Industry Insiders: Ceri Marsh From Chatelaine & Sweet Potato Chronicles

INDUSTRY INSIDERS / April 15, 2015

An editorial consultant for Chatelaine, Ceri Marsh is a #GIRLBOSS in every way. The former Editor-in-Chief of FASHION Magazine manages and oversees Chatelaine’s editorial content, blogs at Sweet Potato Chronicles, the author of cookbook “How To Feed A Family” all while being a hands-on mom to daughter, Esme and son, Julian. Here at Lotus Leaf, we love browsing through Sweet Potato Chronicles for fun, healthy recipes for meals on the go. The healthy recipe and nutrition advice blog began in 2010 when Ceri bonded with FASHION co-worker and beauty editor at the time, Laura Keogh over busy editorial schedules and finding time to feed their families nutritious meals.

I had the opportunity to speak with the Canadian fashion media legend Ceri Marsh, to learn more about juggling a successful career and family.

Ceri Marsh - JBS What has been the biggest challenge/learning curve since starting Sweet Potato Chronicles?

Ceri Marsh (CM): Laura and I thought the best approach to starting the blog was just to start simple and see if we even enjoyed blogging or not. For us, the decision to start the blog felt almost natural because we  were writing about things that    we were living, and both being writers, the transition made sense. However,  it was hard to go from being part of an established and respected brand like FASHION to nothing – what I  mean by that is for example, if my computer broke down, there was no IT guy – with this blog, it was just  us. Luckily for us though, the online community is very open and collaborative and at least once a week I  would take someone out for coffee and ask them for advice. It was sort of like going  back to school and  people were very generous with their time and information.

What tips do you have for parents who want to make their family meals (and homes in general) healthier, but are having a hard time making the transition?

CM: I think a couple of things are super key. The first is planning. Meals can be overwhelming (whether you have kids or not) and this scenario becomes all too common: you get home late and you’re hungry but  you don’t know what you’re going  to make and nothing is out of the freezer so naturally you’re instinct is to  just order a pizza or make mac ’n’ cheese. I suggest  that people take the time to make a meal plan on  Sunday and plan all their meals for the week. Only after your meal plan is  set is when you make a grocery  list and go to the grocery store. This way, you only buy what you intend to cook and you cut  down on food  waste and money waste. My second tip is to get your kids involved. Make everyone in your household  suggest  a dinner so that they know what’s coming and also get them to help out in the kitchen so they are  involved and are learning l  life skills.

Name one food and one fashion piece you can’t live without.

CM: The food I can’t live without would be eggs. Eggs are the most flexible food and they are healthy. You  can make  anything from devilled eggs to shakshouka, there are just so many possibilities. The fashion piece  I can’t live without would be shoes. For me, no matter what you’re wearing, if you have a great pair of  shoes, it elevates everything. And of course, you can never have enough!

What is your favourite dish to make with your family?

CM: My kids love to cook and at ages five and eight, they’re good cooks already. I think the food we love to make together is pancakes. We make pancakes once a week and my kids can almost make a pancake from start to finish completely by themselves. My daughter also loves to make salads on her own and she and her dad like to make pad Thai.

How does your editorial experience influence the way you blog and vice versa?

CM: To me it’s all the same. The only thing that is slightly different is that online, our blog is more casual and personal. In terms of my standards for both and the way I think about the audience, they are the same. For me, it’s important to connect with your audience, be honest and transparent with them, and deliver the best I possibly can for them.

Watch The Sweet Potato Chronicles newest video on how to make a healthy apple, cheese and bacon frittata by clicking, here!

The perfect bring-to-work lunch.


Written by Nicole Ballantyne-Choo

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