Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Girl's Camp or Bust...

This Week: Something blue....

Here I am in my blue camp shirt. I'm so excited to go to girl's camp with Marlee and Paige this year. We're gonna have a blast!

Saturday, May 24, 2008


Marlee had her eighth grade graduation last night. She looked gorgeous in this vintage dress that we found at an antique store (it's even prettier in person). She finished off her look with a vintage hat and jewelry that we also found at an antique store. We may not have modern conveniences in this little town, but at least we can find cute antiques.

It's official-- look out high school her she comes!

Way to go Marlee!!! We're proud of you!

Paige sang with the choir at the graduation. And speaking of Paige and choir, we need to give a big congratulations shout out to Paige for being selected for next years junior high show choir. It's a really fun choir to be a part of. Where most school choirs simply stand on the risers and sing, the show choir sings and dances and participates in extra performances including a brownie social at the end of the year. This year they also put on a melodrama but I don't know if that is something they plan to do again. Paige had to audition for her spot in the choir and she nailed it. I was so proud of her! She is beyond excited to have been chosen--way to go Paige!!!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Up, up and away....

I was considering deleting my "Borrowed" post because there is this part of me that doesn't like to admit that I am in a funkadinka, but I decided to ignore my ego and let it stay. I want to document these moments of my life, the good and the bad, for myself and for anyone else who might benefit from them. I know for a certainty that I am not the only one who experiences a spiritual funk from time to time. That is why we are commanded to endure to the end because the temptation to give up is forever present and we have to fight for what we want. And I want spirituality, I need spirituality so I'll never go down without swinging.
I’ve been brought to a place in my life where I am being forced to explore deeper levels of myself. The things that I thought defined me are being challenged and it’s time for me to show what I’m made of. It’s sink or swim time baby and I’ve got to start paddling. As part of my game plan I am reading, “Organizing for Life, declutter your mind to declutter your world”.

It’s fabulous! I recommend it for the organizationally challenged like me.
The author also has a website http://www.messies.com/ and it’s full of great tips for “messies” like me. I am going to implement one of her plans to see if it helps to get me out of my funk. Here is what she suggests:
Make a strong take-off every day. A good take-off sets the tone of the day. When you:

set a time

don’t lie in bed, there’s a wonderful world waiting

the bed immediately, automatically

something nutritious

bathe body or wash face

take care of your teeth

completely from head to toe including hair, shoes,
and makeup of some kind on your face

somewhere during the day you need to turn your heart upward to God
(a great way to start the day)

Add any other steps you may need to your flight plan, like TAKE A WALK. They don’t have to end with UP.
So to my list I added:

get some exercise everyday

take time to write daily

expand your mind with a good book
I'm already pretty good about doing a lot of these like waking up and jumping up in the morning. I get a big fat F in the make up the bed department, but that's something I want to change. It's hit or miss on the eat something nutritious, but I usually am good about the wash up, brush up and dress up part of my day. Normally I'm great at the Look up part as well, but as I mentioned before I've been in a funk so this will be good for me. The firm up, write up, and read up are all things that make me feel alive so I know if I work on them everyday I'll be much happier.

I also know that no matter how big a funk we might find ourselves in, it is so easy to come back to putting spiritual things first in our lives. The other day I was feeling quite low so I grabbed the book, "Jesus the Christ" off of my end table, opened to a random page and started reading.
Soon I was sobbing as I read the words of my Savior and felt his tender love for me. His love is perfect, unconditional and always available if we will simply take the time to seek it.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Borrowed strength....

This week: Something borrowed....


I borrowed the following quote from an LDS conference talk given by President Eyring (I also borrowed it from a fellow blogger who posted it and brought it to my remembrance, so it's a double borrow).


"But the spirit who led the rebellion in the world before still opposes the plan and wants you to be miserable. He wants you never to find your way home again. That enemy of your soul knows you and your goodness. He knows that if he can turn you away from walking in the light, he can both capture you and stop you from helping others along the journey. He knows how good you are and your power to teach and influence hundreds of Heavenly Father's children in this life—and thousands over the generations that will follow your path. If he can get you to wander away from the light on your journey, he can do harm and bring misery to many."

Boy did I need to hear that. I feel like I've been under attack lately. I have been so tempted to be miserable, to separate myself from everything that brings me light, hope and joy. I go through many of my days estranged from the Lord, resisting scripture study and prayer and concerning myself far too much with the things of the world. I know I can't continue this way and be happy. I am miserable without the strength of my Savior. So at this time I am Borrowing from others who are not in a funk right now. People like my wonderful visiting teacher who shared with me her insight on the story of when Jesus walked on the sea....

Matt. 14: 22-33

22 ¶ And straightway Jesus constrained his disciples to get into a ship, and to go before him unto the other side, while he sent the multitudes away.

23 And when he had sent the multitudes away, he went up into a mountain apart to pray: and when the evening was come, he was there alone.

24 But the ship was now in the midst of the sea, tossed with waves: for the wind was contrary.

25 And in the fourth watch of the night Jesus went unto them, walking on the sea.

26 And when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, It is a spirit; and they cried out for fear.

27 But straightway Jesus spake unto them, saying, Be of good cheer; it is I; be not afraid.

28 And Peter answered him and said, Lord, if it be thou, bid me come unto thee on the water.

29 And he said, Come. And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus.

30 But when he saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink, he cried, saying, Lord, save me.

31 And immediately Jesus stretched forth his hand, and caught him, and said unto him, O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?

32 And when they were come into the ship, the wind ceased.

33 Then they that were in the ship came and worshipped him, saying, Of a truth thou art the Son of God.
My visiting teacher shared her thoughts on how while Peter kept his eyes on the Savior he was able to stay on top of the water, but when he focused on the boisterous wind and waves he became frightened and sank into the sea. She likened this to the turmoil that arises in our lives and how if we keep our eyes on the Savior we are strengthened, but when we turn away and focus on the troubles around us we can fall into despair.

I know that I have been focusing too much on the boisterous wind and waves in my life when what I should be doing is turning my gaze toward the Lord. So I am going to continue forward, Borrowing strength from the good people around me, from the scriptures, church magazines and meetings. And from my ultimate source of strength, the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Ether 12: 27

27 And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Hurry home....

They say a watched pot never boils and I guess the same is true about a watched clock never moving forward if your waiting for something to happen, but every time I look at this clock I can't help but think of my sister-in-law Cameo, because going to buy it was one of the last things we did together before she, my brother Lynn and their three wonderful children moved away. They headed out for Colorado yesterday and I am soooo sad. The good news is that they will be back in a year and a half, but in the meantime we are going to miss them so much. They were the family pioneers, the first to buy a home in Snowflake. My brother Ben and his family came next followed by us shortly after. We have loved living near them, getting together every chance we could get and watching the cousins become the best of friends. It's going to be hard not to keep my eye on that clock waiting for their return, but I wish them the best of luck in Colorado and send all of my love and prayers out to them.

The kids and I made these travel boxes full of activities and treats for a going away present. I mention them because blogging has really opened my heart and mind to the joy and fun of giving. I have been inspired by kind acts that I have read about on other blogs and so appreciate the sharing of ideas. I have always been a compassionate thinker but I lose it somewhere before I get to the compassionate doing part of it, but the stories that others have shared have really gotten me excited about being a doer. Thank you all of you compassionate thinking and doing fellow bloggers--you have changed my life!

The Snowflake cousins (minus Landon). Come back and join us soon Johnson kiddos! We miss you!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Mercy me...

The 102 thing about me is that I am a serious proofreader. I read and re-read until I know it's right. I guess it comes from being a writer. I can edit my novel 500 times and still find things that are wrong. So I got a chuckle when I was going over my 100 things about me post again and noticed that I said merciless love instead of merciful love (I quickly changed it). It got me thinking that I sure am glad that our Heavenly Father and Savior's love is not merciless or man would we all be in trouble. Much like my Jamie is lucky that my love for her is not merciless because last night after we all went to bed she snuck out and had her own personal little TV party, snacks and all, until three in the morning. She said she wanted to see if she could stay up all night without anyone knowing. She might have gotten away with it if she hadn't come down for more snacks and gotten spooked by the ice maker. She ran into our room and said, "There's something scary in the kitchen!" After waking up to comfort her I realized that she had been up the whole time and ordered her to bed.
"Can't I finish my show first?" she asked me.
Are you kidding me? I remained firm, but inside I was cracking up. That is so Jamie. She was the queen of the house, having the time of her life. I love her spunky spirit.
This morning she slept in until I finally had to wake her for school (she has afternoon kindergarten). I told her that she needed to wake up for school and she asked if she had morning school today. I told her that it was her regular school time and that she had just slept the morning away. She said, "Oh, so that's why you don't want me to stay up so late."
Lesson learned. She went to bed right on time tonight, no questions asked.

Something new...

This week's SPT: Something new.
Well I didn't plan for this to be my something new, but Saturday Rick and I had to go to "the valley" for a few things and while visiting my favorite salon I got a wild hair (literally). So here's my something new....

I know. I barely recognize myself.
Who says blonds have more fun?

Sunday, May 11, 2008

My 100 things...

The 101 thing about me is that I love to copy a good idea. So after reading Cedar's and Mindy's 100 things, I decided to give it a try-- here goes....


1. I am an Arizona native
2. My ancestors were among the first settlers of Mesa and other Az cities.
3. I am the third of seven children
4. I was a “surprise” (I say accident but my mom doesn’t like that)
5. My older sister and I are only a year apart.
6. I was born with dark hair. Then it changed to blond. Now it’s back to dark, but I make it blond.
7. I desperately need my roots done.
8. I’m considering going dark brown and being done with the whole root business.
9. I won student body vice president in 6th grade because I gave a killer speech, even though I was normally very shy and quiet (see #s 98 and 99 for explanation). I quickly discovered that politics was not for me (meetings and work—yuck!)
10. In eighth grade I discovered that I was good at long distance running, but turned down a chance to run with the varsity team my freshman year (extra training and hard work—yuck!)
11. I regret that I never strived for greatness.
12. I would love to start running again and train for a half marathon.
13. We never moved while I was growing up. I lived in the same house from age 1 to 20 (except for some time away at college and a summer apartment with friends).
14. I drove a VW Karmann Ghia in high school and college.
15. I was a daddy’s girl and could talk to him for hours on end.
16. I have had the privilege of speaking with my deceased relatives.
17. I’m not a medium or psychic, I believe anyone can talk to the deceased.
18. I met my husband at Mesa Community College in Spanish class.
19. I don’t speak Spanish.
20. My parents sent me away to Rick’s college to meet a good man (in hopes of steering me away from my high school boyfriend).
21. I had already met a good man (Rick, my now hubby) at home, so while I was away I wouldn’t date the same guy more than twice and I didn’t kiss anyone.
22. The first time I kissed Rick it was electric and we made out (kissing only) for over three hours. Crazy.
23. During a bout of insanity I returned for a second semester at Ricks College.
24. I went home for Thanksgiving and got engaged.
25. Three months later I was married.
26. I was the recipient of a miracle that I would love to talk about but can’t.
27. I have an absolute testimony of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
28. I have always dreamed of being a mother.
29. I had my first baby 13 months after I got married.
30. I have been pregnant 8 times, which would have resulted in 9 babies.
31. I’ve had two miscarriages.
32. I am the mother of 6 (two boys, four girls)
33. I’ve always loved baby boys (I always made my dolls be boys)
34. I wanted to be the mother of 9 boys.
35. I love being the mother of girls.
36. Little boys still melt my heart.
37. I have been blessed with a great deal of patience and rarely get my feathers ruffled. Except for….
38. When I’m involved in a project or want something changed or moved—I want it RIGHT NOW! And can’t wait for help.
39. I’ve moved heavy furniture and the piano by myself many times and have broken the leg off of a dining room table and dinged many a finish because I was too impatient to wait for help.
40. I am a S.H.E. (sidetracked home executive)
41. I lack time management skills. Therefore….
42. I am almost always running late.
43. I like driving with my kids.
44. I hate driving on high, winding roads or bridges.
45. My or my children’s lives will have to be at stake before I will drive the Salt River Canyon again.
46. I am a member of the American Night Writers Association.
47. I love to write.
48. I have written a novel, but am stuck in revisions (I’m in a funk)
49. Writing poetry is my favorite especially children’s books written in verse.
50. I enjoy writing talks.
51. I showed up late the night Rick proposed because I was engrossed in helping my sister write an essay for school (at least he knew what he was getting).
52. I love Sunday afternoon naps.
53. I’ve been taking Synthroid every morning for about 12 years for hypothyroidism, but….
54. I have been blessed with incredible health and am rarely sick.
55. I am a night owl, but….
56. I hate sleeping in, so….
57. I don’t get enough sleep.
58. Waking up at the crack of dawn for yard sales is one of my favorite things to do.
59. I love to treasure hunt in thrift stores too.
60. I love taking old, ugly things and making them pretty and useful.
61. I love to decorate, but…
62. I have been uninspired in the decorating of my new home.
63. I desperately miss my yard sale and thrift store hunting trips.
64. I miss the city but…
65. I am starting to feel much better about my new life.
66. I enjoy working with the Young Women at church. They keep me young.
67. I want to eat better and exercise so I can keep feeling young.
68. I love healthy food that tastes like the goodness of the earth, but…
69. I love junk food too and it’s easier.
70. I love how I feel when I get regular exercise, but…
71. I hate to exercise regularly.
72. I like exercising with friends, but…
73. I like sitting around and eating with friends more.
74. I have imaginary friends a.k.a. other bloggers, strangers that I read about regularly.
75. I think it would be fun to meet my imaginary friends someday.
76. I am terrible about calling friends but once I do…
77. I can talk on the phone for hours.
78. I love my laptop and call it my precious (like Gollum and the Ring).
79. I love many kinds of music. From spiritual, classical, big band, and Josh Groban types… to rock, pop, alternative, and almost anything 80s, but I’m not too fond of Country. Although…
80. I like watching country music videos because I think cowboys are hot. But…
81. I wouldn’t want Rick to be a cowboy because….
82. I love how much Rick and I have in common including our taste in music (except for Josh Groban, Rick hates him) besides…
83. Rick’s broad shoulders, bald head and goatee remind me of a biker dude and…
84. I think biker dudes are hot. Although….
85. I’m most attracted to Rick when I’m sitting next to him in church while he is dressed in his crisp white shirt and tie.
86. My heart leaps to know that I am married to a man who loves the Lord as much as I do.
87. I love bald heads especially my hubby’s. If his hair could be restored tomorrow I’d beg him not to do it.
88. I love snuggling up and watching TV with Rick especially the food network’s Diners, Drive-ins and Dives—yummy!
89. I love going out to eat.
90. I pretty much love any kind of food.
91. I don’t like sugary candy but I love chocolate and….
92. I can’t say no to a pastry, but….
93. I like salty, savory more than sweet.
94. I am a good cook but I don’t enjoy it.
95. I am the queen of throwing a meal together without prior thought or preparation.
96. I love shoes, but not those that require socks. I hate socks.
97. I love being with my kids and enjoy summer break more than the school year.
98. I can be shy one on one but…
99. I don’t mind speaking to large groups.
100. I am generally an optimistic girl who loves God, family, and country. I am grateful for my gifts, talents, and blessings as well as my tests and trials for they have all, the good and the bad, brought me greater understanding and love for my Heavenly Father and Savior Jesus Christ. I love to testify of them. Of their goodness and glory, their merciful love and their wonderful plan of happiness. They live and because I know this—my life is bliss.

Friday, May 9, 2008


Yesterday Jamie and I went to a special Mother's Day Luau at her school.
I enjoyed watching her perform her cute Hawaiian songs and dances and she was so sweet to serve me cake and punch. But the highlight of the night was definitely....


How low...

Can you go?

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Dang it I forgot...

This is Paige and Marlee. Paige and Marlee had a band, guitar and choir concert Tuesday night.


This is the camera that I forgot to take to their concert.

And this is the video camera that I also forgot. The camera that I was going to use to capture Paige's amazing solo on the trap set (set of drums, you know like in a rock band). Rick and I were blown away by her performance. We had no idea that she was that good (our drum set is out in our detached garage so we never hear her practice). I was going to post it for Grandma and Aunts to hear, but sadly it shall not be. So you'll just have to take my word for it, she was fabulous! Marlee did a great job on the guitar too, but she was mad because some of the orchestra and band members played with them and muted their sound. She said, "What's the point of having a concert if you can't hear us. I should have just stayed home." I love Marlee's feisty attitude. She's so funny. Despite what she thought we could hear her and she sounded great. I love watching my kids share their talents. I'm so glad that they are much braver than I am.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Lelly's challenge for this week (month) in her words:

"I’m really excited to try something new with spt this month. Today, I’m going to issue the challenges for the entire month of May!! May means *wedding month* to me. And, no, this challenge is not going to be about weddings (unless you want it to be...) this month's challenge is simply:


Tuesday, May 6 something old

Tuesday, May 13 something new

Tuesday, May 20 something borrowed

Tuesday, May 27 something blue


take it literally, take it figuratively, but by all means, make a commitment to complete all four challenges for the month of may!"


I'm excited about these challenges they should be fun. Especially this first one, something old. I am a thrift store and yard sale junkie because I love, love, love old things. Here are just a few of my "lucky finds" as Wallace from Wallace and Grommet calls them.

I love old suitcases. The large one and black one are from yard sales and the little brown one was Rick's Grandpa's mission suitcase. They make me happy every time I look at them.
This old trunk was a yard sale find. My sister came across it in Tucson and called to see if I wanted it. Hooray! I've had it and loved it for at least ten years now. The old tea set was a thrift store steal at 50% off. It too has been with me for nearly ten years.
I love this old mirror. I got it at a yard sale with a matching dresser set. The dresser set has long since fallen apart, but the mirror is still wonderful and brings me joy.
These old books were a gift from my mother-in-law. They belonged to Rick's great-grandmother. I love their cheery red color and with a set of ten I've been able to use them throughout the house for that little splash of red that I need to be happy.

I love, love these old dolls (even though they scare my sisters. I think they've seen too many horror movies) I found them abandoned and falling apart in my grandparents basement. After a visit to a doll restorer to restring heads and limbs they can be happily displayed again. (Tip: the doll restorer said that the worst place to store dolls is in an attic or basement, it ruins them. Who knew?) I used to play with these dolls when I was a little girl. I don't know if they belonged to my Grandma or Aunts (Amy if you read this ask your mom for me) but when I look at them they make my heart smile.

This small tobacco table was my last lucky find before moving (it's lined with copper and was used to keep tobacco fresh). I found it at a yard sale. When I asked the man how much, he said $15.00 I was thrilled, but he went on trying to sell it to me telling me that if I cleaned it up or gave it a new paint job it would be a really nice table. I nodded politely then left with a big smile on my face. As I walked to my car, several people stopped me and said, "Do not paint that table. It's an antique." I said I wouldn't dream of it. After all I do love old things.
Now if only I could learn to love the fact that I'm getting old too. Maybe if I prop myself up on a shelf somewhere it will seem more appealing.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Rick + Jeanette ~ TLA...

Rick serves as first counselor in the Elders quorum presidency at church and each first Sunday of the month the presidency takes turns teaching the lesson. Yesterday was Rick's turn and he taught a lesson on family unity. As part of his lesson he asked me to come in and share a few of my thoughts on the subject. Scary. I remembered how in the movie, A League of Their Own, about the women's baseball team, Tom Hanks tells one woman, "There's no crying in baseball." Well that's how I felt about speaking to Rick's class, "There's no crying in Elders quorum." And I can't speak about anything special or spiritual without boobing, but I did it anyway and it went well with fairly controlled boobing (no ugly cry or squeaky voiced sobbing) so I was happy. One of the things I shared in the lesson was the wonderful advice Rick and I received on our wedding day. We had the privilege of being married by my Grandpa Johnson and he told us, "Never go to bed angry." My grandparents had a very loving marriage so I figured he knew what he was talking about and have worked hard to heed his words all of these years. And I can honestly say that in 18 years of marriage, Rick and I have never gone to bed angry. There have been times that we stayed up til three in the morning working things out, but we always do work them out and can sleep peacefully snuggled together and wake up blissfully in love the next morning. It really is the best advice for a happy marriage. Working things out before going to sleep means that problems never have the chance to fester, grow and get out of hand. I will be forever grateful to my Grandpa for blessing us with his wisdom.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Puppy love...

Tuesday night I staged a home. Instead of cash I got paid with this...

A West Highland Terrier named Lily. The owner needed to find a home for her so even though she is worth a great deal more than the price of staging a home, she asked if I wanted to make a trade. Well who could resist this face? She's a sweetheart and my kids are so loving her. But here's the best part...

This is how Jack has been spending most of his days since we fenced him in. Sitting by the window, watching his friends outside and whimpering. Poor Jack. But now that Lily has joined us....

Doggy Bliss!

We are now a two dog family. So sweet.