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Simply Step Up to the Plate, by Carol Schneider, VLCE

In celebration of July 12 – National Simplicity Day – let’s get simpler to de-complicate our lives.

I love simple. So did Emerson, who said, “To be simple is to be great.”  Jill Milan, Moo Shoes, Steve Jobs, Spanx, and on and on, built empires on concepts of elegant, staight-forward, technical, focused, spare simplicity.  Simple. Focus. Simple. Focus.

Banishing animal food for beans simplified our eating lifestyles – turning upside down what we previously thought we had to have. Don’t let complexity muck it up.  Whatever you’re absolutely sure you must have… you probably don’t. SimpleSize any thing and it’s likely to be better.

Try one of these to edit to a simpler vegan life:

Declutter. Joyful eating means fine vegan food – not more vegan food. Excess loads you down and complicates your body. A vegan chef said ask yourself, “How do you want to feel at the end of the meal?”  Not stuffed – nor stressed from eating it just because it’s there. Leave half for tomorrow or give it away. “Tell me what you think you need and I’ll tell you how to get along without it.”  Dilbert

Make it up. Forget recipes. Avoid them for a month and see what you create without them. Chop, stir, steam, simmer, or saute real food and see where it takes you. Use the flavors you love – and try new ones. Former NYT restaurant critic Mimi Sheraton said, “Are we going to measure or are we going to cook?”

Open it up.  Rock your kitchen! Add square footage by removing cabinet doors – or the entire cabinet. Once I dumped the just-in-case plates, stale spices, unused spiralizer, and other silliness I thought I had to have, I released possibilities. Our gatherings from 2 to 25 still work in our lighter kitchen. There’s just enough food and gear and nothing more. Keep only the essentials – including great people – that fuel and reveal who you are.

Drink a salad. Swap a snack. Thanks Blender for giving me tasty treats. Salads can slow you down on a busy day; instead, sip, slurp, gulp a smoothie. Salads with oil are yesterday; nutrient for nutrient, you’re heart-healthier by swapping liquid calories from oil to sipping wine anyway. Swap intact for liquid food a couple days a week. (Yet arugula is so amazing I think it’s winning over popcorn as my idle munching snack :).

Guard the entrance –  Fiercely keep phonies and intruders out – of your basket, cart, front door, kitchen, mouth. You are a fine form of life and you deserve better than random, processed, or stale food that passes your way. Save yourself for simpler, finer health.

carol sCarol Schneider, VLCIE is Chief Simplicity Officer of –  helping people create  carol logoleaner, lighter lives through SimpleSizing to offload excess – at home, at work, in health, and life in general.  She attended the founding Main Street Vegan Academy. She heartily thanks her daughter, Suzannah, for prompting her vegan life. And her careers in teaching and business communication led her to edit work and create   



  1. Great post! I am all for simplicity. After retiring, and after a lifetime of cooking for a family, I do believe I AM DONE. Now I go for simple, healthy foods that can just be simply thrown together. I wish there were more cookbooks with a nod to that. In this hectic world, no matter what your age, who has the time? Sometimes I think people are turned off to veganism because they think the food is complicated. NOT!