Slow living hobbies have a way of bringing a sense of balance to our daily schedules. With so many things vying for our attention every day, it’s important to intentionally engage in activities that allow us to step away from our busy lives for a bit.
As a person who engages in the practices of slow living, I like to think that overall I do a pretty good job of looking after my mental, physical, and spiritual well-being. I haven’t perfected this feat by any means, but I sure do try my best.
One of my favorite ways to reset and center myself is to fully put my focus on doing something that I love. When I am immersed in an activity that captivates my attention, the hustle and bustle of daily life melts away.
And it is in that space that life, as I know it, resets itself. It’s a very good thing.
Hobbies are as varied as the people who engage in them. And those that interest you may be very different from those that I hear call my name.
But, irregardless of what hobbies you are drawn to, I would like to share my favorites with you today.
I’m hoping that, if you are not already actively pursuing a hobby you love, at least one of the things I enjoy spending my time doing will inspire you to give it a try.
And, if you are already involved in a hobby you love, you will still find the passion I have for my hobbies to be a source of inspiration in some way.
Planning The Garden
As slow living hobbies go, this is a new one for me, sort of. I had my own gardens for two of the last three years, and I am hoping to have one this year as well.
I’ve been dreaming of gardens and learning all I can about them for what feels like forever though.
I like to spend time in the winter season dreaming of the day I will have permanent garden space. I could immerse myself in a seed catalog at the start of the season and not come out till spring.
But, more practically, the few years that I had a space to actually plan, I decided on how many beds I was going to install, and chose what I would plant in each bed.
I also tried my hand at growing my own plants from seed. I didn’t have a very workable space for this task, and so much of it was unsuccessful. But it was great to ‘get my hands dirty’, as they say, and give it a try.
This year I am uncertain where I will be ‘hanging my hat’, so I am making minimal plans. I am looking at things that I can grow in containers for the most part. And hoping that I will be able to manage at least that, wherever I am.
The only thing I know for sure is that I will do whatever I can. Having herb plants in containers is a no-brainer. I’ll expand from there as much as I can, and then I’ll support my local farmers by buying whatever I can’t grow from them.
Sewing Something Just For Yourself
Sewing is one of the slow living hobbies that I loved and pursued for many years when I was much younger. When I was in my 20’s I made much of my own clothing.
Back then it was not fashionable to make your own clothing. As a matter of fact, many people associated the practice with poverty and found it distasteful, at least that seemed to be the case among the people I was surrounded by.
But, inevitably, when I would show up to an outing wearing an outfit I made people would adore it. They would end up a little envious of it because they couldn’t just go out and buy the pieces.
I still remember those outfits really well. There is one pattern that I would die to get my hands on. I’ve found an image for it online, but haven’t been able to actually find the pattern for sale.
However, I have found some really great patterns for the styles of clothing I love. And I plan to make a at least one outfit for myself this winter.
I absolutely can’t wait to lose myself in long afternoons of sewing. It’s a really gratifying way to spend the day.
Learning A New Cooking Style
Cooking is probably at the top of the list of my favorite slow living hobbies. It has it’s own special place in my heart. It’s a little ironic that I don’t get as excited about it, as I do about some of the other hobbies I’ve listed in this post, yet it is the hobby I engage in most often.
I suppose I don’t get that excited because it has simply become an extension of who I am over the years. It is not an activity that I have to carve time out of my schedule for, it is just what I do as part of my daily life.
One of the ways that I intentionally conjure up some excitement for this favored hobby of mine is to set out to learn a new cooking skill or dabble in an unfamiliar cuisine.
This winter I hope to learn more about Asian cuisine. I had the privilege of having a Chinese chef in my home for several weeks last year and I learned quite a bit from him.
I’ve always been interested in this cuisine. And having him cooking in my kitchen peaked my interest even more.
My cooking schedule is looking pretty full with the blog, the youtube videos, and the spring cookbook on the agenda. But I would like to at least perfect some of the basic American Chinese recipes I’ve been making already.
For instance, I make fried rice that’s pretty decent. But I’ve just been winging it without all of the proper ingredients. So, I want to get the ingredients that are actually used in this dish and learn to make it the right way.
Expanding Your Baking Skills
I had plans of hitting the expansion of my baking skills really hard this winter. Baking is one of the slow living hobbies that I am not always really great at.
It seems I am able to bake something, or you know, I’m not. It can frustrate me a bit because I am able to cook just about anything I decide I want to make. I just go in the kitchen and whip it up. It’s kind of guaranteed to be fabulous every time, fails are rare.
But baking, is a hit or miss. This may come as a surprise to some of you who have tasted the great baked goodies I’ve made for the blog, as when I get it right I really get it right.
Anyway, the thing I’ve been wanting to perfect is homemade bread. I am determined to make the best darn sandwich rolls, focaccia, rye bread, sandwich bread, english muffins, bagels, naan, and baguettes EVER!
And I don’t plan to stop there either. I want to master all the bread. Well … maybe not this winter. BUT one day, and this winter is a good time to start.
Preserving Off Season Foods
Preserving off season foods is a really great activity to have on your slow living hobbies list. It is a great way to save money throughout the rest of the year.
Whenever you’re able to score a deal on food that you wouldn’t normally preserve from your own food production sources, you can take advantage of it and preserve it for future use.
As an example, I just saw someone on one of my FB food preservation groups who got their hands on 30 really nice pineapples for $28. She snagged them all up, took them home, and canned them to use over time.
Another great food to preserve in the winter is cranberries. They are only available at this time of year, and there are often clearance sales on the last of them for the season.
It’s great to have cranberry sauce or chutney with a cooked from scratch chicken dinner later in the year when this scrumptious berry is nowhere to be found.
I just recently got my hands on some really amazing organically raised French breakfast radishes. And while I hope to grow some of my own radishes in the spring, I can’t ever get enough pickled radishes, so I’m pretty excited to have these to hold me over to spring.
Having Fun With Photography
I have always loved photography, but I’ve never invested the time that I would like to invest in this hobby.
However, it is going to take a little bit of a priority on my list of favored slow living hobbies this winter. I really want to improve this skill.
I plan to see what kind of resources I can find to help me expand my food photography skills. Food is very hard to photograph, and I know there are many tips and tricks of the trade that will help me create better photos for the blog.
I have played around with nature photography in the past. I got pretty good at it. I’d like to expand on that skill as well.
The great thing about photography is that, while it’s nice to have really great equipment, you can actually get started with just your phone.
It’s true that you can’t produce the same quality photos as you would with a good camera, and a few different lenses. But, you can still do some pretty amazing things, and being able to do that is a great first step.
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