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Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Of murder and giant carrots

Dear Resa ~

Probably the highlight of my week was hosting a Murder Mystery party. We did the same one (Way out West) that we did with your family, but this time BJ and I were the bartenders. I put way too much time and effort into decorating, but I surprisingly didn't stress about it at all. Plus, I think the atmosphere was pretty dang awesome because of it. I invented a logo for the Silver Dollar saloon, then put it on a sign for the door, on aprons for BJ and I, and even made stationery for people to take notes on if they wanted. I divvied out the food to everyone else (making my life way easier), and one gal brought cans of soda, wrapped in paper with our logo on it. We also took down most of our pictures/paintings and replaced them with black and white photos and tin types (all framed in old barn wood). And I borrowed a couple of old cameras as decoration as well.

Our guests were fantastic with their costumes, and really got into their parts. It was hilarious being on the bartender end of things. We had our entire main floor open, but everyone stuck to the kitchen and family room area (even though we had 18 people in there!), which made it far easier for us to walk around, listening to what people were saying, laughing at how people chose to make friends/enemies, and perform our bartender duties. I definitely want to do more of these. So. Much. Fun.

I think this next picture is my favorite, though. BJ did a panorama of the group. I just love how everyone is crowded in the kitchen, but Dan and Lucy are having a private moment in the family room.

And... let's throw things up a little and put kiddisms in the middle today.
Me: What do wolves say?
Abby: They don't say anything! They talk!
Kessa's dinner prayer: Help our food to be blessed. Help our family to be strong. Help our family to be safe while we eat. And while we sleep for lots of days.
Abby: My teeth don't know they're surprised.
BJ: Let's face it, Bellatrix was no Hufflepuff.
Abby, telling me that there were monsters where I was: It's OK. They are bad, but they won't hurt nice.

Sunday I was out in the garden and Kessa asked when we could pick carrots in a certain bed. I told her she could pick one right then. (She likes to pick them and eat them. I'm not going to complain.) She tried to, but it didn't take long before she told me she couldn't, because all the leaves were hooked to one spot. Now, there were a *lot* of leaves in that box, so I was rather skeptical. I went over anyway and soon found out that she was very right. (BJ points out that he has told me before that there was only one giant carrot in that box, but I have so completely ignored my garden this year that I apparently forgot.)

Resa. This carrot is gigantic. Ridiculously gigantic. After we cut off the leaves we weighed it. It was 4.2 pounds! BJ wants to put it on our front porch with our pumpkins. But the girls keep breaking off legs and snacking on them, so we'll see if it ever makes it out there. :)

Peter learned how to walk while pushing a little toy car on Sunday. He's been walking while holding fingers for awhile now, so this shouldn't be surprising. Honestly, I hadn't even considered trying him on it. Neither of our girls ever wanted to walk with it, so I've just dismissed it as a walking toy. But a neighbor's boy just learned to walk while pushing theirs, so I decided to try it, and man, he's taken to it like a duck to water. He can zoom around the house with it.

Also about Peter, I think his first word is officially “banana”.

We had parent teacher conference with Kessa's teacher this week. As expected, she's doing great. What I wasn't expecting was one of the schoolwork papers that was given back to us. Resa! What am I supposed to do with this?! Kessa is not boy crazy!

She is also getting a lot better at roller skating.

And... apparently I didn't get any pictures of Abby this week. But I suppose she dominates the kiddism section, so oh well? I did get a video of her telling a story tonight. If I have time, I'll transcribe it and send it to you separately. She's hysterical.

Love and hugs,
~ Tianna and Co.

Monday, October 19, 2015

A double dose of kiddisms

Dear Resa ~

I'm sorry for all the confusion with last week's letters. I had my days mixed up and thought you wrote on Monday. It was just a mess. And, just now, I just realized that my last post never actually posted. It had kiddisms and pictures! [sigh] Lesson learned, though! Never blog kiddisms and pictures from the tire store on my phone.

Forgive me?

Let's start with kiddisms. In good news, you get a double dose.
Abby: Am I going to Liam's house?
Me: Yup!
Abby: But I don't like boys!
Me: Remember Brother Anderson?
Abby: I like him!
Me: He's a boy.
Abby: I like that boy but not other beautiful boys.
Me: Can you tell me the story?
Abby: Mmmmm… no. I don't know how to learn it. Because I'm not a mommy.
Pizza night at the Homers = Zoombini quote night. “There's something on here I don't like!” “The perfect pizza!”
Abby: Mommy, we forgot to watch a show!
Me: You did watch a show. You just fell asleep while you were watching.
Abby: I noticed.
Abby: G-O-L-M-O spells go.
Kessa: Mommy! Time for breakfast!
Me: Is it ready?
Abby: Yes, because I can fly.
Abby threw up tonight. We just got her resettled on our bedroom floor.
Abby: It's still hurting.
Me: If you need to throw up again, try to get it in that bucket beside you.
Abby, writhing slightly: I'm trying to push it out.
Me: Does it feel like it's going to come out your mouth or your bum?
Abby, relaxing visibly: It came out my toes.
Abby: If you go to Farm Country, I will give you a candy. Promise?
Abby, whispering: Mommy, if you let me go to Grandma Lovell's, will you give me a candy?
BJ: Eight plus the tree plus the two is 13.
BJ: With our hands combined, we are… holding hands!
Talking about a favorite neighborhood kitten that died last year:
Abby: She ran to heaven.
Kessa: She didn't run to heaven. She didn't fly to heaven. She died to heaven.
Abby is scared to sleep by herself tonight. She's in bed yelling, “Daddy, I'm scary!”
Abby: Cooper! Watch this sound!

I know you want us to write via real letters. You have one in the real mail from Kessa. And you should have gotten some printed at the MTC by the time you read this from Kessa and Abby. But I'm going to keep writing this one, too, as it doubles as my blog. So there. :P

I told you my mom took my kids for almost a week, right? It was marvelous. When I thought of something I needed at a store, I could just go get it. Right then. By myself. Or when some friends who decided to move to Boston had a dinner/game night and invited us, we went, even though it was late at night. I got so many little things done. Not many things that sound impressive on their own, but it was the conglomeration of all of them that made it so lovely.

I have a friend who does a podcast called The Protagonist Podcast. Every week they talk about a different fictional protagonist. A few weeks ago he asked me if I would join them as a guest for the Harry Potter podcast. Um. Yes! Yes, I would. So I did! Thursday night I went down to Orem and spent a couple of hours talking all about Harry. It was lovely. (It'll be edited down to an hour.) I'm excited for it to come out and see what it ended up being like!

Abby has been showing a great interest in cooking lately. That is actually an understatement. Every time I start cooking anything, she comes running into the kitchen, grabs her kitchen chair with her booster on the seat, pushes it over to wherever I happen to be working while yelling, "I want to help!" It's adorable and very inconvenient all at the same time. I think that might actually be a good description of kids in general. :D Anyway, so when my friend, Melanie, hosted a Kids in the Kitchen Pampered Chef party, I had to go. It was a little chaotic (it had a good turnout), but super fun. Abby and Kessa both had a grand time. And then, as is the point of the party, I spent way too much money on Pampered Chef items. But in good news, many of them I got so that I could cook with my kids more! So... hopefully that happens.

Last night Kessa walked into the ditch and completely out of the blue said, "I want to be more like a grown up.” I asked her if she knew what that meant and she said, “Yes. It means I have more chores and things.” She then proceeded to help me finish cooking dinner and setting the table! She's so proud of herself. (And I am too!) This morning, when she was having a hard time being responsible with her  morning chores and getting ready for school, I asked her if she had meant that she just wanted to be more like a grown up last night, or just for a couple of days. "No, I meant it for forever!" And then she got up and (admittedly very slowly and with prodding), finished getting ready for school. I love that girl.

Peter has stood up by himself for about 5 seconds multiple times now. At my parents' house he took a couple of steps by himself, but I don't think he's done it since then. He's getting there, though! He can also climb really well.  Up and down stairs. Up the stool in the bathroom so that he can turn on the water. And even more fun, he's also learned how to stopper the drain and fill up the sink! Woo! What a lucky mommy am I! ;)

And now, pictures.

Some pictures from Grandma and Grandpa Lovell's

Hopefully all is great in Mexico. That you can walk again. And that you understand and speak a little more Spanish. Hugs!

<3 Tianna and Co.

Monday, October 12, 2015

Letters and apologies

Dear Resa ~

This past week I read The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. Have you ever read that? If not, you should. It's delightful. It always makes me want to write better letters. Why? Because the entire story is written in charming letters. Sometimes hilarious, sometimes tear-wrenching. It's written shortly after World War 2, mostly about the occupation in Guernsey, an island in the Channel Islands. Perhaps it's because I listened to it as an audiobook, so I got all the voices in various European accents. How can one not fall in love with that? I've decided I can write much better letters so long as I can read it in Juliette's delightful British accent. I must also use words like "charming" and "delightful." So try to read it in the same British accent I have in my head, k? ;)

Each letter is filled most with one or two stories, some questions, some answers to previous questions. And that's all. Perhaps that has been my problem—I write too much detail about ok many things. That perhaps is better for a journal. But not a letter. 

I know last week I promised you two letters, but life has charged on by and here I am, Monday morning again, and no letter written yet. So I will get you the one. I did promise you some stories, though. 

You worried you wouldn't be missed. Let me assure you that is not the case. Last week the girls were sleeping out on the couch in the loft (we have Silly Sleeping Fridays) when I heard Kessa crying. I went in, assuming Abby had invaded her space or something, only to hear her sob, "Resa! I miss Resa!"

It came completely out of the blue. We hadn't been talking about you that evening or anything. I don't know what made her think about you being gone, but something did. And, oh Resa. It was heartbreaking. 

I assured her you would be back and explained again that you were teaching people about Jesus. But we could still write you letters and call you every once in awhile. That worked for a second, but then she was sobbing again. So I reminded her that Jessa had gone on a mission, and she had come back! "But Jessa doesn't babysit me anymore!"

Isn't that adorable? She's afraid that when you come home she won't have the same relationship with you. I was justified in missing your babysitting! ;) But in the end she calmed down when I promised her that I would show her the map you made her to color in. We've since laminated it and they each have colored in a heart. 

This week the kids are all up at my parents' house for Fall Break so I can get stuff actually done. We've hung up a bunch of pictures and moved sprinklers, and then it was Sunday. I've been busy with babysitting co-op and primary this morning, so hopefully by next week I will have a long list of things done. 

And now you will be writing any moment. And I want to have something to send you, so I will post this. So much for an awesome letter. Forgive me? If you haven't written before I get home (I'm out for lunch), I'll send pictures. 

Love, Tianna