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Sunday, August 24, 2014

Please help us... to be awesome!

Dear Jessa ~

Most exciting news: our basement is painted! The end is so close I can almost taste it! (But maybe that's just because of the new paint smell...) We did the same tan color from the rest of our house in the office and bathroom last time they were down here. This week Damain was doing a carpet cleaning trip in Oregon and Kim decided that if he was gonna be gone, so was she. So she brought all 4 kids down and finished painting the basement. We did a light sage for the rest of the basement, which I really like. It's still fairly neutral, but is still color. Plus I really like sage. The pillars are now done and look awesome. And the playhouse is painted! It just needs shingles and it'll be done. Hooray!!! The girls love it. Obviously.

While they were here I made Chore Monster accounts for the rest of them. In order to help Kessa out in the reward department, we didn't make any rewards for outings. Instead I just told them that I was gonna take them on an outing because I'm nice. So one day during nap time we (the older kids and I) went to the Dinosaur Museum. Because I haven't taken them there yet.

Then we got home and they put on a Frozen party. I've told you about tea parties Lexi likes to do whenever she's here, right? Well, this one takes the cake. They decorated with snowflakes that they took hours to cut out. Even hung them from the ceiling. Then they dressed up as characters from Frozen and sang the song, "In Summer" for us. It was adorable. Then they fed us goldfish, pretzels, half a banana and tic tacs. lol.

This month marks one year of doing freezer meals! I can't believe it's been that long. So we met early, swapped meals, then went out to Olive Garden to eat. It was super yummy and the company was great. There are some really awesome people in my neighborhood. I love it here.

And some random pics:

 Daddy/daughter/Nephite? bonding time. :)

Basketball hoop made out of cardstock and yarn. I'm impressed!

Cutting out snowflakes

The final Frozen decorations (but not costumes; sorry)

 Sven (a reindeer on Frozen who loves eating carrots) helped me make dinner.

Indoctrinating Peter young. 
Now he just needs to get big enough to wear his Apple onesie.

Despite being raised on a farm with beef cattle, hay, and grain, I am still an Idaho farm girl. With that comes certain responsibilities. Tonight I am shirking them.

I'm making instant mashed potatoes.
I believe there are 3* parts to #Ferguson that need to be considered:

1 - The actual shooting of Michael Brown.
2 - The reaction of officials.
3 - The reaction of citizens.

No matter what your opinion of one part, you still have to consider the other parts separately. No matter if you feel Darren Wilson was justified or not in shooting Michael Brown, you still have to decide if the way the police reacted to the protests was justified and right. And you still have to decide if the reaction of everyday people is right and justified.

This isn't just about one particular incident. This is about the power our government officials have. This is about the racism that still exists in our country. This is about the love and support that exists in our country. This is about right, and this is about wrong. But no matter where your opinions lie, you can't deny that there needs to be change. There needs to be productive discussion (not arguing/fighting). There needs to be activism.

Things need to change.

*You could argue there is a 4th part: The reaction and rights of the media.
Well, I'm off to a good start with this whole school thing. Back to School night was yesterday. I forgot. Life was chaos and I just forgot. Until this morning.

Kessa has no idea, but I'm still really kind of sad about this.

Also, because she's my first in school, I have no idea how any of this works. And I was really looking forward to it so I could learn.

{Editor's note: I've since emailed her teacher and we're going in to meet her and see her classroom tomorrow during nap time.}
The events in #Ferguson, Missouri are truly troubling to me. I've been glued to Twitter, watching the updates since Wednesday night. I feel like I'm reading about a war in a fictional novel, and then I realize that no, this is real. This is happening Right Now. In America. I am horrified.

I've decided that it is a conflict between two parties (largely, but not entirely) split by race. Both sides have good people who just want justice and peace. But both sides have stupid racists who hate the other side and keep using violence to prove their point. It's gut wrenching and terrifying. I pray that I can raise my kids to treat everyone with respect and kindness, regardless of their race.

Please, pray for peace. Pray for love. Pray for justice. Pray for mercy.

If you want to read about what has happened and is happening, I've found this website to be a pretty good account from the very start, and is frequently updated.


  • Abby: Knock knock. Who's there? Banana who?
  • One of the first things out of Abby's mouth every day: I want oatmeal!
  • Kessa: Your dad is Papa Lovell! He always teases me.
    Hah! She nailed him perfectly. 
  • Kessa: But Mommy, I don't want to be with you. I want to be with Resa!
  • Kessa: “Daddy, sometimes my brain just doesn’t work right. It keeps telling me I have to finish this game, but really I don’t!”
  • “Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for the astronauts, and for outer space, and please help us… to be awesome!” —Kessa helping Abby pray, after Daddy left the room.

And for a quick update about Ferguson: everything has been far more peaceful this week. They're doing 3 autopsies on the body to try to figure out what happened. The cop's family has come out saying that the boy had turned around and was charging back towards him when he shot. His parents have asked that the people not protest on the day of the funeral. And there's a project going on called Heal St. Louis, promoting peace and unity and love. They're also focusing on registering people to vote and educating them on the voting process. Because equal representation needs to happen. So I think, in general, things are going well. There are still some bad things, too, but it's been a much better week there this week than last.

Hope you're having an excellent week!

<3 Tianna and Co.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Forgive any errors; I'm focused on Ferguson

Jessa ~

I'll admit, I'm having a hard time focusing on writing this. There is huge riot going down in Ferguson, Missouri right now. It is insane. I seriously can't believe this is happening in America. These are stories I'd expect to hear from somewhere in the Middle East. It's like the 1960s Civil Rights riots all over again. I'm not even sure I could condense it for you, but I'll try.  (BJ: Do you think you can do it in 2 paragraphs?)

Two black boys walk down a residential street. White cop tells them to get on the sidewalk because they're blocking traffic. Something we're not sure of happens. Somewhere between one boy (Michael Brown) mouthing off or maybe assaulting the cop. Either way, he ends up running away from the cop who then shoots him. Michael puts his hands up in the air to surrender, and the cop then shoots him dead. Autopsy just came back with 6 bullet wounds, two in the head. Residents start protesting against police brutality. The police respond by sending riot police in with sniper rifles and tanks. After a few days of tense standoff between protestors and police, some idiot throws a Molotov cocktail at a cop, the cops say, "This is no longer a peaceful protest" and immediately start tear gassing and shooting rubber and wooden bullets into the crowd. That was Wednesday night. Thursday those police pull back and the Highway Patrol take over and do a much better job, going in peacefully, walking in the protests with the people, talking to them. They also finally released the name of the officer, but haven't done anything against him other than put him on paid leave and let him skip out of town.

Friday night gets tense again, people start looting shops. Residents take it upon themselves to stop the looters and ask the police not to get involved, because they know if they do, violence will break out. Saturday the police guard the shops to prevent looting and enforce a curfew. Most go home at midnight (the curfew), but a small crowd stays... and they're armed. More tear gas and rubber bullets and 7 arrests resulted. Today has been tense. Another curfew was enforced. 3 hours before curfew, some punk sets off fireworks, police think it's gun shots and immediately start tear gassing again. Did you know tear gas is banned in international warfare? But apparently ok domestically. [shakes head] They tear gassed an 8-year old boy.  That's what's happening right now.

(Dear BJ: Yes.) So basically,  I'm having a hard time focusing on writing this blog post because I'm glued to Twitter, watching the live updates. I can't get this through my head. Clearly I have White Privilege to not really know that tensions like this really and truly still exist in my America.

Ok. I'll try.  Here we go.

Kessa had her Kindergarten pre-assessment. The teacher was rightfully impressed at her reading and math skills. [beams] And then on Friday class lists are posted. She's in afternoon Kindergarten with Miss Griffey. So now you know almost as much as I do. lol. She'll start school next Tuesday.

I think I told you that Abby has been dying to ride horses? Well, Grandpa Homer and Resa made that happen last week, up at the Draper fairgrounds. The girls loved it. At least once every day or two Abby will ask, "Go see Papa Resa?" She would be happy to ride those horses every single day. Multiple times a day.

Peter had his 2 month checkup. His stats:
Weight: 12.7 lb — 52.86%
Length: 24 in — 82.44%
Head Circumference: 15.5 in — 49.65%

So, he's tall, but otherwise average. He also sleeps All The Time. I won't put in writing how much he slept last night because last time I did that he stopped sleeping so well for several days. No more jinxing myself here! But at 2.5 months, he does still wake up to eat, then go back to sleep. Once or twice a day I'll bring him downstairs to lay in his gym with the girls fawning all over him for an hour or so, but mostly he's either nursing or sleeping in his bed. It's still a miracle.

Damian came down this past week with two of his boys, Parker and Kolter. He was able to finish all the trim! Hooray! It's now all ready to paint.

Last Sunday I discovered an app called ChoreMonster. It's been brilliant. Kessa has been begging for chores all week. It's great. I set up an account for Parker, too, so he cheerfully did chores all week to earn a trip to Thanksgiving Point and to stay up late one night to play a board game.

The other day she came down and told me I needed to buy her a new bed. I told her her bed was just fine. She insisted. I told her beds cost a lot of money. She said she'd earn it. So I searched for "girls twin bed" on Amazon and let her scroll through and pick one. Then BJ and I decided that we'd be willing to pay her 1 quarter for every real job (which I give her 5 points for). So we put the bed on her rewards chart for 6900 points. She has spent the last several days dedicatedly not spending any of her points on any other rewards because she is saving up for this bed. She is begging for chores to save up for this bed. I can't really blame her. The bed has a slide. That's right. My daughter is kind of awesome. It's a bunk bed of sorts. The bed is up top, with a slide to get down, and the bottom bunk area doesn't have a bed, but instead it has a curtain around it for privacy. So it's like a hide out and a bed and a slide. All in one.

Kim and all the kids are coming down tomorrow. I'm pretty sure I will be required to give Lexi and Taegen accounts too.  And they'll be spending their rewards. I'm interested to see how Kessa will handle it. Will she spend her points because of peer pressure? Or will she hold strong to her goal? My heart is already breaking a little for her right now at the decision. Part of me wants to just let her do the things the others do without charging her points, but the responsible part of me knows that this is an excellent learning opportunity, and I need to let it happen.

Parenting is hard.

We had Nick and Chelsea over for dinner tonight. I made Cafe Rio salads and they were delicious. Seriously. Definitely keeping these recipes on hand. They made us Homers Hookies which were also delicious. And then we played Ticket to Ride. Which was awesome.

Also, my sister had her baby a little over a week ago! Her name is Megan. Both are doing great, which is awesome, especially considering all the bed rest and such. I'm so happy for them. :D

Kessa has two loose teeth! And this time, she even let me touch them. That's new. Her last two she's been way too afraid of. Tonight we ate corn on the cob, which she has been begging for because her cousin, Parker, lost a tooth eating corn on the cob, so maybe she would too! She didn't, if you were wondering.


  • Kessa: Abby, do you want to be blown into your service? Do you want your dreams to come true?!
  • Kessa: When olives are whole and not cut up, I like to put them on my fingers and they’re like Minnie Mouse fingernails!
  • Kessa: I am oranges, Abby is apples, and Peter is pumpkin.
  • Kessa: Mommy, you won't be evil to listen to me. And I won't be evil to listen to you! Both of us won't be evil to listen, because we'll have these headphones in!
    Me: … do you mean “able?”
    Kessa: Um, yes.
  • I think Abby thinks “I know” means “no”. Which is often really confusing.
    Me: Abby, do you need to go potty?
    Abby: I know. I'm just coming upstairs.

    Me: When I'm done eating it'll be time to take a nap.
    Abby, whining: “I know, mommy!”
  • Kessa: What are we having for dessert?
    Me: Who says we're having dessert?
    Kessa: Me! Everyone else is having dessert. Look! Doggy is eating milk… chocolate milk! And unicorn is napping while eating ice cream. [continue listing animals and what dessert they are eating for another minute or two] So, see! We need to have dessert!
  • Kessa: Maybe Peter could be an astronaut!
    Me: Maybe you could be an astronaut!
    Kessa: How?! I'm going to be a cowboy!
  • Kessa: If we get this done before Daddy comes down, he'll be so suppressed!
  • Kessa's new favorite phrase: Oh you think so!
    For example. We were playing TTR and Nick placed some trains, moving his point marker past Kessa's.
    Nick: Oh, I just beat you!
    Kessa: Oh, you think so?!
And for sake of time, I'm just gonna put all the pictures here and write commentary.

Reward trip to Farm Country. I love the one with them holding hands. Parker really was such a great cousin to Kessa this trip. I love that they can still be friends, even with a 4 year age gap.

Just stating facts here. ;)

I forgot to mention, Abby wanted so badly to go ride horses that she just couldn't wait until the set day. So we went to Farm Country so she could ride ponies. But how was I to take all three kids? I had to walk with Abby on the pony and couldn't just leave Peter alone. So Kessa suggested we take turns. Abby could ride the pony first and she'd watch Peter, then Abby and I would watch Peter while Kessa rode the pony. How smart! And how kind to let Abby go first!

Riding horses!!!

You won't get this reference, as it's from Frozen, but just pretend she's a snowman here.
"Hi! I'm Olaf and I like warm hugs!"

Getting ice cream after a shopping trip. Mmmm.

Abby dumped saw dust from the garage all over her hair. That is not why she's crying. She's crying because I wouldn't show her the picture... before I took it.

Daddy decided to use the vacuum to clean her up. Hah!

Just chillin' with Peter.

Kolter and Abby looking out over the neighborhood.

One of Parker's prizes: staying up after bedtime to play Kingdom Builder. He did really surprisingly well.

Hmm... I apparently forgot to put these in the collage above. Oops! Feeding baby goats at Farm Country! The one in the top picture is a new baby. He and his brother kept jumping up on the crate in their pen and butting heads, trying to knock each other off. It was hilarious. I got a video. But I don't have the energy to post a video tonight. Sorry.

Abby got new sunglasses. How is she so stinkin' adorable, even with the sunglasses on her head?!

And... I think that's all for tonight. Back to watching in horror what I've decided is a conflict between two parties both comprised of people who want peace, and racists who hate the other and make really dumb decisions, ruining the potential peace for everyone else.

~ Tianna and Co.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

2-week recap

Jessa ~

Let's see... where to start... Two weeks of stuff happening. This probably won't go in any sort of order. Hang with me.

Well, Abby randomly became obsessed with horses. One day she just looked at me and said, "Ride horses, k?" I just kind of laughed and suggested she go ride her rocking horse. But no, she was not deterred. Over and over again she would ask. Finally I asked her where we were going to go ride horses. Taking that as a yes, she lit up, ran to the door to the garage and said, "Ok! Go to Mama Papa's house! Ride horses!" Uhhh... apparently she's made that connection, then. So last Sunday when we went up for Resa's birthday, we talked to Papa and scheduled a horse riding trip for next week.

Of course that didn't satisfy Abby. So the next day we had some spare time and I was in a good mood, so we went to Farm Country at Thanksgiving Point to ride ponies. One nice thing about having an annual pass is that I don't feel like we need to rush through and do everything. So we went to the ponies and took turns riding them. BJ was working so he couldn't come. But when Abby rides the pony, I have walk next to her. But what do I do with Peter? When I presented this problem to Kessa she came up with the solution. "Abby can ride first and I'll watch Peter. Then when she's done, I'll get to ride the ponies!" Nice solution! So Abby rode then Kessa did. Then Abby took another turn, then Kessa took another turn. It wasn't very busy, so they didn't have to wait in line, which was nice. Of course, when Kessa watched Peter, she mostly just took off her sunglasses and put them on his face, then came back to the fence and watched Abby ride the pony. Hah!  Then we went and rode on the wagon, then went home (much to the girls' dismay. But it was nap time for Abby and lunchtime for Peter. So I didn't budge.)

For months now we've talked about having Heather (Jenson) and Adam Thompson over for a game night. They just live in Pleasant Grove, so they're pretty close. Plus they got 7 Wonders for ... Christmas, maybe? and didn't know how to play, so we were supposed to teach them, but then they figured it out themselves. Anyway, at the wedding I talked to them and said, "Ok, let's just plan a date." So we did! And Tuesday they came over. We taught them Kingdom Builder, which you haven't played yet, but will. It was fun. And then we played Pandemic because they've been wanting to play it, but never have, and we have it. And we won. It felt a little too easy. I guess that's what happens when you go back to the beginning game. It was nice, because they know strategy games well enough to pick up on both quickly.

Yesterday we had a family reunion for my dad's siblings down in Lindon. It was a pretty small turnout this year, but was still fun. And the girls had a blast with cousins. (Errrr... second cousins. BJ doesn't like when I use "cousins" as a catch-all term. Silly boy. :D) We ate dinner and the kids played water games. (BJ wanted me to play water balloon toss with him, but I was wearing a white shirt, so I declined.)

Damian came back down this week. But his wife, Kim, is the expert painter, so this time she came with, and thus all the kids. He got the tile on the bathroom floor done and the trim around all the windows and doors and baseboards. Kim primed all the walls and ceilings and got the office and bathroom painted. And then at the very end Damian put together the siding for the playhouse! The girls were super excited about that. It'll be fun to see it painted. And my mom is going to paint on the wall around it. Maybe trees and clouds and something?  We'll see! That'll probably be further out, though, because she's spent the last 3+ weeks up with Jalin and will stay at least a week after the baby is born. And really, the baby isn't actually due for 2 more weeks, so who knows how long she'll be there. After that long of being away from home, it's going to be awhile before I can talk them into making another long trip down to my place, I'm pretty sure.

Meanwhile, I had the kids upstairs. The first day Lexi and Parker come running down the stairs holding a chore reward chart I had made for Kessa. Basically the idea was, 1 chore = 1 point. Here are the things you can spend your points on. And largely the rewards were outings. Mostly things we have passes to. "Aunt Nana! Can we do 20 chores and earn swimming?!" Umm... yes? The great part is, they're 11 and 9, so they can actually do chores without me holding their hand the whole time. So I wrote a bunch of chores, easy and hard, on post-it notes and put them on the wall. When they did a chore, they wrote their name on it and put it in a bowl. (An idea very similar to one I had just seen on Pinterest. Hah!) In 2-3 hours I had all of my baseboards cleaned, house dusted and mostly vacuumed, windows washed, cupboards and appliances wiped down, toys picked up, front porch and deck swept,  light switches and handrails cleaned of fingerprints, etc. It was pretty great. Honestly, I was probably more exhausted by the end of it than any of them were. They ended up doing 35 chores! Which meant they not only earned swimming, but also ice cream and a trip to the Museum of Natural Curiosity. (Aka the Children's Museum.)

So Thursday BJ took work off a little early and helped me take seven kids to the swimming pool. One being a 2-month old baby who can't even hold his own head up yet. Thank goodness for life jackets for the 2-6 year olds. But we had a lot of fun and it wasn't nearly as overwhelming as I feared it would be. On the way home we stopped and got ice cream at Arctic Circle. (Yes, right before dinner, why do you ask?)

Friday I was a little smarter and put the two 2-year olds and Peter down for naps and left them with BJ (who was working) and took the 4 oldest to the Children's Museum. Much more manageable. Honestly, having the two older kids here makes me very excited for when my kids are older. Except that I'm not yet ready to wish their childhood away. So mostly I'm just glad to know that I'll enjoy that age as well as this one.

Have I told you about potty training Abby? I know I told you that we started, but I was pretty half-hearted about it and it wasn't working really well. Well, I finally gave up, but Abby still wanted panties and I was pretty much too exhausted to fight her on it. It was just easier to clean up her accidents and say, "No sweetie. Pee pee doesn't go in your panties, it goes in the potty." And next thing you know, she started peeing on the potty on her own! It probably helped that I gave her a jelly bean every time she went. And turns out, she loves jelly beans. (Thank goodness we have a Costco-sized container of Jelly Bellies in our pantry!) During waking hours, she's pretty darn good about going, even all by herself, then running out to tell me "I went big pee pee in the potty! Jenno-bean?!" Best potty training ever. Well, except sleeping is still only 50/50. But she's perfectly capable of taking off her diaper and peeing on the bed or floor, so doing a diaper when she sleeps doesn't really help. And she's not good (at all) with poop yet either, so... we still have plenty of work to do. But overall, it's been a major blessing to my super tired mind.

Speaking of major blessings... Peter. Seriously. Who is this boy? He is BJ incarnate, I think. Did I tell you about the deal I made with God when I found out Peter was a boy? Abby was going through an overly-energetic phase and I had been spending a lot of time with my high-energy nephew and neighbor twin boys, so I was a little panicked about being able to deal with a boy. Ok, maybe a lot panicked. So I told God, "Here's the deal. If you want me to have more than 3 kids, this boy had better be BJ and not Nick or Damian. Because if you give me one of those, I'm done at 3." Pretty sure that if I can judge by 2 months, we'll have more kid(s). He is the easiest baby ever. He's sleeping from about 8-6 every night. 10 hours! (I'm really nervous about putting this in print. Will this jinx us? :S [knock on wood]) This has been going on for a couple of weeks now with only one night where he woke up before 6 ish. And during the day, he mostly just sleeps all day long, too. And when he is awake, he's just happy to lay there, eyes open, and just stare at things. Happy and content. He only cries when he's hungry or getting tired or needs a diaper change, and I haven't figured it out fast enough. And then once I start to take care of it, he's totally cool again. Best third baby ever. I needed this.

We found a really awesome website the other day. Basically you sign in through Family Search (same as your login) and it looks at your family tree and tells you how closely related you are to prophets, apostles, pioneers, US presidents, famous authors, famous scientists, signers of the Declaration of Independence, etc. It's pretty awesome. (Did you know that Nana and Harold B. Lee are 2nd cousins?! Who knew?) You can also create groups and people can join them so you can see how you're all related. A neighbor made one for our ward (which is how I found out about it) and we discovered that BJ and I (and thus you and I, too), are 5th cousins once removed! So far we're the most closely-related couple in our ward. Hah! In good news, we're still two generations further than legal for marriage, so we're all good.

Our garden is growing pretty nicely. Minus the yellow squash that totally died. Everything else, though, is good. I even discovered one peach on our peach tree today! I thought for sure there were none. Hooray!

The grass, however, is another story. We've been fighting that for two years. But we think we finally figured out why we have dry spots! They're right where you'd expect them to be if the sprinklers weren't spraying far enough, but every time we tested them, they covered those spots quite nicely. But we discovered that at certain times of day we have almost no pressure. Like some heads can't even fully pop up. So that's why our grass was dying! We changed the time to morning when we can actually watch it and make sure they're working, which seems to have mostly solved it. It's been so nice watching our dead spots slowly regrowing.

BUT our actual sprinkler box is possessed. It hates our lawn, and I think is actively trying to kill it. I don't even know how many times it has decided to lose power or something and change the date or time and suddenly our sprinklers are on in the middle of the day on a Thursday (we're under water restrictions, so we can only water on MWF, and then only between evening and morning). Which means we missed the times we could actually water the day before, and now we're risking a fine by watering at the wrong time. It's been very frustrating. And then the other morning I noticed they hadn't run that morning and so I went out to check and discovered that it was running on very minimal power. We could run the system manually, one station at a time, but it couldn't even light up the screen. What the heck? But then after we manually ran all the stations, the screen lit up and has been working perfectly ever since. I don't get it. It hates me, I'm sure of it. So if you think of it, pray for my grass, will ya?

I've been on a mission to simplify my house lately. I was sick of puzzle pieces and board game pieces everywhere, especially as their boxes are now broken beyond repair, so we spent several days putting together all the puzzles, turning them over and writing a letter on each piece (so when we find random pieces, we know which puzzle they belong to), then putting all the pieces in a ziplock bag along with the picture of the puzzle cut out from the box. I was impressed that only one puzzle was actually missing a piece. And we found it this week! We also put the board game pieces in ziplocks, then just stacked the actual boards together. Our game closet looks a lot nicer. (Note: we only did this to the kids' games. Our games miraculously get left alone. It had better stay that way.) I also gathered all the toys with the intention to box half of them up and put them in storage, but it didn't get done before niblings (that's an actual word for nieces and nephews! What?!??) came, so they're strewn around the house again, so I'll need to gather that all up and finish that project this week. And then I tackled the craft supplies in the guest room closet. I bought a bunch of small bins and sorted all my stuff. So I have one for crochet/knitting, one for sewing, one for adhesive/fastening things, one for crafting tools, etc. Maybe now I'll be able to find things! Though, I need to label the boxes...

Grandma Goddard's birthday party was tonight. Kessa made her a yarn bracelet. It was lavendar. "That's an old color, right?" she asked while wearing a dress the exact same color. Hah! Also, when I told her we were going up for Grandma's birthday she said, "So that means she's going to die soon, right?" I asked why she thought that, "Because Grandpa Goddard had a birthday party, then he died, like, the next day, right?" I reminded her that he had had lots of birthday parties before that one and that he had lived much more than one day after the party. "Oh yeah, cuz like, I had lots and lots of birthdays before I turned 5, huh!" Yes, dear. 4 is lots and lots. Hah!

Oh, no big deal. Just driving home listening to BJ asking Kessa big math questions like, "If it was 100° when we went up to Grandma's and 93° now, how many degrees did it drop while we were there?" And "If there are 6 shoes, how many kids are there?" And she's getting it right. And hasn't even started kindergarten yet.

This girl got her daddy's love of math, that's for sure.
I knew I needed something from Costco that didn't get put on my list, but I couldn't remember what it was. So I bought a whole bunch of extra items not on my list, just to be safe.

Next day:
I remember what I wanted from Costco. I didn't buy it yesterday. #facepalm


  • Kessa talking on her pretend phone. Part of the conversation included, “My password is, 81773812345678910.” Including appropriate pauses between numbers.
  • Kessa has a baby doll she's pretending is her baby. She's been calling me Grandma all morning. Just now she was talking to her baby about Peter. “That's baby Peter! He's your cousin!” Well… she figured out what a grandma is, but I guess we still have some work to do for uncles vs cousins.
  • Abby: I two! And Kessa five!
    She tells us this all the time. Sometimes she'll say one of us is 5. We've tried to teach her our age, but more often than not she says we're 50.
  • BJ told Kessa the story of the 3 little pigs
    BJ: What does this story teach us?
    Kessa: To not get eaten by wolves!
    BJ: What else does it teach us?
    Kessa: To not build a straw house!

Random pictures

Girls with Peter

We found Kolter and Abby dancing atop the goldfish they had poured out. I made them sit and watch me clean it up, so Taegen and Kessa came to be my enforcers. "I'll make sure my baby brother doesn't get up and you make sure your baby sister doesn't either." You can tell how Abby felt about that idea.

I told Lexi to make the alphabet out of pretzels. So she did!

Kessa playing with Shawn's phone at 4th Sunday dinner.

They were playing Star Wars and Kessa was Leia, so Lexi put buns in Kessa's hair. Hah!

My awesome babysitter with her favorite charge.

Seriously. I can't leave Kessa alone with Peter. The first is from Farm Country when she was supposed to be watching Peter. The second (sorry it's dark) was how I found him after I left them alone to go do laundry or something upstairs. Good thing the gym was there to hold up all the cushions and pillows!

<3 Tianna and Co.