Embracing a New Season
In case you don’t know me personally, Hi! I’m Jessie Ansley. I am a Coast Guard wife, mom of two amazing little boys and someone who believes in cartwheeling through life. Let me give you a quick overview of my life leading up to the beginning of Streamlined & Simple.
I grew up in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. I moved to Paducah, Kentucky in the middle of my junior year of high school. I attended Western Kentucky University for a year and a half before transferring to East Carolina University. While in school at East Carolina, I began working as a gymnastics and cheerleading coach under the incredible mentorship of Darlene Rose. I graduated from East Carolina University in August 2006 with a degree in Communication Studies. I went on to work at an advertising, marketing and PR firm while still part time working at the gym because I loved working with kids so much. In January 2008, I met my husband. We were married in May 2009 and my life as a Coast Guard wife began.
My career in advertising, marketing and PR wasn’t going to work well with a Coast Guard life that has us moving every 4 years. So I went back to school and got a masters in education from Bridgewater State University. During my time as a full time grad student, I was also working full time as the technology teacher at an elementary school. My husband and I had our first son 5 months before I graduated. And yes, it was as hard as it sounds. Having a newborn and finishing up your last 2 semesters of grad school was a bit intense. Upon graduating, I was immediately hired as a special education teacher and I worked for a year. I loved every minute of it.
However, I had a VERY strong calling to stay home the following year with our son. I listened to this calling, left the classroom and embraced life as a homemaker. Exactly 2 years and 2 days after our first son was born, we had our second son and I was thrilled to raise those sweet little baby boys.
I started blogging during this time as a way to share our family’s story and photos with our extended families who lived several states away. The blog was also a creative outlet for me. I loved sharing educational activities that our boys loved, ways to organize toys + books and fun hacks that made mom life easier.
After a couple of years, my husband and I decided that the having a public blog sharing all of families detailed stories and photos wasn’t the right path for us. My hubby knew how much I loved writing and encouraged me to start a new blog focused on what I loved most: homemaking, parenting, education, organization and simplifying.
I started the Streamlined & Simple blog in September 2016. What you might not know is that during this time I was in the thick of it. I’m talking raising two kids (under the age of 5), homeschooling my kids (and another child) and living in a home that we were renovating (with no prior experience). And may I point out that homeschooling and renovating were NEVER part of our life plan. For a lack of better words, they sort of just happened. Life was extremely challenging and overwhelming at this time, but also amazing and full of wonderful memories.
During this time of being in the trenches, I had discovered a few tools to help me manage my crazy + chaotic life. I fully embraced the products created my two of my favorite small businesses: Simplified and Cultivate What Matters. However, there were a few gaps. So I created a few tools to fill those gaps.
Those tools became the product side of Streamlined & Simple. In June 2017, I released a line of notepads that I coined as Functional Stationery. It is still hard for me to believe that I designed and produced a small line of paper goods + organizational tools. As you know from earlier in this post, my background is mostly in the teaching field so this business venture was quite the leap for me.
I was in business for about 6 months when we got the unexpected news that my husband’s job with Coast Guard was transferring our family across the country - from coastal North Carolina to coastal Oregon! In February 2018, I had to temporarily shut down my online shop in order to focus on finishing our home renovation and prepping our family for the move.
We arrived in Oregon and our kiddos went to public school for the first time and we were now in a rental home AKA no renovations! Life was finally calming down. The crazy + chaotic season that lasted three and a half years had some to a close.
In September 2018, I relaunched the products with a few additions. I was so grateful for all of the support I received, particularly from those in my new coastal Oregon community.
During this time, I found myself with a lot more time on my hands. New ideas, goals and dreams began to surface. Then in early 2019, I was asked by the local library to do a presentation on how to clear the kitchen clutter. I had the BEST time preparing and giving the presentation. Speaking to a room full of women was life giving for me. So much so that it ignited a spark in me.
I began to found myself less and less content with running the product side of my business. While I whole heartedly believe in my product line, it was sucking the life out of me.
So I was faced with a harsh reality that I didn’t want to accept: It was time to close the chapter on the product side of Streamlined & Simple. I have spent almost three years pouring myself into the product line and it has been an absolute pleasure to do this work. But as seasons change, so must we. And it is time for me to shift gears. It’s time to focus on what I love and what brings me joy.
It is with bittersweetness that I announce our Functional Stationery line will end on June 30, 2019. From now until then, please enjoy up to 40% off everything in the Shop!
It is important to note that all orders placed between 6/12/19 and 6/30/19 will ship on or before 7/8/19.
I cannot thank you enough for all of your support. Every order has been an absolute joy to process and send out. Every email, every comment, every photo sharing how you have used the products has meant the world to me.
There is good news in all of this. Streamlined & Simple isn’t going anywhere. While the product line is coming to a close, my work is not. With all of that being said, I am going in a new direction. I am heading back into the classroom.
But that’s not all. I am going to be shifting gears with Streamlined & Simple to better pursue my passions. Yes, I will be back in the classroom teaching elementary students, but I will also be pursuing my love of speaking, writing and consulting about parenting, education and community. These are my passions. They literally light my soul on fire and provide me with immense joy
Stick with me friends. There are a lot of good things to come including more free printables, blog posts and blog series, eBooks, local events and more!
I am going to be sharing all of my tips for classroom organization, home organization, bridging the gap between home life and school life, sharing how I tackle being a full time working mom and so much more!
I would LOVE to hear from you on how I can serve you well going forward. Please share with me in the comments below. Tell me what areas in your life that you want to be more Streamlined & Simple! I am so excited to provide you with carefully curated content focused on the power of family + the magic of learning + the beauty of community.
I’d love to end this post with a fun little brief history of Streamlined & Simple: