Bloomington-Normal Mama Interview: Meet Jennie!

Welcome with us Jennie + her little family to our Bushbunch journal. We love the opportunity each month to learn a little more about a family that embraces the values that we stand for at BUSHBABY. Adventure. Sustainable living. Getting outside to explore our world. Community involvement.

Let's meet this precious family.

Hi, Jennie! Where you were born + raised?

I am from a small central IL town, Arcola.

Where did you go to college + where has that journey taken you today?

I attended Illinois State University for undergrad and Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary for graduate school/seminary. I’m an ordained United Methodist clergyperson. I get to work with college students at Illinois State, and last year I worked with a group of recent alumni to launch a new faith community in Bloomington-Normal. We are theologically progressive, have excellent music, and meet in a movie theater.

Tell us a bit about your husband, Ryan + your new little guy, Van.

Ryan is a writer who specializes in technical documentation and content development. He’s worked for Motorola Mobility, State Farm Insurance, and Bushbaby! At the beginning of this year he launched his business as a full-time freelance writer. He likes writing, but his true love is cycling – which he does as often as possible. Van is a sweet and active 2 ½ year old boy. Ryan and I adopted him at birth and we are thankful for him in our lives everyday! The phone call about his birth came at the same time as Bethany’s [owner of BUSHBABY] wedding, so at the last minute they had to find another officiant!

Van loves swimming, running, baseball, and all other kids. He thinks everyone is his friend, and has an uncanny memory for names.

Wow! Keeping up with them must be tons of fun! With the New Year upon us, what are some things you are looking forward to in 2015?

We’re excited that the new church is up and going as we approach its first birthday, we’re happy that Ryan is able to focus more attention on his freelance career, and we can’t wait for spring so we can play outside every day. We love to sit on our front porch, and we’re lucky to live in a historical neighborhood where neighbors hang out on their front porches.

What are a few experiences you + Ryan are hoping to have with Van this year?

We can’t wait to take him camping and hiking this summer! He loves being outside, collecting random leaves and rocks, and asking what everything is. “what’s this mama?” he wants to know the name of every insect and bird, too. “what’s his name?” for every living thing he sees!

This little man is rocking his Obermeyer jacket from BUSHBABY :)

This little man is rocking his Obermeyer jacket from BUSHBABY :)

As part of the Bloomington/Normal community, what are your favorite places to take Van?

We live in the White Place Neighborhood, just off the Constitution Trail. He loves running and tricycling on all of the sidewalks, and exploring the trail. There’s a great little city park around the corner from our house, too. During the winter Ryan takes him swimming and running at the YMCA, and they love stopping by the Bloomington Public Library. His favorite place to go in the evening is Lucca Grill where he’s spoiled rotten by all of the servers, cooks, bartenders, and managers.

Well, Jennie + family, it has been a joy to get to know you better. What a memorable season of life you are in! Take lots of pictures + enjoy your 2015 together.

Thanks for taking time to meet the rest of the Bushbunch.