Meet the Contributor: Jenna Whiting


Hi there! I’m Jenna. I was born and raised right here in Rochester.  My hubby, Shane, and I have been married for 10 years. Our oldest is Gretzky, a Catahoula/Golden Retriever mix who just turned 9. He is by far the calmest in the house. Our first born, Driver (DJ), is a sweet, loud, superhero loving, long haired, three-year-old boy. Recently, we welcomed Snow, our little baby girl, with a full head of mauve colored hair, in July. I met my husband in high school, but neither one of us realized there was interest. It wasn’t until college, in the back of Gabby’s Bar in Winona that we rekindled that interest. 15 years later, we have done a lot of growing together. He is my biggest support system, and my best friend. This year marks 10 years at Mayo Clinic. I work as a Project Coordinator in Office of Contact Center Management. In addition to my 9-5, I have a creative side too. I specialize in anything from murals, watercolors, and acrylic painting, to digital art.

Copper and Coal Photography

I love traveling, especially to the Pacific NW. I have a deep fondness for nature and taking care of our planet. Peanut M&M’s are a food group, and I am one of those people that like pineapple on pizza. I love making my house a home through reno projects, furniture flips and organization. My homestyle is hygge-minimal and my personal style is preppy-boho. I love music, dancing, and daydreaming. My favorite holiday is Halloween, I laugh in haunted houses, and I always appreciate a good joke if you’re willing to share.

Chilling mountainside in the Colorado Rockies.

What is something you would never do again?

Easy. Waterskiing. I won’t go into details, but I can assure you, the experience went in a very uncomfortable direction. It still comes up at family gatherings many years later.  Without a doubt, Beaver Lake took a bit of my dignity that day. But why stop there? Let’s add tubing to the list.  Nothing good has ever come out of me cruising around the lake on top of an inflatable with someone, each of you holding on for dear life to one semi-attached tube handle. My favorite part though wasn’t wondering if the tube handle was going to bust off. No, it was wondering if the swimsuit bottoms would stay on this time.

What is your guilty tv pleasure?

This is multiple choice, right?

Documentaries – Give me a fake horror movie and I’m terrified, but give me a real-life crime scene and the voice of Keith Morrison, and I’m invested. I have a list of favorites, and the not-so-favorites, as well as which streaming platform they can be viewed on. I find documentaries in general fascinating – People are so interesting.

Creative Competition – Fashion, baking, candlestick making – you name it. If there is a show where creatives are working under pressure and snappy deadlines, with a little drama tossed in, I’m going full on sofa city.

Our rescue pup, Gretzky

What song do you know all the words to?

Let me just say… back in my day we read jewel case inserts (ya know, for CD’s) that contained — you got it — lyrics! I spent hours reading, singing, and memorizing the words. But it also means that most of the songs I memorized are from 2005 and earlier (CD’s became obsolete after the invention of the iPod Nano in 2006). 90’s/early 2000’s hip hop and alternative music still take up plenty of real estate in the old noodle. When they drop the classic hip hop bangers on the radio, I am fully equipped to sing along, and successfully, during carpool pick-up.

Twelve Ten Photography

What’s an irrational fear?

I’ve developed just a few over the years.  My top three from soul crushing to bad are:

  1. Vomit (mine, yours, doesn’t matter)
  2. Mackinac Bridge
  3. Dead Birds

What has been the most surprising to you as a mother?

Honestly, when we found out we were expecting our second, I was worried I wouldn’t have the energy for two. Even worse, I wasn’t sure if I would be enough, or how I could love two littles equally. My son had my whole heart for 3.5 years. How could I possibly generate a second full heart that is capable of double the love? As soon as our daughter joined our arms, my heart did in fact grow two sizes that day. It’s come up a few times in conversation with other parents, and I’m happy to report that if anyone is feeling like I was, it’s completely normal. Now our home is filled with more love, and more noise.

Twelve Ten Photography
Twelve Ten Photography
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Born, raised and back after college, Jenna, alongside her HS crush, Shane, are raising their son Driver (DJ), newborn daughter, Snow and senior pup, Gretzky in Rochester, MN. A creative at heart, you'll find Jenna sipping coffee, painting murals, crafting, & working on home renovation projects. Family time is best spent traveling near and far (team road trips), dancing, snugs and laughing. Jenna loves a good joke and has a deep appreciation for electronic music, fashion & thrift stores.