“I love taking a vision and executing it with all the details in mind.” She said. “I found my calling planning my in-laws’ 50th wedding anniversary, ten years after I planned their 40th.”
Working with nonprofit organizations for all her adult life, Jen has participated in many unique fundraising events (including one with Flamingo Flocking people’s yards.) She’s also the person in her husband’s family that plans the parties and has ALL the dishes. (I can vouch for this because, at our Kaci Christmas party, I didn’t know which fork or plate to use- I’ve never seen so many dish options in my life!)
When not working, Jen, Kaci’s Event Specialist, is either rearranging her house or planning a get-together (which sounds like work to me), but clearly, she loves it! She also loves her wingback chairs, and if she weren’t so good at her job would probably be an academic.
In another life, she is sure she was Meg from Little Women, and if she could invent a holiday, it would involve fat mugs of spiked coffee, stacks of magazines, and super soft blankets. Her favourite line from her favourite movie is “As you wish” (and you shouldn’t need any clarification on which movie that is from!)
The best piece of advice Jen has received is, “guilt is better than resentment,” and her favorite word in the English language is ‘delight’!
When she was growing up, her dad’s family owned a section of land surrounding a lake and included two train tunnels and a “Stand By Me” train bridge with no railing. In high school, she’d spend many weekends hiking to that magical spot to tell ghost stories in the curved train tunnel (where you couldn’t see the other end and where four people died in an accident) and sleeping on the dock where there were no lights to be seen and you could see billions of stars.
The most inspiring part of her job is that “I get to celebrate all the time!” she said. “There is always something to be grateful for, and it’s my duty to encourage it!”
Jen loves that Kaci trusts people to work in their strengths with their intuition and experience to create marvelous growth for charities. Her advice for anyone wanting to join Kaci’s team of superstars is, “You have great instincts!”
Jen is a dual citizen of the US/Canada and soaks up spiritual theology; even though she’s not the mystical recluse, she kind of dreams of being one in her old age. “With five children, though, I don’t think I’ll ever get to be a recluse.” She said.
Maybe one day, Jen!
“Hope is the thing with feathers that perches in the soul
And sings the tune without the words
And never stops
At all.” - Emily Dickinson
What are the values that drive you? My “big rocks” are hospitality, beauty, faith, hope, and grace.
Top three authors? Dorothy Sayers, Eugene Peterson, and Julian of Norwich.
Pets? Unfortunately, five children are enough work. Pets haven’t entered the picture. Maybe when I can get my house clean for more than an hour, we’ll consider adding a pet. Also, since I can’t keep a plant alive, maybe it’s for the best we don’t have a pet.
Clothing? Flowy skirts and tank tops or holey jeans and a sweater are my fav clothes.
Travels? My favourite vacation spots are Tofino, Whistler, and the Rockies, but I prefer meandering the boutiques to surf and ski. I prefer sitting inside at the window, during a storm, with a beautiful magazine and a glass of wine.
If you won the lottery tomorrow? I’d start a Spiritual Formation Retreat Centre.
Things you fear? I am always afraid something bad will happen to my kiddos, and I won’t be there for them.
Your best friend? My husband. If he weren’t my best friend, we’d have never made it past 20 years with all that has happened!
Your bucket list? I had a homebirth (unplanned, but my dream), I homeschooled my kids (for too long), I finished my MA (after 20 years), and I am living in my strengths and relying on God to help me through my weaknesses.
A favorite singer or group you love to dance to when you’re all alone in the living room?
I. Love. George. Michael. (Spaces and periods for serious emphasis.)
Your hairstyle? Even when I cut my hair short, it always ends up in some kind of ponytail. I hate it on my neck.
Your elevator pitch? I love your earrings.
The most unusual thing in your office? Is my bowl of hazelnuts to remind me: “The first is that God made it, the second is that God loves it, the third is that God preserves it…that God is the Creator and the protector and the lover.” Julian of Norwich
The car you drive? A 2011 Dodge Grand Caravan.
Things you collect? Books.
Your hero? My husband, Ken.