Tuesday, June 30

looking to the south

This morning my girls were calling to me...."QUICK! Come and look out the kitchen window, Mom!" Dashing into the kitchen I could hardly wait to see whatever had excited them so much as I peered out the same window.

Hmmm, nothing unusual.

"WHAT is that HUGE orange bird, Mom?" they asked. At that moment - and before I got my camera - that is what the bird looked like as it looked straight at us. A HUGE orange bird.

Then the bird turned its head.

Ohhhhhh, it's just a robin. But they seemed to think it had to be a mama robin with eggs since it was so puffed up. Nope, the orange was too bright for a mama. It had to be a papa who was all puffed up to stay warm in the low 50 degree weather with a stiff breeze and a light misty rain in the air.

A papa robin who hopped very slowly down the roof of our storage building with its beak to the south. Ahhh yes, a smart papa robin who was perhaps wondering if autumn came early this year and it was time to head south....

I can understand his thinking! BRRRRRRRRRR!

Hope it's summer somewhere......

Tammy ~@~

thin not squeeze

Yesterday afternoon in the misty rains, I took my children's friends home after a day of playing. Once they all jumped out of the car to fit in a little bit more play time, we moms wandered into her garden.

Garden wandering is one of my favorite things in the world to do. And this was no exception as she showed me the rows of veggies in her very first garden. It was a delight to talk about this and that and thinning and transplanting. We browsed through her wide row plantings which had radishes, spinach, and carrots all mingled together and talked about the importance of pulling the bushy radishes as soon as they were ready so that the carrots and spinach would have more room to grow.

And I think that is always one of the hardest things for me to do in my garden. To thin out the rows of things that are good. I cringe every time I pull out little beet or carrot seedlings knowing they could grow into bigger edible beets and carrots, yet they will not be able to do that without room to grow.

Even in my own garden this year I see tons of cucumber and squash plants coming up all over the place. I guess someone in the family must have accidentally put the seeds in the compost over the winter not realizing the future results in the garden. As we begin weeding in the garden, all those random plants will need to be pulled as they will crowd out the veggies that are growing in those rows.

It reminded me of a line in my devotional yesterday.

"There are many things that are perfectly legitimate, but if you are going to concentrate on God you cannot do them."
~ Oswald Chambers

And isn't this the challenge mothers have on a daily basis? There are so many good things we can do whether around our house or for others or in specific areas of ministry and as we plunge into them there's a tendency to have a schedule so full that we end up not taking care of the main things of importance. In fact, when we are juggling a lot of things at once - even good things - often nothing gets done well, does it?

The growth of the important good things in our life get squeezed and then nothing grows well.

Take some time to ponder your life. Thin out things that may be good, but may be hindering you from further developing specific gifts and talents that God had given you. Once you've done that, you'll be more apt to have the concentration you need to focus with passion for the specific tasks God has before you.

Just say no....

And say YES to God!

Tammy ~@~

Monday, June 29

monday ramblings

Although the simple woman's daybook is on hiatus through the summer, it certainly did a mighty fine job of organizing my thoughts on a Monday morning. Instead I'm left with many ramblings on my mind and no clear focus. So, here's a number of topics I could easily expand on this morning, but won't...LOL!

*All the things my son has shared about his experience on the mission trip to Mexico. He's always been a sharp observer and his insights are fascinating. He did come back not feeling well - bad sunburn at the end and congestion - so you prayers are appreciated!

*The difficulties with friendship that come up with my kids. 'Nuff said.

*The temperature drop of THIRTY degrees from a week ago and the fact it'll stay like this for a few days. Hey, if we keep getting some rain with this cold, I'm okay with that.

*The delight my husband no doubt has now that the kids are home which means I'll start cooking again this week! LOL!

*The challenge of figuring out what is wrong with our German shepherd. My husband took him to the vet on Saturday, but I need to follow-up today on the cost of x-rays and the sedation needed to even take the x-rays. Apparently the pooch wasn't very cooperative at the vet visit :::sigh:::

*The conversation at Curves this morning about how woman our age have enjoyed the movie Mamma Mia and the younger generation hasn't.

*The whole Michael Jackson thing and how my heart grieves mainly for the obvious lost and lonely spiritual condition he lived with all this life.

*The heating up of global conflicts and the fact that I have a son close to finishing up basic training.

*The glimpse out my window of my pink peonies almost opening!

*The excitement of continuing work on a baby quilt! I just need to find my cross stitch notes for the block I put on the back of the quilt. Where, oh where, could they be as they aren't in the file I always stick this kind of stuff?!

*The ways I'm watching God move right now in lives around me.

*The chair that my son-in-law picked up for free at a garage sale. Every time I envision it with its springs hanging out the bottom, I start laughing out loud! I know his shopping drives my daughter crazy, but it is an endearing thing about him as he definitely finds the most unique things available.

*My son has a double header baseball game tonight in this rainy cold weather which is something I may have to avoid attending. He did get his picture in the paper last week while batting so that was cool.

AND I think I've rambled enough for this Monday. Time to leave my desk and get busy as my list is long for things I want to accomplish in June....and I only have two days to do them!

Enjoy the last Monday of June in your garden!

Tammy ~@~

Saturday, June 27

pleasing petunias

"Simple days bring simple joys..." ~ Emily Lawless

My day will be spent by leaving early morning to travel to my oldest daughter's home where I look forward to visiting for a bit. There's a possibility that my son, who is staying at college to work this summer, will also be able to drive over with his girlfriend to visit a bit, too. Then it will be back on the road with my three daughters who should be very tired after these days of being so very busy with their favorite sister. At least I hope they will be tired and nap a bit as I'm not certain my well rested ears can handle all their chatter so soon!

It should be a simple summer day filled with simple joy. How about you? Any special summer plans for your weekend?


Tammy ~@~

P.S. This was suppose to post early this morning about the time I left the house and I see it never did. Hmmmm, interesting! I just got back home safe and sound with three very tired girls...and one very tired mama! I just talked to my husband who drove down to the airport to pick up the mission team and the flight is an hour late, so they will probably get back here in the wee hours :::yawn::: It will be nice to have everyone back under our roof!

Friday, June 26

quiet double time

Time passes quickly....especially when it's quiet.

Here's the scenario. Five kids living at home. Minus one who is on a mission trip to Mexico. Minus one who has been working with Dad this week and is only home in the evenings between evening baseball games or hanging out with his best friend. Minus three who went home with their oldest sister on Monday.

That leaves ZERO kids home.

Can you imagine?

It has been a rare unexpected treasure! I cannot remember the last time I had such a stretch of quiet house time. My husband will sometimes take the kids and do something with them all, but it's usually only a few hours at a time.

Now I can't say that I've had every moment home and to myself. There's been an appointment at the bank, volunteering at the pregnancy resource center for a day, meeting with an expectant couple, making lunches, picking up my husband when he drops equipment off, hand watering the garden and all my flowers, running general errands....BUT, there's been some quality quiet time around my house this past week that has been simply mahhhhhvelous!

I am thankful that I've had this time to talk to the Lord, keep a clean house (!), and spend quantity time doing one of my favorite things in the world...work on a quilt. I've cut quilt blocks, sewn quilt blocks together, and almost have a quilt top finished! Truly, my heart is humming away!

My only complaint is that it really does seem like the clock has been moving twice as fast. I cannot believe the speed of time! One minute I've had breakfast, the next minute I look at the clock and it's past lunchtime, then before I know it the sun is setting. Yikes!

Life will change tomorrow. I'll be on the road traveling to get my girls and bring them back home. The Mexico mission team will be landing in an airport tomorrow evening arriving home late. And I'll probably be back to escaping to my computer for necessary vegging breaks.

But I still have today and I'm going to use every single minute - no matter how fast time wants to pass! - to my full enjoyment!

Enjoy this day in your garden!

Tammy ~@~

Thursday, June 25

awesomely incomprehensible

"You may not understand God's love for us. I don't know that I do myself. We are trying to comprehend the incomprehensible. It is like trying to take the ocean in your arms, or embrace the atmosphere, or rise to the stars." ~ A.W. Tozer

It is hard to wrap our human minds around the awesomeness of God's love. It truly is incomprehensible, isn't it?

May God's love embrace you on your garden path today!

Tammy ~@~

Wednesday, June 24

a disappearing act

Yesterday I noticed something on my blog sidebar. Those beautiful lavender flowers - and their name escapes me at the moment - on the top picture are gone from my yard!

Every year there's usually a spot or two of newer perennials that don't come back and need replacing twith something new. I often don't remember what had been there as all that is left in the spring is a blank spot. But now I know after noticing that picture.

Awww, it makes my heart sad.....

Perhaps the greenhouse still has some and I can put them in a different empty spot in the flowerbed because they are so pretty!

I hope you aren't missing anything on your garden path!

Tammy ~@~

Tuesday, June 23

unicorn six

A couple weeks ago our neighbor was having a garage sale and my girls enjoyed walking over there to *shop*. They picked up a couple of things, but the littlest was quite sad because her sisters wouldn't let her buy a unicorn costume because they told her she had to save her money for a Father's Day gift. Little did she know that one of her sisters sneaked back over to the sale and spent a dollar on the costume for her littlest sister's birthday.

The unwrapping happened yesterday morning and she was excited to become an unicorn for a few moments.

Goodness but I love those little cheeks!

Kiss! Kiss!

Her actual birthday is today, however yesterday the girls had a travel day as their oldest sister took them back home with her after the weekend which is why we had the early present opening.

SIX! The time is passing much too quickly!

I'm guessing there's probably a term for the emotions about the youngest that come upon a mom who is raising a large family. A phrase or word for the longing in your heart that you'd like them to stay little a little longer. You've watched all the others grow up so so quickly and there's a sense that it would be nice to freeze time for a bit so you can soak up this wonderful age.

SIX! For everything there is a season....I'm going to enjoy it while it's here!

Tammy ~@~

Monday, June 22

grand opening

What could be more spectacular for the first day of summer than the grand opening of the peonies! The white peony bushes are loaded with opening buds while the pink peony bushes are still thinking about it a bit.
I cut my first bouquet and set it on the porch hoping the critters would all climb out before I brought them in to set on the kitchen table.

Yup, those critters....the ants!

Although I had admired my grandma's peonies which then became my mom's peonies, I had never paid close attention to them until they became my peonies. And I began to began to panic when the bush was covered with ants. When I sent out an S.O.S. to a group of friends, one friend responded to me gently between her laughter that I should do absolutely NOTHING to those ants because they were the friends who were opening up my peony buds for me.

Ah, yes! The scent of peonies freshly picked after the sprinkling of a rain cloud. Could anything be more wonderful on an early summer day?

Enjoy the first summer days in your garden!

Tammy ~@~

Saturday, June 20

full of seedlings

Since this blog has a gardening theme, every once in awhile it does seem necessary to prove that I actually garden! In fact, I love to garden! Just seems I'm often busier gardening my family than digging in actual dirt when it comes to blog material.

My vegetable garden went in later than usual due to our colder than normal spring. The last rows planted were completed on June 15th and we've only had a sprinkle of rain since then, so this morning my sweet husband hooked up the hoses for me and I went out to gently hand water the rows.

What a wonderful surprise to see so many rows already up and growing! The corn, the beets, the beans, the kohlrabi, the lettuce, the onions, the radishes, the spinach, and the seed flowers at the end of the garden.

Probably one of my favorite seedlings coming through the dirt are the beans. I love how they are slightly bent until the leaves pull them out and out.

And I love the tender early stage when the bean seed is still slightly attached on the sides until the plant gets a little bit bigger and those fall away.

Ahhhh, this is heaven on earth!

Please note my professional looking garden marker popscicle sticks. My kids are always delighted when I get toward the end of my planting and I run out of markers. A quick run to the grocery store for whatever is on sale in the ice cream freezer department - this year it was orange dreamscicles! - and mom shouting eat as many as you want NOW as I need the sticks is indeed the best gardening bonus to my kids.

Enjoy this wonderful gardening season!

Tammy ~@~

Friday, June 19


Ever have one of those days? You know, the kind where you start doing something only to be stopped with an interruption? So then you start going again only to be stopped again? And each time you're stopped, it seems harder to start going back where you were going before? By the time you start going back where you were going you're stopped again?

Once upon a time this morning I did start going on my blog writing. However, I've stopped and goed (I see that isn't a real word, but since we use a lot of words that aren't real around my house I'm leaving it to irritate spell check) so many times that I finally came back to my computer and dumped the blog thought of the day. Alas, you're left with this stop and go post, which by the way, has been interrupted thrice while writing!

And here I thought I'd get so much done indoors on this cloudy with an occasional sprinkle of rain in the air kind of day. I may have to stop trying to go and instead stop to take a nap....

Tammy ~@~

Thursday, June 18


A typical late afternoon in our home.

The potatoes are on the stove top gently boiling for a big bowl of potato salad, the kids are all occupied, and the phone rings. Pleased to hear my daughter-in-law's voice on the other end, we weren't but a few minutes into the conversation when the scream came.

First step was to determine where it came from.

Living room.

I rush to the scream and see the cause.

A cat. Sound familiar? But this time it isn't the young laid back cat, it's the old frail one I find in the middle of the living room. That alone shouldn't causing a startled scream....it was the chipmunk she held in her mouth and between her paws. The cat apparently came through the screen door in the kitchen, walked through the house to the stairs, and took her treasure down into the living room.

No problem. My thought was to pick her and her treasure up to carry them out the door just a few feet away. Good thought. Didn't work that way though.

I was screaming next as the cat let go of the chipmunk who instantly dashed away down the hall and under the open shelving of all the games and movies.


So we had to unload the bottom shelf of "stuff" to see if the chipmunk was behind it. Nope. Rubbermaids were moved, games tipped and dumped all over the floor, movies fell open, and we still didn't find the silly critter which meant it must have shifted underneath the waist high movie cabinet.

By this time we had quite a mess in the hallway and I had to come up with a different plan. I shut the two doors off the hallway to prevent a chipmunk escape into other rooms and I grabbed quilt frame boards to devise a chipmunk chute along the floor to the door leading to the great outdoors. Of course, when the chipmunk suddenly dashed out, not only was there more screaming but it went in the opposite direction back under the shelving.

After about thirty minutes of maneuvering and screaming every time it startled us by running out from under something, the chipmunk FINALLY ran down the chipmunk chute and out the door. All pets went into lock down to prevent someone else catching it and bringing it into the house.

Back to the kitchen I went to prepare the potato salad while my sweet girls cleaned up the disaster left behind.

Yup, just a typical late afternoon around here.

Nothing spiritual about this adventure other than I'm beginning to wish that what the Lord hath given, I'm ready for Him to taketh. Anyone need a cat or dog??????

Tammy ~@~

Wednesday, June 17

a lily chorus

One of my favorite scented sights is a chorus of Lilies of the Valley!

I think perhaps they are my favorite flower - okay, I realize I say that A LOT about this flower or that flower - but I do truly adore them and their sweet singing season is so short.

For years I wore a perfume called Muquet? does that sound right? which was a Lily of the Valley scent. Mmmmmmm!

And once again I could not resist the scent and picked several stems of tender white bells to fit into a vase for my room.

All I can say is HALLELUJAH!

Tammy ~@~

Tuesday, June 16

sojourn with an exclamation point

Would you consider yourself a stranger?

Stranger: 1. foreigner 2. intruder 3. a person with whom one is unacquainted

"I am a stranger on earth; do not hide your commands from me." ~ Psalm 119:19

How many followers of Christ actually think of themselves as strangers? And do those who know them think of them as strangers?

I'm just randomly guessing that the answer would be that not many Christians think of themselves as strangers nor do those who know them think that either. In fact, it seems that Christians tend to blend in with the rest of the world.

Last night I was reading through the same verses only there was a difference in this verse as I read from the ESV this time: "I am a sojourner on the earth; hide not your commandments from me!" ~ Psalm 119:19

Sojourner: to dwell in a place temporarily

So this morning I looked the word up in Strongs and the Hebrew defines the word stranger as a guest, a foreigner, an alien, a sojourner.

So why am I stuck on this word? I think it's because I was reflecting on who wrote this passage. David. A mighty warrior who most likely knew all the territory of the world at that time as well as having a name that was well known to all those living in the world. A king with a magnificent kingdom where many traveled to have the opportunity to bow down to him. He was "the" man. David.

And yet "the" man with so much and known by all recognized that he was a stranger on a temporary earthly journey and heaven was his true lasting home. He knew that he was dwelling in a land that sought after what the world had to offer and he needed a godly compass to best navigate through it toward what God had to offer. I love that the ESV uses an exclamation point at the end of this verse which to me accentuates his crying out to God to reveal those very commandments which will guide him through life.

David may have been "the" man, yet he was a stranger, a sojourner on this earth as he followed God. I may be just a mom, yet I am a stranger, a sojourner on this earth as I follow Christ.

May my heart cry out with the same exclamation point for God's Word to guide me daily toward my true and everlasting home!

Tammy ~@~

Monday, June 15

go ye

Yesterday our fifth child took some new steps as he launched off on a mission trip. The first leg of the journey began at church where the mission team leaders, students, and parents met for the official send-off.

The blue bus was loaded full of their bags each weighing less than fifty pounds - hopefully! - and off they went for about a five hour journey to stay by the airport where they will be flying out this morning.

This son is following in the footsteps of his four older siblings who all went to Mexico sometime during their high school years. His older siblings have also traveled on mission trips to Peru, Brazil, the Philippines, and Papua New Guinea.

With each trip comes a story of adventure as the Lord stretches and grows each traveler. And with each trip mom and dad stretch and grow as well for often our only contact is through prayer while they are away from home.

Through the years I've learned about key areas to pray for them and their team:

*For travel mercies - there's been plenty of tales of broken down buses and vans, delayed flights, and wild honking drivers in foreign cities.

*For health - ahhh, good old travelers diarrhea, headaches from dehydration, cuts on building sites, and even a bleeding ulcer with one of our sons upon his return.

*For team unity - a large group of teens with various personalities can be challenging to keep in peaceful relations especially on longer trips where their best traits fade and the worst comes out.

*For safety - especially on outings in strange territory as I remember near drownings off the coast of Peru one summer.

*For spiritual boldness and protection - sharing God's love with those who have never heard of Jesus has risks when working in enemy territory.

*For stamina - these trips require a lot of constant energy for students and leaders during the day and they need restful sleep at night.

*For character trait growth - these trips often stretch youth to develop compassion, kindness, love, forgiveness, and humility in ways that wouldn't happen at home.

*For processing - there's always a reflective period of time after the trip that requires quiet time as well as talking through things with others.

As we countdown the days until our son's return, we will be prayerfully thinking of him and his fellow team members.

Tammy ~@~

Saturday, June 13

the inevitable startles

Ahhhhh, yes! To be out in the garden is a glorious thing especially when it's a glorious day!

My first gardening task every year which takes a day of work is to go along the inside perimeter of the garden fence and pull all the weeds and grass that have encroached since gardening season ended last September. It also involves working around some blueberry bushes and through the rhubarb patch (and please don't ask me if I've baked a rhubarb pie yet.....)

So I was humming to myself as I was working along the rhubarb patch until I lifted one of the big rhubarb leaves and my hum suddenly turned to a SCREAM!

My kids who were playing in the yard came running not knowing what to expect only to find their mother laughing at herself. Silly cat! Startled the living daylights out of me! (Isn't that an odd expression now that I see it written. Living daylights?) They ran to get the camera so we could photograph the hidden garden danger who is nothing but a way laid back cat, well, unless you're a bird who may have experienced the other side of this cat.

You know, it's kind of like daily life. You're moving along doing your normal routine and suddenly a child comes down with a high fever OR you get a flat tire on the way to the grocery store OR the yearly real estate tax bill comes :::thud:::: OR a light bulb goes out with a flash. Things that momentarily startle us, yet after catching our breath we realize they can dealt with easily. You give the child some ibuprofen OR a kind person helps you change your tire OR the money is already budgeted for your real estate taxes OR the light bulb is changed with a turn of the hand.

How thankful I am for the knowledge God has given me to deal with those little things which may temporarily startle!

Yet what if I had lifted that rhubarb leaf and come face to face with the fisher that has been spotted in our neighborhood? That sudden startle may have required more than my common knowledge of the meanness of a fisher, but a rapid cry out to God for His wisdom on how best to respond as well as a quick prayer that the fisher would run in the opposite direction!

Sometimes our daily startles can be bigger than our own knowledge and they do require seeking God for His wisdom. A child's fever that comes with other unexplained symptoms OR a car breakdown requiring transmission repairs beyond the car's value OR a real estate tax bill that has not been budgeted for OR electrical wiring issues in the cord of a lamp that start a fire.

How thankful I am to know God's wisdom is available in those moments that go beyond a temporary startle!

"If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him." ~ James 1:5

As you walk along your garden path, may you find God's faithfulness in the little and big startles of life!

Tammy ~@~

Friday, June 12

the scent of spring

When I walked out of the house this morning to go to exercise, I took a deep breath and whispered, "Finally!" The air was mild, the sun was shining, the birds were singing, and it FINALLY felt like a morning in the month of June.

It's been a long cool spring, yet there's benefits to that delay. Although my lilacs were late to bloom, the cool weather has allowed them to stay much longer than normal. Last evening I cut more for indoors and I may be able to get another full bouquet this weekend. I love the scent of lilacs lingering throughout the house. My second lilac bush is all in pink and blooms later, so I'll have another scent of spring to look forward to next week.
Upon checking the forecast for the days ahead, it looks like the weather is going to stay sunny and warm with nothing too cold predicted at night.


It's time to get into the garden and start planting! At least it should all be done before the official arrival of summer next weekend.....

Enjoy life in your garden whatever season you are in where you live!

Tammy ~@~

Thursday, June 11

harvesting remembrance

The thing I think I like least about this season of life is that it takes my mommy brain which has already been stretched by a houseful of children and totally eliminates whatever short term memory space I have left.

So it is with sorrow that I read this verse:

"I will delight in your statutes; I will not forget your word." ~ Psalm 119:16

Oh yes, I do delight in God's statutes. It's the second part of the verse that is so difficult :::sigh::: It's getting harder and harder to remember where I've read something in God's Word. Fortunately I can usually find the general area and after much effort find what I'm looking for, but it's still a struggle.

Add to that a Bible that is literally falling apart. It needs to be replaced, but the thought of a new Bible is almost intimidating when I consider starting over and losing all my underlinings, markings, and notes from my old best friend Bible.

The positive thing with this season of life is recognizing how important Scripture verse memorization is when you are young and your brain is so receptive. Those verses will get lodged into your long term memory base never to go away! How important it is to get kids into God's Word and memorize verses which will come back to them when they need them.

The other positive thing I found when pondering this verse is that when I checked my comparative study Bible the end of the verse in the New International Version read like this - "....I will not neglect your word." YES! I CAN do that part. I can be in God's Word on a regular basis and immerse myself in each verse and word. If I'm not neglecting His Word then I have an opportunity to remember it better, right? Not neglecting and not forgetting work hand in hand, don't they?

May you not neglect or forget God's Word in your garden for God will faithfully provide a fruitful harvest of remembrance!

Tammy ~@~

Wednesday, June 10

avoid this fruitless task

Just a little something to ponder today....

"Human curiosity and pride often combine to drive us to try to understand acts of God which are plainly outside the field of human understanding. We dislike to admit that we do not know what is going on, so we torture our minds trying to fathom the mysterious ways of the Omniscient One. It's hard to conceive of a more fruitless task...." ~ A.W. Tozer

Tammy ~@~

Tuesday, June 9

steadfastly seeking

By this time in the past I've typically transitioned to doing my morning walk outdoors through my neighborhood. However this year the weather hasn't transitioned yet as it's still quite cool in the mornings and quite honestly, I do NOT like being cold.

So, this morning I took advantage of the last day of public school and did my early morning walk in the high school fieldhouse. Perhaps I enjoy walking there so much because I don't have to pay close attention to my surroundings. I can just walk and think and pray. When I walk outdoors in the early morning I typically have a dog or two with me and possibly a child or two if they are up early. Not only do they keep me busy as I attempt to keep the dogs from chasing squirrels as well as keeping up with the conversation of a child, but I also have to watch for traffic along the road as there's no sidewalks.

"Blessed are they who keep his statutes and seek him with all their heart. They do nothing wrong; they walk in his ways. You have laid down precepts that are to be fully obeyed. Oh, that my ways were steadfast in obeying your decrees!" ~ Psalm 119:2-5

Ohhh, my heart does seek God! During the calmness of life when I can spend time in His Word and in prayer it is easier to walk in His ways and to follow His precepts. My heart readily goes to these very things when interacting with my children.

And then.

Suddenly we are on a crazy busy wild kind of life *stuff* activity stretch. Distractions abound and my focus is trying to be everywhere at once.


Ohhh, that my ways were steadfast in obedience!

How very important it is to seek God during those crazy busy wild times. As a mom it is necessary to adjust your schedule to have that time to seek God first thing in the day BEFORE life begins happening in your household.

Be steadfast as you seek God on your garden path!

Tammy ~@~

Monday, June 8

quietly out loud

Currently being on call for a birth means a shifting of my routine in some ways so that I am close to home, especially since this baby will be born in a hospital 80 minutes away.

A shift occurred over the weekend when I opted to go to church on Saturday night since our church offers this extra service during the summer months when our population greatly increases. My family was busy at home with other activities like supper, fishing, and playing, but there was someone around to catch a baby phone call if it came and could alert me.

That particular shift quite unexpectedly gave me almost two hours of a quiet house yesterday morning when everyone else went to church while I listened for the phone.


Even the dogs and cats were quiet since the weather wasn't nice outside and they settled indoors for naps.


Grabbing my devotional books, I curled into my rocking chair with my quilt on my lap. My devotional took me into the book of Psalms, chapter 119. However, I couldn't stop with one verse. Instead, I went to the very beginning and read each verse of Psalm 119.

Out loud.

Twenty-two sections (one section for each letter of the Hebrew alphabet) of eight verses each. As I paused after each section, sometimes I'd re-read a verse or two or more from that section.

Out loud.

Spending this quiet time reading out loud David's love for God's Word over the course of 176 verses gave me an opportunity to refresh my love for God's Word.

Could I challenge you to read through Psalm 119 either quietly or out loud? If you can't do it in one sitting, maybe one section a day over the next 22 days? Find a verse or two or more in each section to meditate on a bit deeper.

May this challenge refresh your walks in the garden!

Tammy ~@~

Saturday, June 6

changing to unchanging

"All that God was and is, God ever will be. His nature and attributes are eternally unchanging." ~ A.W. Tozer

Isn't that the most incredible statement when you stop to think about it?

Eternally unchanging.

Then I think of myself.

In a state of constant change.


I am not the same person I was thirty years ago and I doubt if I will be the same person in thirty years - if I live that long - that I am today.

"Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever." ~ Hebrews 13:8

My hope is that although I am constantly changing, may those changes be part of the process of becoming more like Jesus who is the Unchangeable One.

Tammy ~@~

Friday, June 5

truckin' to play

Through the years it has usually been the boys who have gone to work with my husband. However, a rare opportunity came up this morning which allowed my littlest to ride in her dad's big dump truck.

I think it's perhaps the first time she's gone with him in that big noisy truck. But she knew that the ride to the work site would be well worthwhile as the job was at the house of one of her favorite friends.

Note her foot apparel. Definitely working in the dirt kind of shoes....NOT!

And off they went! It will be fun to talk to her later and see how she liked riding in dad's dump truck.

**As a postscript....my husband forgot to grab one of his equipment keys and I had to hop in the car and drive to where he's working to deliver the key. My daughter definitely did not consider this a day to go to work with dad as she had disappeared into the house with her friend. I'm sure both dad and daughter will have a productive day of work and play!

Tammy ~@~

Thursday, June 4

a refreshing sniffing

After a day of fullness of activity away from home, when I finally got home late afternoon yesterday I decided to stay PUT. Most of the family rushed out the door after a quick bite of supper to attend the first boys baseball game of the season thirty minutes away. My choice was a quiet evening at home to slow down and sniff the roses.

The roses who were my youngest daughter and my little grandson.

We took a leisurely long walk around the neighborhood followed by a lengthy time getting covered with sand while playing in the sandbox. As the daylight began waning, into the house for tubs which also had no timetable. Clean and tired, the two little ones eased into their beds. It had been a relaxing evening of listening to my daughter chatter with my undivided attention as well as recapturing the wonderful sounds of little boys.

It was just what I needed after a busy pace for days. And the Lord graciously provided this window of time to just.slow.down.

Truly, it's so nice to have the lingering scent of roses as I head into another busy day.

May you have little breaks of refreshment in your garden, too, to renew you for the tasks of your household!

Tammy ~@~

Tuesday, June 2

don't send a boy

Yesterday on my list was the task of beginning the clothing changeover for the new season. Typically it's a task already completed by June, however this continuing cold weather has delayed it a bit.

Last year's summer clothing is kept in the girls closet which makes it easy to pull out and see if it still fits. However, since my grands are here, I also wanted to check to see what was in storage for them.

Finding the boxes up in the garage attic is typically the job of one of my older sons. But as it was a cool day, I decided to climb up there myself and take a look because it had been awhile since I had been up there.

Good thing I did!

I KNEW that I had been missing clothes for my older ones!

There were several boxes that were filled with clothes and shoes for the girls. Yet every time I had checked with my sons as I sent them up into the attic, they said they didn't see anything for the girls in the range of sizes I was needing.

When will I ever learn that males in general - although I recognize there may be exceptions to this rule but they obviously have never lived in my house - cannot see things right in front of their eyes?!

Soooo, we ended up with quite a girls fashion show and I still have clothes to continue sorting through today. Hopefully I will get through this task today as it is a task that tends to put me a little over the cliff! Yikes!

And always remember, if you REALLY need to find something, go look for it yourself!

Tammy ~@~

Monday, June 1

simple woman's daybook for June 1

For today June 1st

Outside my window.....
the skies are heavily overcast with a breezy dampness in the air and temps in the 40's.

I am thinking.....about how slow our spring seems to be this year! When will it finally warm up and STAY warm?

I am thankful for.....twenty-nine years of marriage!

From the learning rooms.....still a bit of finish-up and corrections for my older boys, but other than that our formal schooling is taking a break.

From the kitchen.....my daughter-in-law is going to cook us a special anniversary meal one evening.

I am wearing.....my black exercise pants, a white t-shirt, and a sweater thrown over for warmth.

I am creating..... a summer list of intentional goals.

I am going.....to the clinic this morning to get a TB test which is required for the place I volunteer.

I am reading.....nothing in particular right now as there hasn't been time to settle into a book.

I am hoping.....the sunshine will return soon!

I am hearing.....my two grandchildren playing in the kitchen.

Around the house.....there's signs of small children with toys scattered, bibs on the kitchen table, and non-stop toddler talk.

One of my favorite things.....in the spring are lilac bushes that are starting to bloom! Is there any scent more heavenly?!

A few plans for the rest of the week.....are the doctor clinic this morning and a meeting at church this evening, a couple of baseball games, sorting through clothing, volunteering at the pregnancy center, a little planting, enjoying my grandchildren while they are here, and being on call for another birth.

Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you.....

Over Memorial Day weekend at our family cabin, each morning as I looked out our bedroom window I kept seeing a bird fly from what looked like the roof down to the ground. Exploring outdoors, I noticed that there was actually a nest right by our window. You can see the bird's tail and tip of its head sticking out.

If you enjoy reading daybooks or would like to participate yourself, please stop over at Peggy's Place

Have a great Monday!

Tammy ~@~


Yesterday my husband and I celebrated our twenty-ninth wedding anniversary. It was a wonderfully low-key kind of day which are my favorite kind :-) It's hard to believe we've been married that long as the years have flown by. We've weathered many storms through those years which have stretched and grown us into who we are today. I'm sure there'll be more storms ahead, but I can't think of anyone else I'd rather be in the boat with in the years ahead. The bonus is having Jesus in the boat with us and I hear He likes to sleep through storms which sounds perfect for this couple who loves Sunday afternoon naps!

The making of a marriage is similar to the making of a diamond. Click over to Heart of the Matter Online and read my thoughts about both today.

Tammy ~@~
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