Thursday, June 30

head out of doors



"A taste for the beautiful is most cultivated out of doors." ~ Henry David Thoreau

Ohhhh, how I love the summer and wandering through my yard to see the beauty of my flowers!  

Do take time to stop and sniff the non-roses of the world!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Wednesday, June 29

the hurrying sun

"The sun rises and the sun sets, and hurries back to where it rises." ~ Ecclesiastes 1:5

Now isn't that the truth?!

I'm finding that it seems like the sun is hurrying even more the older I get AND the sun especially hurries during the summer months.  Can you believe that we are almost to the Fourth of July?  That is always the marker for my summers and once that date comes and goes the summer quickens even more.  

Off to get busy before the sun is setting and hurrying to rise again!

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Monday, June 27

the thorn of character

In reading about Paul's *thorn* found in Second Corinthians 12:7 -10, my devotional said this:

"God seems to value character more than our comfort, often using the very elements that cause us the most discomfort as His tools in fashioning that character." ~ Philip Yancey

Ever feel like God's doing a lot of character work in your life?!  Ever feel like saying enough already?!  Ever feel like tears won't even be enough to help with the discomfort?!

THEN God has you right where He wants you!

".....For when I am weak, then I am strong." ~ Second Corinthians 12:10

"I can do all things through him who strengthens me." ~ Philippians 4:13

Call upon His strength and watch Him take your thorn and fashion it into  Christlike characteristics that will bring glory to His name!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Friday, June 24

a moment for the future

"How am I going to live today in order to create the tomorrow I am committed to?" ~ Anthony Robbins

We often like to think about the future, but just as often don't think of how this very present moment will impact that future.

How we live today will affect our tomorrow. 

How we respond to our spouse, our children, our family, our friends, our co-workers, or even complete strangers....each encounter in this very present moment will impact our future and theirs.  

As a believer in Jesus Christ, if you are truly loving the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength, THEN that love relationship will flow into loving your neighbor which includes every person named above.  

Reflect the love of Jesus into the lives of others and impact the future for eternity starting NOW!

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~



Thursday, June 23

joyfully counting

It's finally here.  Let's just say that the countdown has been L.O.N.G.

Although I believe the countdown began last June 24th, officially it went up on her wall this winter.
I had to take a picture because I couldn't believe she had this taped to her bedroom wall over the winter to faithfully mark off each day.  I mean, we've had kids that are excited about having the next birthday in the family or having a birthday next month or next week, but our youngest has been thinking about her birthday for about a year!  Not only that, but she's been accumulating a list of things she wanted as presents.  When one of her older brothers recently requested a list of possible ideas for her birthday, I typed out THIRTY-SIX items.  (Of course, it was 37 but she miscounted along the way).  

I have never had a child so birthday c.R.a.Z.y!

Could it be a syndrome that the youngest of the family seems to develop? I have no idea.  

All I know is that her arrival may have come as a surprise, yet God knew there'd be no surprise in how blessed we'd be to have her as part of our family!  

Happy birthday, Lovey!  

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Wednesday, June 22

avoiding green mush

Last evening our family was blessed by a farmer neighbor when he stopped by bearing gifts - two extra large ziplock bags packed with fresh asparagus!  As I stuffed them into our refrigerator, my mind was whirling with how we would ever eat so much asparagus without eating large servings three times a day plus for snacks.  


Then I considered freezing it.  Looked online and wasn't very encouraged with the results I was reading about freezing asparagus.  Apparently it becomes very soft and mushy.  


I would at least like to attempt freezing some of it.  Have any of you tried freezing asparagus and have some great tips for me? 


And if you are one of my local readers, love eating fresh asparagus, and would be blessed to have some, please give me a call as I'd love to share some of my bounty!


Blessings,
Tammy

Monday, June 20

Simple Woman's Daybook for June 20



For today June 20

Outside my window.....the skies are heavy gray with some rain on the way.

I am thinking.....about tomorrow being the longest daylight day of the year!  YIPPEEEEE!

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

I am wearing.....my Green Bay Packer sweatshirt thrown over a lime green t-shirt and dark blue workout pants.  I'm in relaxation mode :-)

I am hearing.....the refrigerator running.  I think the kids are in and out of it way too much this time of the year as they are ALWAYS hungry lately.

I am creating.....a list of pictures I need to print out for the grandpas of the family.

I am going.....to write some long overdue thank you notes this evening.

I am reading.....Experiencing God by Henry Blackaby.
 
I am praying.....for my eyes to be opened to what GOD wants me to see so that I'm more closely following His will and not mine.
 
I am remembering.....how quickly the calendar moves to the Fourth of July every summer.

I am hoping.....
to have enough time to finish planting my flowers before the rain starts.


On my mind.....is all that needs to get done this week.
 
From the learning rooms.....with the exception of a few corrections, we are done for this school year.

Noticing that.....the woods is completely full of green right now.

Pondering these words....."Don't measure excellence by the world's standards." ~ Henry Blackaby

From the kitchen.....
have been lots of rhubarb desserts lately.

Around the house....are little piles of this and that after getting home late last night after a weekend away.  Time to put things away and get the house straightened up.

One of my favorite things.....is picking real life flowers from my yard.  My peonies are just starting to bloom.  I simply adore them!

A few plans for the rest of the week.....include office time, two meetings, a daughter's birthday, weeding the garden, and cleaning my desk AGAIN.   

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

One of my favorite spring yard flowers is my bleeding heart plant that is from a cutting from my mom's house.  I wish it flowered longer than it does, but I guess I feel that way about most of my spring perennials as their blooming season is too blooming short!


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


Enjoy the rest of June!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Saturday, June 18

speak up

Here's my quote for the weekend:


"Appreciation can make a day, even change a life. Your willingness to put it into words is all that is necessary." ~ Margaret Cousins


Take some time to speak some appreciation into another person's life.  You never know how it could change their outlook, their day, or even their life!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Wednesday, June 15

unexceptionally exclaiming

Beware as this seems to unexpectedly be an exclamation point kind of post!


"When God does exceptional things through unexceptional people, then others recognize that only God could have done it.  If you feel weak, limited, and ordinary, take heart!  You are the best material through which God can work!" ~ Henry Blackaby


Waking up as an unexceptional kind of person this morning, these words were an encouragement!  Looking forward to how God will work on this day!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Tuesday, June 14

spell that cracker

May I interrupt this beautiful summer day to share with you an impulse treasure I found at the grocery store yesterday afternoon?
Knowing how much I LOVE the game Scrabble and knowing how much my children LOVE Cheez-its, it seemed like the perfect snack!  Now instead of chowing down these little cheesy crackers in an instant, my children will need to spell a word approved by their Scrabble lovin' mother and then they can chow down the approved letters.  Who ever thought there'd be educational food?!  Works for me!

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Thursday, June 9

may I interrupt you a moment?

"He has a right to interrupt your life.  He is Lord.  When you accepted Him as Lord, you gave Him the right to help Himself to your life anytime He wants." ~ Henry Blackaby

Interruptions.  My life is full of interruptions from the start of the day to the finish.  It is true of my life as a mother and it is true of my life in ministry.  I have found that the more I fight those interruptions, the harder life gets....and the crabbier I get.  It has become much easier to go with the flow.  And smile.  And wonder what the Lord is up to at that moment with that interruption.  

So, when I read this quote this morning, it put interruptions in an even more clear light.  A reminder once again that life is not about me, but about Him.  I'm not my own, but bought with a price.  I'm HIS and need to live accordingly. If He's my Lord and Master, I need to serve Him where He shows me. Even with lots of interruptions. It's knowing that those interruptions have His purposes written all over them that suddenly makes them important and not annoying.

Soooo, if the Lord interrupts your plans today, smile.  Be willing to see what HIS plans may be for you!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Wednesday, June 8

go out for launch

A word or two from my devotional this morning - "If you do not cut the moorings, God will have to break them by a storm and send you out.  Launch all on God, go out on the great swelling tide of His purpose, and you will get your eyes open.  If you believe in Jesus, you are not to spend all your time in the smooth waters just inside the harbour bar, full of delight, but always moored; you have to get out through the harbour bar into the great deeps of God and begin to know for yourself, begin to have spiritual discernment." ~ Oswald Chambers


Ahhhh, how much we love the smooth waters and calm seas!  But ahhhh, how much more God has to reveal to us about Him when we are open to launching all of our life on His purposes!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~


P.S.  I did have to smile when I considered the title of this as perhaps there's people who will read the subject line quickly as "go out for LUNCH" and won't even read the rest of what I've written since they'll immediately be obedient THEN I thought about how even God can use going out to lunch to launch someone out of the moorings of smooth water and into His purposes.  You never know who you will bump into during a lunch out or how that could change your course!  


P.S.S.  Soooooo, have fun whether lunching or launching!  To God be the glory!

Tuesday, June 7

a worthy friend

"Oh, the comfort, the inexpressible comfort of feeling safe with a person, having neither to weigh thoughts nor measure words, but pouring them all out, just as they are, chaff and grain together, certain that a faithful hand will take and sift them, keep what is worth keeping, and with a breath of kindness blow the rest away."  ~ Dinah Craik

Awww, do you have a friend like this?  Are you a friend like this?  

It's hard to find an earthly friend who would meet these requirements and just as hard to be such a friend.

Jesus.

He perfectly fits the description of the perfect friend.  He is completely trustworthy and faithful.  Always available. Readily able to hear you pour out your thoughts.  Perfectly capable of handling anything that comes His way.   Unconditionally loving.  Abundantly caring.  

Jesus.


What a friend we have in Him!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Monday, June 6

a speck of dirt away

Once upon a time it was easy to recruit garden helpers, especially when there were lots of little boys living here. You know, boys and dirt and rocks.  Perfect combination, especially when you give them little hand shovels. 

However, little boys grow up and the girls at the end of the family move into prime gardening age.  Girls and dirt and spiders and bugs.  Bad combination, even when suggesting it's a good way to get a tan.

That leaves a mother with a big ol' garden staring her in the face as spring quickly wanes turning into summer and planting time is prime.

The first gardening task is always to clean-up along the inside of the garden fence as the weeds and tall field grass love to encroach as soon as the snow melts.  After receiving minimal help for this task, I had no choice but to forge ahead.  

Can I tell you my heart was weak?  That I really didn't feel like doing it myself?  That the task seemed so overwhelming during a time when life is so overwhelming that I was a speck of dirt away from saying forgetaboutit?  Do you realize how rare it is for me to say I don't want to garden? But I was at that point and strongly wavering as I worked along the garden fence line and pondered what a summer would be like without all the care of a garden.  Imagine all the free time I would have and the relaxation that would come with it.  

Each time after I returned back to the garden after going into the house to get a drink and cool down a bit on this rather warm day, I continued the wrestling within my mind figuring it still wasn't too late to make the decision NOT to plant.  

By the end of Saturday, the fence line work was done.  I did a little planting as the daylight was beginning to fade and the mosquitoes were beginning to invade.  Time to head in for bed after a long day.

The birds began singing quite early on Sunday morning announcing the glorious day ahead.  As I woke up and had a perfect cup of my husband's coffee making skills in my hand, back out to the garden I went.  The sun was shining, the temperature was perfect, the birds were alive in the woods, and the only thing left for me to do was praise God as I began planting row after row.  With my hands in the dirt measuring the spaces between each seed, my heart was singing.  THIS is what gardening is all about!  I was quickly reminded that THIS is what brings peace and relaxation to my soul when life is overwhelming.  My garden is the place where God gives me the quiet time I need to see Him more clearly.

As I went into the house to shower and get ready for church, my heart was even more ready to spend time worshipping and praising God!

Are you going through a difficult time right now?  Not wanting to forge ahead?  Wrestling with continuing on a hard path?  Can I encourage you to persevere?  There's absolutely no doubt in my mind that God has a blessing waiting for you at the end that will turn your ponderings into praise!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Friday, June 3

the long to short version

It's been resistance for a bit on my part.  For awhile.  She's been wanting her hair cut each time she watches her older sisters get hair cuts and some styling by their oldest sister. Mom keeps simply saying "no".  

With each of my four daughters, I only trimmed the ends of their hair for several years.  I loved their little girl long hair and always felt sad when they made the BIG cut as it seemed to suddenly grow them up.  Those kinds of things are hard on a mother's heart!

So, with much pleading when we were all getting haircuts last week, I weakened.  Call it perhaps being overtired and easily worn down?  I dunno.  All the girls presented their case to mom in support of their youngest sister and I simply said "yes".  
After washing her hair, I took one last long look at my youngest daughter's hair.  It was ponytailed for locks of love and entirely snipped off in a moment.  Some trimming and snipping and styling was done.
Before I knew it, she looked like an entirely different little girl.  My youngest grew up in moments in her new shorter hair style.  

Every time I look at her I still take a double take as I feel my heart momentarily sigh.  Then I note her big smile. They grow up entirely too fast.  Just sayin'.....

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Thursday, June 2

leaning in the right direction

A new month!  June has arrived in full blossoms throughout our yard as our short season of spring will quickly turn into summer.  

With June has come the following verse:  "Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding." ~ Proverbs 3:5  The older I get the more I find that my own understanding is not worth leaning on. Not one bit.  My knowledge and wisdom is often foolishness when placed before God's throne.  It's much better to TRUST the LORD in all things and join Him where He's leading for His wisdom truly is supreme.   The more I find how faithful He is as I trust in Him, the more I want to lean on Him!

May June be a month of leaning in the right direction....God's direction!

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~







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