About Jen

{Playing in the pool with my mum...}

I was born and raised in Maine--and love, love, loved it. Unlike many, lived in the same home from the day I came home from the hospital as a newborn, until the day I boarded a plane for college. But, looking back on my family history (on my mother's side), I should also disclose that I grew up in the same town that was settled by my ancestors. I suppose transiency just isn't in my blood--and I love my deep roots.

{The first day of kindergarten}

I began piano lessons in the second grade--a talent I pursued with much coaxing, prodding, and the sheer determination of my mother. It's the classic tale: girl takes piano lessons, girl hates to practice, girl's mother urges her efforts, girl finally falls in love with playing the piano. The catch? It was nearly a 20-year process. =)

{gathering eggs with my little sister, Hannah, at my parents' house}

As I got older, I took interest in music, and played the French horn. I took part in All-State bands and choirs and also enjoyed learning jazz piano. In high school, I took part in the marching band, student government, tennis, and other musical and civic organizations....but really, really, I was most looking forward to going to college.

{Making pumpkin rolls}

In 1999, I headed to Brigham Young University--which would prove to be a wise decision. Within my first week there, I met Joseph (as well as the dear friends who continue to be an integral part of my life).

{Eating a "tongan pancake" (long story) with friends}

Going to BYU would change the entire trajectory of my life, and I'm so glad I was able to spend four years as a student, two as a full-time employee after I graduated, and another nearly-two years as a member of the BYU community.

{At my graduation from BYU with Joseph and my siblings, 2004}

My undergraduate degree is in Geography, and I have a minor in English--both were exceedingly interesting...even (dare I say it?) FUN! I graduated in 2004, and immediately went to work for BYU's Marriott School of Management.

{Making eyes at my husband with an overtly ridiculous pair of sunglasses}

I really wish there were more hours in the day--Sometimes I think my husband wishes I'd pare down my list of hobbies....because, most of the time, "hobbies" = "stuff lying around the guest room." =) My first love is cooking--nothing gets me going more than high-quality ingredients and daring new recipes. Most of the time, my endeavors are successful...but......sometimes....my husband is backed into that "what-do-I-say-now?" corner. =) I appreciate his honesty, though--he's the best food critic I know.

{hiking in Moab, Utah}

I love to travel (that's the geography bug in me) and experience new places. We have a precious few years to travel with Joseph on business before Ian goes to school, and we take every opportunity we can. I just feel badly that Joseph is in so many meetings while Ian and I are having perfectly wonderful vacations. Living in Massachusetts has been one of the BEST sources of our travel bug, and we've been able to be resident-tourists at least once a month, if not more.

{hiking "the Y" in Provo, UT}

I have a lot of hobbies that I'm not very good at, but that I really enjoy....Sewing, crocheting, and knitting are a few examples of hobbies that tend to go terribly awry, but with which I have tons of fun! I've been nurturing my blog for nearly three years now, and I love the creative outlet it affords me. I'm always part-way through reading a book, even when it takes me months to complete.

{Taking Ian on his first walk}

Most of all, I love being a mother. In it I find my greatest source of joy and more fulfillment than I could find anywhere else. I know what it's like to have an attentive, nurturing mother, and so I do my best to mother Ian the very best I can. I won't lie--there are some days when I'm in sweat pants until mid-afternoon and by early evening, there are times when I think to myself, "Huh. Did I put on deodorant today?" There are other days when I can tell that Ian's had just about enough of me, and can't wait for Daddy to come home... =) But even on those days, there are still joys to be found--and Ian is especially good at making me laugh. I sure love him.

There are lots more things I love....and I make it a point to make an annual list. You can find them here and here.