Tuesday, November 30

on the other end of the prize

Last spring during the Bloggers Quilt Festival, I was blessed to be one of the prize winners by leaving a comment in the comment section!  During the days following I enjoyed looked through page after page of all the beautiful fabrics trying to pick my choice.  Then it was garden planting time and a family wedding and summer and life got busy outdoors and I totally forgot about anything having to do with fabric.  So, when Amy over at Amy's Creative Side announced her fall Bloggers Quilt Festival I panicked for a moment as I considered the prize I hadn't claimed in the spring and sent off an email to find out if there was an expiration date on it.  


What a relief to receive a response from Anina from The Twiddletails Store who was very willing to fill my prize and sent it right off!  
I ended up picking two different fabrics - one to go with all the girl quilts I seem to be doing all the time and the other because I loved the colors, the flowers, and the birds.   The other item enclosed in the package was a small sampling of fabrics to pick from to hopefully match other fabrics in a quilt to use for a border.  (Sorry that the colors don't look too bright.....we have nothing but cloudy weather this time of the year....but they really are beautiful!)


Complete satisfaction on this end of prize winning and I'd highly recommend checking out Amy's Creative Side if you enjoy quilting and are looking for ideas or tips or tutorials or anything about the art of quilting and I'd also just as highly recommend checking out The Twiddletails Store if you are interested in purchasing quilting fabrics online as there is a wide selection of fabric, patterns, tools, and also a clearance section.


Happy quilting!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Monday, November 29

the tale end of the shoes

While waiting to hear if family members made it back home and between doing some cleaning, thought I'd throw up a quick picture.  
I know I've done shoe pictures before, but I guess seeing all those shoes and boots muddled together when family come home is a rather fascinating thing to me.  These are just the ones that landed by the kitchen door.  There's also shoes all over the girls' bedroom, shoes all over down by the boys' bedroom, and an interesting collection of dress-up shoes that go clip clop on our tile kitchen floor. Lots of shoes.  Lots of feet.  Lots of family.


Bliss!


We have one left at home who will be flying out early tomorrow morning as long as the weather cooperates.  Then maybe I can shift back to normal which has never been a setting on my dryer!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Saturday, November 27

the gratitude habit

"It is always possible to be thankful for what is given rather than to complain about what is not given.  One or the other becomes a habit of life."  ~  Elisabeth Elliot


During this season of thanksgiving AND all year long, let us be in the habit of being thankful AND content for all the Lord has blessed us with which is typically far above and beyond our daily bread!  He is sooooo good!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Friday, November 26

none-fireproof goo

Leaving my camera out and available for use when family is home always leads to some interesting pictures when I start downloading them.  Such as this one:


I have no idea who was taking food pictures as we were setting all the menu items out on our kitchen peninsula before eating our ginormous Thanksgiving meal, but it seemed rather interesting to see the full gravy dish as the main focus of this one.  However, it wasn't the gravy dish that caught my eye, but the gooey messy casserole dish of sweet potatoes behind it.  Those sweet things so gracefully expanded and overflowed onto the bottom of my oven starting a small fire while I was chatting away while making that beautiful gravy.  Another interesting note about the sweet potatoes was hearing from one of my college sons that he has developed a liking to yams while eating on campus.  Who'd a thunk?  


Ahhh, yes, it wouldn't be Thanksgiving without a few memories, eh?  Back to making some more around here.....




Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Thursday, November 25

overflow the gratitude

"As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, having been firmly rooted and not being built up in Him and established in your faith, just as you were instructed, and overflowing with gratitude." ~ Colossians 2:6-7 NASB


Looking back, it has been a year of great highs and great lows for me personally. And yet, all those experiences have given me firmer roots as they've established my faith in ways nothing else could.  For that I am very thankful on this day!  


And I will be even more thankful when by the end of this day each one of my children and their families will be under my roof.  I know that as my family grows and moves further from home establishing other family ties, it will be harder for all of us to come together at one time.  How can I not thank God for the treasure of time this weekend ahead will be!


As I pray for my family travelers on this day as they go over the rivers and through the woods to grandmother's house, I will also pray for the families I know who will be missing someone around the table this year.  There is always some sadness that comes with the happiness of gathering on traditional holidays as memories are so prevalent at times like this.  


Happy Thanksgiving!  May your gratitude overflow on this day!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Wednesday, November 24

bell ringing

Right after the worship service each week this fall, I've been attending an adult Sunday school class which has been going through the book of Isaiah.  I found out this past week that the Sunday after Thanksgiving will be the final class for this study in which the last chapters will be covered.  Knowing that we will only be attending the worship service on that day since there'll be a house full of family home, I decided to work through the last chapters myself this week beginning with chapter 58 of the book of Isaiah.

It was interesting timing as I read how the people were following religious "rules" as the chapter specifically talked about fasting, yet the hearts of the people weren't acceptable as they kept sin in their hearts acting out upon it in selfish ways.  They weren't reaching out to the hungry, the homeless, the poor, the afflicted, the oppressed.

A few hours later a couple of my daughters and myself were standing next to a red kettle greeting people and ringing our bells.  The Salvation Army's early beginnings in the late 1800's came from a man who had a heart to reach the hungry, the homeless, the poor, the afflicted, the oppressed, with the hope and salvation found through the Gospel of Christ.  Not only was the Word of God the anchor of this ministry, but practical help was offered as well....and is still offered over a hundred years later.  It is a ministry which is living out exactly what Isaiah wrote about in chapter 58.

So as you see the bell ringers out and about over the next several weeks, take a moment to remember what the Salvation Army's ministry is all about as they put hands and feet to what God's Word teaches.   Support them with the coins you have - every cent adds up and counts! - or with more generous donations or with your time as you volunteer bell ringing!

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Tuesday, November 23

one thing leads to another

You know how when people come to your house it's easy to notice all the areas that you need to clean?  Well, every week that we hold Bible study in our home, I notice how marked up and dirty my kitchen walls are becoming.  Soooo, my goal before Thanksgiving was to wash down the kitchen walls before family all came home.


What was I thinking?


WHAT A TASK!


Yes, they definitely needed it and look much better now, but I've realized in the process that there's a lot of markings on my walls that isn't going to come off no matter how much elbow grease I use as my kitchen really does need to be repainted in the future.  I've also realized in this process that all my kitchen woodwork and cabinets need to be washed down as well, not to mention how much my kitchen tile floor needs a good scrubbing.  Oh, and after I walk out of my kitchen, it's obvious that the hallway walls need scrubbing, the bathroom walls need scrubbing, not to mention the stairway walls and the girls bedroom walls.  


What was I thinking?


WHAT A TASK!


Just mentioning this to you in case you are considering doing such a task before Thanksgiving arrives in your house.  You may want to reconsider it and wait until school is out in the spring as it appears to be a task that could require an entire summer and not just a few days before Thanksgiving.


Just sayin'.......


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Monday, November 22

one, two, three potatoes

This weekend we finally rented Toy Story 3 from Redbox and it was watched a few times while we had it.  A wonderful storyline with all those familiar characters.  It was only a few short months ago that we had a college bound son sorting through his room and putting things into four piles - taking to college, saving in storage, handing down to the younger siblings, and trash.  


But toys didn't really play into his sorting much.  For you see, I've solved the sad toy dilemma around here as they never seem to get put into a sorting pile unless mom is going through the toybox or toyroom to clean out all the things that aren't toys.  Our toys pretty much ALL still live here. Well, at least the classic kind of toys do as I have slowly filtered out the junk.  There's zillions of Legos, dolls and favorite stuffed animals, Matchbox cars, Fisher Price sets, Lincoln logs, board and card games, play dishes for the play kitchen, dress-up clothes....you know, all the timeless kind of entertainment for a creative imaginative child's mind.    With a large family arriving over the course of twenty-two years and then the older ones marrying and bringing our grandchildren into the world, all the toys have continued to be in use and are kept in one area of the house.
Sooooo, after viewing Toy Story 3 a few times, it was no problem to locate the three potato heads and their gear when my youngest asked if we still had them somewhere to play with for awhile. She entertained herself for a LONG time and I enjoyed listening to their, um, conversations every time I walked in and out of the room.


Who would have thought so many many years ago that potato heads would still be bringing a smile to a child and to their mom?  It makes me thankful for the simple delights that carry through the years of a family.


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Saturday, November 20

excited contentment

After traveling to connect sisters together for a mini vacation, when I got back into town I remembered that the dogs were out of food and I needed to make a quick stop to pick up their dog chow.
Once I got home with their big bag of dog chow, the dogs were so excited to see me and get fed their bowls of supper.


And that's when it struck me.  Every day these two dogs get fed the same meal twice a day.  Every day these two dogs are soooo excited to get fed the same meal twice a day.  Day in and day out.  For YEARS.  


Can you imagine if WE had to eat the same meal three times a day? Oh wait a minute.  What about the Israelites who were given the miracle of manna from heaven on a daily basis?  Seems it wasn't too long and they weren't thankful for what they had been given but were instead thinking about all they didn't have.  They remembered the delicious Egyptian food with great fondness, but somehow had forgotten the harsh and brutal slavery conditions that came with eating that food.  


Yes, so often we can take our eyes off of the generous daily provision that the Lord sends our way and tend to NOT be content with having our *needs* met but demand that our *wants* be met, also.


Ahhhh, may my heart attitude be like my dogs.  Ever excited and delighted with the Heavenly Hand that daily provides exactly what I need!  And may I add that I am indeed thankful that it is NOT dog chow! ;-)


May you see with new contented eyes how wonderfully God provides for those in your garden!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Friday, November 19

the last day

Since the voting opened, I took my time and browsed through the other 59 blogs that were nominated for Best Encourager Blog in the Sixth Annual Homeschool Blog Awards.    What an amazing variety of blogs!  Some include very long posts, some have very short posts.  Some are daily, some are sporadic.  Some have a very busy active approach while some are very quietly calming.  Some writers are well known out in the blog world and others are little known writing from the heart. Some have no sign of children around nor homeschooling, some have a daily post and picture of a child involved in a homeschooling activity.  

When I got to the end of the list and had viewed them all, I just smiled.  Truly, there is a just about any kind of blog available which will not only catch the particular eye of individual homeschooling parents, but will fill them with the type of encouragement they are looking for online.

So, if you haven't had a chance to check them out yet, please take some time to visit the Best Encourager Blogs.  Of course, your vote for Garden Glimpses is greatly appreciated as this is the last day to vote.  If you have even more time, scroll down through some of the other homeschooling award categories as you will find some amazing blogs.

And before I forget, can I please thank those of you who have sent me little notes of appreciation since the voting began last week.  Thank you for warming my heart!  And a special thank you to Tracy who left such a sweet comment on the Best Encourager Blog page.  What a special blessing of encouragement that was to me!

Have a great day!

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~


Thursday, November 18

mom and spam

Every once in awhile I feel like I need to explain my name.


Mom.


My first attempt at blogging was a private family blog created to journal through our daily lives at home for those who no longer live at home.  My hope was that it would supply all the news of the day in one spot so I didn't have to remember who I told what or constantly hear, "I can't believe you never told me this!"  I still forget to write about critical things but for the most part they hear about a fire at the farm market or what we ate for supper or the snow that fell on the ground or the dog throwing up all over the kitchen floor before Bible study or who got into trouble for listening to their iPod while doing their schoolwork.  You know, important stuff.  Daily life.  


But when I began blogging, my children thought it was too weird to read about their family life in a blog written by Tammy.  They wanted it to be written by Mom, so I submitted to their wishes.


Then I decided to launch a public blog and felt I should change my account name from Mom to Tammy.  But again there was great resistance from family, so I again submitted to their wishes and left it like it has been from the beginning.  I'm sure it seems strange to some people to have "Mom" commenting on their blogs and I even had someone comment on another blog about how nice it was that the blog owner's Mom commented regularly on their blog - yikes! - but honestly, I don't even think about it anymore.  Perhaps it's because young people who aren't my real children do call me "Mom" when they see me or call here.  I feel like a "Mom" to many other people who I enjoy nurturing through life.  It does feel like a natural role as I've finally come around to acknowledging - and stop fighting! - the fact that perhaps I am one of those.older.women because that title doesn't just mean I'm older, but hopefully means I've learned some wise things along the way and am still learning and will continue learning which is something you realize more and more as you get older.


And you know, I'm okay with being Mom and the only online drawback is that my comments on my own blog always get thrown into SPAM (and perhaps they go to SPAM when I comment on other people's blogs, too?)  Throwing a Mom into SPAM?  Really?  How rude!  It made me look up the definition of SPAM to see if there was some hidden meaning but it is basically unwanted or unsolicited email. But does that mean that most people don't want to hear from their Mom? That their emails are unwanted?  Could a Mom really be Scientifically Proven A Menace or a Strange Product with Abstract Meaning?  (only a couple of online acronym definitions which could apply to something besides the meat by-product)


All that to say.....I'm thankful on this day to be a Mom no matter where email servers may toss me!  I will continue to be Mom as long as my days are numbered on this earth and look forward to the journey ahead.  And I will continue to walk alongside the rest of you as your friend Tammy because that is also a role I cherish!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~



Wednesday, November 17

a math footnote

After thinking about my post and pictures from yesterday as well as Kimmie's comment, I thought I'd add a little footnote about it.


This son is the first one of my children who was ohhhhh sooooo diligent about his math.  His coursework last year was Precalculus with Trigonometry and Analytical Geometry.  Honestly, it was easier for him to correct his own homework in this subject as I was pretty much lost each time I opened his book.  If he got a problem wrong, he'd take the necessary time to look through the solution key and then rework the problem.  It would be written out and rewritten and reworked until it clicked.  He was meticulous and determined and wouldn't let the challenge get the best of him although there were some moments of complete frustration in which his mother was absolutely no help at all.  


Entering into his freshman year of college, he was immediately immersed into the tough subjects of his major which included.....calculus.  All the skills he polished while homeschooling of working and reworking problems has paid off.  He called last week to say that he had gotten the results back from his first calculus exam - a 95.  Can you imagine?  I can't. 


All that to say......don't be afraid to challenge your kids a bit with their learning. They need to learn how to think and work hard.  It'll pay off in their future!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Tuesday, November 16

a type of mother

Recently I was looking through our pile of used spiral notebooks for some scratch paper.  Typically at the end of the school year as we put all our schooling stuff away, we pull all the used papers out of these notebooks for our records and throw them on the pile with the freshly lined pages still intact.  These notebooks work well for the littles in the family.  Or for mothers who need some scratch paper.  Except this is what I found inside the first notebook I opened:
Page 
after
page 
of math calculations.
The entire spiral notebook was full of equations and numbers and writing in every single possible space.  How the notebook ended up where it did was indeed a mystery. But the feeling inside my heart upon seeing it was no mystery.  For you see, homeschooling has turned me into something else. Hmmm, want to know more?  Head over to Heart of the Matter Online to read my article about another kind of mother.


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Monday, November 15

Simple Woman's Daybook for November 15


For today November 15

Outside my window.....the early morning skies are dark and gray with chilly temperatures.

I am thinking.....about how busy the week ahead is looking right now.

I am thankful.....for God's continued provision for our family.

I am wearing.....a denim skirt and my pink hooded sweatshirt.

I am hearing.....my husband talk to the dog in the kitchen.

I am creating.....a baby quilt and hope to have time to cut out the pieces this week to be able to sew it next week.

I am going.....to keep phone calls short this week.

I am reading....a book a friend loaned me to look through which I've decided to put on my Christmas wish list.
 
I am praying.....for a short and wonderful labor for a friend.
 
I am remembering.....sledding and ice skating on Thanksgiving Day many years ago.  If we keep up this cold snowy pattern, the kids may be able to enjoy those activities this year for Thanksgiving.

I am hoping.....that we'll get some fresh venison in our freezer this fall.
 
On my mind.....is learning how to use all the Microsoft office products.  One of those old dog new tricks kind of things.
 
From the learning rooms....we are working hard this week in anticipation of taking next week off for a Thanksgiving/hunting break.

Noticing that....this stretch of night flashes is lasting WAY longer than I'd like it to be!

Pondering these words....."Help me not to live this life in the horizontal, never slowing or resting long enough to see your vertical vistas." ~ Michael J. Easley

From the kitchen.....there will be a bit of baking so the menfolk have some goodies to take along to the hunting camp.
 
Around the house....are mittens, hats, socks, boots, snowpants, and coats that have been placed in strategic places to dry from our wet snow.

One of my favorite things.....are the candle scents that come with autumn.

A few plans for the rest of the week.....include getting things ready for my hunting menfolk,  connecting one daughter with another daughter for a mini-vacation, a midweek early morning women's Bible study at church with a Bible study in our home the same evening, getting a son home from college, putting in some work hours, and hopefully being a birth doula for my friend's fifth baby!  Time to come out, sweet baby!

Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you.... 
It's a hard life if you are one of my garden pumpkins as you have to sometimes endure snow and frost as autumn decorations before coming into the house for pumpkin seed harvesting!


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


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Saturday, November 13

a close encounter of the best kind

Sometimes it's hard to know where to begin a blog post because you have to think back to the beginning in order to begin, if that makes any sense.  Sooo, let me think.....


It all began when a friend recommended a particular blog to me about four years ago thinking I'd enjoy it on several levels and she was right!  I enjoyed reading Quiet Life from the beginning as well as interacting with Donna's readers in the comment section.  However, I hadn't expected the wonderful friendships that would develop through this blog and which have become a great blessing to me as we began connecting through email and facebook.  


What has even been more of a surprise is finding out that we even have common "in real life" friends.  How fun it was to meet a fellow Quiet Life reader over a year ago at her daughter's wedding in my church when her daughter married the son of a friend AND I saw Jenny again this past summer at a conference as we also share a passion to work in pregnancy resource centers.


About a month ago an opportunity came up to connect with another Quiet Life reader as she would be in my area at a Christian camp to lead worship for a women's retreat. She and I have many "in real life" friends in common and I could hardly wait to meet her.  What a blessing it was to give her a hug in person and spend some quality chatting time together!  This was followed by sitting with her and her family for supper in the big dining hall.


Of course, the highlight of the visit was gathering with the women for their evening worship and message time.
How do I describe how Steph's fingers float over the keyboard for song after song?  Or the deep richness of her voice as she sings to our Heavenly Father?   What a gift He has given her as she shares her musical talent with those of us who have a heart to worship!  It was a blessing to be part of this small gathering knowing that Steph travels all over the country - and world - to use her gift to minister to other women and you can catch a glimpse of her music here 


I can't help but smile as I think of how our Heavenly Father makes the world a little bit smaller as He connects people together and allows us to have close encounters of the best kind with one another.  Can there be any greater encouragement?


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Friday, November 12

if you like cake.....

Every once in awhile I try a new recipe that has passed the test to be worthy to share with others.  Since this recipe received rave reviews from those who taste tested it at our home Bible study the other night, it easily makes its appearance on my blog.  The recipe was a clipping from a 2006 Sunday newspaper and I suggest you only make it *IF* it will all be eaten in one sitting by a large group of people as it is quite rich and you don't want any leftovers staring at you each time you walk into the kitchen!


Holy Cow Cake


1 package plain devil's food cake mix
1 1/3 cups water
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3 large eggs
1 jar (8 oz) caramel topping
1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk
4 Butterfinger candy bars (2.1 oz each), crushed 
1 container (12 oz) frozen whipped topping, thawed
1 package (8oz) cream cheese, room temperature


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Lightly spray a 13 x 9 baking pan with cooking oil.  


Place cake mix, water, oil and eggs into a large mixing bowl.  Blend with an electric mixer on low speed for one minute.  Scrape down sides of the bowl well with a rubber spatula, then increase mixer speed to medium and beat two minutes more, scraping sides as needed. Pour batter into the prepared pan smoothing the top.


Bake cake until it springs back when lightly pressed with your finger and just starts to pull away from the sides of the pan, about 35 to 38 minutes.  Remove pan from the oven and place it on a wire rack.  Immediately poke holes in the top of the cake with a drinking straw or chopsticks.


To make topping, place caramel toping and sweetened condensed milk in a small bowl and stir to combine. Spoon this mixture over the warm cake so that it can seep down into the holes.  Sprinkle half of the crushed candy bars over the cake.


Place whipped topping and cream cheese in a large mixing bowl and blend with an electric mixer on low speed until smooth and combined, about one minute. Spread mixture over the top of the candy on the cake. Sprinkle remaining candy pieces over the top.


Place pan, uncovered, in refrigerator to chill cake for about 20 minutes before cutting it into squares and eating.  Store covered in the refrigerator for up to one week.  Makes 20 servings.


Enjoy!  And do let me know if the cake lasts a week in your refrigerator.....


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~



Thursday, November 11

my soldier

Once upon a time we lived with a soldier in our midst.  He was the son that frequently came to the table with camo paint on his face and a green helmet on his head.  His play rifle was never far away and he was known to always have the best micro machine armies whenever doing battle with his brothers. 


That little boy grew up to work with his Dad for a few years, but there was a restlessness in him to follow his heart into the military.  Finally, he took the leap and prided himself on giving his all and his best which took him through Army, Airborne, then into Rangers.


Many prayed for him as he left for his first deployment this past year.  Every time his name came to mind, a prayer was whispered as he served in an unknown location.  It didn't take long to realize that our media in this country covers nothing about our military engagements and some web searching brought up a site that gave a daily online accounting of the activities and fatalities in faraway places in our world.  It made me acutely aware of the sacrifice our military personnel were making and my prayers were whispered with each name on the list knowing that a family in our country would be contacted with the news of the loss of a beloved son.  


Yet, even with the knowledge of the extreme danger my brave son was facing, there was great peace knowing his eternal salvation was secure.  He was doing what God had prepared him for years ago and no matter what happened, I would see him again. Today was living in the dot.   Eternity would be forever.  


When I heard his clear voice recently and realized he was calling from his room on the base back on American soil, it's hard to explain the great relief that flooded my soul.  He was quick to state that the faithful prayers of others kept him safe and protected.  I pass that on to my readers here who have faithfully prayed for him throughout this time.  Thank you from the bottom of my heart!


And on this Veterans Day across our land, be sure to say thank you to a man or woman who has served our country bravely and willingly to the point of ultimate sacrifice with their lives.  Our freedom comes at great cost.....


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Wednesday, November 10

because

As I head out for my early morning women's Bible study, I'll leave you with a thought for today to encourage you:


"Because I first overheard my mother's praise and prayer in the rhythms of her song, and because I first overheard the praise and prayers of others like her, I was later able to hear the voice of God." ~ Kenneth L. Water Sr.


Have a great November day!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Tuesday, November 9

the horse ride of seventy-five

After reading aloud "Paul Revere's Ride" by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, my daughter exclaimed that she really enjoyed the poem.  As I was thinking to myself about whether it was the engaging rhythm of the words or the fact that a horse plays a large role in this poem that caused that reaction, she looked back over to me and asked if I remembered it.  


     "Yes," I easily responded as I recalled all of her older siblings also reading this particular poem.  She continued looking at me as if waiting for me to go on......."Yes, what?" was my response.


     "Do you remember when this actually happened?" she asked.


     "Well, I'd have to be well over two hundred years old to be able to remember it!"  I exclaimed.  Now she looked at me puzzled.  


     "But, mom, it says it happened on the eighteenth of April in seventy-five!  Weren't you still a kid in 1975?" my daughter questioned.


     "Um, it happened in SEVENTEEN seventy-five so I don't think so!" as laughter escaped from under my breath.  


Oh dear.  I've obviously failed in teaching history, haven't I?  Not only was it necessary to review some facts around that time period, but to also share that the poem's information wasn't entirely correct.  Hopefully learning the rest of the story hasn't ruined the fun that comes with reading of the courage of a midnight ride on a wild galloping steed back in seventy-five.....


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~



Monday, November 8

an encouraging vote

Woooo hoooo! My blog has been nominated for "Best Encourager Blog" in the  Homeschool Blog Awards which is put on annually by The Homeschool Post.  A big thank you to those who have nominated me in this category for the fourth year in a row.


If you are one of my regular readers or even a first time visitor - and you don't have to be a homeschooler - please stop over and cast a vote for me during this voting time which will be open through November 18th.  It's so easy to do and it would bless my little heart!


Go to the Homeschool Blog Awards Voting Page, scroll down to Best Encourager Blog and click on it, scroll down to Garden Glimpses, and click on the button next to it to cast your vote. 


With twenty possible homeschool blog categories to vote in this year, I'd also encourage you to check them out as there's so many excellent blogs available to read (click on the blog name) plus it's a great way to meet many different homeschoolers around our country and our world.  


Have fun!  And thanks a bunch!  :-)


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Saturday, November 6

worthy of the night

Remember my recent nightly multi wake-ups?  Just had to share about one of my recent episodes which was a bit interesting.


Sometime during the night my littlest whispered next to my bedside about a dream she was having and trying to cut it short, I whispered back to her that she should go to the bathroom and then crawl into our bed to talk.  As soon as I heard her move away from the bed, I determined that I should perhaps do the same thing and navigated down the hallway - without walking into a wall - to the bathroom off the kitchen.  But I suddenly stopped as I heard the most unusual noise.  


A crunchy crispy noise.


So I slowly moved closer to the noise only to find my husband eating an apple in the darkness of the room!


Apparently he had woken up before our daughter had come into our room and had made his way into the kitchen to get a drink.  Finding nothing tasty to drink in the fridge, he noticed the wonderful apples we had picked up at the farm market the weekend before and instantly grabbed one of these juicy delightfully sweet flavorful apples to eat.
Have you heard about Honeycrisp apples?!  They are the most amazingly wonderful eating apples!  So good that I'm seriously considering where I could plant a couple of honeycrisp apple trees in our yard next year.  Yum!


Of course, I don't recommend eating them during the night and frightening your family by the crunchy crisp noise they make, but they are certainly worthy of a midnight snack!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Friday, November 5

raking excuses

From my gardening flip calendar:  Fallen leaves are almost too beautiful to rake.  I know....excuses, excuses.

The only raking that has gotten done here this fall is the raking the girls have been doing to build jumping piles.  I have not yet, um, picked up a rake to move a single leaf.  Yikes!  Think there's still time?  Of course, my excuse is that those leaves really are, um,  almost too beautiful to rake  :-X

How about you?  All your autumn chores done in preparation for the winter ahead?

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Thursday, November 4

:::yawn:::

Although it would happen off and on before, the night time wake-up ritual of my youngest has definitely gotten worse since August.  That was the month a son left for college and we did a major bedroom switch around.  After sharing a room together for years, one daughter finally got to have her own bedroom leaving her two sisters behind.  Not a problem as the bedroom could now easily be separated between the two.  


The problem was that these two sisters had slept together in a double bed for about five years.  The oldest rejoiced at having her own bed, but the youngest snuggle bug was not quite as excited.  In fact, her lack of excitement quickly became my lack of excitement as she kept waking up at night.  She was missing hearing the comfort of her sister breathing next to her and the extra warmth of another body in her bed.  Knowing that her sister was on the other side of the room didn't help.  So, there were many trips made into mom and dad's bedroom where we'd often just tell her to crawl into bed with us.


I thought this would be a very temporary thing.  


Not.  


Like last night.  She woke up and stood by my bed giving her night time dialogue which is always very detailed and long.  I've learned to shorten it by immediately offering her a spot in our bed, but that didn't work.  She needed to tell me all the details about what had woken her up, her vivid dreams, getting up and going to the bathroom, and how she thought she may be able to go back to bed acknowledging that it may help for me to come into her room and lie down with her for a few minutes.  However, she knew I was tired and probably wouldn't want to get up, so she would go back to bed and think about good things to dream about and perhaps then she'd fall back to sleep.  Which I'm guessing is exactly what happened.  


I realize this isn't the first time I've talked about this topic on my blog, but this time is different because it's combining with a new stretch of multiple wake-ups all night long with night flashes which is something else I've already talked about here.  


It reminds me of all those years of baby nights resulting in sleep deprivation where I would long for a nice extended lengthy stretch of sleep.  Just one good night to catch up a bit.  Just ONE!


So, if you bump into me, please don't comment about the dark circles under my eyes or the fact that I can't put a sentence together or my yawning during our conversations as apparently it's still my normal even after thirty years of mothering.....


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Wednesday, November 3

an unblended difference

"Our Lord is searching for people who will make a difference.  Christians dare not dissolve into the background or blend into the neutral scenery of the world." ~ Charles Swindoll


It's been a busy day around here as I've been working on a project which was bathed in prayer and has the potential of making a difference in the lives of others.  What have you been up to today?  Make sure you whisper a prayer as you do it so that it may bless others along your path!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Tuesday, November 2

v.o.t.e.

Since I tend not to write about politics on my blog, here's my political statement for the year:


"The future of this republic is in the hands of the American voter." ~ Dwight D. Eisenhower


And if you ask me why, it's because I've always heard this:


"To make democracy work, we must be a nation of participants, not simply observers. One who does not vote has no right to complain." ~  Louis L'Amour


What are you waiting for?  Get thee to thy polls! You'll be setting an example for your children of engaging in one of the duties of an American citizen.


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Monday, November 1

the daily give thanks

Welcome to November!
I have to confess that November is probably my least favorite month.  The leaves are off the trees and everything looks gray and brown outside my window.  The weather tends to be just as gray with many cloudy days as the temperatures stay in the chilly level.  There's the sense that snow and cold are right around the corner and you hope that corner is December and not November.

And yet, my favorite holiday arrives later in this month - Thanksgiving!  I so thoroughly enjoy the food and fellowship that happens around my kitchen table.  Plus we've always taken that week off from schooling as it's a huntin' week for the menfolk.  But primarily it's a time when thankful hearts are all around and God is given the praise He should be receiving EVERY day of the year.

"Oh give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever!" ~ I Chronicles 16:34

I am so thankful for His steadfast love and am glad that I can glance at my calendar each day of the month to be reminded of that very love on those gray days of my least favorite month when my heart would prefer to grumble.

Be thankful!

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~
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