Thursday, March 31, 2011

Giveaway Winner!!!

Through a very scientific, random drawing....

(ok, I wrote all entries on a piece of paper, threw them in a bowl, & had Kade draw one while holding said bowl over his head)

The Winner of the Wild Olive Adoption Tee is . . .

(I will email you through your blog)

Congratulations, Kelly, & a BIG "thank you" to everyone that jumped in.

And remember, if you didn't win but would like to help out an adoptive family bring their sweeties home, you can visit Wild Olive Tees here, pick one of their cool adoption tees, & enter code JOHNSON1119 so your order benefits their adoption. Today is the last day, so hurry on over!

And finally, I pray a blessing over the Block Family in their new journey. If you're just catching up, please visit Amy's blog to see the adventure God has in store for their family & how you can bless them with your prayers, encouragement, and/or financial support.

This has been a fun week for me. Honestly, it's easy to get caught up in what's happening in our little world, but it has blessed me beyond words to jump into the lives of others. We're all a team, so I figure sometimes God calls me to go, & sometimes He calls me to send, & there's a joy that comes in being part of His team.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Join in The Giveaway & Kendi Update

REMINDER!!!! Only a couple more days to enter my giveaway for an awesome Wild Olive here to see how many ways you can enter!

And now, a bit of sweetness about our little Kendi-bug...

The princess cut her 1st tooth today AND we had our final post-placement visit!! Woo-Hoo...Happy Day!!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

"When the dream of our heart is one that God has planted there, a strange happiness flows into us. At that moment, all of the spiritual resources of the universe are released to help us. Our praying is then at one with the will of God & becomes a channel for the Creator's purposes for us & our world."
~Catherine Marshall

This was part of my devotion that I read last night, & I haven't been able to stop thinking about it. The theme of the devotion was about being "passionate about your path". It really struck a chord with me, especially when it speaks of the dreams of our hearts being ones that God has planted there.

When I look back over my life, I wonder how many times the dreams of my heart were influenced by society's ideals & not actual dreams that God so lovingly planted. It's probably too many to count.

However, I can tell you about the dreams God has planted. While the paths to these dreams sometimes felt like a scary nightmare (just keepin' it real), these dreams brought me closer to my Father because for those dreams to be reality, I could never do it myself.

People ask me all the time about why we adopted, how we knew where to go, what to do, etc. I have always said that He kept nudging my heart in ways that I could not ignore, nor did I want to. When I read this quote, it made me smile b/c I could just see those "nudges" as God with a backhoe a gardening shovel planting dreams in my heart.

And here's the result of a couple of those dreams (one of them has been much too busy playing outside to sit still with his sisters for a picture!):

Lord, thank you for these precious treasures conceived in my heart that have become a reality in our family.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Happy Birthday Momma!

This is a blog takeover by her firstborn. She doesn't know I'm doing this. I figured she does birthday posts making all of us sound wonderful, but she never gets a blog post that tells how wonderful she is.

So, let's just start by saying that my mother is one of the most caring, selfless people to ever walk this earth. She always puts her children before her and she's always the first to hold their hand if they need a little bit of guidance. Trust me, I have 21 years of experience with this. She's always been there through the good, the bad, and the downright ugly, and that's everything you ever need in a momma. Even with eight children, she can always find time to listen to you. That's pretty special. I don't think I need to mention that she's special just for opening up her heart to children who need it most.

She always finds time to go to our "stuff." I can't think of anytime that my mom would not be at my activities. She finds time to juggle everything, and she somehow keeps track of it in a little planner that goes in her purse. I have a gigantic dry-erase calendar and it still doesn't work for me. She's crazy and we love knowing she'll come to support us at our activities. She'll always be our biggest cheerleader and biggest advocate. She's always got our backs and will always encourage us to do our best and fully commit to whatever we want to achieve in life.

Mom doesn't go without her "mommy-isms." I remember one time, my sister Kearsten and I were sitting and giggling on the steps, refusing to go to bed. My mom came and yelled at us, telling us to stop "sillying around." We laughed harder, having never heard that term. She ended up laughing too, trying to defend this odd choice of discipline words. My sister Kameryn is quick to point out Mom's lack of dance skill, as she is quick to jam out to music in front of Kameryn's friends. Luckily, I have had no experience with this, but she probably knows better. :-) She has a sense of humor. Glad she isn't so mean all of the time!!

Mom is crazy awesome, and I'm already lucky to know that she's becoming more of a friend to me as I get older. I think we'll keep her, only because she is kind of cool. ;-)

Happy Birthday Momma. You're the best person we could ever ask to care for us and prepare us to be the best we can be. You will always be special to us. We love you!!!!!! :-)

PS Don't be mad at me for starting off with an old picture. At least you're not in gardening clothes!!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011


K'Tyo has quite a sense of humor. However, lately, the chuckles he has caused have not been intentional bits of comedy.

As well as he has adjusted to being here, I forget sometimes that there's still a bit that gets lost in translation. Thus, we are the lucky recipients of "K'Tyo-isms" that bring about quite a bit of laughter, especially from the older siblings. K'Tyo's a good sport about it all!

I do forget sometimes, though, that there are still some things that are so strange, & he is still a little boy adapting to new surroundings. Yesterday, for example, we headed to the mall b/c he was in dire need of new shoes (again...another WHOLE size!).

As we entered through a clothing department, he was suddenly lagging behind quite apprehensively. I turned around & asked him what was up. He said, "I'm afraid." I looked around & he pointed around with a sweeping motion & I realized that the headless mannequins had thrown him for a loop. Oh, mercy...once I did some explaining, he giggled a bit & we moved on.

And now, here's some of my favorite K'Tyo-isms from recently:

When we brought Kendi home, he stood beside me stroking her face & wondering where she came from asked, "Did you go to Ethiopia??" No. "Well, then, what, did you go to store?"

After straightening the toy room, he said, "Mom, it looks like nice!"

Last week, we had horrible stomach flu go through the house. He went to bed one night, only to reappear a few minutes later with a panicked look on his face. "I lay down & my belly go boom." I never did fully grasp what he was telling me b/c we were too busy scrambling for a barf bowl. He never did get sick to his stomach??

Kaelee asked Kaya if she wanted to be a gymnast when she grows up, to which she said yes. K'Tyo excitedly said, "Kaya wants to be Jesus!!"

And my most favorite to date: We've all been giving encouraging reminders to K'Tyo about being a good listener during circle time at preschool (Little Man is a bit social...imagine that). Kearsten prompted him with, "K'Tyo, who are you going to be good for?"

"Jesus, God, & Mom..." ;o)

Monday, March 7, 2011

Belated Birthday Post

The flu hit our house. Hard. And this mama was bummin' b/c my baby girl, Kameryn, turned 17 on Friday, & I was laid out. I literally got all teary when Joe came up to check on me later in the day b/c I was supposed to have a date with my three "big girls" for dinner & a movie. Didn't happen. Hopefully, we can make up for it this weekend...thank goodness Kam has some awesome friends that brought her a cake & took her out for her day.

But today is a new day, & I am finally wearing something other than pajamas, so I decided a birthday post was in order.

Baby Kam-Kam...

Next week, nobody is going to remember what you wore today.

In a few years, nobody will recall your basketball stats or your other high school accomplishments.

But for a lifetime, people will remember your heart. And there is nothing that makes your Mommy & Daddy more proud than the hugeness of that heart of yours.

What a year this has been, & I will forever treasure the memories of our trip to Ethiopia to bring your brother home. One of my favorite memories is of our time at Children's Heaven when a few of those sweet girls were so excited to get to play basketball & soccer with you that they didn't want to quit even when the rains came.

Happy 17th Birthday, Baby.............

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Can You Dig It?

Take a listen...this one speaks to me.......