Simplifying

When I set my word of CHOOSE for 2017 I was interested to see how I would manifest it in my life. I said that above all else I want to CHOOSE family and writing this year, the two things that are most important to me. At the time I had a very full plate: working full time, parenting two little boys, co-running a household, co-hosting and producing two podcasts, co-owning Copper Quail Style, working part time as a freelance writer, exercising regularly, being active in a book club and trying to write for myself on this blog. On top... Read more →


Last year I read Better Than Before by Gretchen Rubin and I still think of it often. Erica and I even discussed it in a Girl Next Door Book Club! In the book, Rubin outlines four habit tendencies - Upholder, Questioner, Rebel, Obliger - which describe how a person responds to internal and external expectations. (You can take the quiz here to find out your tendency.) I'm an upholder and respond equally to internal and external expectations. In other words, I love goals and enjoy meeting them. Surprise!! I had so many lightbulb moments while reading about my own personality... Read more →


I love making our home cozy and functional. It's essentially a project I'm always working on. And finally, after eight years, I'm starting to feel confident in how I want to decorate and style our home. I have a lot of ideas about the yard, too. But all these ideas often lead me to want things for the house, which can quickly translate to spending money. This year, Chris and I have an aggressive savings goal of $20,000. We chatted our our 2017 budget and savings goals in a recent Matrimoney episode if you'd like all the details. Our savings... Read more →


What you see above is my new and improved grocery list. It makes me ridiculously happy. So does talking about grocery list habits (totally serious). So let's talk about it. Let me answer a few questions. Yes, the columns are arranged by aisle content at my Trader Joe's. And yes, our most frequently purchased items are listed according to where they are in the store. And yes! there is a spot for listing meals and items to purchase elsewhere (Target/other grocery store) at the bottom. I KNOW. Designing a grocery list template like this is something I had on my... Read more →


Every year is significant but this past year felt especially so for personal growth. Heading into 2016 I hoped that over the year I would begin to emerge from the intensely demanding period of having two boys under three, waking many times during the night and breastfeeding. I was looking forward to reclaiming my body and energy, and focusing some of that new-found energy on myself. So I declared 2016 The Year of Kelsey. I made goals of building a capsule wardrobe, a capsule skin care and makeup routine, going on creative field trips and traveling by myself. I worked... Read more →


Digital photos can be so overwhelming. So! Overwhelming! We can fill up our phones, dump the photos somewhere and then tap, tap, tap our way to thousands of more photos. Quickly there are photos across devices and clouds (what is this cloud exactly again?) and it's hard to know even where to start. But there is hope! My system for managing our family photos does not require a lot of work, keeps my phone from getting filled to capacity and has me regularly printing photo books that are family keepsakes. I have an iPhone and was originally using albums in... Read more →


One of my verrrry early blog posts (beware of terrible photos and tumbling deep into the archives!) was about going paperless in the kitchen. More than five years later and we still have a paperless kitchen - and love it! In fact I often forget that a paperless kitchen isn't the norm at everyone's house. If you're interested in going paperless in the kitchen here's a quick start-up guide: + Identify the different tasks for which you use towels, rags and paper products. At our house we identified the tasks of: wiping up spills from the floor, wiping the countertops,... Read more →