Minimalism (to me). 

As far back as I can remember I’ve been a little obsessive about being tidy (rare is the small child who gets extreme pleasure out of an all white uncluttered room). The truth is… “stuff” makes me really (really) anxious. If I start thinking about how many items I own, I can legit drive myself into a full-blown panic attack. Birthdays and Christmas make me extremely nervous; gifts = more stuff. 

I have this reoccurring nightmare that I’m attending my own baby shower… people are bombarding me with loud flashing plastic toys, stuffed animals and brightly colored appliquéd outfits. I keep yelling through sobs “thank you but we said no gifts” – no one listens and the gift givers start laughing and chanting “Get used to it!” This is right around where I wake up and probably why I don’t have kids.   

When we sold our house a few months ago, we also sold almost everything in it. We’re currently in limbo with our living arrangements, while we wait for our apartment to be built, so we haven’t replaced anything. We were minimalists before but this is next level. We don’t have a TV or sofa. We have a borrowed bed, a borrowed dining room table and 2 borrowed wood chairs. We have 2 plates, 1 mixing bowl, 2 forks, 2 spoons, 2 cups and 1 frying pan… Our garage has some boxes with personal belonging (books, pictures, tools, some art…), we kept our bikes, ski equipment, a grill and a few other odds-n-ends.  Ohh and we moved our plants plus the dog!! 

Simply – Our accommodations are sparse. 

Even since we’ve moved I’ve combed through my wardrobe, purged a lot of things I was holding onto for no good reason and implemented a spending fast of sorts. 

Having so little in the house has done unexpected things. It’s made me really appreciate and use the things we do have. It’s sparked a self awareness in myself that has poured into other areas; my business, my diet and my mental health. Not having the TV for example has made me waste less time in the evenings… when I could be sleeping. I’m better at prioritizing. I’m extremely selective about what I allow into my life (both physically and emotionally). Selling or donating most of my clothes, means I’m only left with the items I really like! It makes getting dressed really quick and effortless. 

Opening the cabinet and using our 1 vintage milk-glass mixing bowl makes me really happy; I love that thing. I feel freer – Less anxious. It’s got me excited about de-cluttering other areas that can be pain-points. Saying “no” more and building in more time to do the things that interest me. Erasing my personal presence on social media, deleting all accounts and apps that aren’t business related and canceling subscriptions that don’t add value. Pulling everything way back; starting from this new place. 

I rarely compare myself to others but I DO compare myself to my past. Was I more ambitions then? Was I in better shape? Was my skin nicer? Were my teeth whiter? I should get back to that routine. I really looked good there… etc. 

A few years ago (well Hell even a few months ago), I was in the relentless pursuit of more. More work. More hours in the gym. More hustle. That was great… Then. Right now I’m into less. Less chemicals, less products, less pressure, less noise, less technology, less of what doesn’t matter. I’m redefining what “health” means to me today (not harping on what it used to mean). Maximizing through minimizing. 

I’m not suggesting that you need to get rid of all your stuff to have a mental breakthrough (I do plan on buying a couch and full dinning set once we move); I’m only suggesting that there could be great opportunity in re-framing what it means to have less. 

Think of something that makes you incredibly happy; this could be anything. Maybe it’s taking a holiday, going for a bike ride. Maybe it’s refurbishing classic cars… Whatever! Now. Think about what it would be like if you could do more of that!!! The typical approach is this… Work more. Work harder. Make more money. Put hobbies and interests, health and connections on the back burner until… You retire. You pay down some debt. You grind through that job you hate. 

What if instead you did less and got MORE. What if you got rid of that new car payment and drove something used (no payment!). What if you downsized from that house you have a huge mortgage on and lived in something smaller. What if you sold some of your toys (the sleds, RV’s, boat, ATV, that 3rd blender). What if you bought a beautiful, high-quality pair of boots every 5-years instead of emptying your wallet every time you pass a clearance rack (disposable/uncomfortable cheap 1-season footwear). What if you stopped buying crap throwaway toys for your kids and went for a hike instead. What if you shut off the video game and finally worked on that business idea you’ve been talking about for years. What if you didn’t need every NEW iPhone. What if you spent more on what goes into your body (nutrient dense REAL food) instead of shelling out cash for antacids, doctors bills and fast-food. 

What if you did just a couple of these things? What if you just did one?! What if you really think about what makes you happy and prioritized that! People always assume they need to make more… But what if you  just need to spend less. You can be a minimalist and have nice things. Look – I love my Apple products and I’m a sucker for well-crafted home goods and clothes. But the practice of carefully curating what you allow into your life is paramount and doesn’t stop at consumer goods. This includes people, energy and emotions. Minimalism to me means being more intensional. More selective. More meaningful. More from less.

I make WAYYYYYY less (crazy less) money now than I did when I was selling (legal) drugs but my cost of living is a fraction of what it used to be. I had a job that was so stressful it was making me sick. I could have stayed there OR I could get out. My plan was to take advantage of a philosophy I’ve been using my entire life; minimalism. I do more with less now and I continue to learn and change through this process. I have time to do the things that interest me and give me purpose; my possessions are few but they make me happy and have a clear function. 

If you visit… BYOCCSD (Bring Your Own Chair Cup Silverware Dish!!) at least for a few more months!!!! We’ve got the beer. Haha. 

Health + Happiness, 


What’s Your Plan?

When people ask “what’s the plan for Carr Eats?” I respond with… When?! Because I LOVE plans and I have many. I have a plan for right now. A plan for the week. A plan for the month. A one-year, five-year and ten-year plan. A short-game plan. A backup-plan. A worst-case-scenario plan. I have plans for my personal life. I have plans for my businesses. I even have a plan for eating and sleeping. Why? Because, in general, I don’t like to be surprised. I’m a scheduler. A type-A controller. A plan gives me purpose and order. A plan is organized and broken-down into steps and waypoints. A plan gets me to my Long-Game. My long-game doesn’t include leaving anything on the table and thus I hammer into my thoughts and do.

I started Carr Eats out of camping-coolers in my house almost three years ago; I couldn’t see into the future then and I can’t know what’s around the corner now. Carr Eats will move into its own commercial production space, The Kitchen Company, this Spring; my newest entrepreneurial adventure. I don’t have a looking glass… I only know there’s more.

Whenever anything seems out of reach, hard or impossible; I sketch my thoughts and intensions out on paper. I daydream the playbook. I think in increments. I get obsessed. The great thing about a plan is that no matter how hard you try, they WILL be unpredictable. A plan will get messy. A plan will flip-flop and wriggle as detours, roadblocks, obstacles and life pileup in your way. Quitting is not a plan. Quitting is a default you lean into when the plan gets hard. Plans might need to be lean and agile while you test them out, but a plan is nothing without the doing so you’ve gotta move. Maybe you spend years living-out a plan only to discover a dead-end. Perhaps the plan was wrong? Maybe after some reflection the plan sucked. Pain-point? Yes. But maybe through all the struggle, wrong-turns and misfortune you found a better way. Be honest. Don’t condemn your future by denying what’s happened in the past but don’t be so self-deprecating that you’re paralyzed by fear.

My relationship with food is at a place today that at one-time seemed impossible. I couldn’t pave the road that that led me here because I wasn’t entirely sure where I was going. You hear stories of people who were born knowing their path. Mine is not that journey. I have been a lot of things. I have made a lot of plans. I’ve quit, failed, succeed, started over and reset more times than you could possibly track or calculate. However. The one constant through everything? Me. Either you are living life or life is happening to you. Today is an arbitrary day, unmarked by purpose. It will be the same as tomorrow and as unmemorable as yesterday until you press-play and turn that plan into action. Don’t choke out a dream with lies and self-appointed logistics. Get busy. Don’t leave anything on the table. The work will feel good and the reward is all the things, people and awareness you’ll accumulate along the way.

My plan for Carr Eats is community. My plan is to grow our customer base into a powerhouse of Eaters who leave nothing on the table. Who use our meals as a catalyst for excellence. I want our meals to fuel-fires and free-talent. I want our meals to remove-doubt and grow-confidence. Lofty?! Yes. But not impossible. We aren’t ready to put a limit on what our meals can achieve so until then we will keep cooking and planning. Think we’re just food? There’s more and we’re excited to show you. That’s us. What’s your plan?

Live It.

There are always… ALWAYS, going to be people that want to knock you down. Steal your thunder. Rain on your parade. People that aren’t open to change. What you believe in…

What goals and dreams you have set for yourself are NOT dependent on the opinions of others. If a simple insult or counterpoint is enough to rip you apart, then perhaps you are not ready to lean your own way. BUT if you listen, process and come to the conclusion your way is worth it. It has value. It would be painful to give up because you feel so deeply passionate about whatever IT is… move forward. Move forward with the people and things in your life that add value and support.

Yes. There will be challenges. You will learn often that you don’t know everything and you aren’t always right. Have the grace to admit you’re wrong. Have the guts to change your mind. BUT stop listening to all the noise. Stop believing all the distractions. Stop believing the headlines.

You are not the world police. It is not your job to convert the opinions and actions of others. If you believe in something – Live it. Live it and let others see you as an influence. Misery loves company but greatness fosters change. Be better. Talk less about people and more about ideas. Lead instead of being led. Stop chasing mediocrity. Be the person people want on their team.

For so many (many) years I wanted to blend in. I wanted to be part of the clique. It never happened and for good reason. It’s not who I was supposed to be. I like tattoos and business podcasts. I get pumped about renovations, FOOD and new work-gloves. ALL of this is OK. Not wrong – Just different.

So while you should bend with the wind – DON’T bend so far and so often you forget how to stand. Stand up.

In short – Believe in yourself. LIVE IT!

Health + Happiness,



Warning: This post is raw. Not like, fresh sushi kind of raw… but like, expired, left in the sun, maggot meat kind of raw. I am not ashamed. What you’re about to read is who I am. This is my life and why I find meaning in what I do. This is my long-grind transformation story. I’m sharing because I know people struggling. People struggling with weight, with being a parent, with being a spouse, with money, with life…  

Sometimes a transformation isn’t about turning into a butterfly. Sometimes a transformation is about just sorting though a pile of mail and passing on an office donut. Lasting transformations don’t happen overnight, they happen in the long-grind everyday. Anyone who tells you differently is lying. Maybe you’ll believe the lie because it’s easy. Prediction: You’ll be back to where you started as fast as you can spend $100 at Target. 

Listen closely. Everything. In. Your. Life. Is. Connected. You CAN NOT transform into a buff/beautiful/successful/happy butterfly, if you are late to work, eat crap, have loads of debt… and disorganized closets. How do I know this? Because I’ve seen it time-and-time again in myself. It wasn’t until I decided to address the small everyday tasks, that I was able to see some transformation in the big picture. 

Sometimes you don’t bing and purge chips because you’re hungry and afraid of getting fat. Sometimes you eat until you make yourself puke because you have ZERO control over the everyday. I’m a recovering anorexic + bulimic. I spent two decades with one eating disorder or another; It started because I had control issues and it ended because I learn how to control my control issues. It was never about weight or food. This is important because while the symptoms were the same throughout the years, the context was always changing… so transforming from empty to whole was ALWAYS out of reach. 

In middle school, high school and college it was easy to function; my parents took care of me. For the most part they paid all my bills, bought my clothes and food, took me on trips… I just needed to pull it together enough to get good grades, shower, dress, play sports and stay out of trouble. Simple. After college things got complicated. It’s hard to hold a job, balance a checkbook, be a good human and stay attentive in relationships when you are overwhelmed by EVERYTHING. When everything is loud + screaming and you’re not sure why. 

I would wakeup exhausted, disgusted and defeated everyday. I was angry, resentful and jealous of everything. I drove myself into over ten-thousand dollars of secret credit card debt. Most of that, food I was eating and vomiting minutes later. This didn’t help my anxiety + stress. All my friends were planning their future. Getting promoted. I hated them. 

My life was a web of lies. I’d quit jobs because I was bored or they didn’t fit with my bathroom schedule. I’d procrastinate about leaving the house, cancel therapy sessions, dump my Prozac. Drink instead. It was hard to see the benefit of doing anything when you’re flush-faced hugging a toilet bowl. I’d put on shows; forcing myself look alive + alert. Side note: I could make some serious mess at wedding receptions and dinner parties. Speaking from experience; self hate, alcohol and zero nutrition are a recipe for disaster. 

During the eye of the storm I was living with Mr. Eats in New Jersey. I’d seen LOTS of therapists and nutritionists – Nothing worked and at that point, I don’t think I even cared. I didn’t care about anything… Certainly not about self-help. I remember one day, home alone – I had just scoffed down an entire loaf of white bread with butter. It wasn’t mine, I had stolen it from one of our roommates. This was common; I’d go on a binge and then have to re-buy and carefully portion out the food I’d eaten. It happened daily. 

This particular day was memorable because, alone, in the bathroom, I was choking. I could feel myself unable to breath (white bread is basically glue) – I remember panicking. Not panicking because I was afraid to die but panicking because I didn’t want anyone to see me dead on the bathroom floor with generic-brand white bread lodged in my esophagus. I was embarrassed. I was embarrassed because my parents had broken their backs to pay for my eduction. I was embarrassed because my boyfriend was blindly supportive – Getting nothing in return. I was embarrassed because I had friends + family who loved me. And here I was… I would be found dead on this F’ing bathroom floor full of stolen bread. NO! NO! NO! I remember thrusting my arm down into my throat and pulling out the obstruction. Gasping for air and crying I remember thinking… “You spoiled brat! What the HELL is your problem?! FIX THIS!” And so the long-grind transformation began. 

It started with finding a therapist I could talk to. It stated with slowly trusting myself to tell the truth and ask for help. It started with opening my mail, mapping out a plan to pay off my debt and working. Working even if I didn’t like it. Getting into a routine. Going outside. Getting exercise. Creating manageable to-do lists. It started with taking one painfully slow step-at-a-time, falling, trying again… Falling even harder but knowing I needed to stay the course. Learning I kind of liked the new me. Learning I kind of liked the process.   

And this process took years. YEARS!!! I’m still working on it. I work on my mental and physical self like it’s a full-time job. I show-up for myself! I’m on time. I understand that if my closets are messy and the dog isn’t listening that I can’t recoil and eat a box of cookies. I take responsibility. I break it down. I own my mistakes and give myself permission to celebrate my successes. 

Transformation isn’t always a graceful before + after. It can be messy. It can be intangible and irresolute. No one is going to throw you a parade for being better than you were yesterday, or last week, or last year. Transformation isn’t just for the Tuesday hashtag – It’s your LIFE. Change is nothing without a purpose and unfortunately your dress size, children, parents, partner and bank account can’t tell you who you are and what you need to be. 

Anything you have done or said lives by the power you place on it. If you are choking – Find the obstruction! If it’s important to you (like breathing important) you will MAKE it happen. Probably Opera or someone just as successful said “Find your why” – I’ll repeat it so you hear me… Find your why.

Conclusion: This is my why.  

(BIG) Goals + (BIG) Dreams

Let’s get really uncomfortable for a moment… and maybe a little rambly. Let’s do an activity (yippie!). Think BIG and wrecklessly. Set a timer, close your eyes and think of 3 BIG goals in 30 seconds…. (3,2,1…) Ok. Now how awkward was that? How small were your goals? Could you even think of three? Were they just tasks? Did you let your mind get large for a second and then you slapped yourself back down? Exactly. 

We like to think in rational terms and lists – It’s hard to set the BIG goal because deep down you think you can’t achieve the small steps to get you there. Maybe you think – This goal is too hard. This goal isn’t practical. Screw that. Let’s try again but differently. Set a timer, close your eyes and think of 3 BIG goals in 30 seconds… before you start, imagine you can’t fail. Instead of “loosing 20 pounds” say “I have a killer body” – See the difference? Instead of “I want to create my own company” say “I have a multi-million dollar bomb-a#$ business” I can thank Rachel Hollis for articulating how I’ve thought about most things since I was little girl. 

Many say “Well Chris – you’ve never lacked confidence” BUT why is that a bad thing? Work with what God gave ya!!! 

I have two businesses with zero experience in business. School was never easy for me. I’m not naturally smart. Yeah I said it!! I did well in school because I was competitive not because I was gifted. If I won anything or got good grades it was because I worked my tush off. I was always envious of peers that didn’t need to study… I’m like a sweaty bull among casual swans. In college my advisor said (and I quote) “You’re like a half baked cake. All the ingredients… but you’re just not there.” She said this one-week before graduation. Thanks for fueling the fire Dr. Hastings… I just checked. She’s still there!

Short story and something that has indirectly come up in every therapy session I’ve ever had: In elementary school I was in the slow reading group. I was in the “special” math class. I had a tutor. I was little but I was pissed off. I wanted to be with my friends. I wanted to be in the smart kids reading group. These were NEVER permissions for me to quit. I didn’t have a plan. I didn’t know what goal setting was but I could see myself there. I created vivid, detailed fantasies of reading to the class flawlessly from a chapter-book. I knew how I would animate the voices of the characters, how I would pause for effect to create drama in the storyline. It never occurred to me that there was even a chance I would’t succeed. 

Flash forward: I’m not great at anything. I am however – stubborn + confident + naive. The combination of which make me a glutton for BIG dreams. I’m in my head all the time. I get bored really quickly. I’m a builder. Doing something when it’s running smoothly doesn’t interest me. I think that’s why I’ve had approximately 100 jobs. I’d start a new position and then when the challenge and chase was over… Once I knew what I was doing or it wasn’t hard – I was over it. I’m a junkie for mess. I love organizing and cleaning and DOING. I can NOT sit idle to save my life so being an entrepreneur is PERFECT!!! I’m also the only one that wouldn’t fire my brand of crazy… so it works out. 

Back to the purpose of this post: DREAM BIGGER. SET BIGGER GOALS. Taste them, feel them, imagine intimate details about them. Know the nail color you’ll wear to your first book signing. What pen you’ll use! What the leather feels like in the SUV that brings you there. Anything I’ve ever gotten was over my head. Even relationships. Mr. Eats didn’t even know who I was in that High School lunch room. Work that shit! 18 years later we own a house, a dog, a business and I get to pack his meals for work every day. Do you think any of that would have happened if I didn’t DREAM it? NO!!! AND I love feeding people so hush yo self if you think that last part is trivial.

If you chop down who you want to be and what you want to do because it’s laborious or time consuming – guess what?! Your best life is going to pass you over like a cold winter wind and you’ll be left living in a boring shell, bitter and sad. Get crazy passionate. When I tell a story I get loud, I add colorful language, I wave my arms around like a lunatic. Goals + dreams are not these abstract unicorns. You can get them. If you think small you get small. 

Put on your favorite song – SCREAM it in the car. Drive to the grocery store like a BOSS, while working out the furniture arrangement inside your dream lake house. Let your imagination run wild like a child. “When I grow up, I want a job where I get incremental promotions and drive a reliable eco-friendly Prius. Also I want to walk on my treadmill for 3-miles a day and enjoy a small glass of red wine on the weekends.” – SAID NO CHILD EVER!!! How else do you think we have doctors, firefighters, soldiers, internet, airplanes and music.     

Hey! If your burning dream was to becoming a parent you wouldn’t just have sex once and call it good. NO! If it didn’t workout after the first try you wouldn’t extinguish your destiny and buy a houseplant! Hell no. You’d get back in there and try again front, back and sideways… and if that didn’t work you try something else. Before the kid is even conceived, you’ve named them, imagined their career, painted their bedroom, dreamt about cartoon band-aids!! The imagination MAKES it real. It makes you smell it when you wake up and live it when you put your feet on the floor.

Conclusion: Cake batter is delicious.