When I stumbled upon this group of FLDS having a ball playing soccer in Colorado City, Arizona, I asked permission to take this video and the mother said yes. It does my heart good to share the evidence I find of FLDS families like this laughing, having fun, experiencing life joy! As a newcomer to the area who was keenly aware of all the negative media, I have been happily surprised by how much happiness I see. Studies show how play and laughter are essential to healthy development, so I commend the mothers here who not only are allowing their children to play, but who are playing right along with them! THOSE are incredible moms.
In fact, all the Cricker moms I have met have been full of love for their children.
Just documenting the joy as I see it. When we moved here, we were under the impression that there was never any joy for the children. In fact, it seems that children are outside playing more and more. Something wonderful is happening.
After taking us to the zoo and showing us the planned renovations, on the spur of the moment, Andrew Chatwin took Tolga and I on a hike to the Amphitheater – just minutes from our cottage! It was absolutely stunning and a mind-blowing experience for us – not to mention that I got sucked into quicksand along the way. Please enjoy our short little video clips.
Click on a photo to launch the gallery and see each photo larger.
The FMJ Zoo is a 12-acre parcel that was turned into a small zoo by one of the Crick’s most beloved people, “Uncle Fred Jessop.” From what I understand, Uncle Fred loved children and created the zoo to bring enjoyment to the little ones growing up here. It used to have bears, a giraffe I think, and more. At some point,Uncle Fred died and the zoo was forced to close. Today it is being renovated to once again become a place of happiness in the community.
The pond is being stocked with fish, special fishing and picnicking locations were set up, and it is being turned into a nature center. The photos below are from a special work day project sponsored by the Fern Foundation (led by Lindsay Hansen Park) where lots of outside volunteers came in to help make a difference.
Ever since the tragic flood of 2015 (read about it HERE), this community is very sensitive whenever there is a flood warning, or when it floods. Tolga and I were out walking – taking photos – early in the morning when the rain started. Within an hour, the rains had created a raging flood that was so powerful, we worried it was going to wash a walkway bridge away. We were awestruck by its force, dragging strong, heavy trees like they were feather-light twigs. As soon as the rain stopped, the city trucks were out removing the wash over the streets. Although we thought it would take a month to do the cleanup, the streets were clear and drive-able by that afternoon. The sun came out, some flowers survived and the chickens bawked in the underbrush like nothing extraordinary happened. We gave words of encouragement to a fearless snail, then we walked home in utter amazement, and thankful everyone in the community stayed safe.