Saturday, December 31, 2005

Happy Anniversary

Today Mom and Dad celebrate 36 years of marriage! Aren't they a handsome couple?

Karl and Jenn are celebrating 2 years of marriage today.

Congratulations to both beautiful couples! It's hard to believe that 2 years ago today we were dancing at their wedding with all those bananas from New Jersey. I'm so happy that Jenn came into our family. Love you all!

Monday, December 26, 2005

Cat Stew, Anyone?

JUST KIDDING! I love Mia so much, but she can accidently do naughty things sometimes. Even naughtier than Mia, is my husband Corey. Rather than squirting her with a little water, as is the customary behavior modification technique in the Johnson household, Corey takes photos.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

A Charlie Brown Christmas

When "A Charlie Brown Christmas" was aired for the first time forty years ago, 15.4 million viewers tuned in. This month, when it was re-aired, 15.3 million viewers watched. It is amazing that this movie is just as popular today as it was forty years ago. However, the special almost never happened. Schulz, Mendehlson, and Melendez broke the standard mold with this special. Rather than adult voices, they used the voices of children (Linus' voice is my favorite). There were no laugh tracks and there was jazz music written and performed by the Vince Guaraldi Trio throughout the movie. CBS did not like this and did not think the viewers would either.
This Christmas movie is, I believe, the best Christmas special EVER made. By today's standards, it is not politically correct to even say "Merry Christmas", much less to talk about Jesus' birth. However, Schulz felt it was important to keep the real meaning of Christmas at the forefront. Throughout the movie, the characters are searching for the true meaning of Christmas. Finally, Linus stands up, and with his sweet little voice, recites from the King James Version of Luke 2.
“And there were in the same country shepherds, abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them! And they were sore afraid ... And the angel said unto them, ‘Fear not! For, behold, I bring you tidings of great joy, which shall be to all my people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior which is Christ, the Lord.’ ‘And this shall be a sign unto you: Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.’ And suddenly, there was with the angel a multitude of the Heavenly Host praising God, and saying, ‘Glory to God in the Highest, and on Earth peace, and good will toward men.’”
And that's the real meaning of Christmas, Charlie Brown.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Nursing School Memories

The last 2 years spent in nursing school bring up many mixed feelings. On the one hand, I was extremely busy, stressed out, and tired all the time. On the other hand, I met many new friends and spent time with great people. Here is a small collection of pictures of some of those fun times.

This picture is at our pinning ceremony. Eric (my first lab partner who kept referring to my cornea as my "corona" is in the middle. My friend Tamara is the other lovely lady. She and I had a great semester together at the public health department, and more importantly, we had many great lunches.

These two photos are from labs. I had a great time with Carol, Carrie, and Tamara. They kept things amusing for me. Carrie will work with me at Pine Rest but on a different unit.

This is me as a public health nurse in action. Exciting, huh? Actually, we were doing teaching about hypertension at a community center in downtown Grand Rapids. But that is a story for another day.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Ode To Kevin

Once, a long time ago, in a psych hospital not far away, our little Kevin began working as a patient care provider, and thus began our little friendship. Nathan Eshelpants and I immediately loved Kevin, and took him under our collective wing and watched him blossom as an excellent employee. Soon after, our little friend Tito (Tanya) began working as well, and we sealed our friendship. Sadly, Kevin had to cut off the relationship and move out east to pursue his relationship with Natalie Portman, leaving the rest of us feeling forlorn and depressed. But rather than dwell in the ruins of that brokenness, I would like to reflect on some happier times.

Nathan and I used to watch Kevin talk to people and count how long he could hold eye contact. I think the longest was 3 seconds (and we counted fast).

Kevin and I would bike together, but he always ended up with a flat tire. I think he just couldn't keep up and would stick a knife in it so he wouldn't look bad.

Nate, Kevin, and I once got the nurse to call Tanya into work a few minutes before she was done being on call just because we missed her and wanted to spend time with her.

Kevin and I once fell off of the side of a cliff and Nate had to choose which one of us to save. Luckily for Kevin, Nate had really strong legs.

If you have more funny Kevin stories, please contribute.

Friday, December 09, 2005


I finally finally finally finished nursing school as of 11:23 am today. It has been a really long road and I can't believe it's over. Tomorrow is our pinning ceremony and lots of celebrations. Thanks to everyone who was cheering for me, praying for me, etc. these last few years! Hope to see you all at my party tomorrow. Below is my brother Karl, who as you can tell, is so excited for me!

Monday, December 05, 2005

Why I NEVER believed in Santa

One of my favorite things that we did in New York City was visiting Santa in Macy's. I have never in my life had my picture taken with Santa. One year I dressed up like Santa (complete with a toilet paper beard) and my friend Jodi and her sister Tonya had their picture taken with me. But as a child I never did this. We didn't believe in Santa as kids because our parents didn't LIE to us. This got me into a lot of trouble each year until about third grade, because I felt it was my civic duty to inform all the other children they were believing a lie. Each year, my teacher (Mrs. Beabout, Mrs. Strain, Mrs. Slankard) would take me outside the classroom and ask me kindly not to ruin all the other children's lives by being truthful. Anyway, visiting Santa was an exciting new experience for me.

Macy's had a very cute area to walk through with all kinds of wonderful Christmas scenes and little elves who were kind enough to pose for pictures with us. As you will notice, Dr. Kevin, our friend and Tanya's personal hero, joined us. Really, he is the one who wanted to see Santa so badly.

Poor Karl, he hates shopping and being in stores. He is smiling on the outside, but thinking about Joe Torre on the inside. Later, Tanya and I were saying that this was our favorite part of the day. Karl still had to say that Joe Torre was his favorite part.

This was when things started to get creepy. Santa just kept rubbing my arm.

Kevin looks like he's having a great time, doesn't he. Santa had a special little bench for him to sit on. As we walked out of the magical winter wonderland, we turned to see lots of other areas, with what looked like OTHER SANTAS! Karl asked the elf what was going on behind those secret curtains, and she said it was just her home. Aaahh...the season of lies.