Wednesday, March 31

avoid the bucket

Although I haven't read much *extra* over the past few months, I stumbled across a book when looking for another book and have been more avidly reading it before bed perhaps because it goes along with the theme we've been talking about in our Wednesday evening Bible study on First and Second Peter.  

So, I'll leave you with something to *chew* on today:

"In hindsight, we can look back and realize that most of our lives have been poured into the bottomless bucket of this world, and that, after all is said and done, the bucket is empty.  Worse yet, imagine stepping onto the shore on the other side and realizing that we have brought nothing with us of eternal worth.  Think of looking into the face of our eternal God, realizing that our lives reflect only earth-side existence rather than the meaningful, profound realities of the kingdom." ~ from Eternity by Joseph M. Stowell

Can you tell that I just read through the section of how even Christians get caught up in this present world attempting to make their mark in society by doing those things that will get them ahead, give them honor, add prestige to their lives using all their time, energy, focus, and attention on these things that have absolutely no eternal value?

:::::gulp:::::

You may need to *chew* on this for longer than today, eh?  

Here's to praying for a perspective that sheds eternal light on our activities whether they be those daily tasks of mothering, things that look too little to matter, or big projects the Lord is nudging us to attempt!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Tuesday, March 30

how does your garden grow?

My eye is drawn to spring or garden theme type of books and I couldn't resist this book called Up, Down, and Around written by Katherine Ayres and illustrated by Nadine Bernard Westcott.  It was a fun library book for my grands to read through and look at the pictures while they were visiting.
The book very simply tells the journey of a garden from planting seeds to harvesting the vegetables as it describes how each plant grows.  Some grow up.  Some grow down.  Some grow around.  
The pictures are fun to look at because there's so much activity going on in each scene.  Being an experienced gardener, my eye immediately found all the garden pests.  
Bunnies and potato bugs and those little green caterpillar things that eat my broccoli as well as a host of other little critters.  

It's a fun book for preschool to lower primary grades children to read and now is the perfect season to read it!

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Monday, March 29

and she's off!

Look, mom!
 Dad took the training wheels off my bike!
And I can ride all by myself!
 See!
Mom!  Are you still watching?!
You never know what a day may bring. Wow!  I think she was the quickest one of all the kids to make the transition from training wheels to riding on her own.  Back and forth up and down the driveway she goes!  It gives me the sniffles as I watch that little girl with a feather in her hair....another first for my last child.

And a picture for my sweet granddaughter....
Here's Sally!  She's missing you and hopes you come to visit Grampa and Grammy's house again SOON!

Life is short.  Enjoy each moment!

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Simple Woman's Daybook for March 29

 
For today March 29

Outside my window.....it's only in the teens now, but it's suppose to be a wonderfully warm week ahead.

I am thinking....about planting some lettuce very early this spring to see how it does since I have some older seed to use up anyway which would work well for this experiment.

I am thankful.....for those who are willing to preach the hard things that don't tickle our ears but convict our hearts as the Holy Spirit speaks through them.

I am wearing.....dark blue pants, a white t-shirt with thin light blue stripes, and a hooded sweatshirt thrown on top.

I am hearing.....the dog pawing at the door.


I am creating.....a package to send to a son that I'm missing like crazy.
 
I am going.....to need to do some special shopping this week as I see Easter is about to sneak up on me!

I am reading.....Eternity by Joseph M. Stowell as it goes well with our Bible study in First and Second Peter.

I am praying.....for a friend's travels and her visit with a sister whose days have been shortened.
 
I am remembering.....white lacy gloves and special Easter hats when I was a little girl.

I am hoping.....to get caught up on ironing this week before we begin the seasonal clothing changeover.

On my mind.....are conversations that have taken place and conversations that need to take place in the days ahead.
 

From the learning rooms....there will some one-on-one working with a daughter who seems to like to skip doing the things she doesn't like doing!
 
Noticing that....even the big snow piles are almost gone.

Pondering these words....."believe actions not words."

From the kitchen.....we'll be eating leftover chili before the weather warms up.

Around the house....there are Hawaiian leis and flowers scattered around from a bridal shower we attended over the weekend while my littlest continues playing with them.

One of my favorite things.....is putting on my warm fuzzy socks when I get up in the morning in our cool home.

A few plans for the rest of the week.....are doing some shopping, hosting Bible study midweek, finishing the last stretch of a quilt hem, a library visit, getting back to my garden order, singing happy birthday to a daughter over the phone, a Good Friday service, and celebrating the worship of the resurrection of Jesus Christ on Sunday followed by breakfast at church.


Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you....
Yesterday I checked along the fence line by our driveway and see some little signs of spring flowers just popping through the ground.

Thank you for stopping and visiting my daybook on this day. If you'd like to visit others who are participating or write a journal yourself, please stop over at Peggy's at Simple Woman's Daybook


Enjoy this last Monday of March!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Saturday, March 27

the Finder

In recent years our local library has allowed us to have library cards for each member of the reading family.  However, I opted not to do that as it's much easier for me to keep everything on one account with one slip of paper going home with the books.  It's very easy to track online and all the kids can jump on the account at any time to look up books, movies, etc. or find resources for reports.  

Beginning last fall my husband would often do the drop off or pick up at the library, so I'd give him my card to take along.  When he'd come home, I'd tuck my library card back into its spot in my wallet.  

Then one day many weeks ago, my library card wasn't in its spot.  When I checked with my husband, he said he had given it back to me.  Hmmmm.  The only thing I could think of was that I had my hands full with something else when he handed it to me and I must have set the library card in one of my special "I'll remember where I put it" kind of spots.  So, through the house I went looking in all those special spots.  Nothing.  Checked coat pockets.  Nothing.  Checked in the car.  Nothing.  Checked through my desk again.  Nothing.  GONE.

I told the librarian that my card was lost at home, but I was certain it would show up while she now scanned my books in through the library computer system.  I told the Lord that I had done my best trying to find my lost card, but now it was up to Him to show me where it was.

And I promptly forgot about it. 

Until yesterday.

The local hardware store called saying that my library card had been in their lost and found box for some time and apparently no one had called me to let me know.  FOUND!  As my husband usually does the hardware store errands and I only tend to go when I need to UPS a package, perhaps my library card fell out of my wallet when I pulled out my hardware card?  

I guess I'll never know, but God knew.  And once I gave up the striving and let Him take care of it, He answered. 

Prayer is often like that, isn't it?  We pray and do our utmost to *help* God with the answers, but once we give it up and totally put it in His hands, He answers and often in the most interesting ways.  A good reminder indeed whether it's a library card or something much bigger!

Enjoy the weekend and remember Who to call upon when you lose something! 

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Friday, March 26

the spring of new heights

There is something about spring, isn't there?  It is so freeing after a winter of being cooped indoors and having to wear layer upon layer of clothing and accessories every time you do go outside.  A rise into warmer temperatures and suddenly my kids are in shorts and flip flops!  With only traces of snow left here and there, the bikes are in motion, the sandbox is busy....
....and life reaches new heights.  Especially on the swings!  

Sometimes I wish I was so fearless and had a smile on my face as the Lord encourages me on to new heights where I feel way above my head!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Thursday, March 25

the prayer helper

Although He has many roles, over the last couple of weeks through our Bible study on prayer I've been pondering how the Holy Spirit helps us with our prayers.

"Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness.  For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings to deep for words.  And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God. And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose." ~ Romans 8:26-28

We tend to know the first and last verse of this passage quite well, but what about the middle verse?

I love what Oswald Chambers says about our prayers which lines up so well with this middle verse: "God searches your heart not to know what your conscious prayers are, but to find out what is the prayer of the Holy Spirit." 

The Holy Spirit doesn't intercede for us only when we don't have the words; He is always interceding for us whenever we lift up a prayer to our Heavenly Father.  Have you ever thought about that before?  There is *God power* added to every prayer!  How cool is that? 

"Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace....." ~ Hebrews 4:16a

Yes, let us approach prayer with confidence knowing that the Holy Spirit seeks the will of God while we are praying so that He may work for His purposes and glory in the lives of those who love Him!

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Wednesday, March 24

an anting they will go

Early each spring there is one event that causes a bunch of excitement in our house....the spotting of the first robin in the yard.  Yesterday marked the occasion as we all ran to the window when someone yelled, "ROBIN!"
After confirming it was an accurate sighting and not some random bird, I grabbed my camera and zoomed in to catch the hardy bird hopping around the yard.  A robin is a somewhat reliable signal that spring is on its way.  He'll still hop around the yard even if we get our typical dumping of heavy spring snow.  And all I can say is YAY!


However, that wasn't the biggest surprise of the day.  It came only moments later when one of my daughters mentioned that robins love to go anting.  Anting?  Like eating ants?  Nope.  She went on to explain to all of us that robins will either pick the ants up with their bill and rub them into their feathers or they'll roll in the dirt and let the ants crawl over their feathers.  I thought she was teasing us and there was some giggling going on.  So, she got out her science book and read the section to us.  Sure enough!  She remembered the lesson well.  Robins do indeed enjoy anting and typically do it when they are molting.  The ants may relieve them from mites or parasites or perhaps the irritation that comes from the growth of new feathers.  


You never know what you'll learn within the walls of a homeschool home....


And yes, I'll keep my camera handy as I want to catch a robin when he's a'goin' anting!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Tuesday, March 23

waiting on your calls

As my children grow up and leave home, I keep thinking I'll have more available down time.  Time to putter around on all kinds of things that I never had time to putter on when they all lived at home.  But I'm here to tell you that this a total fallacy that mothers have been led to believe when their children are young.  In fact, it seems my days have become fuller and more busy with a family that keeps expanding.

Ohhhh, this isn't a bad thing.  No, not at all.  I thoroughly enjoy the relationships I have with my adult children and now their children.  I just have to figure out how to manage it better and perhaps make some changes.

For example, let's talk about the phone calls which come night or day.  They may be short when only a recipe is needed or they may be long like when our army son calls home and talks to every single person in the house for a quantity of time.  Here's another example....last night after supper my oldest daughter called and I hadn't talked to her much last week because the grands were here.  We chit chatted about a multitude of things and when I hung up the phone I noted that the handy time feature on our phone stated that the phone had been used for 95 minutes.  WHAT? Impossible!  We were only chit chatting.  Sheesh!  And as soon as I hung up the phone I had four other phone calls come in one after another  :::sigh:::


So, the topic keeps coming up.  "Mom, you need to get call waiting.  NOW!"


But I keep resisting.  And I think I know why.  I love one-on-one time with another person and I don't like to be interrupted.  Sitting and talking to someone who has a cell phone while they are constantly checking text messages or answering this call or another call seems rude to me.  Or being interrupted when talking to someone on the phone because of call waiting on their end seems rude to me, too.  The flow of conversation disappears and we often forget what we were even talking about.  And besides, if we had call waiting most likely the person calling would be a family member who I'd want to talk to for a quantity of time while I'm talking to another family member who I want to talk to for a quantity of time. 


Go ahead and call me old-fashioned!  I'll take a one-on-one conversation on my front porch any day over dealing with the interruptions of all this great technology.  


:::::sigh:::::


Yes, this topic will be re-visited when my husband gets back to work once spring is really here and we see how business looks and whether or not we can add the extra expense of call waiting on our phone.


Until then, feel free to give me a call and get my undivided attention!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Monday, March 22

Simple Woman's Daybook for March 22


For today March 22

Outside my window.....the skies are blue, the sun is shining and it's suppose to warm up into the 50's today.

I am thinking....about the definition of reform - improvement or correction of what is corrupt or defective.   I believe the health reform has done exactly the opposite of that definition as more and more of the fine print is coming to print.

I am thankful.....for all the safe traveling that was done over the weekend.


I am wearing.....a denim skirt with a red sweatshirt thrown over a white t-shirt.

I am hearing.....a pair of mourning doves outside in our woods.


I am creating.....a new "To Do" list as I look toward spring coming soon.
 
I am going.....to have a quiet week at home.


I am reading..... my devotionals and the Bible.

I am praying.....for God 's Word to remind me of who I am in Him.
 
I am remembering.....those chubby little arms that hugged me around my neck all last week.

I am hoping.....to get back into my walking routine.

On my mind.....is trying to get some focus back as I'm having a hard time between some specific challenges that have come up in life combined with the lack of sleep.

From the learning rooms....there will be lots of sitting and working on school corrections with each child as mama is way behind on that right now.
 
Noticing that....my youngest is growing up WAY too fast! 

Pondering these words....."Pray.  It isn't a sign of weakness; it is your strength." ~ Orville Kelly

From the kitchen.....there'll be more creativity in meals as I scan the freezer and the food pantry.


Around the house....there is sand everywhere as my children and grandchildren lived in the sandbox last week.


One of my favorite things.....is listening to my youngest talk to one of her big brothers on the phone. 

A few plans for the rest of the week.....are hosting Bible study midweek, hopefully finally completing the hemming of a quilt which I've been working on for too long now, a library visit, a bridal shower, and completing my garden order. 

Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you....
The little barefeet of my granddaughter as she left her flip flops on the dock and wanted to stick her feet into the lake water.  Just outside the view of this picture is our frozen icy lake.  Kids!  LOL

Thank you for stopping and visiting my daybook on this day. If you'd like to visit others who are participating or write a journal yourself, please stop over at Peggy's at Simple Woman's Daybook


Enjoy this early spring day!

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~ 

Saturday, March 20

the popping of green

We knew that amazing breath of spring wasn't here to stay.  It was much too wonderful to really be spring, but the week long taste of it was incredible!  Even though the temperatures are back into the teens this morning as we return to more seasonable reasonable days, there is hope.  I've seen it.  It's in my garden.  

Although there is typically nothing much happening in my garden in the early spring - at least until the rhubarb wakes up - I remembered the special planting I did late last fall.  Glorious garlic!  Yum!  Not the typical garden crop since it takes awhile as you plant it in the fall, it sleeps over the winter, then after the long season of rest it pops out in the early spring ready to grow.  

Around the garden fence we walked until we came to the special fenced in area where lo and behold....
....there were four little pointed shoots scattered among the rows popping through the ground!

I'm so excited!  I LOVE garlic!  And it's now growing in my garden!

Are there signs of green popping up in your garden?

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Friday, March 19

it's great

His grace is great enough to meet the great things--
The crashing waves that overwhelm the soul, 
The roaring winds that leave us stunned and breathless,
The sudden storms beyond our life's control.

His grace is great enough to meet the small things--
The little pin-prick troubles that annoy,
The insect worries, buzzing and persistent,
The squeaking wheels that grate upon our joy.
 ~ by Annie Johnson Flint

Whatever a wonderful thing to be reminded - that God's great grace has no limits and stretches to cover us no matter what the day may bring!

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Thursday, March 18

looking across at the shoreline

We have had unusually spectacular weather for this time of the year.  With the exception of shady places in the woods or the remaining lingering big piles from snow plowing the roads and driveways, our snow is already GONE!  That's pretty much unheard of for the middle of March and there's no one complaining about the lack of snow around here.  

With high temperatures in the 60's and no snow, it's been the perfect week to have the grandchildren here.  They are outside each day all day.  The sandbox, the swings, the trampoline, the bikes, the picnic lunches, the balls, the busyness.

Last night after supper we found ourselves meandering down to the lake to check the status of the ice.  The kids ran out on the dock and after I took a few pictures of them, I noticed our dog.
There she sat perfectly still.  Not bothered by the distraction of the children at all. Not wanting to test the waters or the safety of the ice.  Just sitting.  I imagined she was thinking about fishing, but then noticed that her gaze wasn't on the immediate place in front of her, but across to the other shoreline where it stayed.  She tilted her head just a bit with the light breeze, but kept her focus across the lake.

Watching her made me want to sit and do the same thing.  There's an overload of distractions in my life right now as I consider all the inter-minglings of relationships which are not in smooth waters.  Difficulties, disappointments, demanding, disheartening, and downright disturbing at times. 

As I looked across to the other shoreline, I thought about these verses:  "For we walk by faith, not by sight. Yes, we are of good courage, and we would rather be away from the body and at home with the Lord." ~ Second Corinthians 5:7-8   There are moments in life when it's hard to walk by faith.  You want to see the future and the sight of how God will work things out. If only you could *see* to have the necessary and appropriate wisdom for decisions.  When the faith walk gets challenging, looking across to the heavenly shoreline allows some calm and peace to enter your life rather than the shakiness and uncertainty of the immediate waters in front of you.

The shout of a child caused both the dog and I to turn our heads as we land back on earth.  The reminder that our work is not done yet is apparent.  There's also a reminder found in the next verse of how our remaining work is to be done: "So whether we are at home or away, we make it our aim to please him." ~ Second Corinthians 5:9

No matter how difficult, disappointing, demanding, or downright disturbing life can be at times as others cross my path with their decisions, *I* need *my* behavior, decisions, and responses to be aimed at pleasing the Lord and that can only happen through the good courage and strength that comes from Him.  


May the reminder of the heavenly shoreline bring peace and calm into your life just when you need it as an encouragement to navigate the current waters before you.


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Wednesday, March 17

not a bit o'green

With my children having family heritage lines of German, English, Swiss, and Dutch, I don't think there's any Irish in our family's background with the possible exception of one of my grandmothers who had quite a mix of nationalities on one side of her family.  Chances are there is quite possibly not even a hint of Irish which explains why St. Patrick's Day comes and goes each year around here without a blink of an eye.  

Until this year.


Last week friends who come to our evening Bible study mentioned the husband's strong Irish roots and that yes, indeed, they would be eating corned beef and cabbage tonight.  

I have never cooked corned beef and cabbage in my entire life.

Until this year.

Yesterday I could not resist the urge to pick up some corned beef brisket, green cabbage, and red potatoes while I was at the grocery store.  Today I will attempt to cook it.

Anyone have some good cooking tips on this meal for this not a bit o'green mama? 

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Tuesday, March 16

letters with points

There's a couple of girls who are ALWAYS shoulder playing Scrabble when I'm online playing my games on Facebook.  And yes, they sometimes have better words than mom comes up with by hitting the doubles or triples.  

It seemed that it was time to capitalize on their Scrabble playing skills by creating a spelling game to use those skills in a educational way.

Enter mom's homemade Scrabble game. It's still in the practice stages and we are making up rules as we go.  I cut out a zillion white scrabble pieces and initially wrote out double the letters the game typically has PLUS kept blank pieces by the side in case we need more letters.  The object is to use only spelling words from a lesson and we've been restricting our games to words of seven letters or less, but we may change that.  There is no rack and each player pulls the letters they need from the piles.  The object is to learn the spelling words better by handling the letters and putting them onto the board.  The game pictured above is from a spelling lesson entitled "borrowed words" which are words that have come from other cultures.  I took a picture of the pre-final board of only those words from the lesson until when we reached the point of having no room or the right spaces to put any more words from the lesson. The game can be continued to be played with non-lesson words, if desired. 

If you'd like to know our favorite way to practice writing out spelling words, stop over at Heart of the Matter Online and read my latest article entitled Spelling Letters

In the meantime, may the best speller win!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Monday, March 15

Simple Woman's Daybook for March 15


For today March 15

Outside my window.....the skies are blue, the sun is shining and there's talk of possible record setting of the high temperature for the day as we head into the upper 50's.

I am thinking....about how life sometimes blindsides you.

I am thankful.....the weather is so delightful allowing the kids to get rid of that excessive winter energy outdoors.

I am wearing.....my black exercise pants with a hooded pink sweatshirt.

I am hearing.....the quiet house as I recognize one benefit of Daylight Savings Time.

I am creating.....my garden list which will hopefully translate into a order form filled out and dropped into the mail.
 
I am going.....to enjoy this week with the grandchildren around!


I am reading..... my devotionals and the Bible.

I am praying.....for God 's strength and power to uphold a son who desires purity while he lives among men who intensely chase the opposite.
 
I am remembering.....that with tears come rainbows.

I am hoping.....to maintain some semblance of order all week.

On my mind.....are the walls that get built when trust has been broken repeatedly.

From the learning rooms....there will be young grandchildren playing and the public schools on spring break this week which tends to result in many interruptions and schedule changes.  My hope is that we can do a little intense schooling each morning allowing more freedom in the afternoons and if that doesn't work, we'll school harder next week to catch back up.
 
Noticing that....there's only snow left where big piles were plowed or in the deep shady woods where the sun can't melt it as quickly.

Pondering these words....."Children have neither past nor future; they enjoy the present which very few of us do." ~ La Bruyere

From the kitchen.....there'll be lots of kid friendly eating.


Around the house....are toys scattered everywhere!


One of my favorite things.....is listening to my grandson's expanded vocabulary as he chatters at me.

A few plans for the rest of the week.....are hosting Bible study midweek, hopefully completing the hemming of a quilt which I've been working on for a couple weeks now, a library visit, watching the snow melt while we play outside, and connecting with family at the end of the week. 

Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you....
The challenge of attempting to tie a quilt on the living room floor is only enhanced when the cat keeps lying on the quilt no matter how many times you scat him away.

Thank you for stopping and visiting my daybook on this day. If you'd like to visit others who are participating or write a journal yourself, please stop over at Peggy's at Simple Woman's Daybook


Enjoy this March day!

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Saturday, March 13

melting the blues

Wanting to declutter and make practical use of things that we need to declutter, we recently we attempted the art of candle making.  I know....those two things don't seem to go together, do they?

You see, we have two plastic ice cream buckets full of old crayons as well as loose crayons that inhabit our school cabinet.  It seems wasteful to just toss them, so we decided to try a candle making experiment since I'm rather fond of candles.  My oldest daughter had picked up some nice thick candle wicks at Michaels for me and I've been saving the large jars from candles already enjoyed.
Our first task was to dump out the buckets of crayons and sort out every variation of blue hued crayon to be found.  Once we had our crayon pile, the next task was peeling the paper off each crayon resulting in quite a mountain of crayon papers.
Each crayon was placed into a small metal coffee can which was placed into a double boiler pan.  We slowly melted the crayons over low heat occasionally stirring the mix with a wooden popsicle stick.  Once the crayons were melted, we added some lily of the valley fragrant oil to the wax.  
The old candle jar was prepared by digging out the old wick base and placing the new wick base in its place.  We laid a popsicle stick over the mouth of the jar and taped the wick onto it so that the wick would stay centered while the crayon wax was poured into the jar.  The wax pouring was done by mom with potholder gloved hands very carefully tipping the metal can until melted wax was completely emptied into the jar.  A few candle pieces that for whatever reason refused to melt floated to the top as the wax began to harden.  
We let the candle sit a whole day as it hardened to completion and could hardly wait to trim the wick and light it the next day.
Ahhhhh, and we have a flame!  Oh nooooo, the flame of the candle only burned until the candle wick was about one inch down into the candle wax.  It refuses to re-light at this point.  


I did some online research and found that others had this same problem.  From everything I read, here's a few things I'd like to try the next time we do a crayon candle:


*Try using a braided wick instead of a wax coated wick.
*Consider using a mix of perhaps half crayon wax and half paraffin wax.
*Dump a lot more scent into the wax when it finishes melting as the burning candle smelled a lot more like crayons than lily of the valley.
*Place a taper candle in the center of the candle and pour the melted crayon wax around it. 


All in all, it was a fun project and we will try again with a different color crayon!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~







Friday, March 12

can you say pink?

Oh, how I love the color pink!  Oh, how I love to enter giveaways that offer something pink! Oh, how I love to share about giveaways that offer something pink because it gives me more entries to win something pink!  

In celebration of the upcoming adoption of a girl, Kimmie has been blessed to be able to offer a pink giveaway sponsored by Cookware.  The giveaway is a Reston Lloyd Calypso Basics 12 piece storage bowl set in pink.  Do stop over and enter Kimmie's giveaway!  If you don't like pink, enter anyways and then send me the pink set if you win!  *wink*

Busy day ahead for our family.  My oldest son and his family will be arriving early this afternoon.  We have schooling to wrap up this morning and a house to prepare for the invasion of grandchildren (which is much more exciting than those alien invasions that you see in the movies!  LOL!)

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Thursday, March 11

stumped on breakfast

It's always a treat to have my older ones come home and then make their favorite recipes.  

So as I was looking forward to my daughter and her family being here last weekend as well as an older son and his fiance, I realized I did not have a breakfast recipe I could make for them.  For you see, my daughter has been asking me for my recipes over the last few years and I realized that every single one of my special breakfast recipes are now also used in her kitchen.  That rascal!  I wasn't even aware of her total accumulation of all the family favorites!


So now I am on the hunt for new fun breakfast recipes that I can make when our family gets together. Last night I spent some time cruising through my old Taste of Home magazines so I do have a few new things to try.  But trust me...if the recipes turn out well they will not be posted here because you know who will write them down, use them in her kitchen and I'll be back to the same dilemma.  LOL!


Do you have favorite breakfast recipes that your family loves?  Wanna share?  *wink*


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Wednesday, March 10

the white flag

"The wonderful thing about Jesus -- He sees us not as we are but as what we can become.  Even more, He is able to change us from what we are into what He sees us capable of becoming.......We are being made for tomorrow, for the future, for eternity.  To look within ourselves now and be discouraged is to miss it all." ~W. Glyn Evans

Sometimes God puts a word of encouragement in our garden paths right when we need it and I needed to read the words of this devotional this morning.  Why?  Because if I looked within myself now, I would definitely be discouraged!  There is a floundering going on as I work through a challenge in my life feeling like a stubborn toddler not wanting to take the steps that I know in my heart are right and would be consistent with Christlike behavior.    Surely following God's Word completely and fully with real application is the best way to go.  Why is this so hard to do at times?


Yet He knows.  He knows what He's working on changing within me and no matter how difficult it may be or how many tears come with it, the process is forming me into what He sees for my tomorrow.  For my eternity.  And for that I can be VERY thankful! 

No longer do I want to be discouraged and missing what He's doing.  Time to raise the white flag of surrender in my heart and give it all over to God allowing Him to work in His amazing ways knowing His grace will cover us all.  


Amen?  Amen!

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Tuesday, March 9

an early farewell

Ohhhh, how I love our flannel sheets!  Throwing them on our beds in the early fall and stretching their use until May.  

Warm, cozy, soft, and currently MISERABLE!

They gotta go!  NOW!  At least off our bed.

:::sigh:::

This past winter I'd wake up once in awhile quite warm.  

The past few weeks I've been waking up nightly quite warm.  A few times a night.  

What usually wakes me up is the motion of my legs trying to find a cool spot within the flannel sheets.  Yes, that is an impossibility.  Especially when your entire body wakes you up feeling like it may be on fire from head to toe and has been warming up those flannel sheets.  Yikes!  Upon realizing there are no cool spots, you then need to get out of bed and walk through cool air to go and drink a cool glass of water. Once returning to bed, you lie on the top of all the covers to fall back to sleep until you wake up freezing and crawl back into the warm flannel sheets.  REPEAT a couple more times each night.

:::sigh:::

I guess my silver lining is that at least this isn't happening in the daytime....YET.

Please enjoy YOUR flannel sheets a bit longer for me as mine will be replaced today!

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Monday, March 8

Simple Woman's Daybook for March 8

 
For today March 8

Outside my window.....the sun is shining and it looks like it will be a beautiful day.  There's even mention of temperatures getting up near 50 degrees this week!

I am thinking....about the challenge of grown up children and the need for Godly wisdom as a parent.

I am thankful.....the weather is getting more spring-like which is motivating me to get done with some indoor projects.

I am wearing.....my black exercise pants with a dark red Maui t-shirt.


I am hearing.....the chatter of the girls in the kitchen as they work on their schooling.

I am creating.....a new place to store craft supplies.


I am going.....to be at home most of the week which is a very good thing.  I like a lighter schedule.

I am reading..... my devotionals and the Bible.

I am praying.....for God to work in a child's heart and life situation like only He can realizing it's outside the realm of anything I can do.
 
I am remembering.....this weekend's wedding couple as TODDLERS! Where did the time go?


I am hoping.....to find the wedding picture of my in-laws which is *somewhere* around here.

On my mind.....is a son who could really use strong Christian buddies to come into his life as he's feeling quite alone.

From the learning rooms....will be working hard on school and trying to get ahead a bit because next week's schooling will be harder to work on with little ones here.

Noticing that....the snow is melting quickly!

Pondering these words....."When the Lord returns, will we be awkwardly attired in our good works which are like filthy rags in His eyes?  Will we be wearing the old hand-me-downs of our parents and grandparents?  Or the latest religious clothing?  Or will He find us appropriately clothed in His righteousness alone?"  ~ Gigi Graham Tchividjian

From the kitchen.....I'm hoping to try some new recipes from the box of recipe clippings I found I last week.


Around the house....we are getting things put back into place after the weekend of people sleeping in different places.


One of my favorite things.....is watching the kids devour a pan of brownies.  Hey, that means no leftovers to tempt me!  LOL!

A few plans for the rest of the week.....are an early morning women's Bible study at church plus hosting Bible study midweek, hemming a quilt, going through a couple of boxes to find items for our mission team to take to Haiti, and family bringing friends home at the end of the week. 

Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you....
A peek at the beautiful wedding cake that was made by a friend who is learning the art of cake decorating. Not only did it look beautiful, but she is also mastering the flavor as it was delicious!

Thank you for stopping and visiting my daybook on this day. If you'd like to visit others who are participating or write a journal yourself, please stop over at Peggy's at Simple Woman's Daybook



Enjoy this March day!

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~ 

Saturday, March 6

aspiring a bit

From my gardening calendar - "Aspire toward a garden where birds come to nest and friends come to rest." ~ Author Unknown
And where onions go to flower!  

March is a wonderfully fun time to browse through seed catalogs and plan for my garden for the season ahead.  It's nice to dream and plan for a garden that will not only provide food for my family, but will also be pleasing to the eyes of everyone who stops by for a visit.  I'm definitely planning on adding more rows of zinnias in between the vegetables this year since they were such happy flowers last season and made me smile every time I stepped into my garden to work.  


Are you doing any spring planning?

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Friday, March 5

inheriting

One of my key winter projects has been to concentrate on going through "stuff".  We still have a lot of items that came from my in-laws house as well as having many things that belonged to my mom.  This past week I've been focusing on going through my own personal "stuff" that clutters up my bedroom and have run across a lot of *ancient of days* kinds of stuff.  There's simply too much stuff.  Stuff that is often old and faded and falling apart.  Stuff that tends to only have meaning to the original owner :::sigh:::  STUFF!

Our home Bible study group has recently begun a new study.  We will be going through the books of First and Second Peter over the next several weeks.  After we opened our books and read the introduction, we had our first question which applied to the opening verses of chapter one of First Peter.....do you eagerly anticipate heaven?


Perhaps you haven't thought about it much?  Perhaps you've thought about it a lot?  All our answers were varied and then we keyed into verse four:  "to an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you," and let me add some of the words used in this verse from other translations to describe our inheritance....beyond the reach of change and decay, unsullied, imperishable, that can never spoil.....those are the kinds of things that await us in heaven.  Can we even wrap our minds around things like that?  It certainly isn't our earthly experience, is it?  It's simply perfect!

And how cool is it that this perfect inheritance is reserved for us!  It's waiting for us and will be there untouched until we get there.


It certainly makes all the things that we chase after on this earth look pale and meaningless when put up against a heavenly light.  All these things which will remain on this earth after we are gone as they continue their perishing fading process.  All this STUFF! 


And really, there is only one thing that matters.....relationships.  The stuff will all pass away or be left behind.  It's people that will follow us into heaven.  People who have come to know Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior.  Focusing on that helps me to keep focused on getting rid of earthly stuff which helps to simply life and allow me more time to focus on relationships.  And that, my friend, is GOOD STUFF!


Enjoy your day as you ponder the heavenly inheritance waiting just for YOU!

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~



Thursday, March 4

the good rubbings

"When God wants to bring more power into your life, He brings more pressure.  He is generating spiritual force by hard rubbing.  Some of us don't like it.  Some of us don't understand, and we try to run away from the pressure instead of getting the power and using it to rise about the painful cause." ~ A. B. Simpson

Okay, raise your hand if you enjoy those hard rubbings....

I can't say that I've run into anyone through the years who has said they've welcomed trials that have passed through their lives with open arms.  But I can say that I've run into countless people who did not run from the difficulties and can testify to God's power getting them through and growing their spiritual lives in a way that only those specific trials could do.  

The things that happen on the paths of our lives are often beyond our understanding.  But they are never beyond God's power.  Each step that we take adds to our growth in knowing without a doubt that we can wholeheartedly trust God as He builds our faith in Him.  


Yes, they may be hard rubbings, but hindsight always proves that they were good rubbings!  


If you know someone going through a hard rubbing in life right now, how about giving them a hug or a word of encouragement to soften it a bit?

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Wednesday, March 3

eyeing the eye

I want to introduce you to a long long lost new best friend.....
As I've been busy sorting through things the last few days, I ran across this little beauty.  I knew I had one at one time, but had no idea if it was still around somewhere.  Then I stumbled across it in a box of sewing odds and ends.  

I'm in HEAVEN!

What is it you ask?

It's a needle threader!

You set the eye of the needle into smoke stack thing.  The thread gets placed in the gap next to the smoke stack thing.  The little white foot pedal looking thing gets pushed and the thread goes through the eye of the needle.  As you pull the needle back out it's ready to go!

Having struggled with threading needles as I can't seem to see well with or without my glasses to do such a simple task, I am very happy!

Now I wish I could figure out an easy way to thread my sewing machine needle....

May you have little conveniences to rejoice about today, too!

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Tuesday, March 2

lion's work on a lamb's day


What a wonderful verse to kick off the new month - "The Lord is my strength and my song." ~ Exodus 15:2

So, how has your month of March come in?  Like a lamb or like a lion?

If I'd go by looking out my window, we definitely had lamb weather.  The cloudy skies of the morning gradually faded until sunshine was streaming through our windows in the afternoon.  Temperatures rose into the 30's and the snow on the ground softened.  A beautiful day indeed!

If I'd go by looking within my home, we definitely had lion activity.  I began tackling a project that has been long overdue.  Although my early homeschooling records were kept quite organized, as the years passed and our family grew and life got a bit hectic, often times it was easier to throw paperwork into a box until *someday* when I'd have time to sort through and organize it.  How often does *someday* come at your house?  Not very often here, I'm afraid.  Well, until yesterday when I attacked the project like a lion chasing its prey.  

Twenty-three folders for twenty-three years of homeschooling were spread out upon my bed as I sorted through boxes putting the appropriate paperwork with the appropriate folders.  The thing that REALLY slowed me down was all the other paperwork that got placed into these boxes through the years, too.  Missionary letters, tons of recipes, a folder on soapmaking, Christmas cards, newspaper clippings, etc.  Now I had to find a place for those kinds of things in the midst of this project and for the most part they all got thrown into a box to sort through today.  

At the end of the yesterday, the twenty-three folders had all the sorted paperwork randomly placed in them and today my project will be to put each folder in order making sure I have all the necessary papers for that school year.  It shouldn't take me long and I'm excited to get it done so that I may put all the folders in neat order on my shelf.  

Of course, there is that other random box waiting for me to sort through, but I'm in a lion mood so it shouldn't take too long.

The only thing I'm struggling with is all those recipes I've clipped out through the years.  I want to keep them and yet it's so easy to find any kind of recipe imaginable online nowadays that I could probably toss the whole boxful.  What to do?  What to do?????  

What would YOU do?

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Monday, March 1

Simple Woman's Daybook for March 1


For today March 1

Outside my window.....the skies are cloudy with a slight chance of some snow flurries this morning.  It looks like the forecast for the rest of the week will be mild with highs in the 30's with sunshine!

I am thinking.....that I like the accountability that my weekly daybook provides.  I can always look back to the week before to see if I got done what I had planned to do.

I am thankful.....the Olympics are now done.  They've been fun to watch and help pass the winter days and evening as we cheered on our favorite athletes, but they also consumed large amounts of time sitting on the couch.

I am wearing.....my black exercise pants with a warm hooded pink sweatshirt.

I am hearing.....the sweet un-sound of quiet!

I am creating.....a re-covered quilt for the girls bed which is turning out to be a much bigger project than I thought it would be.


I am going.....to work at chiseling down my list of some of the big items this week.  I hope to get all our school records out of boxes and organized, my doula records out of a storage box and organized, two quilting projects worked on, and the old laundry room cleaned out.  Think I'm biting off more than I can chew?  :::thud:::

I am reading..... my devotionals and the Bible.

I am praying.....for the dear sister of a friend who has been diagnosed with an aggressive and inoperable brain cancer.
 
I am remembering.....how hard it is to have patience with my children sometimes, especially when it comes to maturity issues.

I am hoping.....to get back to some walking and exercising this month.

On my mind.....is all I want to get done this week and wishing there weren't any other activities on my calendar.

From the learning rooms....the boys will be quietly working on school in their rooms only needing me occasionally until the end of the week corrections.

Noticing that....February went by in the blink of an eye and wondering if March will do the same since it's a busy month.

Pondering these words....."If you cannot worship the Lord in the midst of your responsibilities on Monday, it is not very likely that you were worshiping on Sunday."  ~ A.W. Tozer

From the kitchen.....I'm baking a special cake this morning and hoping to have low-key meals all week.

Around the house....it is actually quite picked up and neat.  I guess we know who the mess makers are around here!

One of my favorite things.....is listening to all my daughters giggling together!

A few plans for the rest of the week.....are a woman's gathering at church tonight, attending a jewelry party Tuesday night at a friend's house, an early morning women's Bible study at church plus hosting Bible study midweek, a chiropractor appointment, a meeting with our insurance agent, a meeting with our accountant, and family coming home at the end of the week to attend a wedding on Saturday. 


Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you....
This is the basket of take home bags for the women attending the women's gathering at church tonight.  I was delighted to find Irish breakfast tea to stick into each bag!

Thank you for stopping and visiting my daybook on this day. If you'd like to visit others who are participating or write a journal yourself, please stop over at Peggy's at Simple Woman's Daybook

Enjoy this first day of March!

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~
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