Who is Jen? Who am I? (Maybe, I should not be the one to write the “About” page!!!)
I, Jen, was given the name Jennie Joanna Ford at birth. I was born on the 5th of October 1973 to Blair and Carol Ford and was named after Jennie T. Standring, my maternal grandmother. I was the oldest of six girls.
As a child, I wanted to be a writer. I dreamt about it throughout my youth. But with the death of my mother and father, my writings became very introspective and I didn’t want others to know how I felt, especially when I was sad! I didn’t want to be sad. I wanted to be happy.
As a teenager, I was obsessed with the song “Don’t Worry! Be Happy!” I sang it everyday and played the “record” over and over. (For those of you who do not know what a record is, it is how we listened to music before we had Ipods, CD’s, and Tapes!) The extremely difficult experiences of my youth made it difficult to not worry and to be happy. But still that was one of my greatest desires, to be at peace with life and to be happy-truly happy!
In my twenties, I started to come unto my own! I was more willing to share feelings from my heart and even learned to open my heart to “men/boys”. I began researching,writing and even published some compilations. After I published my first compilation “Women of Destiny: Reflections of the Relief Society Declaration”, I was able to go and speak to large groups of women, singles and youth. I enjoyed the speaking as much as I loved the writing. I’ve always loved speaking in front of large groups, which of course, makes me very strange!
In my thirties, I found love and I married Jared McBride. I, Jen, became Jennie Joanna McBride. I tried to settle down. But instead, went back to school and got my master’s degree in Sports Performance and Conditioning. I, currently, teach as an Adjunct Professor at Southern Utah University. I am very passionate about helping others find the path to healthy living. I believe that one of the best ways I can help others be happy is to help them live healthier lives.
However, in order for me to be happy, I have learned I have to spend time creating, living, laughing, writing, and being artistic. It isn’t enough for me to go to work everyday, even if it is teaching and doing something I am very passionate about. I need more in my life and I need to be creative!
I enjoy making my home more beautiful- I like finishing projects. That makes me happy. I enjoy taking beautiful pictures of people and places. That makes me happy. I enjoy thinking, researching, pondering, and writing. That makes me happy. I love writing a song, poem or thoughts. That makes me happy. And I just hope that my happiness is contagious and that you can share in my joy, the joy I feel as I create and share.
I use to hide my talents because I didn’t feel that they were “good enough” to share. But I have realized that in order for me to develop my talents, I must share them. I am the first to admit that my underdeveloped talents are more than often only in the “process of being developing”, and ask for your patience with me as I grow and develop.
I believe it is part of the ” my human experience”– to grow, make mistakes, and learn from the mistakes I make. I use to want to do everything “perfect”, but once again I have learned that learning is “messy”. Often as I am learning to do things, I make mistakes. Often when I have learned how to do something, I continue to mistakes though I hope, that I make less mistakes than I did in the beginning of the learning process!
For example, I first launched Jen.co in December of 2010. By April of 2011, I wanted a different design. And in June of 2011, the second design was up without content. You can check out the original blog at http://jen.co/originalblog/index.php . I have separated the original jen.co into the new jen.co and healthyliving.co . In the original blog, I was having a very hard time blogging about the destruction in Japan, healthy meals and cupcakes. I need to have some healthy “separation” and “boundaries” between my life, healthy living concepts and other categories of interest.
The purpose of Jen.co is to allow me a place to create and share my photos, my thoughts, my songs, my writings with those people who are interested in getting a glimpse into the world that brings me so much joy and happiness! It is a place to share with you what I am learning and how the learning process is helping me find Joy in my Journey!
Note: My grandfather, “Papa” Standring NEVER liked my nickname “Jen” because I was named after his wife and he wanted me to be called Jennie. I, however, grew up in the 70′s and 80′s when every other female was named Jennifer or Jenny and I just wanted to be called Jen, not Jennie Ford. As much as I loved my “full name”, I just wanted to be called “Jen”.