Truth, Love & Insight – Kelsey Brown

Happyolks

I am seeking, I am striving, I am in it with all my heart. (Vincent van Gogh)

Are you ready for another completely inspiring Truth, Love & Insight interview? Last week's post featured the brilliant and delightful Susannah Conway. Today, I'm thrilled to introduce a new friend.

I first discovered Kelsey through an afternoon of exploring food blogs. Kelsey and her beau Shaun have created a delicious website that's equal parts of gorgeous photography, soulful storytelling and yummy recipes. Follow the dynamic duo's blog, tweets & pins. A little more about Kelsey, in her own words:

Kelsey Brown is a senior studying International Relations at the University of San Diego, avid traveler, and creator of the Happyolks blog, Recipes and Stories for Happy Folks. At Happyolks, Kelsey wants to share the experience of creating a wholesome meal and the happiness that inherently grows from it. When we make room in our lives to celebrate the good things growing, we honor the earth and each other by slowing down and cultivating connection and consciousness despite our full, busy lives. Kelsey believes that her blog has served as reinforcement that we are not alone; that together, we can be better, do better, and inspire new ideas and new ways to look at the world.

1. How did your blog get started?

The blog definitely started on a whim. I was baking pumpkin bread in Shaun’s small studio apartment and when I cracked three eggs into the mixing bowl, one broke into a smile. Happyolks. I started writing down the things I was making from time to time and sharing them with friends on a basic Wordpress template, having never blogged before, let alone reading other blogs. I soon discovered the vast and incredibly diverse world of writers, dreamers, and cooks who shared my passions and interests and were engaged in meaningful and productive conversations. It grew from there, taking a brief hiatus as I traveled for five months in the fall of 2010, and has been evolving ever since.

2. What motivates you to continue sharing your story with the web?

Before starting this blog I was admittedly anti social-media. People need people, not computers. Nothing replaces real human connection and relationships, but I've learned over the past year that social networks, blogs, and digital media actually do bring people closer together. This blog has taught me that we are not alone; there are thousands of people who share similar passions, interests, and goals. Together, we can be better, do better, and inspire new ideas and new ways to look at the world.

We create our experience. And when we use these tools properly, our experiences can be authentic and meaningful.

I continue to share my voice on the web because I believe that we can create a chain reaction of positivity, of encouragement, of inspiration without even knowing it. I have been gently, and abruptly inspired and uplifted so many times by the creativity of others, so I have to believe that maybe my meager perspective might do the same. It’s the hope.

Kelsey In Sarnath, India

3. If you could go back in time, what advice would you give to yourself as a budding blogger?

Don’t compare yourself to others. This applies to all things in life though, doesn’t it? It’s one of the hardest things. A lot of the advice I would have given myself is still advice I would give myself today. Be okay with exactly who you are, what you can write, what you can produce today. That’s it. Today you are enough. Tomorrow you will know more, and then THAT will be enough.

4. If you could go forward in time, what is one question you would like to ask yourself? How do you imagine you might answer it?

How often did you give love? How often did you say thank you? How often did you listen? How often did you make someone feel important? I hope I can answer “often” to all of them. At the end of the day that’s the only thing I really care about. Forget the recipes, and photos, and nutritional integrity - did you make people feel important? That’s what matters.

5. What are your favorite creative resources?

Music, always. Good books. Home videos. Living life. I know a lot of people like to editorialize their blogs and it’s probably really smart, but I find that my posts really just come from whatever comes up in my life spontaneously. There is always a new lesson to learn, and share.

Love Hugs

6. Who inspires you online? Offline?

I’m teased about this often, but Oprah Winfrey has been a constant source of inspiration throughout my youth and young adulthood. She is strong, vulnerable, driven, a visionary, and committed to helping people live out their dreams. Lisa Ling, Erin Brockovich, Barbara Kingsolver, my Mom. I am inspired by strong women who are seeking the truth, expressing themselves with the intention of teaching, bringing about some kind of change, and helping make the world a better place.

These are a few sources of online cooking inspiration: Sprouted Kitchen, Roost, Not Without Salt, My New Roots, The Year In Food, Fish and Veggies, Golubka.

7. How do you make every day an extraordinary adventure?

Last year, I had one heck of an extraordinary adventure: five months, fourteen countries, four continents, and four oceans. Since then, I’ve been focusing on how amazing the ordinary adventures are. Installing a new bathroom sink, taking the dog to the beach, Sunday morning games of rummy with Shaun. Often I take a step back and look at my life and am just blown away by actually being alive in this world. It’s crazy. Everything seems like an adventure with eyes wide open and a grateful heart.

Images via Happyolks