Everybody has a story: Bloom where you’re planted

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Lindon’s Tammy Northrup enjoys floral watercolor painting, and looks to nearby Thanksgiving Point for inspiration.

Lindon’s Tammy Northrup has found joy in all stages of life — from 2nd-grade teacher to California mom and now as an empty-nester and floral art lover.

I grew up in Pleasant Grove and went to the same high school my father and grandmother attended. I grew up with two brothers and two sisters. I was also lucky enough to have an honorary third sister Emma, who was from New Mexico and came to live with my family through the LDS Church’s Native American placement program.

After high school, I headed to BYU. I studied early childhood education and went on to teach second grade at the same school I attended as a child.

I was living at Raintree Apartments, which was where I met my husband, Lonny. We dated for a few months and then got engaged. I had a mustang convertible (mostly because my dad was into restoring vintage cars), and Lonny had a bike!

We had to trade in our fun car for a more family-friendly one when our children came into the picture. Our first son, Devin, was born while Lonny was finishing his degree at BYU and I was teaching school.

We moved to San Diego for Lonny to take a job in the computer industry. In California, I had my two daughters — Cassidy and Brianna. I always say my daughters are California girls and my sons are Utah boys. Cassidy was actually named after a cute little street near Oceanside Beach.

My husband earned his master’s in San Diego, and I had fun raising my kids in such a beautiful place. We had season passes to Sea World and San Diego Zoo. Even though we didn’t have family nearby, I learned you can be happy no matter where you live if you focus on the positive.

We ended up back in Utah for my husband’s career. After moving back I had my youngest son, Connor. We raised our kids in Lindon where we still live today. My husband traveled frequently for work and I had to do a lot of things on my own while he was gone. It taught me how to ask for help, and my kids learned how to pitch in and help, too.

As my kids grew up and didn’t need me as much, I had to figure out what I wanted to do with my life. Art is one of the things I started to pursue, and it has become my biggest passion, specifically watercolor and acrylic painting. My favorite subject is flowers. My husband is always willing to stop by a garden I want to see for inspiration, and I have taken many art classes over the years. I share my talent on my blog, myflowerjournal.com, where I post tutorials among other things.

I love living in Utah Valley and spending time with my husband, children and three grandkids. Being happy has a lot to do with getting out and enjoying the community.

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Kate Lehnhof Nash first joined Bennett Communications as a summer intern in 2009. Now, as an associate editor, she writes for magazines including Utah Valley Magazine, Utah Valley Bride and Prosper. Kate lives in Springville with her husband Steve and enjoys running, reading, sushi and her french bulldog, Chief.

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