Sunday, January 06, 2013

2012

It's time for our recap of 2012!  This year has brought some major answer to prayers and we have seen the hand of God move in incredible ways.  I think it is so awesome how he is involved and cares about the small details in our lives.

At the end of 2011 we were still waiting on direction from God regarding Travis' career.  Over the course of 2012, he gave us clear direction on where he wants Travis to be, and we are so thankful.  It all started in the Spring when Travis was offered a job at the Hospital and we were very excited about the opportunity for him to advance.  We made a small counter offer that we felt confident they would accept.  We waited to hear back and when we didn't hear anything after a few weeks we started to get worried.  Travis called to see what was going on and he got the dreaded, "We need to talk".  He met with them the following week and they told him Vanguard, who recently bought the hospital, put a hiring freeze on their department due to the possibility of them outsourcing the hospital billing.  We were frustrated and confused once again.  But we also felt like God protected us. If he had accepted the job earlier, he likely would have been out of a job due to the eventual outsourcing.

During the summer, Travis came to me and told me he felt like it was time to really pursue the farm.  He felt like God had closed the door on the hospital job for a reason and he was leading us to the farm.  I'll have to admit I cried when he told me this because it not only affects his choice of career but it ultimately affects everything else in our lives.  I knew this was ultimately why God had called us down here, but I really struggled over the course of the fall because I felt like God was asking so much of us.  There were things that are going to be required of us that I wasn't ready to accept.    I also had some major fears, so one day I wrote down all of my fears on one side of a page and on the other side I wrote all of the reasons I could trust God and ways that he has been faithful to our family.  The reasons to trust God far outnumbered my fears and I knew I had to put them aside and press forward.  God also showed me that what I was struggling with pride.  I was being selfish and I was thinking of myself as better than others.  I guess I thought I had a better plan that what God had planned for us.  God gently reminded me through the book of Job that I don't have better plans than him,  "Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth?  Tell me, if you know so much."  Job 38:4

During this time, Travis went to his dad and began discussions and his dad also felt like it was a good time for Travis to come on board.  His dad approached his uncles and they began hashing out a plan.  After several months of discussion they came to us with what had been agreed upon and they decided Travis would begin farming in January.  There is still a lot of things to be determined as we plan to join the partnership in future years, but we have time to figure all of those things out.  It's a little overwhelming to think about the financial aspects of this decision, but we believe this is what God is calling us to do and so he will provide for us when the time comes.

After pouring over our new budget, we determined that I would need to go back to work at least part time.  During the past year I had been working from home doing some part time work for a start up company, but during the fall it was evident that the company was not going to make it.  We started talking to different people and sending my resume out, but ultimately we were concerned about how this would affect our family especially in the summer.  In November, I got an e-mail from a partner at a local accounting firm asking me to come in for an interview.  I had actually talked to them four years ago before we moved to Harlingen.  During the interview we were talking about my preferred schedule and they told me that they have several people that work flexible schedules, including some that take a few months off at a time.  I left the interview so encouraged because they were willing to let me work part-time during the school year and take the ENTIRE summer off to be with my kids.  I will be able to take and pick the kids up from school during the year and be home with them after school.  It was a huge answer to prayer and I'm so thankful that I will be able to be with my kids while they are home during the summer.  It was way more than we could have ever hoped for!  "Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever!"  Ephesians 3:20-21

Another huge answer to prayer this year is our new church, Logos Community Church.  During the spring and early summer we because increasingly unsettled in our old church.  We weren't really sure where we were going to go, but we just felt God calling us out of that church.  We visited a church in Mcallen a few times, but didn't really like driving 45 minutes to go to church and felt that we would never really have community or be able to be involved with living so far away.  Sometime during the summer we heard through the grapevine that Logos Community in Mcallen was going to be planting a new site in Harlingen.  We looked up the church and were excited about the potential.  We had actually heard of this church before we moved down here because the pastor is friends with one of our good friends from Houston.  We went to the informational meeting and have never looked back.  We are so happy that God was orchestrating this and that we get to be a part of it!

As you can see, 2013 is going to bring lots of changes for the Johnson family!  We are nervous and excited about the things to come, but we know that God will be with us through all of it!



Thursday, January 03, 2013

Christmas!

We had a wonderful Christmas in Virginia this year with my side of the family.  We had lots of fun and of course ate way too much!  Here are some pictures from our trip!



Claire being a monkey on the plane ride there.


We went and looked at Christmas lights one night and this one house had a crazy amount of inflatables.  The kids loved picking out their favorites.

Tyler with Santa!


The kids with Santa!


Claire loved the Dora inflatable!


Christmas Eve morning we woke up to this...

SNOW! 
 The kids were so excited!


The kids ready to open Stockings!


Claire loved her very first Barbie doll!


I love this picture of Cooper's face.  He must have been really excited about the Star War's Angry Birds Pajamas!


We couldn't find Claire behind all of her presents!


The Johnson kids ready to open presents!


The day after Christmas we headed up to West Virginia to spend a couple of days at the famous Greenbrier hotel.  Because we had so many people we stayed in one of the cottages.  It was so beautiful and it snowed while we were there.

Here is our cottage!  Isn't it beautiful?


The boys playing in the snow!


Claire all bundled up and ready for the snow!


Claire and Cooper


Tyler and me in the lobby of the Greenbrier


My parents graciously offered to watch the kids one night and let us go out with the Hoovers for a date night.  We had a fun night just the adults!


Kyle and Christine ready for a night out!


Friday, November 02, 2012

Milestone

Tyler lost his first tooth!!!  He came to me at the beginning of the week and said his tooth was hurting when he ate or brushed his teeth.  I took a look and realized it was loose!  He was so excited!  Throughout the week he would wiggle it.  On Thursday he came home from school and showed me how loose it was.  I took a look and realized it was ready to come out.  I asked him to go look in the mirror and I would show him how far back it would go.  I got a kleenex and managed to pull it without him ever realizing it!  He was thrilled and was super excited about putting it under his pillow for the tooth fairy!


Happy Halloween!

The kids had so much fun on Halloween this year.  They all got to wear their costumes to school.  Cooper's school had a parade where they went through all the older classes (1-6) and the older kids gave them candy.  The older kids went crazy over Cooper's costume.  I must say it was my favorite!  


Cooper and some of his favorite girls in the class getting ready for the parade!


Cooper's class posing for a picture!


Later that evening we headed over to Cooper's school for a Trunk or Treat and Festival.  Then we headed over to Uncle Lynn's and Grandma's for a little Trick or Treating!

 The King Pig, A Pretty Ballerina, and Clone Trooper


 I love Coop's costume.  We had to stuff him with two pillows to fatten him up!

 Tyler the Clone Trooper


 My little ballerina who calls herself, "Stinkerbell"


 Uh oh, somebody found the cotton candy!


 Sugar High!!!

Fall Fun!

We have had a busy fall around here filled with lots of activities.  A couple of weeks ago my parents came down for a visit and we packed in lots of fun while they were here.  Friday morning we headed out to eat lunch with Tyler at school.  He requested that we bring him pizza, so that's what we did.  He was very excited to see us and we ate a quick lunch with hundreds of crazy kids!

Friday night we headed to the Donna Corn Maze and had a great time.  It was a nice evening and we had the place almost to ourselves due to the Friday night football games around here.  We did the smaller corn maze made for kids, rode the oil barrel train, rode on the hayride, played tetherball, jumped on the blob, and rode the big slide.  We had fun!  Here are the pics from Friday night before my camera lost battery.


 Gram, Papa, and the boys before the corn maze.


 They boys found a marker!


 Tyler enjoying the hayride.


 Tyler on the big slide!






 Cooper on the slide- his expression never changed.


 Daddy got in on the fun and raced the boys down.


Saturday morning we headed to Chuck E. Cheese's, Harlingen's newest fine establishment!  It is very close to our house and the kids have been begging to go since it opened.  We thought we would save the joy of Chuck E. Cheese for when Papa was here!  We went at 9 am and the kids had the place to themselves.  We finished up our tokens and rushed home to watch the Aggies play.  

Saturday afternoon the boys headed to a fall festival while the girls headed to a birthday party for one of Claire's friends.  It was a super cute tea party.

 Claire and the birthday girl, Paisley, enjoying some afternoon tea!


 More, please!


Sunday morning we headed to the pumpkin patch fundraiser at Claire's preschool.  The boys picked out two big pumpkins to carve.  We headed home to do the carving.  

 Cooper watching Papa scoop out the guts!


 Papa getting ready to start the Angry Bird pumpkin!


 We headed inside because it was blazing hot outside.  Cooper was super excited about his yellow angry bird!


 Tyler and Daddy working on Darth Mahl.  Of course Tyler picked out the hardest one he could find!  His was so hard!!!  Papa cut off one of his eyes at one point and we had to get the super glue out!!! 


 Cooper and Papa working hard!


 The kids with the final products.  


The pumpkins lit up.  They turned out pretty good!!!

Sunday afternoon we headed to the airport to drop Papa off (Gram got to stay for a week).  Then headed to church to finish off our weekend.  Gram was awesome to have around for the rest of the week.  I think she did every single item of laundry that I had and she may have done the kids more than once.  I tried to convince her to move down and live in the guest room, but she left on Friday.  :(  Thanks for coming, Gram and Papa!  We had so much fun!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Take Me Out to the Ball Game!

This year we let the boys pick one activity outside of Awana that they could participate in.  Cooper choose T-ball!  So we signed him up and we have had so much fun watching Cooper play!  He is enjoying it and he is doing really well.  This week he got a great hit and finally got to touch home plate! 
Travis and I definitely get our fill of comedic entertainment each week.  Grandma and Grandpa have been able to come watch him several times and next week Gram will be in town and will get to see him play!

I can't even stand how cute he looks in his uniform! 


 His biggest fan!


 Warming up for the big game!


Getting ready to hit!

Tyler is starting basketball at the Boys and Girls Club soon!  He is super excited about it and we can't wait to watch him play!