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‘7 Little Johnstons’ Put Technology in a Lockbox, Live a Weekend Close to Nature

News, Reality TV, TLC Shows

No matter where the 7 Little Johnstons go, life is a constant adventure for the loving, little people family. In this week’s April 28, episode “Naked and Annoyed,” Amber decides that the time of having flooring renovation done in their new home is perfect for a commune with nature.  No one says that appreciating nature’s beauty has to happen in some faraway tropical locale.  The 7 Little Johnstons go just a little further outside then their backdoor to share a backyard campout.

There is one more stipulation for this family weekend– Amber Johnston declares that the 48 hours must be phone-free, and she means business.  The kids aren’t the only ones among the 7 Little Johnstons who have a tough time surrendering personal technology.

‘7 Little Johnstons’ take to the outdoors

This was no simple jaunt for the Johnston’s.  Furniture had to be removed for the flooring refurbishment, and Trent was tough on a stairway banister.  Dad also became frustrated when Alex and Jonah stayed upstairs with their games while he, Amber, and the girls did all the prep work of hauling and toting.  “I’m either all in or all out,” Jonah admitted.  There was hardly a glimpse of the eldest son until his backyard arrival.  Little did they know it, but mom had another surprise in “secure” technology.

Amber took out a plexiglass lockbox and proclaimed that every single phone in the family would be confiscated and kept under lock and key during the “carefree” weekend, as she dubbed it.  Trent pleaded for one more “check-in” on social media.  Amber wasn’t giving him a pass, within 3 minutes every phone was visible but not available.  The 7 Little Johnstons siblings instantaneously began their efforts to break the code or break the lockbox.

Amber teased that Anna was using something “that looks like an edger” to break the protective container open.  “We’re gonna do this all night until we get our phones,” Emma declared.  Alex was trying another route– continually trying to decipher the mathematic combination to retrieve his lifeline to the social world.

Silver turtles aren’t enough for the ‘7 Little Johnstons’

One of the sweetest sights for 7 Little Johnstons fans was the arrival of Brice Bolden to the family campsite. Brice brings along his twin brother, Brandon, who really doesn’t look like him at all, to keep Jonah company. Elizabeth’s beau is very happy to be with Elizabeth and gives her a kiss on the shoulder in one touching glimpse.

Brice also fits right in with the whole family, and shows that he is more limber than a chimpanzee when he climbs up into tree branches to bring them down to Trent’s level for tying together to make a “shelter.”  Gotta give it to Brice, there’s not much that Elizabeth’s boyfriend won’t do, and he does it all with a smile.  It’s no wonder that all 7 Little Johnstons are so taken with him.

The younger 7 Little Johnstons are very keen on learning survival skills.  “It just looks like a bunch of branches tied together to me,” says Alex.  He continues to ponder the puzzle of the plexiglass box.

Usually, Alex loves anything to do with food, but this time, the youngest son in the 7 Little Johnstons doesn’t find the family camping favorite, “Silver turtles” too appetizing.   Almost anyone who’s ever been camping had been treated to the foil-wrapped dinner of seasoned ground beef, potatoes, carrots, and vegetables-to-taste tossed on an open grill.

Alex did eat his supper, but not with his usual gusto.  “She’s tired,” Jonah said of Jesse, the dog,   He and the rest of the kids turn in earlier than their parents.  No one got much sleep on this 7 Little Johnstons.

“We’re icky, sticky, and wet in dark places” Trent described the next morning alongside Amber.

Roughing it still ends with fun

Going without a shower and being soaked in sweat can’t keep the  7 Little Johnstons from ending there camping adventure with fun.  Trent brings back a kickball with the tractor for the gear, and the game is on.

Each parent picks teams.  Trent gets a little fussy when Amber allows Alex to sit out when the fun starts.  Before the end of the game, however, Alex kicks a winner and the whole gang rallies in giggles and cheers.

The countdown is on as the 7 Little Johnstons load up and head for the comforts of home.  They also get their personal devices back.  Instant peace and quiet descend over the home, even with everyone sleeping on the floor.  The hardwood looks beautiful, and Trent gives his wife credit for the wholesome, screen-free lessons from the weekend.

In her April 28 Monsters & Critics interview, Amber Johnston talked about how Jonah and Anna have really progressed on the right track personally and in their vocations.  She revealed that both have found their “purpose” and personal happiness.  “Emma is making strides” in communication, according to mama Johnston.  There may be something surprising on the future horizons this season regarding Trent’s health, so there’s a lot to keep everybody tuning in to 7 Little Johnstons every Tuesday.

By the way, Cruiser is still a cherished member of the 7 Little Johnstons family, too.  The pup is no longer a puppy, though.  The dachshund is already a year old!

7 Little Johnstons airs Tuesday on TLC.


Tresa Patterson

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