Jenna Evans

The "Us" Project | Tanei & Jed

Jenna EvansComment

Oh hey, remember this amazing project?!  I’ve been slow to get these up, but they do not lack in content. This family blew me away with their powerful thoughts and how they have raised a family in Provo, Utah. Enjoy.

Jenna Evans1709030157032.jpg

What first attracted you to one another?

"We were at a family home evening introduction event— Jed forgot his scriptures and we were paired together. I noticed he had really nice green eyes..."

"I noticed her flabby left leg."— Jed

"I’d just gotten out of a cast and the first impression he had of me was this leg. Very romantic.” — Tanei

What qualities attracted you to one another?

“Initially we just had a good time, we could goof off together and didn’t have to worry.” — Jed

Jenna Evans1709030023002pp.jpg

How they’re involved?

“I am 100% not involved in the community, I am Tanei’s launching pad for the Provo community. We are very dissimilar in our personalities and interests. We can’t ever decide on the same movie to watch. We’ve never even read the same books. Our world views overlap quite a bit, interests not so much. We try and gratify one another’s needs knowing these differences.” — Jed

“Getting to know Jed better helped broaden my world view of people. For example, if someone was doodling in one of my classes I would have thought they aren’t paying attention and they’re not following rules. Seeing how Jed works and learns as an artist I was able to expand that view. Some people really do listen better when they have a task. My ideas about how things ‘should be’ have expanded. We can talk, and relate to people better, even if they’re different than me I can relate more because my husband does that.”—Tanei  

Jenna Evans1709030053009.jpg

How do you embrace individuality?

“We value different things quite a bit, but we trust the other that if  they value something else, its worth the time, it’s worth discussing, it’s worth-while and vise versa. Though neither of us alone would care about that on our own. We both listen to each other.” — Jed

“I used to be able to remember a lot more details of some of Jed’s interests— these topics have toned down to a degree since they don’t hold all the time. But as things have changed and evolved, having kids etc we’ve had to compromise sharing some of these interests to the depths we used to.” – Tanei

“A friend of mine sent me an email once titled "Date Night.", There was an image of them playing Zelda. I was kinda bummed out, cause ya know "they vibe." But I came to realize what I really like about us is how Tanei is giving our kids a much more rounded experience to the world than what I could have ever given them. Our girls are sassy, fun, they’re ready to go out there and kick some ass. If I had married someone similar to me, someone who was introverted and shared my interests, I never could have diversified my home or my family like we have. I value that in her, I rely on her for that. If we have to have an argument, Tanei’s the one I can send after them. For example, when we were buying the house we had some issues since I’m not traditionally employed (Jed sells fan art for video games.) We had a big top payment but I don’t have paystubs or a salary. Tanei got into their faces though, she’s very kind but she speaks up and gets what we deserve. I like to be humble, and she likes to change the world— that’s what works for us.”— Jed

Jenna Evans1709030100020.jpg

The Biggest Difference?

“Tanei's older sister was the first to go to college in their line, Tanei  followed shortly after.”— Jed

“Jed’s parents both got a masters and his dad a doctorate. His family has conversations about books and politics, we talk about sports, songs, and then might start to wrestle. My family is super authoritarian— you get up and give older people your seat. Jed’s family, they aren’t like that. When Jed would get in trouble when he was little his parents would ask “What do you think your punishment should be?". Their family communicates differently than mine.”— Tanei

Jenna Evans1709030119021.jpg

The Hardest Part?

“The culture shock of different families and trying to understand what the different expectations are from one another's in-laws. We have to try and understand what we are responding to and what our personal insecurities are.”— Jed

Power Couples You Look Up To? 

“Many local couples. Their homes are open so many people can pass through to be nourished socially and emotionally. We see them as examples of giving love to anybody in need, whether the people belong to the majority or not. Everybody needs a support system and we are glad to have them.”— Tanei

Jenna Evans1709030184040pp.jpg

Spirituality and The Role It Plays In Your Home?

“We have a pretty boiled down belief- The church is in a really interesting place right now- but we believe in God, Jesus, the Atonement.-that Jesus loves everyone— not that their wasn’t any judgment in that— but OUR only job is to love everyone.”— Jed

“We keep an open door policy to everyone. We have a lot of siblings that are in and some out of the church, but we can’t imagine not caring about those people.”— Tanei

“And we are schooled by people all the time who have different beliefs, sometimes they have better common sense than me! That’s just how it is. We would never try and turn people away, regardless of their own practices. We try and extend love, just like so many people outside of our religion do.”— Jed

“If people are good people, they’re good people. And I don’t think it really matters after that. We didn’t have to put that over our mantel or in vinyl on the wall. Our door is open to everyone. It unifies our house, because we both really connect with that.”—Tanei

“We grew up in families where everyone is doing their best. Our families struggled to keep commandments, make the ‘right’ choices. But everyone just does what they can AND they’re killing it. We’re lucky to have people that don’t think the same way we do; we admire the people in our families a lot, they’re amazing.”—Jed

“I think about my mom a lot, seeing her kids make different choices. But at the end of the day, all of my siblings love her and she lets us do what we are gonna do, loving us regardless.”— Tanei

Jenna Evans1709030150028.jpg