Saturday, December 18, 2010

2010 Christmas Letter

Matthew, Luke, Sam, & Caleb

Dear Friends and Family,

It has been a year of extreme highs and lows for the Johnson Family.  Among the greatest celebrations was my (Christina) mom’s retirement in late April.  She had worked very hard in her job as the executive director of a lovely apartment complex for retired folks.  She loved her job, but was eager to spend more time with her family.  A few months later, my parents moved to Kentucky.  We were all thrilled to have them close after living far apart for such a long time.  We were enjoying lots of great dinner conversations, lots of laughs, accomplishing a few home projects, and our boys were being spoiled by their grandparents.  It was wonderful.

 My mom became ill very suddenly in late August.  She suffered an acute aortic dissection (essentially an aneurysm of the aorta).  She had emergency surgery and survived three days before she went home to Heaven.  She had enjoyed nearly perfect health all of her life and was a vibrant 62 year old woman.  We were stunned and heartbroken.  Our extended family, our church family, and our friends have loved and served us well ...shining the light of Christ into this very dark time.   The hope of Christmas has special meaning for us this year.  Because of Jesus, we have the promise of forgiveness and a Heavenly home.  We are all stumbling along as we grieve…and are increasingly grateful for a Heavenly Father who is gentle with the broken-hearted. 

Our busy boys have been a source of joy and we’re so grateful.  Sam (7) is excelling in first grade.  He is an excellent student and a well-loved friend.  His imagination is unbelievable, he is funny, and loves all things Star Wars.  We’re most proud of Sam’s growing faith…several big conversations about Jesus have taken place over the past year.  What a precious gift to share with your child.

Luke (4) is enjoying playing the role of “big brother” while Sam is away at school each day.  The twins follow him around and obey (mostly) his every command.  He is a sweet friend to them and enjoys “teaching” them things.  Luke is an incredibly loving little boy and wants to marry his mom when he grows up.  {grin}  He also loves to wrestle, run, flip, jump on the trampoline, tumble, and the list goes on and on.  Luke loves superheroes.

Caleb (2) is the smaller of our twins, by about 5 pounds and a few inches in height.  He is incredibly funny and loves to make silly faces.  He has a very tender heart.   He loves to hug his mom and play with his brothers.  His most favorite activity of all is “wrestling” with his daddy!  Caleb loves music, candy, and his cousins. He has been entertaining us by singing, “Frosty the Snowman” the past few weeks.  While we have learned much about controlling his asthma and allergies, Caleb was briefly hospitalized this fall with pneumonia.

Matthew (2) mastered potty training a few months ago (much to the delight of his parents) and has become a “big boy” in every sense of the word.  He is fiercely independent and can often be heard saying, “I do it by myself.”  I am sure that this will serve him well in the future…however; it leads to some frustration now.  {grin}  Matthew is super snuggly, loves to pretend he is different “characters” (firefighter, daddy, superhero, a puppy, etc...), and enjoys story hour at the local library.  Matthew loves to dance, “play” his dad’s guitar, and does his best to keep up with the big boys. 

Brad continues to work diligently as a student and a teacher.  He is just a few courses away from finishing the classroom portion of his PhD in Biblical Studies.  There are many more “hoops” to jump through after that is finished, but we just take one step at a time.  He is an excellent student and even presented a paper at a theological conference in California last spring.  As a teacher of Biblical Greek, he is loved and respected by his students and colleagues.  In his favorite role of “daddy” he can be found wrestling, chasing, riding bikes, playing in the snow, and reading bedtime stories.  He installed a fence around our backyard this fall – always thankful for “extra security” with the kiddos.  We are outnumbered!

I have come to the conclusion that I am a better homemaker than I am a housekeeper, and I am okay with that!  We love having people over to our home and we do it quite often.  I am growing more comfortable with the fact that our house is never perfectly clean or tidy…but, pray that our guests feel loved and cared for.  My days are spent juggling mothering duties, attending story hour at the local library, volunteering at Sam’s school, trying to keep up with the laundry, and enjoying the occasional date with my husband.  I celebrated my fortieth birthday just a few weeks after my mom’s death…a somber reminder that this life is fleeting and so temporal.  With God’s help, I am learning to love more deeply, anger less quickly, savor each sweet moment with my little boys, and do my best to live well this life I ‘ve been given.  It’s a precious gift.

Each year at Christmas, I am reminded that God chose to reveal Himself to humanity in the form of a helpless little baby boy.  What a strange way to impact the world in such a powerful way – through a powerless infant.  I am so thankful for this strange and amazing gift…and for God’s amazing creativity in providing a savior that I can identify with.  We pray this Christmas you find yourself overwhelmed…not by gifts, parties, and decorations – but, overwhelmed by the goodness of God’s perfect and personal gift.  Jesus.

This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.”  1 John 4:9-11

Monday, November 15, 2010

My Lukey Boy


Our second born son, Luke(4), is quite an amazing little boy.  He is full of silliness, lots of "tricks" and jokes, big warm hugs, smooches for his Momma, questions, a tender heart and an occasional bit of wisdom.  Now that Luke's older brother is away enjoying first grade for a full day, Luke is the "big man on campus" during much of the day at our home.  His mornings are spent playing with his little brothers, reading books with Mom, and entertaining all of us.  While the littlest brothers are napping, Luke and I are working on some school skills.  He loves it and I think I am enjoying it even more.  The learning is fun - he is a bright little guy and it's fun to watch him discover new things.  But, our conversations are what I treasure most about our time together.  I am doing my best to remember them, write them on my heart...I don't want to forget his precious heart and his innocence.  Here are a few recent conversations:

Having measured himself on our family's growth chart earlier in the day, Luke had some questions about growing up.

Luke: Mommy, when I grow up, I am going to shrink back down to be a boy.
Me:  Luke, that sounds like fun.  But, God made our bodies to grow up just one time.  When you are a big man like Daddy, you will stay a big man.  You only get one chance to be a little boy - that is why Daddy and I try to make it so much fun for you.
Luke:  But, I don't want to grow up.
Me:  Why not, honey?
Luke:  Because grown ups drink coffee and I don't like coffee.

The conversation from today was heart-breaking and a precious gift all wrapped in one package:

Luke: Mommy, how did Gran get to Heaven with Jesus?
Me: (pausing to pray that God would give me words)  Well, Luke, Jesus came to carry her to Heaven.  He didn't want her to be afraid, so He came to get her because He knows the way to Heaven and Gran had never been there before.
Luke:  (smiles sweetly)  That's nice.  Can we go pick her up for Thanksgiving?
Me: (fighting back tears)  Oh, Luke, that is such a nice idea.  I really wish we could do would be so fun to spend time with Gran.  But, Heaven is the kind of place you never want to leave.  It's so wonderful and Gran is so happy there.
Luke: Oh, okay.

I am so thankful for this little boy who challenges me as a mother and loves me with a God-sized love.  What  a gift to be his Mommy.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Late Night Gifts

I don't have the emotional fortitude or the energy to blog these days.  I am finding the loss of my mom to be the most brutal experience...yet, there has been such great beauty in this difficult journey.  God has revealed Himself in such powerful and unmistakable ways that it has lightened the load of my heavy heart.  So thankful to serve a God who is compassionate and kind.  I know that I need to blog about the journey, for my own record and for God's glory.  I don't want to forget a single act of His goodness.  Tonight, I was reminded of this truth.

A few weeks ago, two to be exact, Caleb was having some trouble breathing...his asthma had reared it's ugly head.  After a long evening/night in the Emergency Room, he was admitted to the hospital.  We would spend our weekend there - receiving breathing treatments around the clock and spending lots of quality time together snuggling and reading books.  Hospital stays are torture for a little boy who is accustomed to a pretty regular routine...everything is different.  Late Saturday night, as I was drifting off to sleep (I was provided a hospital bed & Caleb had a very institutional looking crib), I heard Caleb's voice say, "Hello."  It was as if he had answered the phone.  I listened closely...and heard him say, "I'm fine."  ....followed by a long pause.....then, he said, "I love you too, Gran.".....long pause......"goodbye."   I was in that in-between state, not fully asleep but not fully awake.  I initially thought he had the cell phone and was pretending to speak to my mom.  So, I got up to check things out.  He didn't have the phone, it was plugged into the outlet near my bed.  I asked him who had he been talking to, he replied very matter-of-factly "my Gran."  I don't know what to make of this...I am honestly not a person who is looking for "signs" from my mom...I know she is in Heaven and is fully surrounded by the Glory of God.  I just don't know what to think of this.  I finally decided to accept this "gift" spoken from my sweet little boy into the darkness of a hospital room as just that - a late-night gift from my Heavenly Father.

Fast forward to tonight, nearly 2 weeks later.  Caleb woke up coughing and need of his mommy's comfort.  I picked him up from his crib and we settled into the comfy rocking chair in the nursery.  He began to talk ...this is roughly how the conversation went:

Me:  I am sorry you woke up coughing.  Let's snuggle for a little bit until you feel better, okay?
Caleb:  Okay, Mommy.  I was coughing.
Me:  I know, sweetheart.  But you are okay.  Let's pray that God will help you to feel better. (then I prayed a simple prayer asking for God's comfort and healing for Caleb).
Caleb:  Mom, Jesus loves me.  He will take care of me.  
Me: Cal, you are exactly right.  Jesus does love you so much...He will help you to feel better.
Caleb:  Mom, Jesus made Gran feel better.  Gran is with Jesus.  She is so happy.
Me:  You are right, Cal.  She is so happy with Jesus.

So, yet another "late night gift" sent from God from the lips of my sweet little two-year-old boy.  I am so grateful.

"The Lord gives strength to his people; The Lord blesses his people with peace."
Psalm 29:11


Wednesday, September 8, 2010


My mom died.  It still seems so unreal to me.  The wound is still incredibly fresh and my emotions are raw.  I am convinced that God loves me and will make this journey with me.  In the midst of this unspeakable pain, there has been blessing.  I am hoping to blog about it so that I don’t forget the Lord’s goodness when I least expected it.


Judy's Retirement (76) My niece, Morgan, with my Mom at her retirement party on April 29, 2010.


Judy G. Sherrow, 63, of Richmond went home to Heaven on August 28, 2010. She was born September 25, 1946 in Rhodie, Virginia to Lon and Ruth (Dickenson) Hunter. Her family moved to Richmond when she was a young girl and she remained in the area. She was a graduate of Richmond High School.

She married Calvin “Bud” Sherrow on October 7, 1967 and welcomed three children into their family. Judy was a loving wife, mother and grandmother. She was a loyal sister and dependable friend, and was happiest serving others. She enjoyed spending time with her family, making memories with her grandchildren, and gardening. She was a member of The Richmond Emmaus Community and Middleboro United Methodist Church.

Judy lovingly served many children while providing child care in her home for nearly 28 years. She was later employed at the Leland Residence. She served in many roles during her 10 years there and retired from her position as the Executive Director in May 2010. Serving the residents of the Leland brought her such joy.

Judy is survived by her husband, Calvin “Bud” Sherrow and their three children: Jeff (Laura) of Hagerstown, Tony of Richmond, and Christina Johnson (Brad) of Wilmore, KY; brothers Jeff Hunter (Cheryl) and George Hunter both of Richmond, and nine grandchildren: Ashley Sherrow, Morgan Kincaid, Zackery Sherrow, Grace Sherrow, Lillee Sherrow, Sam Johnson, Luke Johnson, Caleb Johnson, and Matthew Johnson. She is also survived by many cousins, nieces, and nephews. Judy was preceded in death by her parents; her sister, Connie Hunter; her brothers, James Hunter, Tom Hunter, and Merle Hunter; and grandsons Dylan Sherrow and Austin Sherrow.

A celebration of Judy’s life will be held at First United Methodist Church at 318 National Road West in Richmond on Saturday, September 4th at 3:00 pm. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Gleaner’s Food Bank at 3737 Waldemere Ave. Indianapolis, IN 46241 or

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Monkeyin’ Around

My oldest brother and his wife are the parents of four fantastic kids.  Morgan will be a college freshman this fall and is working to save money this summer.  Zack (9), Grace (8), and Lillee (5) have been visiting us this week {“Cousin Camp” as we like to call it} and it’s been such a great time!  On our first day together, we visited the Krispy Kreme store to watch the doughnuts being made from their “observation” window.  Of course, we ate a few just to make sure their work was okay.  It was.  Feast your eyes on these cute little kiddos.  From left to right: Grace, Lillee, Luke, Sam, Caleb, & Matthew.  My handsome nephew, Zack, is way too cool for this silly photo opportunity.  He is super cool, by the way.

2010 340 After this fabulous outing, we headed to Wal-Mart for school supply shopping.  With lists in hand, we all worked together to find everything the school-aged kids needed.  My parents enjoy this annual event…and the parent’s enjoy this generous gift!  It was fun to see what each kiddo chose…all individuals, for sure. 

We finished the day off with some time playing outside, a yummy dinner, and grandma’s brownies for dessert.  We also made a quick trip to the park before a bath and bedtime.  Whew…we were all tired.


Day two of “Cousin Camp” took us to a local inflatable “jungle.”  Our 30 minute drive to “Monkey Joe’s” was worth the effort.  The kids jumped, bounced, slid, ran and all had a great time.  Check out Monkey Joe below with Lillee and Sam posing.  Such cuties.

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Zack proved once again that he is an incredible young man…following fearless little Matthew all around the place and helping him to climb up and through things.  Zack got a workout from shadowing him, for sure.  Matthew spent nearly 2 hours running from inflatable to inflatable…no “little jumpers” area for him.  Caleb was as predicted, more timid.  He loved being in the “little jumpers” area…it was safe, small, and he was content.  He did venture out a bit, trying some bigger inflatables.  When he did, he big cousin Grace was was right behind him to help.  She was amazing…and Caleb loved having her attention. 

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Zack and Matthew after the big slide.

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Matthew followed by Zack, & Caleb followed by Grace.


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Luke thinks that Monkey Joe’s is heavenly!  All the bouncing and running a busy boy like him could handle…and no one even says, “no!”

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Caleb happily jumping in the “little monkey’s” play area.

The kids were all really tired and hungry…so, we headed for a bite of lunch.  We filled our bellies and then came home to chill out a while.  The little boys napped and the big kids entertained themselves as follows:

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Zack tutoring Sam in the ways of Star Wars Lego video game.

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Grace lounging and watching the video game playing.

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Lillee and Luke reading books together.

We’re tired and the day isn’t over yet.  Hopefully, we’ll have a low-key evening of hanging out and playing together.  We don’t often have this much time together…living nearly 4 hours apart from one another.  I am so thankful that our boys have this special time with their cousins…what a blessing. 

Saturday, July 17, 2010

A Visit From The “Old Codger” and His Crew

Brad is a blessed man for many reasons… a lovely bride with mad cooking skills among  among the reasons are his grandparents.  His maternal grandparents {affectionately known as MaMa & PaPa – pronounced maw-maw and paw-paw} have lived long and faithful lives and played an important role in our boys lives.  MaMa had a stroke in January of 2009 and her health began to decline pretty quickly afterward.  She went to be with Jesus in May of that same year.  We miss her…a lot. 
PaPa has done his best to adjust to this “new normal” of living without his wife of over 60 years.  He recently took a trip “down home”, to his birthplace.  He visited with old friends and his siblings and their families who still live in North Carolina.  At 88 years old, PaPa has finally given up driving.  Brad’s brother drove PaPa, NeeNee Linda {Brad’s mom}, and Aunt Sherri {Linda’s sister} on their big adventure.  After a week full of fun, they stopped by our house for a sleepover before heading home to Indiana.  I guess they were looking to end their vacation with some extra excitement!  {snicker}  The Johnson boys excel in creating excitement!  This photo is proof.  Notice young Luke smiling politely for the camera.  Sam has PaPa’s hat and cane, pretending to be an old man.  Caleb and Matthew have stopped squirming long enough to capture this image.  George {the dog} seems to be the most obedient. Amazingly, PaPa is grinning from ear to ear.  What a good sport.  He loves these little squirrely great-grandsons of his. 
On a previous visit, PaPa had been working on a cross word puzzle {one of his favorites hobbies before his eyesight began to fail} and Sam was intrigued.  He very patiently explained the puzzle to Sam, clues to down words here…and across words there.  He asked PaPa how he knew all of the answers.  PaPa laughed {his grin is so broad that his eyes disappear – it’s adorable} and told Sam that when you live to be an “old codger,” you know lots of things.  So, thus began a new “inside joke” for PaPa’s stay.  We all called him the “old codger” and he loved it.   
All of the boys love crawling on PaPa and asking him questions about everything.  They took turns wearing his hat and walking with his cane…and he just took it all in.  It seemed like his heart was full.  I sure hope so…we love that “old codger.”

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Potty Training Twins

For months now, Caleb and Matthew have been going “potty” occasionally, at convenient times when they are already sans clothing : before & after a bath or a diaper change.  They have shown some interest,but not overwhelmingly so.  I am not a fan of changing diapers…but, I also know full well the challenges that potty training brings.  I have not been in a rush to get the twins potty trained.  Sam and Luke were both potty-trained just a few months shy of  their third birthdays – and it was effortless.  In just one day – SHAZAM!  We had success!  Only one or two accidents in the following days.  So, I was comfortable waiting a bit longer if it meant an easier transition.  I have heard so many stories about potty training that takes place over a period of months.  I wanted no part of that misery.
Potty-trainers get really fired up about their new-found skill and want to “go pee pee” in every possible location…each restaurant, store, or home you visit – and for my boys, each tree or bush they find along the way!  Potty-training also involves a bit of OCD on the parent’s part: repeatedly asking(as if your life depended on it)  if they have to “go potty?”  It also involves remembering to bring an extra change of clothing (or two in our case) everywhere you go…just in case!  However, the process doesn’t last long and the rewards are well worth the effort.  Perhaps the greatest blessing has been the reduction in diaper changes around here.  For nearly seven years, we have been changing and wiping the bottoms of at least one of our sweet boys I have tried to erase the brief period when three were in diapers from my memory. 
With all of that said, I must admit that I am a bit sad.  My “baby’ boys are growing up.  I am choosing to focus on the freedom that this new phase brings…and to celebrate that God is growing my boys up just as He should!  I just wish that it didn’t happen so quickly.  {sniff}
Caleb (left) and Matthew (right).
Isn’t the difference in their skin tone remarkable? Matthew isn’t more “tan” than Caleb – all natural coloring.


Sam has reached another childhood milestone…losing his top front teeth.  Several months ago, he lost both of his bottom front teeth within a matter of days.  So, we’re waiting patiently for the other top tooth to come out.  However, Sam prefers to allow nature to take it’s course rather than aggressively move forward on his own (read: he allows the tooth to fall out…really, fall out.).  He doesn’t enjoy wiggling or moving his loose tooth…I think he’s fearful it will hurt.  My man Sam does not enjoy pain.  So, for now we enjoy his sweet little grin and talk about how cool it is to have a “window” for his straw to fit into when he drinks.  {grin}


Can hardly believe he is about to be a first-grader.  {gulp}

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Where to Begin?

I think I am suffering from a severe case of “I-am-so-far-behind-I-don’t-know-where-to-begin-itis.”  I have at least a million blog posts swirling around in my mind…along with my grocery list, a reminder to ask Brad to trim the boy’s nails (the is the chief mani/pedi man around here), an ever-growing list of thank you notes to be written, and the list of phone calls to return.  This blog is read by a few friends my mom….but, it’s real purpose is to be our family’s scrapbook.  So, I have these major events that need to be chronicled here for the sake of our family history.  Things like: Caleb and Matthew celebrating their second birthday, Brad celebrating his 29th birthday again, Luke celebrating his fourth birthday, Sam finishing kindergarten, my mom retiring from her job, and great conversations had with the boys that left me in fits of laughter and with tear-stained cheeks.  I am so far behind that I find myself overwhelmed …unsure where to begin.  So, I have decided to blog on, as if I never missed a beat (or in this case, a major life event).  So, tomorrow is a brand new day …and a fresh start in my blogging mind.  {grin}



Monday, May 10, 2010

The Big News

Okay, so it’s not really big news in the traditional sense.  No need to interrupt regular broadcasting for this bit of news.  No, I am not pregnant.   That would be more dramatic news than simply “big news.”  My parents are moving to Kentucky, however!

My dad retired several years ago and has adjusted quite nicely to his life of leisure.   My mom retired from her job at the end of April.  She has served as the director of a senior living apartment complex in my hometown.  It’s a lovely historical building that was once a hotel (as a matter of fact, B and I spent the first night of our married life there) and has found new life as a home for folks 55 and older.  My mom has done amazing ministry during her time there and accomplished so much.  We couldn’t be more proud of her.  In an attempt to show her how proud we are, we loaded up the minivan and pointed it north to Indiana to attend a retirement reception in her honor.  It was a lovely afternoon of meeting her friends, the lovely people she has loved and served,  and to listen as people spoke of her tremendous impact on their lives.  Many tears were shed as folks told me how much they will miss her.  I am so thankful that my mom is the sort of lady who values people and not things.

Because of her great love of people, she and my dad are moving to Kentucky in just a few short weeks.  My family and I are all eager to have them here…just to live life together.  For nearly 17 years, I have lived more than 2 hours away from my parents…nearly six of those years a four hour drive from them.  So, at best, our relationship with them has been a weekend at a time.  I realize that this is not a huge distance compared to some families, but we are excited to spend more time with them.  You know, “normal” time – not holiday visits or special events.  We’re all looking forward to the luxury of sharing meals together, enjoying some of Gran’s good cooking, playing with Pa in the backyard, loving on George (their cute dog), having time to enjoy long chats after school and reading books in the rocking chair.  Just enjoying one another.  Lots of sweet memories to be made between my boys and my folks.  I know we’ll all be the richer for their being here with us. 

  This picture was taken at Caleb & Matthew’s second birthday party.  Note Sam and Luke’s lovely facial expressions.  I love them dearly in spite of the the fact that they ruined an otherwise great photo.  {grin} B

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Knock, Knock

Who’s there?  It’s me!  I haven’t blogged in over two months.  I have missed writing the memories of my days…the wonderful and the frustrating…and marking the milestones of my little men.  There have been a lot of distractions that have kept me away:  the hard drive on our computer died, we celebrated 4 birthdays (Caleb, Matthew, Brad, & Luke), had lots of company visiting, some of us battled a virus, and other sorts of busyness.  100_2711Brad, Sam, & Luke at Shakertown100_2605 Creative Boys at Work

Oh yeah, we’ve also been busy listening to Matthew’s new knock-knock joke and pretending that it’s hilarious.

Matthew :  Knock-Knock

Us: Who’s there?

M:  Baby crying.

Us: Baby crying who?

M:    (big grin)


So, there are blog posts about birthday celebrations, Easter celebrations, and family/friends visiting coming in the next couple of days.  Oh yeah, there is also a big change in store for our family in the near future… {grin}

Friday, January 29, 2010

Back At It

Wow...I think I have been struggling with some writer's block, some serious lack of motivation, or just feeling overwhelmed in how far I have gotten behind here at the ol' blog.  But, I think I am  ready to get back at it.

As promised in the last post, I gotta few things to cover from the holiday season.   We'll do it bullet point style!

  • We hosted our second annual “Johnson Gingerbread Party.”  Sam and Luke each invited a friend over to decorate a gingerbread house one Sunday afternoon.  It was such gooey, sugary, sweet fun to watch our boys and their friends be creative.  Much fun was had and much candy was consumed.  {chuckle}100_2447
  • My sweet little Sam certainly has his mother's blood coursing through his veins.  He suffers from the same excitement and anticipation issues as I do.  {grin} I can vividly remember being so excited for Christmas to arrive that I would lay awake for hours before finally falling asleep on Christmas Eve...only to awaken a few hours later and then trying to convince my parents that 3:30 am was a great time to begin the celebrating! The Lord used these sweet childhood memories to help me give Sam the extra grace he required on Christmas Eve.  He woke up at around midnight (just minutes after I had finished placing the gifts under the tree and stuffing stockings) and asked me to snuggle with him because he was having trouble getting back to sleep.  I called upon my own childhood memories and mustered the strength to stumble to his bed with him.  We lay in the dark whispering and giggling...I am so thankful that God caused me to be gracious to Sam...I could have missed making that sweet memory with him.  Did I mention that he finally fell asleep at 4:30 am?  Oh yeah, he was awake again at 6:30 am ready to go! 100_2502
  • Christmas day was simply sweet.  It was just the six of us enjoying the day in our old Kentucky home.  We sang "Happy Birthday!" to Jesus and enjoyed some of His birthday cake for our breakfast.  This tradition began back in 2004 and it's one of my favorites...and I think the boys enjoy it, too.
  • Luke sang "Happy Birthday, Jesus!" for weeks on end, both before and after Christmas.  It made my heart smile to hear his sweet voice singing this song of praise.  {grin} 100_2485
  • Matthew was so excited about his gifts on Christmas.  He is a man of few words, but is always expressive.  His eyes open wide, his eyebrows raise, and his mouth forms a perfect little "o" shape as he says, "Ohhh!"  and "Wow!"  and "Ahhh!"  Such a sweet boy who truly appreciated each gift.
  • Caleb took on the job of reminding me to turn on our outdoor Christmas lights each evening.  He’d run to the love seat in our living room and look out the window while instructing me to   “Turn on, Mommy!”
  • Sam used his allowance money to buy gifts for each of his brothers.  We did our shopping at the dollar store - lot's of options for a boy with $5 in his hand.  He thoughtfully chose a gift for each of his brothers and took great pride in wrapping them himself.  


            Caleb opening his well-wrapped  gift from Sam.


  • The sight of my four boys in matching pajamas on Christmas Eve thrills my heart.  I know that this is not normal...but, as a mom of all boys - there are so few "clothing related" joys! {giggle} 100_2462
  • As an afterthought, I bought a very inexpensive gift for the boy’s stockings.  A package of 4 silly glasses/nose things (what are they called anyway?) for one dollar.  These turned out to be the “hit” of the day.  We laughed at one another and really got our money’s worth of them. 100_2516Luke and Sam…so stylish. 


Is that Peter Pan in disguise or Matthew?


  • The boys and I all enjoyed having more time with Brad during the holidays.  Things are always better when Daddy is home.  {grin}

I think I am on a roll now….getting excited about getting caught up.  So many more good stories to tell about how God is restoring Caleb’s health, time with our extended family’s over the holidays, and the twin’s second birthday celebration!  I really am back at it!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Overwhelmed...and Overdue

I am feeling a bit overwhelmed these days.  It's all sorts of good things that are making me feel this way.  We've hosted both sides of our families at our house over the past few weeks.  Some dear friends from out of town came to visit us, too.  Most recently, two of our former youth ministry students (siblings, who are now in college- eek!) came to spend a few days with the tribe.

It was wonderful to have so many people that we love in our home...and a blessing to be "loved on" by so many, as well.  Our boys seemed to understand that something special was going soak up every minute spent with our visitors. They knew that something extra special was happening.   There were extra hands to hold babies, extra plates set at our big table, extra people to read books in the comfy rocking chair, extra people to laugh with, extra people to make us laugh (Wii fit is a riot as a spectator sport), extra giggles, extra hands to change diapers & wash dishes, and an extra special feeling that comes from being surrounded by people you love and who love you in return.  All of the excitement has left our boys a little bored now that we've returned to our normal life - with just the six of us. 

I am having issues uploading photos again...and I find myself coveting cameras.  That is a miserable feeling.  I know that I am blessed beyond measure, but there always seems to be just one thing that I am lacking.  I am so thankful that God is so patient with me.  {sigh}  Anyway, I have lots of fun pictures to post...I just can't get them uploaded from my camera to the computer.  I am working on it and will hopefully have a little "eye candy" for you soon.  Golly, those boys of mine are adorable.  {grin}

In the meantime, you can look forward to hearing all about:
  • Sam's insomnia on Christmas Eve.
  • Luke's joy in singing "Happy Birthday" to Jesus.
  • Caleb enjoying Jesus' birthday cake immensely.
  • Matthew's infectious joy as he opened gifts...saying "ooh" and "ahh" repeatedly.
  • The wonderful way God is restoring health to our Caleb.
  • My nieces, Ashley and Morgan, bringing my Mom & I to tears.
  • The sweetness of our simple Christmas.
  • Details of our visitors...and the fun!
It's coming...I promise! {grin}