Mary Beth Johnson is a wife and mum to four schooners, as she’s dubbed her children. On a normal afternoon, you would find her in moccasins, skinny jeans and a comfortable tee, camera in hand. Recently moving to the suburbs of Atlanta, Mary Beth spends her days homeschooling, sneaking away to the bookstore, trying to act the part of a southerner, and sifting through recipes in The Vegetarian Times. Food is her love language.
I remember as a child wondering what kind of woman I would be when I grew up. (I have always been relentless about the future.) I wondered if I would highlight my hair or be a salon mom with her nails done and her eyebrows waxed. I wondered if I would read books that didn’t make any sense, live in D.C., or marry a man who took me out to dinner on the weekends. It’s funny the recollections that stick in our brain and the things that seemed important at the time.
There was a day in my mid-twenties where the past I had always used to define me collided into what would become a turning point in my adulthood. For the first time, I realized that the small choices I made every day were
the woman I had become. Where I spent my money every week, how I did my hair (or didn’t), how I talked to my kids, and what I read were all summing up into me. The woman version of myself. And I had the power to change and grow and become who I wanted to be, not what everyone expected of me.
This realization was incredibly liberating and for the first time I began living in the freedom of exploring who God meant for me to be. With all of my quirks and passions and gifts I began to treat each new day as a discovery. And I grew.
I started embracing my mornings and used the time to read and work on things that interested me. I started to get rid of clothes that I never liked and began drinking coffee. We took our kids to outdoor concerts in the evenings or weekend trips for exploring. And we stopped apologizing for being out with them past 8pm.
I look at my life now and love how God has brought me from a place of insecurity to a place of identity in the membership of womanhood. I still struggle at times wondering if I’m making my 10-year-old-self proud, but I’m mostly just happy to be alive eating avocado toast in the morning and watching Jimmy Fallon on YouTube.
There’s a million different ways you can make avocado toast…you can have it in the mornings with your smoothie or in the afternoons with a bowl of hot soup. It’s so simple and customizable. I like to contrast smooth textures with grainy ones, so I love a good hearty/seeded bread for this toast. And if I’d had them, fresh sprouts on top would have been pretty good too.
4 slices of hearty bread
pinch of salt
pinch of red pepper
lemon, for squeezing
fresh sprouts, for garnish
Toast sliced bread in a 450° oven for about 5 minutes, or till golden brown. Slightly mash avocado onto each slice and sprinkle salt and red pepper flakes for flavor. Squeeze a bit of fresh lemon juice on each slice and garnish with fresh sprouts.