Link-O-Rama Mama — Happiness, Pantries and a Little Bit of Soule

by Katy on March 8, 2011 · 15 comments

My husband took this photo of our first son when he was a newborn. So sweet, kicky and intense. Happiness is available to everyone.

It’s time again for Link-O-Rama Mama, where I lazily just link to other people’s well written and thoroughly researched articles.

A Great Blog for the Soule

My friend Sasha has been telling me about the blog SouleMama for years. But somehow, I didn’t actually look at it until a few days ago. Now she may be old news to the rest of you, but Amanda Soule’s blog is beautiful, revealing, inspiring and frankly, puts The Non-Consumer Advocate to shame. (Today’s post already has 600+ comments!) Unschooling, knitting, crafting, cooking and simple living are all swirled together in a way that softens the heart and makes me want to dedicate a month to reading all her back posts.

Soule’s About page is filled with wonderful information, links and a FAQ section that I think I need to incorporate into my own blog. (Worry not, it would be your FAQ’s, not hers!)

You should totally check out Soulemama. Then again, you probably already have.

The Pain-Free Pantry Principle

Tuesdays in Portland, Oregon are notable not only for their probability of rain, but also because it’s the day that The Oregonian publishes the FoodDay insert in the newspaper. And today’s edition was especially rewarding.

My favorite food writer is Leslie Cole. Not only is she a terrific writer, but her choice of subjects always seems to grab my attention. (I previously linked to an insightful article she wrote about eating well on a limited budget.) Today’s article was titled The Pantry Principle, so I knew it was worth a thorough read. The story profiled a stay at home dad who had taken a Cook with What You Have class that changed his family’s life.

Now I am a pantry principle kind of gal. I don’t make meal plans with elaborate shopping lists, instead choosing to just keep a store of generalized ingredients on hand that seem to never fail. I’m not vain enough to think that there isn’t a trick or two still to learn, and I waited until kids were off to school to give the article my proper attention.

I won’t spoil the article for you, as it’s pretty terrific, plus chock full of mouth watering recipes.

Click HERE to read it!

Happiness is a Warm Baby

My friend Ashley English is a whirlwind of productive activity. Not only has she published four Homemade Living books in the past year, but she also gave birth to Huxley, a sweet giggly bundle of joy a few months ago.

Today, Ashley published a lovely piece about happiness on her blog, Small Measures. My favorite line that she quotes from Thomas Bien, Ph.D is “Know that happiness is always available to you.” A powerful message that I may need to memorize for those challenging days that sneak into my life.

Click HERE to read Ashley’s post on happiness.

Do you have any links to share with The Non-Consumer Advocate community?

Katy Wolk-Stanley

“Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without”


{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

Mary H March 8, 2011 at 10:08 am

“Unschooling, knitting, crafting, cooking and simple living are all swirled together in a way that softens the heart and makes me want to dedicate a month to reading all her back posts.”

Katy-I discovered Soulemama about a month ago and have almost finished reading the archives!


Megan March 8, 2011 at 10:28 am

oh , oh , oh what a pretty baby.


Kristen@TheFrugalGirl March 8, 2011 at 12:10 pm

Amanda’s been blogging for 6 years now, and she’s got an insane amount of traffic. There are streams of comments just moments after she publishes her posts.

I don’t know how she keeps up with them all!


Heather March 8, 2011 at 5:01 pm

I have read Soulemama for years. Initially she had wonderful ideas for our family of unschoolers. Since she has published several books, the ideas are a bit fewer (you can now find plenty in the books). However, the inspiration remains.

Love the baby shot!

I try to utilize a well stocked pantry. Sometimes I do get lazy or lack inspiration, but most of the time it works for our family.


Katy March 8, 2011 at 5:38 pm

Isn’t he cute? He’s 15 years old now, but essentially still the same kiddo.



Barb @ 1 Sentence Diary March 8, 2011 at 6:27 pm

He is still recognizable (according to the photos) from that baby picture! Such a cutie, both then and now.


Margaret September 12, 2011 at 5:27 pm

As a fellow cloth diaperer (of a two year old) I am impressed that you were cloth diapering 15 years ago!

It’s hip now, and it was common 40 years ago. But 15 years ago? Not so much.


Katy September 12, 2011 at 7:20 pm

I cloth diapered for a year, but he always had rashes which immediately cleared up when I switched to disposable.

He still has very sensitive skin.



Alison March 8, 2011 at 5:36 pm

I previously lived by the mantra that “we make our own happiness” and happiness is a choice, but I’m now switching to “Know that happiness is always available to you.” Thanks Katy.


Katy March 8, 2011 at 5:37 pm

That makes me happy!




Barb @ 1 Sentence Diary March 8, 2011 at 6:31 pm

It’s so interesting about the Pantry Principle. I know several people who swear by the idea that you just keep good general ingredients in the pantry and you’re good to go.

For me, the one thing that has really helped my evening routine is to plan dinners. I plan all our weeknight dinners in advance, and go shopping on the weekend to be sure I have the appropriate ingredients. Of course, I don’t make much that is fancy or that requires unusual ingredients on a rushed weeknight. The planning makes me so much calmer — I never walk in the door at 6:15 with two hungry kids and think, “oh no, what will we have for dinner?!” Makes a huge difference.


Sue March 9, 2011 at 12:34 am

I’m a pantry principle girl too. I’ve recently decluttered my pantry and am enjoying cooking with what I have in the cupboards it appeals to my creative side.

I love Soulemama too, I covet her wonderful house. I don’t know how Amanda can keep up with all the comments though. I like lots of comments but 600+ is a bit frightening.

Some really interesting reads there Katy, thank you.


Jennifer Lorenzetti March 9, 2011 at 5:28 am

Regarding links to share, let me shamelessly submit my own. Fast, Cheap, and Good is my own blog about sustainable living, and I hope you and your readers will come take a look:

Meanwhile, I will be checking out these fabulous links!


Carla March 9, 2011 at 6:51 am

Soulemama is great, but why compare yourself, Katy? You and she are different — not one “better” than the other. I read both of you!


Jinger March 9, 2011 at 9:26 am

I love reading soulemama, non consumer advocate and many other blogs…each unique in their own right. Two others that are terrific are http://down—to— and the


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