Thursday, September 30, 2010

Marley was a cutie bug today! Layla was sick at school and had to go home so Tom and I kept Marley with us. We played games, went to the library, shopped, cleaned, played games, and collected acorns and drew faces on them. Gorgeous day so we took advantage of it!
Now, you have to admit, she's CUTE!

Ready, set, go!

Whose turn is it???

Saturday, September 25, 2010


People are always asking me about my mother. She will be 90 on March 1. With her musical gifts on the piano, she is a busy woman. Her calendar is full of Eastern Star, church and other organizational activities and needs for me to get her 2011 calendar prepared due to obligations she "needs to record". Don't call her before 11 at night because she is probably out and about. Most of all...don't call her before 11 in the morning due to sleeping in to recover from the night before. This has been her schedule for her entire life. Just thought that I would share since she really is an amazing woman!

Saturday, September 18, 2010

STILL Undefeated!

As far as I'm concerned, the L.E. Johnson sponsored 1st grade soccer team Layla is on, is undefeated!!!!! the numbers indicate that they "lost" but I know that they really were "winners"!!! So far this season, they have won every game with one tie. They have scored 49 goals so far this season. The team that they played today had never won a game. I remember being on (or rooting for) a team that lost every game. It's no fun. I don't care your age or your sport. But in 1st grade!!!!!!!!! Losing is not fun!!! Layla's coach knew that they would be playing such a team. He wrote his player's parents and informed them that he would be putting his best players (he is blessed with a few very good little players) on offense for only 1 quarter, on defense the rest of the time and they would all sit out a quarter. He was sorry if any parents were offended by this but he wanted the other team to have a chance to win a game.

The results are in: the other team won the game. Good for them! Those little ones are so happy and proud of themselves! I'm so happy for them.

I'm especially proud of the coach for making this decision. He is a natural with those kids...cheers them on...builds them up....praises.....hugs....laughs....plays.....

He was blessed with good players and good team parents but I was blessed...........

with a terrific son! I'm very proud of you Brent!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Prayer: Does It Make Any Difference?

On this absolutely gorgeous 72 degree day, Tom and I decided to visit the Meijer Gardens in Grand Rapids, MI since there was a Chihuly glass art exhibit on display for the summer. We fell in love with his work during a trip to Phoenix a couple of years ago. I took many pictures (no!!!!!) because the sun was popping in and out from behind the clouds continually changing the colors of the glass.
The sky alone was a masterpiece! I could have just taken sky photos and been thrilled! We were surrounded by true beauty. I kept thinking about something that Philip Yancey wrote in his book Prayer: Does It Make Any Difference? when he asked a friend named Marcia about prayer and she spoke of the "other" hours in her day: "Conversation can be a prayer. Think of the Samaritan woman at the well, talking with Jesus about water and mountains and Jerusalem--wasn't that a prayer? I like to think of my conversations with people as prayer. I speak to Jesus within a person. I ask, Lord, let this lunch or tea or whatever be a prayer. When I read the Bible, that's a prayer. I don't read Psalm 73, I 'pray' Psalm 73. I willingly refer my actions to God, and in so doing they become a prayer.
"I'm a painter. I pray as I paint, and my painting becomes a kind of prayer. If someone asks me for help in prayer, I tell them to find what they most enjoy and do that, only do it for the glory of God. For you it may be writing or climbing a mountain. Ask God to remind you, as you do it, that you're doing it for him. Often as I'm doing what I enjoy, specific requests come to mind. I pray instantly, as soon as something comes into mind, and I trust God to bring it to mind.
"Spending time with God is what's important. We spend the time anyway. Why not recognize that we spend it with God, and then act like it?"
Then Yancey continues to say that "listening to Marcia, I realized how easily I compartmentalize my life. I had the notion of prayer as a spiritual act oddly unrelated to the rest of my life. Out of a sense of duty I would put in the time, sometimes gladly and sometimes not, then get on with the real business of the day. I have since come to see prayer as something like a warm-up excercise, not an end in itself but a means to an end: to increase awareness of God at all other times."
I guess that today was one of those days. I "felt" God everywhere! It was a beautiful day.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Labor Day "laboring"

"Hi Uncle Ron" says Alexis. "Thank you for letting us come to your house for Labor Day weekend. We really appreciate it! You can come to my house anytime you want to. I love you!"

"Hey PopPop Tom!!! I WIN and you haven't even moved yet! Do you need me to help you get started?" yells Nicholas.

"Look what I just caught from Aunt Paula's dock! I can tell you all about it if you have time! I don't even mind sticking my thumb into it's ugly, smelly, little mouth!" says Nicky.

"Mommy!!! Aunt Heather!!!! Aunt Kendra!!!! Lexi!!!!! Will someone listen to me??? What are you laughing about??? What IS so funny???? Is it something about Aunt Heather's 38 birthday party??????????????? HELLO!!!!!!" yells Layla.

"Ok. It is a gorgeous day and it's time for some Sunday excitement in the driveway! Please don't run over anyone who is on a scooter or running around!"

"I'm Blake and I discovered that I am getting really good on this scooter! I can go very fast and I don't even fall down very much! I didn't want to even try it last summer but this summer, I am really trying lots of new things and it is fun!!!!!"

"PopPop Tom and JoJo, Aunt Lizzy and Mommy took us to the part nearby. The sun was shining and the temperature was perfect. You can see all 5 of us grandkids and the "old folks" in this picture."

"I am sooooo cute! I just love being outside with Blake and Nicky! The weather is so beautiful and I have had such a good time. I think that we are ready to head home now because I have a soggy diaper."

"Mommy is ready for 'Trouble'. She is learning to play better every time she tries to beat me. Usually I win though. Playing a game is a good way to rest after being outside for a long time."

"While we were at the park, PopPop and JoJo brought us a lunch from McD's. It was fun to eat outside."

"Today is Monday and I woke up early this morning but Daddy got up with me and got me dressed so I was ready for photos when JoJo got up. I LOVE wearing GAP. I'm stylin' don't you think? JoJo caught me reading my book. It is so much fun to look at the cute pictures."

"I just think that I'm the cutest thing ever!!!!"

"Blake and Nicholas jump out of bed (when they don't have to get ready for school) and begin to build things in their room. Blake said today that he wants to be a "Brickmaster" when he grows up. He said that it is someone who builds lots of things. My brothers do love to build things. They play for hours in their room and don't even come out for a long time to talk to me. I need to speak to my Mommy and Daddy about that!!!!"

"After we were all ready this morning, some of us had breakfast at the "Red Roof" with PopPop and JoJo. Layla loves being anywhere that her PopPop is. So do I!"

"Mommy is holding me up so I can check out what everyone is doing from Aunt Paula's kitchen deck. I see Nicholas and PopPop, Layla and Aunt Dizzy and my daddy is checking the water levels. Daddy is going to walk to my house and get his boat and drive it over here so we can go for a boat ride. He is a good daddy!"

"This is my cousin Marley and her daddy, Uncle Brent. Marley must be a very very big girl since Uncle Brent is letting her drive Daddy's boat!"

"Blake, Layla and Nicholas are being towed on the tube. I don't know why they won't let me get on. Oh well....maybe someday. Right now they are going very slowly."

"Hmmmm....Layla isn't on the tube anymore. They must have picked up speed!"

"Marley didn't last very long on the tube. I think that she prefers the safety of her Mother's arms. (I still think they should let me go on the tube!)"

"Daddy is letting Layla drive too!!! Hey....HOW ABOUT ME!!!!!"

"Ok...what's so funny? I can tell that those cousins of mine are having a darn good time.....but wait! Is that Uncle Brent back there? HEY UNCLE BRENT....are you having a good time?"

"Time to head back to my house. Nicholas is going to drive. I guess he will make PopPop walk. Good thing we live so close!"

"I see my Blakie on his scooter and....wait! Is that my mommy driving???? OMG!!!"