Saturday, January 20, 2007

It's Time

The Johnston Weight Loss Challenge never officially I think now is the time. We certainly wouldn't want to let Gabe down since this was his brainchild. He did tell me the other day he was happy because he hadn't GAINED any weight! Hooray for Gabe. Unfortunately I did. Saddie on the other hand has started off with a bang...she's already lost 2! Way to go, Mom!

So comment in if you want to join. You can tell your weight and the date you weighed in...or you can just write in how many pounds you have gained or lost since a certain date. Does that make sense?

Every weekend, weigh in and either post your new weight or just let us know how many pounds you've lost (or gained)!

Here's to summer...........

Sunday, January 14, 2007

There are stars...and then there are STARS

When I think of a 'star'...I think of something or someone that shines. Camilla has dreamed of being a star - the movie-type of star - and this past week, her dream came true - in ways she couldn't have imagined.

Our community has been a star for Camilla's family...people have rallied around this family in so many ways...including people who have never met them.

Tuesday, Camilla, Rema, and I were flown down to LA. We had arranged a visit to the set of the OC - one of Camilla's favorite shows - for Wednesday.

Backtrack to December...a neighbor knew someone who knew someone...etc., who contacted one of Camilla's "idols"...Drew took a day, flew up to our little town, and came to visit Camilla. What an absolute delight it was for her. As they visited that day, Camilla told her how she loved the show called The Family Guy. Drew gets home and contacts Seth who calls Camilla and talks to her, does voices for her...again makes her day.

Fast forward back to January. So we have the OC set up, the donation of the Camilla calls Seth. He invites us to visit the set. Camilla is BEYOND excited.

Tuesday we walk in to the set and everyone there treated Camilla like a 'star'. Seth arranged for her to sign a record for an upcoming show...Drew came to record was beyond her imagination.

Camilla looks over her lines.........Getting set up to record.

Camilla recorded as the character of Baby Girl.

Watching and listening to Seth as he recorded the different character voices was amazing. He also drew for Camilla.

After I took this photo, Camilla wanted a 'retake' without her glasses. Seth decided he would take his glasses off 'take 2.'

Wednesday, we were given a grand tour of the OC set and then watched them film. Not sure what episode...maybe 14? It was a birthday party scene for Taylor. It didn't matter what the scene was, it was thrilling for Camilla...and that's what mattered.

Camilla is certainly a star...What you cannot tell from these photos is the intense pain this 'Baby Girl' was in. Two days before we left, she developed shingles...extremely painful. As we were loading the plane Tuesday morning to leave, Rema is telling Camilla we should cancel the trip. Cancel? No way!

How do you say thank you to people who have gone so out of their way to give this precious child such gifts? There aren't any words...

Monday, January 08, 2007

The Johnston Weight Loss Challenge is Coming

Are you getting ready? The Johnston Weight Loss Challenge is the brainchild of the one and only Gabe...I'll be officially kicking it off probably about Thursday. Some of the details need to be worked out, but it's your choice if you want to post your weight or just post the number of pounds lost or gained.

Now you don't have to be a JOHNSTON to join the Johnston Weight Loss don't be may want to eat a lot before our official starting date.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Christmas, 2006

Christmas has come and gone...and what a wonderful Christmas it was! We all flew to Texas and spent the holidays between Saddie's and The Farm.

Gabe and I have had multiple conversations about how blessed we are to have the family we do. I'm sure others feel that way about their families (at least I hope they do), but we have the greatest family! I love having everyone together...hanging out...playing games...doing 'projects'...just being together. You've heard of the old expression of 'wall to wall carpet'...well, we had wall to wall people. At Saddies, there were 10 of us sleeping and at the farm, we had 17 one night and 15 the other nights. Was it crowded? Yes...but oh how much fun it was!
This is my side of the family.
In Dallas at my mom's, we spent a lot of time at JOHN DAVID's house...he sometimes forgets the NAME I HAVE CALLED HIM FROM BIRTH...I have NEVER called him just JOHN.

With my side of the family, we play a LOT of games. Donnie is usually the MASTER OF CEREMONIES in the new game category. JOHN DAVID is the MASTER when it comes to making sure everyone is having a good time! Donnie taught us MAFIA and IDENTITY. We also played charades, Taboo, Apples to Apples...probably there's more. Here we are playing charades. JOHN DAVID was SO happy the guys won, that he planted a big ole kiss on Ron!

Playing taboo was a lot of fun. I'll be posting about the "Johnston Weight Loss Challenge" which is the dreamchild of Gabe...but you'll hear it referred to in this video:
Gabe's turn...attempting to get the guys to guess his word.

We had to use the box tops from other games to prevent those WANDERING EYES from seeing the answers.

Here are some family group photos:
Judy (me), Mom, John David.........John David, Sami, Addison, Becky

Donnie and Lindsey................................Gabe, Emily, and Biscuit

Erica, Joshua, and Thalia..........................Thalia and Biscuit

Kasi and Addison.............................Sami and Addison

Biscuit models her Woolrich outfit...Gabe holds Biscuit while he makes his "Biscuit Face."

The other half of our time was spent at the farm. Larry's family was there too so we definitely had a houseful and lots of fun. Dave came for a little while with Grant and Reid. Travis also came one night. We took a photo, but not everyone was there.This is Ron's side of the the family.

Mike and Brenda were only there one night when we were also there. They live in Denver and had to get back. Mike and Gabe have become good buddies...well, I'm not sure if someone who serves you a five year old beer would be considered a buddy, but they have fun together anyway.
Gabe and Mike..................................Brenda and Mike

On Christmas Eve, we had a partial Christmas. Erica and Thalia weren't there...they didn't fly in until Dec. 26th. Dave was there with his boys, but Brenda and Mike weren't in yet. Jo cooked her absolutely delicious Christmas Eve dinner and Ron did his job carving the turkey. We had two turkeys....both deep fried. This deep-frying was done in the pole barn.
Donnie, Sid, Dave, Larry, Ron, Gabe, & Joshua work together to cook the turkey!
Grant and Reid.......Ron carves, Josh eats, and Grant peeks in!
Jo's a great cook......Here the family is starting to fill their plates for our Christmas Eve dinner.

After dinner, we opened some presents. This year was different since we weren't all together at the same time. For the Christmas Eve gift opening, we were minus Erica, Thalia, Brenda, Mike, and Sandy. We enjoyed our time, but it wasn't the same with so many missing. We're we just had another celebration once Erica, Thalia, Brenda and Mike arrived. Now Grandpa might have learned a lesson...he apparently told a lot of people that he wanted a hammer for Christmas...and he ended up with not 1...not 2...but 3 hammers!
So here's some more family photos:
Ron, Larry, and Dave..................Gabrial, Emily, Donnie, Lindsey

Joshua, Erica, Thalia........................Sandra and Larry

Lissette and Biscuit........................Judy and Sandra

Now, of course, when you're on the farm you should do farm things. If you ask Thalia about her time on the farm, I'm SURE she would tell you about driving the GOLF CART. You may be thinking that a golf cart and a farm don't necessarily go together. Well, they do if you're on Grandpa's farm. The one and only Lissette transformed Grandpa's average golf cart into a TEXAS FARM GOLF CART...yep, she did. Thalia became a master at driving it...after I almost had a heart attack as I heard Larry drawl out, "Hey Thalia, don't run into the trees." (Notice there's no exclamation mark..that's because when Larry draws it out, it's pretty even tempered...not too much excitement.)

You may notice some of Thalia's 'passengers.' The farm has no shortage of dogs. Grammy and Grandpa 'adopted' Cocoa...and Sam and Maggie pretty much hang out at the farm with Cocoa. Thalia loved them all. Biscuit isn't exactly what I'd call a FARM DOG. I kept her in my arms when we had her outside if the BIG dogs were around.

The TEXAS GOLF CART is perfect for hauling tools and Grandpa around the farm. I think we all enjoy it. Erica tried her hand at farm life by driving the tractor. I don't think she did any official tractor work...but maybe next time!