GNO: Jenny Smith’s Favorite Things

Jenny picture

I randomly decided to move back to Saint Louis a few years ago after college, and I feel pretty confident about that decision considering it lead me to marry my high school sweetheart (Taylor) and also to me working at Central Presbyterian Church. Since college, I’ve somehow acquired four animals (dogs: Mustard & Dill, cats: Poe & Turnip).  I enjoy (most) change and like to make things look nice. Which is probably why I paint my front door, on average, twice a year. I’m excited to see where God takes my little Noah’s ark-esque family, and I’m sure the two things that will never change are my love of popcorn and the amount of fur on my clothes.


My Favorite House: While there are a lot of houses for me to choose from, my favorite house that I ever lived in is the one that is on Olden Drive in Flemington, NJ. I love the house itself with its wide porch and sprawling yard, and the fact that the neighborhood was surrounded by farms. I also love that it was in New Jersey, and that we still lived close enough to our extended family so they could come over on Thanksgiving and Christmas. I love my memories in this house. I lived there from when I was 8 to when I was 12 years old (we usually for some reason lived in a house for about 4 years at a time, with the shortest being three months in a house that we just had built!).

It was this house that my little sister was brought home to from the hospital when she was born. Its backyard had the pool that I turned into a prune in every summer day, and its basement was where my older sister and I would set up our “houses” out of blankets and play together after school. It also was on the top of its winding driveway where my parents, looking grave, met me as I got off the school bus on Sept. 11, 2001. It was behind this house where I went sledding even though I had a really bad stomach bug and was puking all day, and it was where I got into trouble for lying about the C+ I got on my science test. I love the life that my family and I lived in that house.

When Taylor and I went house-hunting this past spring, I thought a lot about my house on Olden Drive and knew immediately when we found the home that could be just as special to the two of us.


My Favorite Song: My favorite song is called “The Adventure” by Angels & Airwaves. It came out in 2006 when I was a junior in high school. Angels & Airwaves was the first rock show that Taylor and I saw together that December right before we started dating, so I loved this song back then for that reason.

A few months later in the summer, this song meant a lot to me after I lost someone I dearly loved, as it is a song about hope for tomorrow and being thankful for life. In 2014, it was the song that I walked down the aisle to at our wedding. I am sure in the future, I will have many more reasons for loving this song, but I think I have pretty good reasons already.


My Favorite Comfort Food: My favorite comfort food is popcorn. It is actually my favorite food of all time! And not just regular movie theater popcorn (although I do enjoy that occasionally), but the popcorn I make in my Whirley Pop on the stove. Instead of using oil, I use ghee that I make ahead of time to pop it (thanks to Christine Vandervoort for giving me that tip a few years ago—it was a game changer!) and I top it with salt, load it with parmesan and cayenne pepper, and sprinkle it with some shredded cheddar.

I will make a huge bowl for myself and it takes a good 45 minutes for me to slowly eat it – in other words, a whole show on Netflix! It’s my favorite way to relax. Taylor and I buy the 50 pound bag of kernels at Sam’s Club for $20 and it lasts us a good year or so. I converted him from using microwave popcorn pretty soon after we started dating. 🙂


My Favorite Job: I have only had three jobs – working at a dining hall in college, my current job at Central, and a temporary job I had the summer after my junior year in college, which was my favorite because it was SO MUCH fun.

I was on a summer project with my campus ministry in Ocean City, NJ and for those ten weeks, I was the project cook. This involved planning, shopping for, and cooking dinner 5 days a week for 100 college students, plus staff. My “co-chef” and I are proud to say we only repeated one meal all summer!

It was so fun to plan all the meals and, of course, desserts, and to have other students from the project help chop vegetables, frost cupcakes, and the like. We went crazy making things like calzones and s’more cupcakes completely from scratch. I loved serving people in this way. Also, it was a huge plus being able to walk along the beach or on the boardwalk during my lunch break!


My Favorite Makeup Product: My favorite makeup product is Covergirl LashBlast Volume mascara, the one in the orange tube. I have tried so many mascaras but this is the only one that is for me! It makes my lashes look twice as long with two or three swipes, stays on all day, and then is really easy to remove at night. Plus, it is inexpensive and you can often buy it cheaper in a two-pack at Target.

Your friend,

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2 thoughts on “GNO: Jenny Smith’s Favorite Things

  1. Linda Gurney October 4, 2016 / 4:46 pm

    Jenny, I especially enjoyed hearing about that particular house and your memories of what happened there. Seems you weren’t in one place very long, but this home seemed to be extra-special for the events you treasured there. The photo of it is so beautiful!

    Your job as a project cook seemed so fun and the joy you took in doing it is inspiring. Also, I’m really glad to know about that mascara! 🙂

    Blessings to you,

    Linda Gurney

    Liked by 2 people

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