Hello, Friends. How are you? Dang. What a week. Are you feeling ragged? I sure am. I assume everyone is. We had personally emotional stuff going on (like sending Maude off to the dorms), happening against non-stop discussions about white supremacy, and arguments about what happened in Charlottesville. So much pain and confusion. So much reading and thinking and listening in an attempt to understand. So many memes. 

I’ve been processing things through my American lens, but also through my Mormon lens. The Mormon Church leaders made a sort of milque-toast statement in response to the events Charlottesville. And then followed it up the next day with a really strong statement. There are white supremacists among the Church membership who are mad about the strong statement. And there are Church members who are furious that white supremacists haven’t been kicked out already. Black women in the Mormon Church are sharing their experiences in Utah newspapers, and Church members who are in denial about racism in the Church, are having their world view shaken up. Groups within the Church are organizing against white supremacy and making public statements, also in Utah newspapers. Mitt Romney just made a public statement (as a political figure, not as a Mormon), and oh my gosh the comments are so painful to read — Trump supporters, Mormon or not, are furious with him.

How about you? Are you talking about these things online? Maybe offline with your kids? Do you feel like your churches or your schools are battling about what happened in Charlottesville?

Switching gears now. Anything you’re looking forward to? Ben Blair and I are headed to Colorado for a wedding this weekend (it’s the wedding of my super talented niece, Rachel Sabey), and then the whole family is road-tripping to Idaho to see the eclipse. Can I confess I’m ridiculously excited about the eclipse? I’ve been dying to see one since I read Annie Dillard’s eclipse essay when I was in college. Have you read it? It’s so good. Any plans for eclipse watching at your house?

Another happy thing: We’ve been doing our back to school dates and I love them so much. I take each child, one-on-one, and we pick out a new school outfit, get supplies, and get lunch or fro yo, or whatever they choose. We only started doing this a few years ago, but it’s been a good tradition to stick with.

Hey. I better go tackle the laundry so we can get packed up. But first, here are a few things I’ve wanted to share:

– Multilevel-marketing companies like LuLaRoe are forcing people into debt and psychological crisis.

– There are trees that mysteriously avoid touching each other.

– Disturbingly, experts are predicting a coming civil war here in America. (Related: Have you read the novel American War? I haven’t yet, but it’s on my list.)

– Hah! Ikea released instructions on how to make a Game of Thrones cape after the shows costume director said the actor’s wore Ikea rugs.

Breastfeeding at any cost?

– So fascinating. Not all languages have the same number of basic words for colors.

– A robot that fills your house with natural light. I’m intrigued.

Eclipse inspiration. Get excited! 

– Related, this satire made me laugh — The Eclipse Controversy.

Did women have better sex under socialism? (NYT)

Downton Abbey quote napkins (I’m trying not to feel defeatist.)

I hope you have a wonderful weekend. I’ll meet you back here on Monday. I miss you already.