The rest is still unwritten..

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So our foster baby girl, who is now 16 months old, just recently had her permanency planning hearing (to talk about what all is going to happen during her trial on Aug. 31st).

It went different than I expected, and I was actually not allowed in the room (due to construction, and they had to fit about 20 people in a tiny room–including the Judge to discuss the case), and I kind of did not mind.

In the past month, CPS has chosen to fight for termination of parental rights for baby girls mom and dad, and want us (a non-relative) to adopt her. While this news alone sounds amazing, there is so much more that goes into a decision like that, and they only want what’s best for the baby.  Up until this point, they have wanted her to be placed back with biological parents.  When that didn’t work out, and they returned her 3 weeks later back to our house, they quickly changed their minds.

So as I was waiting anxiously to hear what the parents were going to do I was praying a lot.  Praying that God would place her where she needs to be, that He would allow the parents to see what a true blessing of a child they have and that they would want the best for her as well, and just praying over the everyone involved in this case.

Everyone started coming out into the open area (where I was sitting) and the lawyer for baby girls mom came up to me and asked if I/we would be open to communication with mom through letters, and pictures as baby girl was growing up, since she was thinking about relinquishing her rights over, knowing that her baby girl is safe and flourishing in our home right now.  So of course (without a doubt) I said yes, and I almost felt like crying in this moment (especially watching the biological mom cry) knowing that this must be the hardest thing in the world to do (give up your child for the sake of their future/success), and I admire her so much for wanting us to raise her child.

I was also waiting to hear that the Dad wanted to do, and he wasn’t sure at the time of the hearing that he wanted to relinquish his rights too, or if he wanted to go all the way with the trial and fight this case.

It wasn’t until 2 days ago that I got an e-mail from our caseworker stating that BOTH of the biological parents are wanting to relinquish their rights, meaning now there is NO trial in August, and once that goes through, we are going to start the process of ADOPTING our baby girl!!

We are so beyond thrilled to be given this news (because with our boys–we are still in the appeals process which is taking forever, so we thought adoption was so far away for our family) and we can’t wait to finally publicly show her pictures, announce her name, and call her a JOHNSON!

Though this process is long, a lot of paperwork, a LOT of sleepless nights worrying about if you are doing what’s best for these precious kids, I wouldn’t trade it for the world.  I loved baby girl like she was our own from the very first day I met her, and we can’t wait to make it official hopefully this year or early next year!

Thanks for reading and following along still (my life has been a bit chaotic and crazy lately but I was so happy I couldn’t wait to share the news with you all)!

©2017 Sheridan Johnson @Journey with the Johnsons. All rights reserved.

 

Relaxing (or at least trying to) in Port A.

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This past weekend all Brielle wanted for her birthday was “to go to the ocean”. Well, we made that happened and my parents booked a trip for all of us to go to Port Aransas from Fri-Sun.

I am going to break down the hotel we stayed at, the restaurants we ate at, and some of the best and worst of times during our weekend visit!

On Friday afternoon, after waiting in the LONG ferry line and finally crossing over to enter Port Aransas, we went straight to our hotel (Beach Gate Condos), and started to unload/unpack all of our cars and talk about dinner plans!

Friday night restaurant: We ate at San Juan Restaurant and it was delicious authentic mexican food! I had the most amazing chalupas I have had in a while.  Everyone seemed to enjoy it very well, and it had a lot of options for the kids to choose from.  Down side was that it was VERY noisy and did not have a lot of room in between the tables for high chairs.

Adventure #1 Paradise Pond behind the restaurant–so pretty, could definitely take some pictures of the scenery there! It was so beautiful! Down side: The mosquitoes were CRAZY bad and we all got a few not so pleasant bites!

Hotel Swimming- It was so nice to have heated pool and a cold pool, especially since our kids tend to freeze pretty easily! We chose to spend most of our time in the heated pool, but of course there is a down side to everything.. and it was definitely the fact that I kept getting other peoples hair ALL over my arms. So gross!

Saturday Morning Breakfast: We ate at the Island Cafe which had AMAZING food and were HUGE portions! 1 pancake could fill you up! When the waitress warns you “you should probably get 1 of anything, because the portion sizes are huge” you should take their advice.  I had pancake, and oatmeal and it was so delicious! Down side: When you order oatmeal, the toppings (brown sugar, raisins, milk) come in VERY tiny cups, and you should ask for a few of each if you wanted it to be a decent portion!

Adventure #2 Beach– we spent the entire afternoon out at the ocean with winds approximately 55mph, so that was an adventure in and of itself, but so so fun! The kids laughed, played, and built awesome sand castles (that got swept away), but it was just the perfect relaxation time!

Dinner Saturday night: Seafood and Spaghetti Works had over an hour wait (and no room to wait inside the restaurant) but the food+ the salad bar was SO delicious and worth the wait! Shane got this Double meat, bacon, avocado cheeseburger and finished it ALL! It was crazy good though, so I am not surprised!

Adventure #3 Birding Center–Which was VERY stinky (right next to a water treatment facility) and the smell didn’t leave until about half way on the bridge to the birding center! My parents took us there to go see some alligators, but there were NONE in sight. So shocked and surprised! Downside: There is NO shade and it was very hot out. They did have a viewing deck/observation deck but the stairs were VERY steep and I was kind of scared to have all of my kids go up and down them.

Sunday Morning breakfast: Drive through Restaurant San Juan(same as the first one) on the way out and had the most amazing breakfast tacos!! We would highly recommend them!

Overall, it was a GREAT weekend, with lots of new and fun memories made! We will definitely know better with what to do next time we go though!

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©2017 Sheridan Johnson @Journey with the Johnsons. All Rights Reserved

Our little secret- Happy Father’s Day!

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So we have a surprise for everyone that I figured would be best to share on Father’s Day, since Shane is the best Dad out there! WE ARE PREGNANT!

God has granted us the most gift of all, a baby.  A tiny, little human that is going to grow, and flourish inside of me for the next 7 months! We are still early in our pregnancy, but decided since ALL of our family and friends already know, we might as well announce the GREAT news to you all!

**Just a little background, I wanted to give you all the definition of a rainbow baby**

A “rainbow baby” is a baby that is born following a miscarriage, stillbirth, neonatal death or infant loss.In the real world, a beautiful and bright rainbow follows a storm and gives hope of things getting better. The rainbow is more appreciated having just experienced the storm in comparison

We have prayed for our hearts to be ready, to be open and receptive to His will, and do things in His timing. So thankful we listened to Him.

The crazy part is that I found out we were expecting 5 days before Shane’s 30th birthday, so I wanted to give him the news that day.  The irony is that, we didn’t know that we would have to give back the precious foster baby that we have raised since birth, on that day as well.  God knew that our heart needed extra protection and love that day. So thankful for His goodness and mercy!

I wanted to leave you all with a few pics that we took as a family!

(first I will show you how I let Shane know the great news, and his reaction was the greatest of all time!)

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  • We hope you all follow along our journey, we are 7 weeks along now, so we have 33 weeks to go! Can’t wait to share this journey with you all!

©2017 Sheridan Johnson @Journey with the Johnsons. All Rights Reserved.

Easter 2017 photos!

This year, I wanted to take the Easter pictures a little earlier than normal, because I couldn’t wait to put the precious outfits that I bought them, on them! I wish you all could see the precious, adorable, children behind the blurred images (but due to foster care regulations, that is not allowed), but let me assure you… they are some cute kids!

I decided to to take them at a bridge in Gonzales, Tx and it seemed to turn out so GREAT! I also took a few in our front yard, by a run-down barn we have out front.. and we it has made for some awesome backdrops for my kids!

I hope everyone has an amazing Easter this Sunday and spend it with lots of love, food, and amazing fellowship with your friends and family!

 

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©2017 Sheridan Johnson @Journey with the Johnsons. All Rights Reserved.