Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Bloggin' and Bakin'

Ok, so I am a bloggin' slacker.... I am so disappointed in my lack of blogging as of late so please forgive me for not keeping you all posted on the latest happenings. I have lots to say but not too much time to write today as I am actually really busy with Thanksgiving preparations. But to let you all know, I am better than my last post! Emotionally, spiritually, physically... well working on that again :) but all around better. Please check back in a couple of weeks for a full story (bring a cup of tea or coffee with you, it might take a while) of where God has taken me these last few months and the journey that I have been on.

For today though, I am happy and thankful to have a day to spend with some of my favorite kids, MINE! We are cleaning and baking for my favorite holiday of the year... Thanksgiving! We have much to be thankful for and today is one of the days I am most thankful for! So my kitchen will be busy and messy and my kids will be loud and excited, but this momma's heart will be full and happy and so very Thankful!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Its a Roller Coaster season!

Yeah, so this picture sums up my life and my emotions better than I could describe it. Our family is on one heck of a ride these days and it just so happens that today I seem to be able to blog about it without crying my way through it. So, it appears today or at least for the moment, its going to be a good day :)
Its a season of change for us here in the Johnson family. We are waiting on some new housing, a job that seemed stable has cut back on hours, belts have been tightened, kids are growing up and stretching their wings, independance, and boundaries, a marriage has been challenged, and relationships have been strained. Through it all, I am reminded daily of God's constant love for me and for my family. As hard as things are right now, I know that He is there. I also know that I am being taught some really hard lessons right now and I only find comfort in knowing that He is my rock and my Savior. There have been days and more than I can count actually as of late, where I have questioned how we are even going to make it out of the situation of the moment. God has been faithful in providing all of our needs. I am quickly learning the difference between wants and needs in this season of change. I am learning that people who might have a small space in my world are some of the one's who have been the most faithful in uplifting me in prayer and sending cards and calling to check in on me. I am humbled by a friend who stopped in to see me at work, to find me at one of my lowest points and get on her knees with me and cry with me before our God. I am grateful and thankful to have a man to walk down this road with me, carrying me because I can't seem to put another foot in front of the other some days. I am proud of a husband and a father who will work another part time job doing a mundane dirty job for a little bit of money to help out where his regular full time job has left us needing more. I am a grateful mommy who came home from a meeting to find three cards made for her letting her kow how much she is loved and how sad they are that I am having a hard time right now.
I am learning so much right now about myself and my abilities. I am seeing people in a new light, if you will and finding out how strong relationships really are. God is revealing Himself to me daily as I seek direction and peace. He means it when He tells us to seek Him and to look for Him and He will reveal Himself to us.
I pray that the next time I get the chance to blog, I will have new things to share and new blessings to tell you about! In the mean time, remember us in your prayer time and be thankful to Him for how He is using you.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Sweet surrender, difference between faith and trust, and other lessons to be learned

As a homeschooling mom, I am well aware of how important lessons are. You can't just teach a piece of something here or a part of something else there. You need the whole lesson to learn the complete concept. Well, that's where I am with my walk with God right now. In the midst of some lessons. Like teaching my children, they aren't all fun and games either. Actually most of them are not fun at all.
Earlier this summer, I committed to working on complete surrender of my life to God. For those of you who know me, know that this is a task for me since I am a control freak. While I have come a long way in this commitment, I am so not there yet. I do make it a daily prayer that I could give it all over to him, all my worries, frustrations, and struggles.. the good and the bad. It and I am a work in progress. Better than before, but oh so long a road to go!
I am studying the difference between having faith and trust. It is a good study and I am learning alot, mostly about myself, but also what the word of God has to say about faith. Maybe another blog soon about this as it has a lot of content and I have lots of thoughts on it. Not at a complete conclusion though, so I'll leave it at that. In case you were wondering, I have concluded that there is a definite difference.
Right now, today, I am having to leave a lot to God. We have so many uncertainties in our life and I am really having a hard time with it. I am a A type personality and I like my plans made in advance and all my ducks in a row, so to say. There are things that we are waiting on and dealing with that truly only the Lord of the Universe knows anything about. Very hard for me. I am anxious, sleep deprived, and on edge because of it and I am waiting on the Lord to reveal His plans to us.
The one thing I know for certain is that God loves us and wants what is best for our family. I need to rest in that and try to relax and be patient. Lets hope my eyes and ears are open more than they were yesterday so that He can show me my tomorrow!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

My sweet daughter is 16 today!

In working on my blog last night, I wondered why this blog wasn't posted... I had selected save post instead of publish post! So goes my life... anyway my blog to my sweet 16 year old! Mwah...

Wow, how can this be? I asked Frank this morning. It's just not possible for this to be happening in our life. Sixteen years ago this morning, we fell deeply in love with a perfect and beautiful little baby girl that we named Kendra Nicole Johnson.

She began her journey into the world exactly how Kendra does everything - in her own time! My due date was September 12 and it came and went with no baby. On the morning of September 14, my water broke and the contractions weren't far behind. Off to the hospital we went, scared and excited. We were so young and naive. However, I had dreamed of this moment my whole life that I could remember, I was going to be a mommy! We were checked into the hospital and settled in for what we thought would be a few hours maybe 10 tops... we were so wrong! Twenty - three hours, an epidural, and little sleep later my precious baby girl arrived. She was perfect! Petite, pink and pouting she was the most beautiful baby I had ever seen and I was in love. It was there in that delivery room that I remember really falling in love with Frank all over again and understanding what that statement even meant.
We've been through so much together, a near death experience, weddings, funerals, trips to the ER, new siblings, broken hearts, laughter that makes your face and stomach ache, trips to NY, a great boyfriend of over a year and a half, and more personal moments that are for this mom to hold close and treasure them for myself. All in all, she is my pride and joy. She is my first born and one of my closest friends. She knows me well as I do her. When I woke up this morning and realized that my time with her here with me under our roof is a mer two years left, I choked up and found myself in sorrow and fear, just like I did that day 16 years ago when she stopped breathing. Quickly I am reminded that God saved her that day and will continue to save her day to day. So instead of focusing on what is to come, I am focused on the here and now and loving that my baby girl still loves to hug me and love me, watch TV with her mom and sit and chat about stuff. These are the moments I treasure and I am looking forward to more of these to come!
Happy 16th birthday baby girl! You changed my life for the better sixteen years ago. My life and those of our family are better because you are in it and you fill us all with love. Thank you for allowing me to be your mommy, I am so blessed! I love you so very much!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

From school, to sports to season changes.....

It is that time of year here in the Johnson home... Fall is just around the corner and with it is coming the start of a year of running everyone here and there and being straight out busy. Ok, so if you know me at all, you are thinking or even saying out loud, "when isn't the Johnson family right out straight and busy?" Good point, but this time of year seems more so to me than any other!

This morning I am sending Kendra off to the local high school to take two classes this year. She really wants to go into nursing when she gets done school, so she really needs to get her college prep. Biology done where she has a lab. Then she needed to get her foreign language done too, so we thought we would send her to take that class there too so that she was there for more than one class and make it worth her time to be there. I will homeschool the rest of her studies and happy to do it! I wasn't ready to let her back to that world again for the whole day, just wasn't. I am so glad that she put that off for another year :) Can you imagine my happy dance? She is running for the school X Country team and seems to be enjoying that. However, practices everyday after school is a little tough and will be more so when there is also homework involved! Oh, and did I mention she turns 16 in twenty days and is also sending in for her license...EEEEKKK when did my baby get to be that age? I need to stop this!
Austin is playing football for the local junior high team. This is the big boys and man, I worry about him! Not that he isn't big enough, have you seen him lately? He is 12 and 5'4" and 104lbs and getting muscle! But he is still my "little" boy and is still as sweet and sensitive as ever. He is excited though! His practices are also right after school with games on Tuesdays. This guy has no desire to go to the school for any classes and is more than content to stay right here with mom teaching him! I love him!
The twins are growing up too fast. I can't believe they are almost 8!! They begin soccer next week and are so excited to get involved again. Did I mention that their practice is also on Tuesdays and their games are at 8:30AM on Saturday mornings????? Ok, seriously who does that? The boys will be fine, and I suppose I will too once I get my drive thru coffee to prop my eyes open! Homeschooling is their only choice at this point. Some day that might change when they are like 18! No, seriously, we will give them the same options as the older two when they are in jr. high.
We made the most of the short summer we had. Lots of beach trips, exploring new places and getting together with lots of friends. Looking back, I know that this summer is one to be remembered as my time with having all four kids with me is coming to an end. Kendra is a young adult and getting ready to be gone from me more and more all the time. I know that is the way she was designed and I am proud but that pride comes alongside sadness of what once was.
We officially start school Tuesday, September 8. It's going to be a crazy - busy year but we're excited and ready to go! Bring on the cooler nights, fall colored days, apple picking, birthdays, football games and earlier bed times.... we're rearing to go!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Always, sometimes, Nevah Evah.....

I saw this fun little ditty at a new blog I found last week called Under Grace Over Coffee! It was quite entertaining and made me smile so thought I would share too :)

- take the time for a hug from my little ones no matter what I am in the middle of

- kiss my sweetie good night, ALWAYS

- sing in the shower

- put on lotion both before bed and every morning after my shower


- push things to the back of the fridge for Frank to clean out because I have such a bad gag reflex

- have random dance parties in the car when I am driving

- ignore the phone if I don't want to talk to whoever is calling.

- feed my kids breakfast for supper

- delete emails from people if I know they are just forwards


- eat lobster even though I live in Maine

- go to bed without locking the doors and making sure everyone is tucked in their beds

- leave my bed unmade

- refuse fresh fruit. Seriously.

- say "nevah evah".

Let me know if you play along so I can see what you always, sometimes and nevah evah do!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Conditions and Expectations?????

Some recent events that not only have happened to me but also to some of my family members has caused me to pause on the conditions and expectations of loving someone. Whether it is a friend that we love, a spouse, even our children, either knowingly or not we have conditions of some of that love and definitely expectations. Not to be confused with the unconditional love that we have for our husbands and wives or that we have for our children. I tell my kids all the time, there is nothing that they can do to cause me not to love them, and that is true. I can't wrap my head around anything that I don't think that I could work through, by the grace of God, that Frank could do that would cause me not to love him. Thinking and reflecting on things that have happened in the recent past, has caused me to think and appreciate the love Christ has for me.
To know that we don't have to perform at a certain level for Him to "play me in the game" relieves a low self esteem man when he is at his lowest. To know that we don't have to act "just like everyone else", lightens a teen girls heart when she is feeling judged. Learning that we "fit in" all the time with Christ, when others make a young man feel left out of everything, makes him feel worthy of being just who he is without making any changes. To know that even when our hearts are hurting and our immediate response is to put up walls of protection around our hearts or even to hurt the person(s) back that are causing us pain, that God knows the pain in a woman's heart and shows her through scripture, encouraging words from other women, and a loving husband that her heart is safe and only God can and is able to heal those wounds.
I am learning that acceptance of who we are in Christ needs to be enough. This is a tough lesson for me, because I live in constant comparison and competition with other wives, moms, women and families and God does not intend for that to be. He created us just the way we are, sinful and yucky just the same. He wants us to surrender it all and let Him continue to mold us to be just like Him, but I am learning that starts with accepting ourselves as He made us and working with Him to change not change us into what we think HE wants. Does this make sense to anyone else? I hope it does. If not just being able to write it out just solidifies it to me :)
I'd love to hear some feedback on this and see if anyone else has or is struggling with this too?

Monday, August 10, 2009

Gotta get caught up!

Wow, have we been busy!
We have been doing a whole lotta this......

And a couple of these.....

Both Austin and I celebrated our special days with family and friends alike!

We were also blessed to go to this....
What an absolute blessing for my family and I to sit and worship together while watching this band preform! Only a glimpse of what heaven might be like :)

We planned on doing lots of inexpensive, fun, memory making, family trips this summer and so far we have been able to do just that. We have been to the beach more this summer than I can remember doing any other. We have hiked, explored, talked and enjoyed each others company. We reconnected more as a family and have learned to really look forward to the times it is just the six of us. I pray that summer isn't over and this time in our lives doesn't end soon. God has been so gracious in some of the things that he is showing to Frank and I and we are so very humble and blessed to have this family that He has given to us.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

My sweet boy turns 12 today!

Twelve years ago today, at 4:20pm, Frank and I fell in love with a 10lb 3oz (ouch!) bundle of sweetness that we named Austin Dean Johnson! Austin was such a good baby and so easy, I wondered what I had done in this life to deserve such a treasure for a baby. Everyone told me it was such an adjustment to go from one baby to two, this was so not the case with Austin. Truly the only time that we heard much from him was when he was hungry, which seemed to be most of the time :) and if he was hurting. He was so content to just sit with me or in his swing and watch his big sister play in front of him. Always the sensitive child, he would want to give his toys to other kids who wanted what he had, and often would find himself without in a group setting since other kids would just play around him and use what he might be playing with. To this day, he loves to be home with his family and truly is a "mommas boy". We don't look at this as a sign of weakness or demeaning of his character. He truly enjoys being with me and I with him and I LOVE the glimpse into the future that I am getting into the man that he is becoming and will be one day. This boy will be a sensitive and loving boyfriend and husband one day. This boy will be a loving and gentle daddy one day. This boy will be a man with integrity and honesty and a deep love for his Heavenly Father. I love him so much and I adore my moments with him. He is one of my greatest treasures and blessings here on this earth :)

Austin is active and is learning to love basketball and baseball. He is your average 7th grader with curiosity about new things and how they work! I love this about him. He learns all he can about a subject when he is really interested in it and such a joy for me to homeschool! He is growing by leaps and bounds, sometimes over night it seems but certainly in weeks at a time. He is now taller than his dad and wears the same size shoe, but still loves to walk up to his Dad and say, "I love you Dad". These moments melt my heart. He has close friends now, and enjoys his independent time with them. I am so glad that he has these moments in time to have as memories. His sister is still the apple of his eye. Yes, they still squabble from time to time, but those times are farther apart now and he truly would do anything for her and they have more secrets between the two of them and they are each others greatest fans! The twins think he is the next best thing to slice bread :) I love to watch them light up with delight when he is willing to play with them. Colby thinks he is the strongest brother ever, and Cam has the hardest time falling asleep without his big brother there to protect him while his sleepy eyes succumb to slumber. Coaches tell us what a great kid he is. Easy to coach, respectful, helpful and a joy to have on the team. How this mommy's heart swells with pride when she hears these words. Words I have spoken to myself and to Frank on many occasions but a whole new feeling when a stranger says them to you :) Family members gush at how he loves to be with the family and takes care of the little ones in our family. He's smart and articulate and learns things that most people might find a little boring and mundane, not Austin, he'd rather figure it out instead of glazing over the top of it!
We are so blessed! I thank God for each of my family member daily, knowing all to well the size of the hole that is left in our hearts and lives when someone that we love so dearly is taken away from us. Austin makes my heart full of love, joy, and pride and I couldn't be happier than to be on this journey called life with him as my son and to be his mother!
Happy 12th Birthday Austin! I love you more than all the stars in the sky.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

I aspire to be this woman......


Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Bountiful Blessings~ Better late then never :)

So behind the ball this week! We are still functioning in screech mode here in the Johnson family.. and when we aren't screeching somewhere we are so tired that this momma can't keep her eyes open long enough to be on the computer to type my blessings out! So here goes what has been floating around in my head in the blessing compartment of my brain:

~ Watching my son Austin and his team win their major league baseball division! Finally he gets to be on a championship team!! He had a great season and it was fun to watch him develop more into a great athlete! Great job Austin, mommy is so proud of you!
~ Getting to take the boys to the lake last week. It was a beautiful day to be on the water with a picnic lunch and I enjoyed watching them play together as 3 brothers. They love each other so much and it was fun to watch that in action.
~ The Faith Kidz Carnival! It was a wonderful day and it was so great to celebrate the day with the families of the Faith Kidz :) The weather was perfect, the team of workers were perfect, and the families are still telling me that they had a great time! More rewarding than all that is the reasons that we were able to do this. The kids memorized their monthly verses, brought their bibles to church, etc! How great to celebrate with them in this way!
~ Spending time with my BF, Devon! We were able to spend some time together this past week and it felt so good to be with her :) Even though it was working most of the time, it was fun to just be around her and laugh and talk! She is so good for my soul! Thank you God for your gift of her friendship.
~ Lessons that I am learning. They are quite painful actually and I am struggling with most of it, but I do know that when I am at my weakest, God is able to be the strongest and I rely even more on Him which I know is His desire and design.
~ A card that a sweet friend in our church sent to me this week! Timing is everything and this lady doesn't even know what is going on with me, but she was thinking of me and all that "must be going on with how crazy things are in Faith Kidz and I just wanted you to know that I am praying for you and your family". God is so good to use His people in such ways. The little things mean so much in times like this!

Keep looking up and your blessings will come down!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Mommyhood.... not for the weary or faint at heart!

Wow, has this been a really emotional couple of weeks in the parenting department. I have always loved being a mommy and still do, but boy, this is tuff stuff. I know that God doesn't give us anything that we can't handle without His help, but there are definitely times that I think He has mixed me up with another lady named, Janet Johnson. This lady must be more organized than I am, much more patient, never loses her temper on her children, always has a smile ready, all the time in the world to spend one on one time with each of them, always shows Jesus in her actions to others... the list is endless and I am not that woman. The only thing that I can say is that I love them more than myself. I would die for any or all of them if necessary. It kills me inside to see them in pain or hurting either at the consequence of a choice that they have made or because I have had to punish them for something. I know that this is only a piece of the pain that my Heavenly Father must feel when I disobey or have to suffer a consequence of a bad choice. The pain He must feel from me on a daily basis...." Lord, please help me to do better at disappointing and disobeying you! Continue to work on me to become the woman and the mom that YOU would have me to be. Please let me show Christ to my children so that they would want to know You better and more intimately. Thank you for choosing me to be their mommy. It is my greatest blessing in this life and I thank you for "loaning" them to me. I continue to stand in awe of your greatness and generosity of these gifts!"

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Bountiful Blessings~

We had a really great long weekend this past week and blessings were bubbling all over the place!

~ I am so blessed to live in this country! The freedom that we have to worship God, come and go as I please, etc... I am so grateful to all the men and women who fight for that freedom for my family and I!
~ Getting together with friends! We went with some friends to the street dance that our community has every year during their July 4th celebration :) We had the best time dancing the night away as families and really enjoyed each other. What fun to hang out and exercise at the same time!!!
~ Watching our daughter become the woman she is becoming. She is kind, considerate, loving, funny, beautiful and simply a joy to have in our lives. As she is becoming older we are watching our roles change from parents to friends and advisers. It truly is a blessing to have such a grounded loving daughter such as Kendra! I love you, Boo!
~ People who have stepped into offer to help us out during this time of financial transition for us. We still have many uncertainties about the future, but God continues to provide for us and uses His people to bless us along the way.
~ Another 2lbs down in my weight loss journey! This is coming off slow but still coming off and for that I am grateful! Also, my blood pressure lowered alot and my anemia seems to be under control as well. I am only taking sleep medication once or twice a week too! Things are definitely getting better!
~ Another new family adventure to a place on the coast that we haven't been to before! I highly recommend that if you are able to get to Moosepoint State Park in Searsport that you do. It was a lovely area with nice picnic areas, lots of tide pool finds, a playground, and a nice walking trail that Frank and I were able to explore. Looking forward to going back again when we have a little more time :)
~ A husband who loves to show the world just how much he loves me! Sometimes I watch other couples and men and watch how they treat their wives and I just shutter. I truly love having my hand held, my doors opened for me, winks and looks across the room meant only for me. Frank is truly a gem and I am so glad that he is mine. I love you babe!
~ Two days of sunshine! After lots of rain in June the sun was such a blessing. We are looking forward to more of that :)

Hope you are feeling blessed this week as well! Hugs!!!

Monday, June 29, 2009

Bountiful Blessings~

This past week had lots of ups and downs but blessings exist if we look for them!

~ My girl getting home safely! She went camping this past week with her boyfriend's family and had a great time, but boy did we miss her. It was so good to see her come through my front door!
~ Sunshine! We have had too much rain here in Maine this month... actually 20 of 28 days have had some precipitation, ugh! So, when we have a sunny day or even a few hours of sun, I so appreciate it, the warmth, the light and yes even the heat and humidity!
~ My sweetie! He is going through a really rough time right now and watching him continue to press forward, do whatever is necessary to get us through it and watch him in FAITH keep his head high and his eyes focused! He is such a wonderful man, and continues to carry me when I can't keep going on my own!
~ Opportunities. This past week an opportunity presented itself to me and while I take the time to pray about and appreciate the offer, what a blessing to know that I have options :)
~ My family. Whether blood related or love related! How special these people are to me. They are praying and loving on us in this time of need and God is good to send these people into our lives at these times of need.
~ Meeting some new teens and getting the chance to hang out with them this past weekend. I helped the kids organize a car wash on Saturday and spent Sunday at youth group with them. There are some really great teens in my life and I am enjoying getting to know them better!
~ Hugs and snuggles from a really special little girl in my life! I haven't had the chance to see her much lately, but I had the chance to really spend some time with her Sunday night and it was so needed. What a gift you are Tori to this Auntie!!!

Blessings are all around us, we just need to be willing to look for them!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Still standing and listening!

I wanted to continue to share with you how and what I am doing as I wait out this troublesome time that we are in. I have found myself withdrawn and not really talking much to anyone, including Frank and internalizing all that is going on with us. This causes more problems then not but its what I do. I am working on it, but its hard for this "old" dog to change. This is the verse that I read this morning and man, oh man... ouch!
"However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband." Ephesians 5:33 (NIV)
Respect, hmmmm.. well I do respect Frank as the man of our home but since last Friday and he told me the news, I know that he must be feeling like he lets me down and that he is fully responsible for this mess. I have tried to encourage him, but am not doing the best job that I could be in this area and have turned inward and been quite pouty and poor me-ish actually. Don't get me wrong, its scary and I am not sure what we are going to do without the finances coming into the house that we need to live on, so it is hard on all of us, but I really need to try to encourage Frank and respect him as a man more than I am. That's the goal for the rest of the week, hopefully I can be better at it then I have been :)

Tuesday, June 23, 2009


While I am looking for my feet to stay steadfast during this time of unknown and fear this verse was in my devotions this morning and I know it was a clear gift from the author and I am resting in knowing that my hand is being held today by the One who loves me most!

"The steps of a [woman] are established by the Lord, and He delights in [her] way. When [she] falls, [she] will not be hurled headlong, because the Lord is the One who holds [her] hand." Psalm 37:23-24 (NASB)

Monday, June 22, 2009

Bountiful Blessings~

Blessings are hard to see sometimes when we are consumed by unfortunate events, feeling bad, missing people, and just down right pity parties. But God is good to me and when I stop and look at my life, I see that these blessings are still there just in different form than what I am looking for.

~ Girlfriends! I love my Frank more than life itself, but to sit on a friends porch enjoying the company of 4 beautiful and God fearing women, it was a priceless evening for me and I will remember it always!
~ The Maine coast! What a treasure we have here in the State of Maine to enjoy God's creation and His majesty while walking the coast line hand in hand with my favorite man and loving this life that we have built with God at the center.
~ A phone call from a friend when I needed it most. I was really missing my mom Saturday night and the phone call met me where I needed to be and reminded me that I am loved.
~ Worship music! I am so grateful for Pandora, Worship Radio 95.3 and my I-pod! I need this in my life!!
~ Opportunities to stretch myself out of my comfort zone. These come by now and then, and I am realizing that God uses them to teach me that I have more to offer when I think I am tapped out.
~ Emotions... all of them, but at this time, desperation and fear. They cause me to lean on the One who I can depend on at all times. To remember that I am more than just me, I am a child of God and that He will sustain me and protect me and my family.

Till next week, keeping my head and heart upwards and my eyes focused on the journey ahead!

Took a little bloggin break!

I'm back! I needed to take a little break from the blogging world. With the things that were and are going on in the Johnson family, I was feeling just a little too negative and yucky about things and after re-reading some of the previous posts, realized that my posts had started to become negative too and I NEVER wanted that to be the case. Honest, true to life, and factual and real... definitely but not negative and depressing. So, I took a little break, but I have missed it and its good to be back at writing. It's such therapy for me.

I'll take the time this post to catch up on my weight loss - healthier lifestyle and what we have been doing. I'll post later on about some blessings that have come our way!
I stopped doing weekly blog/check ins. Why you ask? Well, glad that you asked! I took a break from weighing in. I was becoming obsessed by it and watched my emotions run around like a roller coaster ride. I was happy when I was losing lots and miserable when staying the same and even had a gain one week. This was not what I was doing this for. I lost focus and became frustrated when people wouldn't notice the hard work and dedication that this was taking for me. I also got too caught up in comparing myself to others, like I said not at all what I started this program for at all. So, I regrouped and continued to work on my own without blogging or even really telling Frank what was going on. He is so good to notice the littlest things about me and I am blessed to have him to be my encourager (more about this in a later, Bountiful Blessings post). All this being said... I weighed in this morning after my standing apt with my Wii and I am at a grand total of 28.5 lbs.!!! BUT even better than that is... I have lost over 9 inches all over my body!!! SWEET!!! I am so happy with this part of it! I wanted to see the 30lbs but not quite and that's just ok. The inches was really exciting as I started writing the numbers down as I measured, what a treat for me to add it all up! So, I have the encouragement to keep going at MY pace and know that this is doing much better good than not :)
The Johnsons' are tired of this rain and gray! It has effected all of us. We are tired, pale, (well 5 of us are, the other one heads to get some artificial sun 2-3X a week, hehehe) cranky, and bored. Sports have been cancelled one after the other and there isn't much to do around here in good ole Waterville indoors that doesn't cost a small fortune for us to do. We did get the chance to get outdoors yesterday to celebrate Father's Day with Frank and even though the sun only poked its little rays out here and there, we had a great time! Just what we needed and I am so grateful for the opportunity to do it. This morning we will collect our gopher wood and my dear friend Laurie is collecting the animals 2X2 so we will work together and see where this takes us, lol!
Regardless of what is going on in all our lives, remember that you are an important part of my life and I am so glad that you stopped by to check in! Happy Monday!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Sibling Lovin'

Conversation I overheard last night at Austin's baseball game:

Alex (older boy that the twins play with during games): What number is your brother?
Cam: 12. Do you know him?
Alex: Yeah, is he fun?
Cam: Yeah, he is fun..... no I lied.. he is the funnest brother ever. I bet you wish that your brother was that much fun!


Monday, June 8, 2009

Bountiful Blessings~

The week went by with more lows than highs but I made it out to the other side, by the grace of God! Blessings still came and while it was hard to see them in the moment, looking back they were still there!

~ A wonderful surprise gift certificate to go out to dinner with Frank! We still haven't been able to go "out" to celebrate our 15 years of loving!!! Such is the life when you have kids involved in sports. But what a nice surprising gift to be able to go out and enjoy ourselves together without the kids :)
~ Friends! I am so very thankful for my best friend! Devon walks beside me through the good and the bad, and lately more of this than good, I'm afraid. She truly is one of my biggest blessings in this lifetime and I am so grateful for her. Love you Dev!
~ Shopping bargains! I was able to get some really discounted, almost so cheap you wouldn't believe it bargains this past weekend :) Anyone who knows me knows, I LOVE a bargain and with a family of 6, with four kids we have to look for bargains! We did well, and the kids are looking all set for summer clothes for awhile.
~ Learning new things about myself. Not always painless, but good to know just the same!
~ Sunday afternoon walks with my family. We have, as weather permits, been getting out on Sunday afternoons to walk/hike to explore the area around us. We have great walking trails around the Waterville/Oakland/Belgrade/Rome areas. The kids love exploring new places and they are learning as we do it too {{bonus}}! I enjoy this family time so much after a really busy morning at church and this is our time to reconnect. I really relish this time!
~ My summer morning routine! My slow wake up, my time with God, my workout and my l-o-n-g snuggles with the twins! Now that school is out, we have more time for taking things a little less hurried! I love summer with my kids!

Hoping your feeling blessed among your trials too!!!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Approval Addiction = Bondage

So, I am really struggling with something that I have had all my life as far back as I can remember. I thought that I had dealt with it but it is very apparent that I have not and still suffer with this as much today as I did as a child, actually probably more so most days. It's called approval addiction and I have it bad. I have found myself too often living my life to seek the approval of others. I constantly compare myself to what others are doing and think that if their lives "appear" perfect, and I don't do things the way that they do them, that I must be wrong and therefore must change what I am doing to be just like them and get their approval. How awful is that? Now before anyone gets on me about seeking only God's approval, I will save you the trip... I know this and in fact find that some days that stresses me out too. I know that I fall short of His approval most days and that simply adds to my distress and discouragement. I also know that this is causing me great bondage in my life and I am trying so hard to give this to God to release me from this bondage. For whatever reason, I am still hanging on to it and it really is causing me emotional, spiritual, and physical pain. I constantly seek everyone's approval, the need for people around me to be happy and to fix things so that people aren't judging me or comparing myself to others is exhausting and I am so weary of this way of life. I try so hard to be everything to everyone all the time... the perfect wife, most patient and understanding mother, the sensitive and caring friend, the most entertaining, organized and God-lead children's ministry director. I try to have a perfect life all the time and when I fall short of that or people point out my downfalls, my world crumbles and I realize that I have failed yet again and so the road goes.....

So, I ask for your prayers in helping me to leave this way of life behind me and get on with the real journey that Christ has for me.
In His grip!

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Bountiful weekly blessings!

I have so much blogging that I want to do and just trying to find the time to do it! So, in light of that I am going to just do a quick list of blessings from this week and hopefully find the time to get more writing done next week since I am on summer break (see previous post)!!

~ A successful ending to a great school year! Our second year of homeschooling is completed and we are ready to enjoy our summer!
~ Friends that are willing to uphold me in prayer and take the time to share words and thoughts of encouragement when I have reached out to them in need!
~ Sitting with the boys and having them take turns reading to ME! All four of the kids are really great readers and it is fun to watch them develop a love for books! If you know me at all, this is a dream come true since I love to read!
~ New blogging friends! I have "met" some really great ladies that have come beside me in my blogging and chatting to walk beside me in my spiritual journey and my weight loss journey! What an encouragement these ladies have become to me!
~ Hugs and loves from my kids! Nothing can pick me up faster or make my heart more full than when I get I love you's,  hugs, and kisses from these special people! They have such great hearts and God has gifted them with such sensitivity and I am so glad that I am their mom.
~ The healthy body that God has given to me! I am able to walk, work out, play with my kids, be a wife to my wonderful husband, and do all the things required of me. The healthier that we get as a family and I get as an individual, the more I am able to do! Sometimes I take that for granted and had the opportunity this week to stop and be grateful that my body allows me to do all these things!
Think about what you take for granted and realize that you are blessed. it can change your whole outlook on things, believe me!

Another successful year of homeschooling is done!

Yea, we did it... another year of school has ended here at the Johnson home :) We are so excited to be finished and ready to have a summer of fun! 
The kids did a great job this year. Kendra did an amazing job completing her freshman year of high school. She is mostly an independent learner, with little help from me. I oversee her projects and tests and keep track of her grades. She really is growing up and it is fun to watch her learn and grow in her studies. Next year she has plans to attend the local high school to take biology and Spanish and possibly another elective. Since she has plans to be a nurse, she needs to take her science labs at the high school. The issues that we had with the public school still exist but she is a stronger more mature person now and she feels ready to deal with all that public school has to offer. She will continue to do her math, language arts, and history here at home. She continues to play sports for the high school and really enjoys the interaction that she gets with some of her old friends. We are so very proud of her! Austin finished his sixth grade year with flying colors! I can't believe he is in seventh grade, wow! He really excelled in math and language arts this year. He developed a new love for reading this year, and that made for a really excited mom :) His studies began preparing him for more independent learning next year and so I see him becoming more and more independent in his studies. He is ready and I am sure that he will be successful as he presses on. He too continues to play local sports and will start playing sports for the local jr. high. It should be a really exciting year for him. He continues to show maturity and responsibility and we are proud of the young man that he is becoming! Colby finished up second grade with flying colors! Colby made leaps and bounds in his reading and really loved learning multiplication :) A teacher once told me that the best class to teach is 1st grade into 2nd... she was so right! Colby is like a little sponge and watching him soak everything up and applying rules to reading and spelling was so fun to be a part of! He is already started on his second grade curriculum and ready to continue in his quest for the next part of the puzzle! Colby is the "class clown" in our house and simply blesses us with his sweetness, sensitivity and sense of humor! Cameron also finished first grade with a bang! He is a wonderful reader and reads everything that he can get his eyes on. Sometimes I forget what a good reader he is and find out when he is reading an email or paper over my shoulder ;) He never liked math, but really excelled at it this year and really found that he liked multiplication. This was a really exciting time for me, because previously math brought lots of tears and discouragement so this made me really happy to see him succeed at this. Art projects were also a favorite of Cam's and he is so ready for second grade. Cam is my schedule keeper and makes sure that we stay on task to get things done. I so love and appreciate his organization of our time!
So, on to our third year we go! We make mistakes and learn something new every year. The kids are given the option yearly whether or not this is what they want to keep doing and I get a resounding "Yes!!!" every year so far! God continues to bless us to allow me to stay at home to teach them and for this I am daily grateful of. 
Thank you all for your support and encouragement in this journey! We are off for a summer of fun and hope we have lots of adventures to share with you all! Happy Summer 2009!!!!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Bursting heart overflowing with blessings!

I have so much blogging I want to do that I am not sure how to keep it all separate, making sense and the time to get it all down! Therefore, there just might be more posts from me than usual, so check back more often this week, you might just be surprised to see more from me!!

Per my usual recap of my blessings from the week, this blog will be the first that I write since I like to begin my week with a sense of gratitude for the MANY blessings that God bestows upon this greatly undeserving woman. I wanted to wait until the whole, long, holiday weekend was finished since I knew that there were plenty of blessings headed my way!

~ My sweet man who celebrated fifteen years of bliss with me this past week (see previous post)! I am so very blessed to be loved by a man such as Frank!
~ Watching my children grow up! While this is a bitter sweet time for me, realizing that my time with them under my care is growing ever so closer to ending, they are becoming such amazing people! They all love God with their whole hearts, have great friends, are socially adaptable (even though we homeschool, imagine that, LOL!), intelligent, sensitive, sweet and all around really a pleasure to be around. The changes that they are making into becoming responsible adults one day is simply amazing to me to watch!
~ Christian Music and the radio stations that bring that to my life! We spent the day enjoying some really awesome Christian music and meeting up with some new friends that we are making at our local Worship Radio station! What a treat for us! I am so glad to live in a country that allows me to bring that music into my home and car!
~ Being the Children's Ministry Director at FEFC! It truly is a position that I LOVE and really enjoy being with the kids in our program. The hugs, and smiles. The tears and the tantrums all make it what it is and I love praising God and teaching these little ones about Jesus!
~ Meeting new friends! What a pleasure and a blessing to meet new friends that Frank and I BOTH like! We were invited to spend Memorial Day with a newer family at Faith on their boat (thanks again Katie and Todd!) We had an amazing time and really relaxed and enjoyed ourselves! We look forward to more of these moments in the future :)
~ Learning new things about myself! I am constantly learning new things about myself and while sometimes it is painful, God is teaching me some things that are making me look at situations in my life and people in general differently. I am so glad to know that God certainly isn't finished with me yet!

That covers a lot of them! Hope you are feeling blessed this morning as well! Check back later on, I might get the chance to write again! Right now, math time is calling :)