Simple in the City: Life of a Progressive Pioneer

Studio 5 contributor, Ashley Kewish sat down with blogger Amy Thompson to chat about the things she is doing within her own home to make her life simpler…and they’re not all new ideas. To her, it’s more about looking to the past and embracing her inner pioneer.

It’s not every day you see chickens running through a backyard in downtown Salt Lake City, but for Amy Thompson, it’s all in a day’s work.
“Well we make a lot of things from scratch. We make our own bread which is really easy. It’s not intimidating at all,” says Thompson.

That’s because she and her family choose to live a more simple life and get by on less. It allows her to focus on what she calls the more important things.

“I think it just kind of slows down the pace of our home a little bit and just makes it more peaceful.”
After earning her undergraduate degree in Anthropology from Brigham Young University, she enjoyed a successful career.

“It was really fun intellectually. It was a really fun job, but it wasn’t so satisfying personally, you know?”
She felt she needed to make a change and get back to the basics. Along the way, she ran into other women who yearned for something more as well.

“I felt like a lot of these women just needed a place where they could go and feel like this is normal. They all had this intuitive feeling, but didn’t feel societal support for their decision and so I just wanted to create a space where I could go and get validated I guess.”
This experience inspired Amy to start her own blog. She shares her experiences on topics like cloth diapering, sustainability, co-sleeping, and even urban-farming. She named it the Progressive Pioneer.

“I like those two words together because they seem kind of opposite, but I think of it as taking the best of the past and the best of what’s right now and putting them together and kind of picking and choosing the best for yourself,” explains Thompson.
And choosing the best for herself and her family means furniture and toys made by hand, less television, and “baby-wearing” — a concept as old as time

“We never had a crib. We don’t have a clot of baby paraphernalia. We don’t have one of those strollers that have the car seat that attach into it.”

With another little one due any day now, she knows simplifying her life will continue to pay off for both herself and her family.

To visit Amy’s blog, go to

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