Karin Stortz professional photo
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Hello, My Name Is Karin (Ka-Rin)!

I'm the creator behind Joy in the Meantime. I was born in Bergen, Norway, grew up in the western suburbs of Chicago, and recently made the move from urban jungle to quaint suburb with my wonderful husband, Roger. I am a mostly stay at home mama to three adventurous little boys, Bram and Emerson, and Soren. I like to think that empathy, hard work and humor inform my passions.

My background is in clinical social work, and up until the birth of our second son, I was in private practice. I keep my professional skills sharp by consulting new recruit correctional officers on the topics of mental health, stress management and mindfulness. Teaching is one my most favorite things!

Food and being in the kitchen has always been a large part of my life. My mother's Italian heritage seemed to center celebrations around food, story telling and laughter. However, it also seemed that rewards and consoling often came in food form. "Congratulations on your test, let' go out for ice cream!" "I'm sorry you had a bad day, let me make you some pasta." You see what I'm saying?! While in graduate school, I remember coping with the pressure by baking, recipe testing and bringing treats by the container-full to class. Though I don't think my peers minded all that much, it was still me using food as a crutch to cope with stress or "reward" success. In 2015, after the birth of my second son, I discovered Whole30.

“Think of it as a short-term nutrition reset, designed to help you put an end to unhealthy cravings and habits, restore a healthy metabolism, heal your digestive tract, and balance your immune system.”

This program was life altering to my relationship with food. It also fanned the flame of my love of cooking. My food freedom is an ongoing growth process. But one that I am committed to cultivating and mastering. Many of the recipes I share are influenced by my love and passion for finding healthy and delicious foods within a Whole30 framework.

Aside from my passion for people and cooking, is my interest in photography. I took a few courses in high school and college, but didn’t find my true inspiration until I had my children. The desire to capture beauty and joy in the fleeting, everyday pushed me to hone my skills. You can often find me researching, reading or pestering professional photographer friends about all things photography related. Oh, and I also kind of have a thing for pretty food photos!

We are currently updating our 1980’s Colonial, so you will also find the odd post about how I play interior designer and put my Pinterest skills to the test.

Cheers to inspiring and being inspired!