bike is written by Tsh Oxenreider, founder and main voice of The Art of Simple. It doesn’t always feel like it, but we DO have the freedom to creatively change the everyday little things in our lives so that our path better aligns with our values and passions. Grab your copy here.
I’m trying to live the Door Number 3 Life. When faced with the “yes or no” life, the “black or white” life, the “Should God or Caesar get this money?” life, Jesus consistently chose Door Number 3. Stephanie Eddleman pointed this out to me in her excellent post where she explores how Jesus, when faced with a “you can choose A or B situation,” continually offered another way. He didn’t get caught up in picking a side.
Raising a family in today’s culture, I’m surrounded by controversy in every decision. According to the Internet, I can only pick public school or homeschool, conventional or organic food, bottle or breast, A or B. But what I’m really wanting, and it’s a hard choice to make, is Door Number 3.
I’ve just finished reading Notes From a A Blue Bike by Tsh Oxenreider, and though she never talks about Door Number 3, Oxenreider gives her readers the same option. We can live a slower life, and we can use our modern conveniences. We can live within our American culture, but it doesn’t have to consume us. Through a series of essays, Oxenreider explores what an intentional life looks like through choices like food, work, education, travel, and entertainment.
Tsh Oxenreider, the founder of The Art of Simple (formerly Simple Mom), is a leader in choosing simplicity. Her journey towards a life of intention resonates with anyone trying to live counter-culturally. As a pioneer of this path with her young family, Tsh brings her reader along for the ride.
The key to Notes From a Blue Bike is balance. Rather than only choosing organic, grass-fed, GMO-free everything or, you know, conventional spaghetti, Tsh talks about 80/20. Having the occasional ice cream bar but trying to stock up at the farmer’s market. In a world where the Internet loves to glamorize controversy and make people pick sides, Tsh’s words breathe a refreshing voice of balance, choice, and Door Number 3.
By finding margins and boundaries in her own life, Tsh encourages her readers to focus on what’s most important, emphasizing balance without sounding wishy-washy. We can use a smart phone, but remember how to power the thing down. We can opt out of the Mommy Wars and the guilt trips. We don’t have to say “public school rules” or “only homeschool.” We can take our flag and build our own camp somewhere else, a place where we choose for ourselves what is best for our families.
I encourage you to grab a copy of this wonderful book. Read it with your book club or some friends. Discuss what your life on purpose would look like. You will be challenged but encouraged to find the bravery to live a life of your own choosing and to take your family along with you:
“As much as our family loves passport stamps, we can find the same answers to our questions about life — Why is it this way? mostly — without leaving our motherland. It doesn’t require a lot of gas in our car or a backpack stuffed with plane tickets. But it does require bravery, and a willingness to let your kids leap onto slippery stones and investigate life up close, with dirty fingernails.”
This post is part of the Blue Bike Blog Tour, which I’m thrilled to be part of. To learn more and join us, head here.