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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.

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