Monday, February 3, 2014

Notes From A Blue Bike- Review

Living intentionally.  Slowing down.  Organized simplicity.

Ahhhh, those are the things I long for.  Just tonight I told my husband I wanted to sell everything and move to a quiet place.  No rush.  No worries.  No distractions.  No stuff.

A few months ago it was a longing to move overseas.  Before that a farm.  And before that a cabin in the woods.  Is it just me?   What is with my desire to leave everything behind and move to a simpler life?

When I was asked to review Notes from a Blue Bike - The Art of Living Intentionally in a Chaotic World, I knew that I would love this book.  Written by author Tsh Oxenrider, author of the best seller Organized Simplicity, Notes from a Blue Bike explores one woman and her family's desire to live their lives with intention.  Alas, I am not alone - it is not just me.

I have breathed in this book page by page.  It has comforted me, challenged me and inspired me.  It has also reminded me that one does not need to completely ditch his or her current life to make changes.  My husband will be relieved.

In six "parts," Tsh discusses areas of your life that can be simplified. This is not a how-to-book, though. Through snippets of her current life and flashbacks of the life they lived for three years in Turkey, Tsh allows you to see how small changes can be made.  Things like riding a bike, making time for friends, stepping out of your comfort zone and visiting or even living overseas.  Or sipping tea and eating simple meals.  Or working from home or homeschooling your children if that is what you are being called to do.

The sections cover:

The final chapter, Revival, is a little more the how to.  Tsh's tips include plan, take care of yourself, slow down, live in the real world, live for the real world, and let go.  The one that resonated most with me - live in the real world.  Yes, I long for a simple, quiet life.  But for now, I am and my family is where God has us.  We need to embrace our life and the adventure it holds in this moment.  While that should not stop us from dreaming big, it should remind us to be content in the moment we are in.  So while I may still come up with a crazy plan now and then to leave the world as I know it behind, it does not make it a burning desire - but just one idea among many to live my life intentionally.

And in case you were wondering how Tsh and her family manage to travel as much as they do, there is an appendix on money and budgeting.  You will not find any preaching here, just a "this is how we do it" explanation that can help those who want to use money as an excuse to not follow their dreams.

Also included are discussion questions for each chapter.  While I used them to help me rethink each chapter, I also think they would be perfect to use in a small book club type setting.  Do you know others who are questioning their lives and how they are living it?  Maybe now is the time to brainstorm together and help encourage each other.  This would be a great book to start with.

So should you read this book?  Yes!  I am convinced that if ever this world needed a time of intentional living the time is now.  We need to get out of the rat race we call life, join Tsh on a blue bike, and live life as God intended - intentional and to its fullest!


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.

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.


  1. This book was on my 'maybe' list. Sounds like I need to bump it up to a definite yes! My husband and I have gone through the same conversations. Our current dream is selling it all and RVing for missions. Wouldn't it be lovely?

  2. Yes, that sounds lovely! We had a RV for years and loved our extended times in it. The kids have been begging to get another one. It is a great way to see the country!


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