About Us

We were inspired to create Lives by Design after many conversations on the things we weren’t taught growing up.  We are constantly designing our lives day by day, hour by hour, minute by minute and learning along the way.

It is impossible to be taught everything before being launched into the world of adulting and some things we have had to learn the hard way or simply by trial and error.  In addition to that, resources and technology are always evolving so ultimately even if you think you have designed your life chances are you will need to redesign at some point, if not constantly.

Our goal is to share our successes and failures along this journey we call life.  We encourage you to learn from both, try our methods and provide us with feedback.  We are not only looking to be creators and educators but students as well.

We look forward to sharing this journey with you.

-Derek & Elissa


About Derek Palmer:

Derek was born and raised in the Finger Lakes Region of Upstate New York and currently resides in Rochester, NY with Elissa.  You can find the avid automotive enthusiast driving around in his 370Z with the likely destination of a waterfall or two.  Being a self-taught photographer and developer, Derek has a wealth of knowledge to bring to the table with tips, tricks and the latest on new technology in the industries of interest.

Derek balances his exploration of the outdoors by spending additional free time behind his computer.  Whether it is editing photos, casual gaming or improving his productivity and finances with the latest app, you will know how to find him.

Derek Palmer

About Elissa Mesler:

Elissa grew up in a small town in Western New York and chose to make Rochester, NY her home after attending college in the area.  Studying both marketing and finance, Elissa has found joy in creativity and numbers.

When she isn’t traveling with Derek or watching Netflix with their four cats, you can find her in the yoga studio, attending health and wellness seminars or making make-up.  She enjoys helping others with their wellness journey, creating beauty from the inside out and assisting individuals and families with budgeting their finances, saving money and creating multiple streams of income.


Photo Credit: Derek Palmer Photography