Overnight Oats | Superfood Style

Graphic Design, amydlux • Photo Credit Alexandra Andersson @ Unsplash

Minimalism has a tendency of finding a way into every aspect of life. Once I started experiencing the incredible freedom that comes from simplification of things like developing a capsule closet, scaling back skincare products, or scanning and recycling heaps of paperwork, I became more aware of when things in other areas of life were unnecessarily complicated and burdensome.

When it came time for a kitchen declutter, the shift first occurred physically, in my pantry and cabinets, removing expired items, excess storage containers, and way more silverware than I could actually utilize. Soon after, my attention morphed towards an observation of how much management and resources my actual food and eating decisions were demanding of me. Once I started analyzing my habits within the realms of grocery shopping, meal planning, prep cooking, recipe development, food waste…it turned out that I was quite inefficient in the kitchen and I was spending a tremendous amount of time, and money, doing something that needs to be done every day, eat! I realized it was probably a good time to optimize my daily menu.

There is intentionality in my minimalism, and when I moved recently, I went tiny, or, I should say, tinier. With each move I’ve made since 2016, I have chosen to live in smaller and smaller quarters. Of course there was also a period of time prior to 2016 that I lived out of a suitcase for my job and stopped having a residence at all, but that’s a story for another day! As far as abodes go though, my latest move in 2021 gave me the smallest kitchen yet. While the overall square footage of my 2020 studio was smaller, the kitchen was much, much larger.

Historically I have always chosen a larger kitchen where I spend more time, and find a smaller cozy living room, or tiny bedroom where I literally only sleep, totally acceptable. I have been known to convert walk in closets into bedrooms on multiple occasions to maximize the rooms I spend my waking hours in. So now my kitchen was the size of closet and had very little counter space. When it comes to prep cooking I usually take up alot of room. I pull everythingggg out and leapfrog between recipes. Toss veggies for roasting over here, multiple cutting boards for chopping veggies for everything from raw consumption to soups, stews, salads, and smoothies.

Speaking of multiple cutting boards, breaking up with kitchen supplies was as hard as it was with my art supplies. These were the 2 areas it took me longest to downsize in my minimalist journey. I had to go into big observation mode and use methods like putting items in a box in the back of the closet for 3 or 6 months just to realize I don’t actually use that thing that I kept holding onto “just in case”. In our consumer culture it is so easy to hold onto things because we spent our hard earned money on it, or it was gifted, or I might host a dinner party with 20 people someday. Finally I decided that if these things weren’t happening on a consistent basis, I was holding onto a fantasy, not reality. Plus, there are solutions for those one offs, borrow items from a friend or neighbor, buy compostable serving dishes, get items from your local buy nothing group and then re-gift them when you’re done.

Refactoring the way I cooked and prepped also meant I needed to consider a few additional factors. For one thing, I didn’t want to sacrifice flavor, but I also didn’t want to own every spice known to humanity. I love simple yet layered flavors, and bringing out the natural flavors from fruits + veggies is better than most over-flavored sauces and dressings in my opinion. I’m a big fan of Samin Nosrat’s basic principle of Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat. I decided that I’m ok with having a few combo spices such as “Curry” as opposed to owning one of every spice that makes up curry seasoning, or having an Italian Blend, instead of having a separate shaker of oregano, marjoram, thyme, basil, rosemary, and sage. To each their own, but I’ve found that this works for me to have more flavor and less clutter. Plus, I tend to keep live herbs so I can just pluck some of these fresh off my plants.

Finally, there was the health factor. I have definitely gone through stages of eating healthy and eating junk, but I’ve recommitted to my health the past few years. 2016 wasn’t just the year I began moving towards minimalism, it was also the year I was diagnosed with a chronic illness. I’m not one to lie down and take it, so I decided right away that I had to do everything in my power to combat my diagnosis. I am a firm believer that movement and nutrition are the most powerful healers there are so I had to make some serious lifestyle changes in order to remove the disease and the symptoms it was hurling at me from my body. I have been extremely successful with this and will share My Thyroid Diet on another post soon, but the real kicker was the pandemic.

When I was first diagnosed with hyperthyroidism, I got sick ALL the time. I had chronic fatigue, endless joint pain and muscle aches, constant chills, dysfunctional levels of brain fog, and on and on. My body could not regulate any function and had no ability to heal on its own from the slightest assault. If something was going around, I got it. Even when nothing was going around I just kept getting sick and sucking at living. Being healthy my whole life prior, this was devastating. I could barely move, or think, or function. Everything hurt and I was miserable. I was genuinely concerned that I would no longer be able to work and for the first time in my life, felt threatened that I would stay sick enough to no longer be able to support myself, and I have no one else to fall back on. I don’t have family ties and I am single. It was a really, really hard reality I was facing, like looking down the barrel of a gun.

When Covid kicked in, I was fairing pretty well and had pulled myself out of the deep mire, but I was still in a job with no work life balance, working extreme hours to try to keep up with my job duties. When I work alot of overtime I tend to forget to hydrate and make poor nutrition choices. Then my body starts to revolt and I feel the inflammation kick in, which triggers the gut to get disrupted, and a myriad of symptoms start to flare up. I was managing it somewhat because I began to recognize those symptoms earlier and earlier and would make shift changes to try to counteract developments, but I was definitely not at peak health prior to going into quarantine.

In March 2020, like so many others, I did not know what to think of this illness that was suddenly in front of us all. Wash your doorknobs and stay away from each other was not exactly comforting. I was worried that my health was not strong enough to combat whatever this Coronavirus was. So I did the only thing I could do, get back to my personal health commitment. I got back into my daily superfood smoothie habit and started prioritizing exercise again. This was another layer to catapult me further into a sustainable wellness ritual with optimized kitchen efficiencies.

All this and more to finally develop the tastiest, most nutrient dense overnight oats one could only dream of, but dream no more, this vegan, gluten free delight is here in the 3D!

2 C Oats
1/4 C Pepitas
1/8 C Chopped Nuts
1 C Coconut Flakes
1/4 C Chia Seeds
1/2 C Hemp Seeds
1/2 C Raisins
1 tsp Cinnamon
1 tsp Ginger
1 tsp Almond or Vanilla Extract
1/2 C Pumpkin Puree
2 C Vegan Mylk

Yields ~ 10 Cups

❊ Save Half the Mylk for Topping Off ❊
✷ Mix Ingredients in a Large Mixing Bowl Until Moist
✷ Fill Jars 2/3 with Mixture
✷ Put Lid On and Shake Vigorously
✷ Remove Lid and Top off with Additional Vegan Mylk until jar is Full
✷ Leave in Fridge Overnight
✷ Pour Mixture into a Bowl and top with Fresh or Frozen Fruit

Enjoy for breakfast or a snack then go Slay The Day!


Can you relate? 🤪

Lately I’m not sure I can even call myself a minimalist anymore because my physical clutter has transmuted to digital declutter. 😅 I am going to schedule a weekend soon to deep clean and organize my digital space.

Getting a new computer last year gave me the illusion that my digital space was pretty clean and organized, but the truth is I have a backup hard drive that needs to be decluttered and downsized. It has been sitting around just collecting dust for too long. I have 2 backup drives but neither is close to full, so the goal is to consolidate into one and then sell the extra terabyte drive once emptied.

Alot of this mess is simply redundant pictures – you know when you take 15 of the same shot to get the perfect crop, lighting, and frame – but you never deleted the ones that were less than par? I have more than I can count. oopsie.

When it comes to internet tabs – I am so guilty of this! If I keep a tab open it is because I still need to complete an action with that page. I have a set for work, a set for personal, and a set for my side hustle. I am a very productive go-getter type so I am often juggling multiple projects, both industrious and creative varieties. At a certain point I tend to just consolidate the links into a list or calendar recurring to-do “event”, and revisit them as needed, otherwise I feel like I just lose efficiency. It has gotten a little out of hand lately so I am working on getting a hold of my tabs TODAY.

Since 2016 I made a goal to simplify my life as a New Years Resolution, which set me on the unbeknownst journey of downsizing and becoming a minimalist in the first place. That entailed closing out so many things that no longer served me that I spent a year and a half “closing shop”, and learning how complex things had really become before I even got started with the original goal of “simplifying”. 😳 I have done a great job since then of evaluating what is worth my time and attention. Still,occasionally, it comes in waves, where I need to check in on my priorities and make sure I am not giving too much time and attention to items that aren’t serving a greater purpose for my goals, health, or well being.

I am looking forward to the day when I’ve overcome the clutter waves to the point that they no longer demand attention to wrangle them back down to manageable bites. With intention and mindfulness, I know it is right around the corner. 😉

What tips and tricks do you have to keep digital clutter at bay? Let us know in the comments! ✍🏼


If you’re lucky enough to have a father figure in your life, you may have heard the old adage that Dad’s are notoriously difficult to shop for. How many ties or wallets can you really give a fella? Plus, many people are getting burnt out on our incessant capitalist materialism, and people are beginning to crave, both as givers and receivers, something more meaningful than a forced token.

Let’s also not make the mistake of assuming all Dads are cis men. Gender is fluid so let’s celebrate all of our Trans and Non-Binary Dads too. Plus some Moms are taking the responsibility of both parents so let’s shout out to the Mom-Dads as well! Whomever the “Dad” in your life, blood or chosen, here are some minimalist and low waste gifts to consider on Father’s Day.

  1. Consumables
    Consider a bag of fancy coffee beans with that delicious aroma pouring out, or a gift card to their favorite cafe or eatery. Don’t forget to be a good consumer and shop Black Businesses. Check out MBG’s 19 Black-Owned Coffee Brands & Roasters You Can Order From Online to purchase your delish coffee gifts.
  2. GoldBelly Delivery
    Oh My Gaga. Did you know you can literally get the best most authentic food from anywhere delivered with this incredible delivery service. Order a favorite dish without having to travel to a different state to get famous, mouth watering, delicacies delivered to the doorstep.
  3. Handmade Art
    It doesn’t matter now old you are, parents love gifts made by their kids. Spruce up a drawing or abstract painting with a custom frame. Or take a pottery or sculpture class and make something unique. Better yet, gift the class to your parent. Michael’s has all the creative supplies you can dream of, custom framing, and regular boasts sales of at least 20% off for both new and returning customers.
  4. Tickets to a Game, Theatre, or Concert
    Let’s be real, we’ve been cooped up for a long time. If it’s safe and you’re family is vaccinated and comfortable with the idea of venturing out, it may be a decent time to consider going to a show or a game. You can often buy tickets months out of you need more time to adjust (like me), or pick a venue with ample exterior seating options. Eventbrite is a great place to shop for events while supporting local and independent creators and LGBTQIA + BIPOC businesses.
  5. Spa Day or Massage
    Who doesn’t love to be pampered. Whether it’s a massage or a trip to the sauna and hot tub, this is a gift anyone would love to get some well deserved R+R. Groupon is always an easy place to find a sweet local deal.

I’m ready to celebrate with a list like that! Don’t forget, these gift ideas can extend beyond father’s day to birthdays, holidays, or no-reason-at-all day. What is a favorite minimalist gift you’ve given or received? Tell us in the comments below!

For those of us without Dads, or for the moms that are shouldering the responsibility of both parents, I commend you. I don’t have a dad and I turned out pretty great. Remember, you are strong, amazing, worthy, and full of love. I believe in you!

This blog is not sponsored and these are not affiliate links. These are just brands that I like and support personally.

Minimalism Is A Process

In December 2015 my New Year’s Intention was to simplify my life. This sentiment was my only resolution that year. Well, let me tell you, simplifying was not simple at all. In fact, it got much more complicated before it simplified.

Almost 5 years later and it is still my main objective, to simplify. 5 years ago I would have never have believed it would take me this long to shift my lifestyle. I didn’t realize my whole lifestyle would become scrutinized to such an extent in the process, but I am so happy it did.

You see, my innate call to simplification was due to oversaturation and overstimulation. I had to first observe, then identify, then evaluate, in order to successfully eliminate. This began a process of unfolding, and of deep work yearned for by my soul.

Now, I regularly re-prioritize. Choose what to delegate, what to let go, and what is worth holding onto. These are all practices, because they take practice. We don’t always get it right on the first try.

Everytime I declutter it feels like such a release that it seems like there couldn’t possibly be any more to let go of. But every 4-6 weeks I evaluate what of my possessions has not been utilized, and I release them to someone that will actually use them.

The best part of the journey is that it isn’t just belongings that are being evaluated. It’s relationships that don’t reciprocate. It’s ideologies that do more harm than good. It’s negative self talk that has long since expired. It’s committing to profound authenticity and refusing to hold a veil between you and your truest nature.

Minimalism is a process. Enjoy the ride. ❤

Redwing 40

My minimalism mission meant it was time to go separate ways with my sweet Kelty Redwing 40 hiking pack that I got when I was traveling in Vermont. I bumbled around the gorgeous state and then took a long beautiful train ride down to NYC after about a month or so of walking the long country roads (getting chased by viscious cows), watching the leaves change every shade of red, yellow, and amber, and discovering maple everything for the first time. I took my Redwing to many United States, and rocked it especially hard in my grand finale state, Alaska. I traveled with it to Europe for 6 weeks of early winter all over the continent from Ireland to Hungary to Portugal and beyond. It is abundantly roomy and the compression straps can suck it down to feel like a daypack. It fits in the overhead bin of a plane, or under the seat of a train. When I’ve been lucky enough to get both seats on a long bus ride through Western Europe it sits by my side and I’d fall over onto it like a perfectly sized mushy cuddle buddy. Sometimes it was even my pillow on the New York Subway after a long day of urban trekking.

I have discovered that I have a little bit of a bag obsession. As I pare down in my glorious minimalism, I have found that I simply have too many bags. Too many ways to carry and stow and trek. I know this because most things, like my wardrobe, have been a cinch for me to downsize. I hate clothes for the most part. I am too rough and tumble to be fashionable. I get into an overwhelming tizzy when I have to shop for anything fabric related. Forget sewing! Textiles have a mind of their own and I can not handle the way they change form and shape without warning. Give me power tools over a sewing machine any day. I am OCD clean at home but what happens after laundry is washed? I can’t seem to find it in me to simply hang these things on a hanger and be done with the task. I dump the basket on my bed so I am “forced” to put them away before I go to sleep ~ but NO ~ this does not happen. Putting the clothes away simply never happens with ease. Later, tired and ready to go to bed, I grab the heap and throw it on the lounge chair and go promptly to sleep. The next day I am shuffling through the mad pile to dress myself and the shit goes spilling all over the floor. After a few days the dirty is starting to get mixed up with the clean and, DAMMIT, again, Amy?! Anyway, it’s a nightmare. So I promptly got rid of all but a capsule wardrobe in about 4 whole minutes when I decided to do the 100 Thing Challenge and go hardcore minimalist. So now I have no clothes. I have BAGS. Holy Cats! I’m a bag lady! Ummm…

SO. I was having the hard talk with myself and realized it’s time for some tough love. I simply must downsize, even my precious bag collection, for my ever inspiring minimalist lifestyle. As a Tiny House Movement Wannabe, it just makes sense. Less is more! How many hiking bags do I really need? I already got rid of 3 lightweight generic backpacks. Along with this Kelty I still have a North Face pack and my trusty Lowe Alpine that I got in 1990 when I first started hiking and climbing in the Pocono Mountains. Home turf Pennsylvania say whaaaat! I also have a gym backpack, a beach tote, a waterprood gecko swim bag, a messenger bag…needless to say there are many more vessels in my collection.

I’ve had a few things sitting on Craigslist for the past month collecting dust and trolls and I didn’t really feel like dealing with that forum so I decided to try posting it to a local Facebook garage sale page I recently began following. I couldn’t remember what I paid for it, at least $150, possibly $180. I posted it for $50. Then I looked it up and it is selling for new on Amazon for $264, and it’s an older model. Whoa! Did I pay that much? I never did think too much about what I spend on quality outdoor gear. I barely shop as it is so when I do go for a high ticket item it’s usually worth it. Still, even though I bought it in 2012, 4 years ago, all of those trips I took it on tallied to only about 6 months of use. I take great care of my gear. Wiping dust off with rubbing alcohol, shaking out the debris regularly, keeping the excess straps bound neatly to prevent unnecessary wear and tear. I always hang my hiking bags in the closet between uses, all zipped up and compressed, so pretty. I copied the Product Description and Bag Features from Kelty and posted it with a couple of pics. To my surprise I had a nearly immediate hit. A woman liked, commented, and sent me a direct message shortly after I posted. Well, that was fairly easy.

We agreed to meet at a nearby coffee shop the following afternoon. I slept as hard as ever since I’m now doing bricks to train for my first triathlon. I woke up at 5am ready to conquer the to do list and saw the appointment on my calendar to sell my Redwing. I suddenly had a hint of seller’s remorse. Not as much of a hint, really – more of an onslaught. “This thing is in excellent shape,” I thought. “Have I been underutilizing this bag?” “Should I sell the Lowe Alpine instead? The Kelty is newer technology! What am I doing??” I continued to wonder if I was doing the right thing as I dragged myself out of my house to deliver it to its soon-to-be new owner. Maybe she won’t like it. Maybe she will find it awkward. Yet, lo and behold, when I met her, I couldn’t help myself: my REI member-salesgirl persona came tumbling out all over as I excitedly showed her all the cool features. How it was so big and so small at the same time. The trick velcro side pockets that opened up for tent poles or walking sticks. The secret camelback compartment that opened through the top while doubling over enough to still keep the rain out. Comfy, slim straps for the female torso and an external spine that distributes the weight absolutely perfectly. So much back padding! The perfect bedroll straps, the countless carabiner loops on the bottom, the compartments, the top loading ~ OHEMGEE~.

It was a hard break up, but at the end, my knapsack was starting a new love affair. The best part came when she told me she will be using it to hike the Continental Divide!!! All of a sudden, I was ABOUT IT. YES. So much YES. “Prior to the trip, planning, preparation, and training can take anywhere from twelve to eighteen months. The trip itself takes about six months on foot, when averaging 17 miles per day.”** I am grateful to provide something so useful to this woman’s incredible journey and the look on her face told me she was super pumped! Kelly got her Kelty and I am stoked to know this Redwing has many more adventures ahead. Bon Voyage!