Bachelor Nation is anxiously awaiting Arie Luyendyk Jr.‘s season premiere — but one fan of the franchise won’t be tuning in.
“I’ve been rooting for Arie to be the Bachelor since my season ended — he’s a great guy,” says Maynard Johnson, 31, of Luyendyk Jr., 36, who was her runner-up. (She ultimately picked Jef Holm, and they broke off their engagement months later.)
Though Maynard Johnson and Luyendyk Jr. haven’t stayed in touch, the two were never on bad terms — and while “it’ll be great TV,” it won’t be “TV that is watched in my house,” she says with a laugh.
“I feel like it would probably not be appropriate,” she adds. “But I’ll catch the highlights on PEOPLE.com!”
- For more on Emily Maynard Johnson, pick up the latest issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday
But while the professional auto racing driver’s journey to find love has yet to unfold, Maynard Johnson already found her happily ever after. Posing for this week’s issue with husband Tyler Johnson, her 12-year-old daughter Ricki and the spouses’ sons Gatlin Avery, 6 weeks, Gibson Kyle, 15 months, and Jennings Tyler, 2, the former reality star admits that a large brood was on her mind from the get-go.
“I’ve always wanted a lot of kids,” she says. “I made it clear on our first day, Listen, my clock’s ticking, and I’m ready to get on this!”
“The foundation of our relationship, with our faith, is the most important thing,” adds Johnson. “She’s my best friend. This sounds awful and cliché, but it’s been really easy. I think you have to be a team and work at your marriage.””
“We have a phrase in our house that we use a lot: ‘Never quit,’ ” he says. “So, we, you know, we just work at it, and it’s fun. I think we kind of secretly love the chaotic nature of everything going on in our lives right now.”
—With AURELIE CORINTHIOS