Hi! I'm Jess.

I help families make and preserve cherished memories of faith-filled lives, happy homes, healthy relationships, and meaningful experiences.

It all started with a birthday party and a journal.

My mom gave me my first journal for my 9th birthday. It took me 7 years to fill it, and most of it consists of little more than a young girl’s dreams of ponies and confessions of school yard crushes.

But I was 15 years old when my baby brother was born and died, and suddenly, I had something important to write about. He lived for four hours, and I wanted to remember every minute with him. It was this first real exposure to the fleeting nature of life that convinced me that I needed to make a record of the people and events that shape my own.

There is no one right way to keep memories.

I am in my 30s now, and that one journal has turned into 89—and counting! I’ve also had the opportunity to study photography and video production, and I’ve learned the truth of the old adage “a picture is worth a thousand words.” I love mixing different mediums in my memory keeping. I personally use a mix of journals, photo books, videos, and carefully curated home décor to tell the story of my life.

If journaling isn’t your thing, rest assured that there are countless ways to keep a record of your life. The important thing is that you do it, and my mission is to help you find a recordkeeping style that works for you and your family. And when those methods don’t work for you anymore, I’m giving you permission to change the plan and try something different for a little while. Life changes. We change. It’s okay if your approach to memory keeping changes and grows along with it. I’m here to help you tell your story, your way, no matter what season of life you’re in.

Life a life to remember.

With so much of our lives spent in the virtual world of the internet and social media, it can be hard to feel like we have anything of merit to write about. I truly believe that every life deserves to be documented, but I also think it’s important to be more intentional about how we spend our time so that we’ll be excited to keep a record of it. That’s why there’s more to Jest Kept Secret than just “how to keep a journal.” I believe a life worth remembering is built on

  • Striving to build a personal relationship with our loving Heavenly Father and Savior Jesus Christ
  • Creating homes and lifestyles that minimize distractions and encourage creativity, curiosity, and play for all members of the family
  • Leaving our comfort zones to engage with the natural and cultural world around us
  • Strengthening bonds with family, friends, and our communities

So whether you need prompts for what to write about in your journal or the best ever apple pie recipe for your next family gathering, you’ve come to the right place. If you’d like to stay connected, be sure to sign up to get posts delivered right to your inbox, or follow me on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest.

Welcome to Jest Kept Secret, you wonderful human. I’m so glad you’re here.

Jess

Additional Contributors

I might not be an expert in many things, but I sure know some incredibly talented and intelligent people. I am so excited to welcome these writers and their perspectives to the blog.

Jenny Harris

Jenny Harris

Jenny is a star-gazing, book-clubbing mother of two. She has a Master’s degree in Human Development and Family Studies, which is mildly comical (but also a boon in parenting and relationships). Her kids will attest that she's crazy about reading aloud, time out of doors, and creative play. Her family's goal is the “abundant life,” as prescribed by Jesus.

Posts by Jenny
Jenny Harris

Jenny Harris

Jenny is a star-gazing, book-clubbing mother of two. She has a Master’s degree in Human Development and Family Studies, which is mildly comical (but also a boon in parenting and relationships). Her kids will attest that she's crazy about reading aloud, time out of doors, and creative play. Her family's goal is the “abundant life,” as prescribed by Jesus.

Posts by Jenny

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