The Simple Sophisticate - Intelligent Living Paired with Signature Style

The Simple Sophisticate - Intelligent Living Paired with Signature Style

The simple sophisticate is someone who prefers quality over quantity, sensible living over mindless consumption, personal style instead of trendy fashions, has an insatiable curiosity for life’s endless questions and a desire to live a truly fulfilling life rather than being led around by the nose. Inspired by her lifestyle blog The Simply Luxurious Life, Shannon Ables (the original Simple Sophisticate) shares with listeners tips on how to live a refined life on an everyday income. From achieving your goals, preparing a memorable meal, creating a capsule wardrobe, traveling the world (Francophiles tune in as Paris is a favorite destination), and living life to the fullest without breaking the bank, living well is really quite simple.

Episodes

April 5, 2021 38 min

Today on the podcast, the creators of the new book Artists in Residence join me to talk about not only their collaboration, but also how readers can find inspiration to look at their own sanctuaries as a haven, decorating it in such a way as to nurture presence and the unique creativity each inhabitant would like to share with the world.

Melissa Wyse is the writer and through her research, so many details largely unknown to ...

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"Living your purpose will make it possible to do all the things you need to do to reach the goals you need to reach in order to fulfill your dreams, which are as big as the world and as optimistic as your mind can imagine." —Norma Kamali, author of I Am Invincible

Change is inevitable, in the world, our bodies and our lives. How we navigate life's endless changes determines the quality of our lives, especially d...

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Over the weekend I quietly celebrated my 42nd birthday. It was lovely. It was full of much contemplation. It included delicious food and wine and the last day of the year brought the sunshine which found me out in my garden preparing for spring.

Over the past 12 months all of our lives experienced unexpected moments, ahas, wonderings, fears, break-throughs and endless other unplanned daily routine shifts and lifestyle adjust...

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"People can change and be happy from this moment onward . . . the problem is not one of ability, but of courage." —from the book The Courage to Be Disliked by Ichiro Kishimi and Fumitake Koga

"As long as one keeps searching, the answers come." American folk singer Joan Baez certainly narrows down succinctly and accurately the practice of finding our way; however, along the way toward the revelation of the a...

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France, food, seasonally fresh produce.

American expat cookbook author Susan Herrmann Loomis has just released a new cookbook and it is good. Deliciously good. Plat du Jour: French Dinners Made Easy was just released on January 12th, and I excitedly welcomed it into my cookbook library.

Today, Susan returned to join me on the podcast to talk about her new cookbook. Sharing the inspiration for the book, the history of the p...

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"The lack of meaning in our lives stresses us out, but too much stress makes it harder to find meaning." —Dr. Rangan Chatterjee, author of The Stress Solution

Yesterday, for the entire day, aside from letting my pups outside from time to time and feeding them, I wallpapered. I turned on old British cosy mysteries (Poirot with David Suchet), and went to town (hopefully) transforming my primary bedroom from a gray spac...

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"The ability to simplify means to eliminate the unnecessary so that the necessary may speak." —Hans Hofmann

Simplifying.

Far different from minimizing, simplifying requires that we consciously explore what is of value in our lives and then thoughtfully edit in order for what we deem most important to shine as fully as possible.

Take for example sight. Eyesight that is. As someone who wears contacts in order to se...

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In the spirit of nurturing ourselves, healing ourselves and opening a door to a better year in 2021, today's episode/post is shared with the intention of providing inspiration for you to do just that as you tailor the final week of the year - the Between the Years as my readers taught me last year (read this post from last year which was inspired by this aha of the term) - to nurture you, heal you, open your eyes to a better, m...

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“Privacy - like eating and breathing - is one of life's basic requirements.” 
― Katherine Neville, author

The sanctuaries we call home, no matter how large or small, provide the comfort and necessary gift of privacy. We hold the key to whom will enter, who lives, who dines, who sleeps, within the four walls we pay each month a large portion of our hard earned money.

Similar to our sanctuaries, we are given choices in...

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“Discontent is the first necessity of progress.” - Thomas Edison

True contentment runs like a river feeding our everyday lives with constant inner peace.

Whether the weather for the day is a turbulent snow storm or a sunny Blue Bird day as we call them in Bend, the river of True Contentment continues to run so long as we feed it with conscious awareness and staying fully present much like a healthy snowpack which keeps th...

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"You shouldn't dream your film, you should make it!" —Steven Spielberg

To live actively requires we take action.

Seems simple enough, but if teaching my students as well as myself to refrain from using passive verbs versus active verbs in writing indicates anything, defaulting to the passive is happens to be a hard habit to break.

What if we are defaulting in the same way in our everyday life and, even more la...

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"When we speak a language that denies us choice, we forget the life in ourselves for a robotlike mentality that disconnects us from our own core." —Marshall Rosenberg, Nonviolent Communication: A Language of Life

Two lives may look like one another, but one may indeed be fulfilling, while the other a life of disdain and pain.

Choosing to live as we do versus living a life out of an expectation, obligation, avoidance...

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Books about happiness ubiquitously fill the publishing world, but the fundamentals of happiness quite simply are just that, simple. We become overwhelmed, and then it becomes easier to fixate, and often superficially so, which expends our finite energy rather than focusing our attention on the core fundamentals and choices of what happiness requires to be deeply and sincerely felt.

When the directions are wrong you will never...

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“Your inner purpose is to awaken.” —Eckhart Tolle, from A New Earth

To observe the seamless fluidity of a dancing pair with years of professional dancing experience float across the floor no matter what type of dance is asked of them is to observe a deep awareness and skill of their craft. Foxtrot. No problem. Viennese Waltz. Got it. Tango. Oh my, yes. Swing. Yep!

In 2017, in episode #143, the skill of self-awareness was e...

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"Creating an environment in which you can have a greater sense of clarity and calm . . . The result is a mind that feels much calmer and clear." —Andy Puddicomb

Having an abundance of choices is a valuable asset and an extraordinary opportunity. However, unconsciously, when we don't filter our seemingly unlimited choices, we welcome more unnecessary stress into our daily lives.

As someone who wholeheartedly emb...

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"The thread of all good cooking: the right ingredients, fresh and the way they should be - not fancy or expensive." —Anne Willan, author of Women in the Kitchen and founder of La Varenne Cooking School in Paris

One of the world's preeminent authors on French cooking, a James Beard Award-winning author and the founder of La Varenne Cooking School in Paris, Anne Willan joins me on the podcast today to talk about her ...

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September 21, 2020 24 min

 

The Atlantic recently posted an article asserting there won't be a clear end to the pandemic. Rather, the end for each of us will be as unique and differentiated as each one of us and occur on a different timeline.

Frequently, the yearning for "returning to normal" may be voiced by those around us, strangers or intimate relations, or we may be simply thinking such thoughts, constantly, as we grieve the parts of...

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"We are born with a capacity to dance together but not with the necessary training."

—David Richo

As soon as I read the first line in chapter one shown above, the analogy made crystal clear sense of my ignorance about relationships and how to navigate past it: I needed to learn HOW to love, not just want to love and want to be loved.

Love, as the oft mentioned quote reminds is a verb, but even if we accept this t...

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“Comparison is the death of joy.” ― Mark Twain

The thief of joy, if Mark Twain is right, is of our own making.

The good news in this revelation reveals each of us can take back our joy.

Comparing ourselves to others occurs consciously and unconsciously. Consciously, we may be acutely aware that we follow certain people on social media to see how we are doing in relation; unconsciously, when we choose not to speak up to s...

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August 17, 2020 9 min

In three weeks the seventh season of The Simple Sophisticate will begin. With 285 episodes already shared, I am excited to explore new books, welcome guests that speak to what living simply luxuriously is all about and sharing motivating and inspiring ways to continue to live a life of quality over quantity.

I have shared the full calendar for Season 7 which spans the next 12 months. You will notice that 2021 has a handful fe...

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