July 10, 2013


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Leaving my television news career has been a trial in careful self examination.  It has forced me to look closely at my goals, the motivation behind them, and put the last 8 years of my life under a microscope.  For many years I have been narrowly focussed on achieving professional success– reaching a level of prestige in my career, beating the competition, winning particular awards, promotions, progression….always progression.  In the last couple of years, life began to change– I became a mother, and my priorities naturally shifted, but so did my perspective.  And it began with my maternity leave.

During that time, I watched a lot of programming.  When you’re nursing a baby, not sleeping, and recovering from delivery, the tv becomes your friend.  I, someone who rarely watched anything other than news, began to really delve into what was out there in the world of satellite and what I found was a bit shocking.  There was news, which I of course watched, but as I tried to find programs geared toward women like me, I found very few shows that met my needs.  I instead found reality shows were running rampant.  Tabloid-y, gossip-magazine-y, shallow programs lacking not only in morality but also in depth.  Frankly, as an educated, career-driven woman, I found it insulting.  Don’t get me wrong, I can enjoy a copy of People while I’m getting a mani-pedi as much as the next gal, but if I’m going to take the time to watch something– and really open my mind to it– I want to learn.  I want to grow.  I want to be inspired, uplifted, stretched, exposed to topics that encourage empathy and make me want to be a better me.  And I know I’m going to upset some of you here, but I don’t really care who gets the rose.  I mean, come on people, do you really think producers aren’t pulling the strings behind the curtain?

I don’t think we’re giving women enough credit.  I certainly can’t speak for every woman, but personally, I crave a combination of fluff and substance.  And that is my goal here on withHEART.  There is fun to be had, but there is also good to be done.  Today, I’m hoping withHEART can do more of both of those in a new capacity by bringing me full circle in a way.  I’m launching withHEARTtv— a YouTube channel with video demonstrations, diy’s, creative mini-films, and what I love the very most, inspiring stories.  We have a new contributor: videographer/photographer/editor, James Young.  Check out his bio in the “about” section.  He’s just the best.  I know you’ll love him too.

This is our very first video.  I hope you’ll watch/share/subscribe/tell-yo-friends-and-yo-mama then watch again.  I’m excited to show you some great things.

I’m ready to start a new journey… are you?

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Photos by James Young

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  1. Danielle Oakey

    July 10th, 2013 at 7:28 am

    Umm, that was awesome! Jen you are incredible. Can’t wait to see more!

  2. Kelly

    July 10th, 2013 at 8:23 am

    This turned out great!!! Can’t wait

  3. Ashleigh Avery

    July 10th, 2013 at 8:33 am

    So excited for this Jen! I love everything about your blog, especically the Unexpected series you have been doing. It’s going to be wonderful to see your pretty face on tv again! 🙂

  4. Veronica

    July 10th, 2013 at 8:42 am

    Yay!! The video was great. Jen I’m so excited for you! This is going to be so awesome!!

  5. Sunny

    July 10th, 2013 at 9:23 am

    I love this!!

  6. June Pope

    July 10th, 2013 at 9:49 am

    I know what you’re planning will be amazing. After having children I never wanted to leave them so I understand your need to be a hands-on mom. With this new sires of yours you can have the best of both worlds and also share your gifts with us. Love your writing and your focus on women. I see success in this venture for you. All the best.

  7. Deborah Speed

    July 10th, 2013 at 10:15 am

    I love you, Jen! You’re so inspiring and I’m totally excited for this new chapter in your life. Can’t wait to see where it goes!

  8. Suzzanne

    July 10th, 2013 at 12:43 pm

    I couldn’t agree more! I have a hard time finding inspiring TV. thanks!

  9. Andrea

    July 10th, 2013 at 2:59 pm

    great video, can’t wait to see more!

  10. Lydia

    July 10th, 2013 at 9:09 pm

    Hi Jen! You may or may not remember me — I interned at KSL the winter before last. I had a few chances to work with you and I always appreciated your critical feedback.

    I’ve been following your blog with great interest because trying to figure out how to balance my career dreams and family and all the other things has really been challenging. I love what you’ve done and this new project you’re starting is really exciting — that’s a goal of mine, getting to launch and create my own content. I can’t wait to see what’s to come!

  11. Senja

    July 11th, 2013 at 11:21 am

    What a beautiful idea! I’m excited 🙂

  12. Chelsea

    July 11th, 2013 at 7:14 pm

    What a great video! So excited to continue to see you grow in this space-such an important and hopeful message!

  13. Heather

    July 11th, 2013 at 9:17 pm

    Wow! That was absolutely amazing and inspiring! Great job to you and Mr. Young! I can’t wait to see more videos!

  14. Rick

    July 15th, 2013 at 3:55 pm

    Wait, when did you leave the news media? Good for you though for making the decision to follow your heart.

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She’s Jen. He’s Jon. We’re believers in the power of home, fearless DIYers, and eternal optimists who know with a can-do spirit, elbow grease and some guidance, you can create a home you love. We love a good project—or 20. Stick around and we’ll have you pulling out the paint brushes and fluffing throw pillows in no time.

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