Friday, July 29

more blossoms

Everything in the garden is heavily blossoming right now.....
The potato plants
The tomato plants
The bean plants
The squash plants

The pea plants are also blossoming and my rows of zinnias are just starting to pop a flower here or there.  Such a wonderful summer of lots of blossoms!  Should be a wonderful summer of harvest, too, in the next few weeks.

Enjoy your gardening days while they are here!

Tammy ~@~

Wednesday, July 27

don't be LAME

As I read this from my devotional this morning, I actually laughed out loud:

"Randall Peterson, a retired autoworker, thinks there could be interest for a new kind of Bible.  He sarcastically says that a publisher ought to create an electronic Bible that would allow for editing from the pew.  That way individuals and churches could make the Bible say what they want it to say.  He says it could be called 'LAME' Bible:  'Locally Adaptive Multifaith Edition' and 'could be sold to any church regardless of what it believes.'" ~ Anne Cetas

After laughing out loud, I was immediately struck with the remembrance of a conversation that I had yesterday and my laughter turned to sorrow.  Time was short when the topic of salvation came up as I listened to this person's interpretation of what Scripture had to say.  My mind was swirling with a response, but the steady talker ate up the time I had to spare as he picked and chose verses that could back him up yet leaving out other key verses found in Scripture.  Since this is a person who crosses my path from time to time, there may be a possibility of gently sharing my disagreement with his interpretation. However, until then he will be sharing a viewpoint with others giving them a false hope.  And that makes my heart sad.  

God's Truth will stand no matter how we try to revise it.  My hope is that this Truth will open our eyes and revise us in the process allowing us to share what truly is GOOD NEWS to others!

Tammy ~@~

Tuesday, July 26

mystery bugs

When I was taking pictures of my hydrangeas, I noticed several bugs that looked like this:
I don't recall seeing them before, but that doesn't mean they haven't been around before.  Perhaps they were more noticeable because I saw many crawling all over my blossoms.  
They were very busy.  Often they'd fly away if I got too close.  
And often they were apparently in a breeding mode as the bugs were often traveling in pairs.  I thought perhaps they were a bug that preferred hydrangeas, but then I found them on my veggie plants in the garden as well.

Anyone know what these little bug critters are?

Tammy ~@~

Monday, July 25

Simple Woman's Daybook for July 25

For today July 25

Outside my window.....the skies are mainly blue with a cloud here or there.  Looks to be a gorgeous summer day ahead in the low 80's.

I am thinking.....that sometimes I think too much! All that thinking leads to a multitude of discussions which causes more thinking.  It would be nice to have a chunk of quiet time to catch up on my endless thinking.  What do you think about that?!  LOL!

I am thankful.....for God's provision of good health for all of our family.

I am orangey salmon skirt, white tank top, and my yellow, orangey, green flowered shirt over it.    

I am hearing.....
the mourning doves coo outside my bedroom window.

I am wondering.....if I'd have enough energy to do all the things I need to do *if* there were more hours in the day!

I am creating.....a new journal to write my thanksgiving praises. 

I am going.....
to get a letter in the mail to a son who is somewhere faraway.

I am still reading.....Experiencing God by Henry Blackaby.
I am praying.....for a heart that will continue to be teachable.    
I am remembering.....classmates from high school as there's talk about a class reunion yet this summer.

I am hoping.....
to check a few big things off my "To do" list this week.     

On my how much I dislike it when my older kids need to learn life's lessons the hard way.
From the learning's time to think about ordering our schooling materials for the fall.

Noticing that.....
the summer daylight hours are shrinking.    
I am looking forward to.....eating more fresh veggies from the garden in the weeks ahead.

Pondering these words.....
"Establishing goals is all right if you don't let them deprive you of interesting detours." ~ Doug Larson

From the kitchen.....
is some freshly baked banana bread that a daughter made last night for our family.

Around the house....are too many rolling clumps of fur as the dogs continue to shed mightily with the heat we've had over the last few weeks.     

One of my favorite kissing my youngest grandson's cheeks over and over again.  He's such a sweet smile filled baby!

A few plans for the rest of the week.....include office time, the start of soccer practices for my two youngest, garden weeding, and continued pecking away of the baskets filled with ironing in the cool basement.

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

A sampling of my hydrangeas which have just started blooming.  The bush is wonderfully loaded with flowers this summer which will keep my vases filled.

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

Enjoy the rest of July as it's almost gone!

Tammy ~@~

Saturday, July 23

grand observations

Since I have found through the years that having nine children tends to reveal all the exceptions to the rules of generalized things about kids, most likely the very small scale study I am about to mention will fall through the cracks as totally inaccurate in the years to come. I'm okay with that as it will keep life interesting as I continue to observe.

Having had my oldest daughter and her two little ones and her dog here for almost two weeks, I've made some observations that includes all four of my grandchildren.

*In the two families with grandchildren, their oldest child is a daughter.  In each family this firstborn daughter is independent, high spirited and busy, very particular about clothes, likes to giggle, has imaginary friends, and isn't all about getting kisses from grandma.

*In the two families with grandchildren, their youngest child is a son.  In each family this secondborn son is laid back, will wear anything, makes noises with their mouths, loves the lake water, enjoys snuggling, smiles every time grandma talks to them, and readily accepts kisses from grandma.

*Each one of my grands is simply adored and I find their personalities quite fascinating, especially when they do or say something that resembles their parents growing up. Even little looks on their little faces will zap my heart with a memory of long ago that makes me smile from the inside out.  

*As grandparents it seems that my husband and I have kept much of our same personalities that we have had as parents.  My husband brings home treats for the grands which they can eat immediately if they want even if it is right before a meal and I'm the one telling them they can't walk around with their food and need to sit at the table. See the difference?    

Stay tuned to see if any of my observations hold up through the years!  LOL!

Tammy ~@~

Friday, July 22

new eyes for life

Summer has been so busy that I haven't had much time to follow national news.  Once in awhile I click on a news link, but for the most part I typically only have time to see what the weather is doing.  And that's okay.  The national news and international news can be so discouraging to read at times.  Especially when you read about the violence and disregard for human life on so many levels.  

This morning my devotional took me to some of my favorite verses in the Bible - Psalm 139.  As I read through verses 13 - 16 and God lovingly handcrafting and creating each new life, I was suddenly struck with the fact that He does this with each and every person that walks on this earth. Not just the ones who come to love, adore, and serve Him, but each and every person.  Even those that I read about in the news who have allowed sin to reign in their life to the point of violence and taking the lives of others.

God lovingly handcrafted even those lives from the beginning. Once upon a time those lives were perhaps snuggled close to a mother as newborn babies.  Their cheeks were kissed. Smiles were shared.  Each new milestone was celebrated. Or perhaps not.  Maybe love didn't greet them as they entered this world.  Maybe their beginnings on this earth would lead them to live their lives completely contrary to Him as they spew hatred into the world. 

But God knew that.  He had a plan.  He loved the world - each and every life - so much that God sent His Son to die for the sins of the world.  Jesus did not come to condemn, but to save.  There is hope.  Eternal hope for each and every life that was lovingly handcrafted by our Creator.  

Simple yet, profound.  It will cause me to look at each person that comes across my path - or is in the news - with brand new eyes as I think back to their beginnings and the hope that is available for each one.  There is new life available for every life through Jesus!

Tammy ~@~

Tuesday, July 19

be cool

It would have been easy to miss the message from God's Word this morning.  How can you NOT commiserate with Jonah as you read about his experience with the scorching wind and blazing sun in the book of Jonah chapter four?Especially when you are feeling much the same way with the scorching wind and blazing sun AND the humidity that soaks your skin?  I mean seriously, has God forgotten that I'm a Northern girl with this Southern climate He has been torturing me with day after day AND night after night?  

Crabby?  Uh huh!  Grumpy?  Uh huh!  Ornery?  UH HUH! Muttering some of the same words Jonah did?  YUP!

All day long I thought about these words in that small chapter of Scripture realizing how self-centered Jonah was and how easily it was to follow in his footsteps.  

Yet hadn't God's love for Jonah been evident throughout all of Jonah's experiences whether he was running from God, praying in a whale, proclaiming God's Word, or angrily muttering his misery?  And hadn't God's love been evident for myself throughout all my own life experiences? Especially during my current muttering through my heat-induced misery?  

As I began to look more closely at recent days I could not help but count my blessings one by one and by doing so the focus left myself and returned to where it should properly be....upon my Heavenly Father.  A good reminder once again that life is not about me and my comfort, but rather about living obediently and reaching a world out there that does not know Him.  A world that needs the refreshment of the Living Water. Seems like a perfect time to offer that, doesn't it?

Be refreshed!  Be cool!  Know YOU are loved!

Tammy ~@~

Saturday, July 16

tucked in with God

As I've been waiting on my girls to get all their things ready for tomorrow morning and to get ready for bed, I sat and read one of my devotionals.  It was soothing to read these words so close to bedtime:

"Notion your mind with the idea that God is there.  If once the mind is notioned along that line, then when you are in difficulties, it is as easy as breathing to remember--Why, my Father knows all about it!  It is not an effort, it comes naturally when perplexities press. Before, you used to go to this person and that, but now the notion of the Divine control is forming so powerfully in you that you go to God about it.  Jesus is laying down the rules of conduct for those who have His Spirit, and it works on this principle--God is my Father, He loves me, I shall never think of anything He will forget, why should I worry?" ~ Oswald Chambers

So nice to be tucked into bed by my Heavenly Father who loves me so much!

Tammy ~@~

Friday, July 15

the many moments of praise

A simple but profound thought from my devotional this morning:

"Long before the discovery of penicillin, other silent killers were at work saving lives by destroying bacteria These silent killers are white blood cells. These hard workers are God's way of protecting us from disease. No one knows how many invasions they have stopped or how many lives they have saved.  They receive little recognition for all the good they do.

The Lord gets similar treatment.  He often gets blamed when something goes wrong, but He seldom gets credit for all the things that go right.  Every day people get up, get dressed, drive or work or school or the grocery store, and return safely to their families.  No one knows how many times God has protected us from harm.  But when there is a tragedy, we ask, "Where was God?"" ~ Julie Ackerman Link

A simple but profound thought that does truly put life in perspective.  How praiseworthy and thankful are we as we consider God's amazing care for us on a moment by moment basis?  What a reminder of how much grace and mercy is ours each day as He loves, protects, and daily works in our lives!  To God be the glory for the great things HE has done!

May your eyes be opened to all the praiseworthy things that are abounding around you on this day!

Tammy ~@~

Tuesday, July 12

it all began with a radish

When it comes to my garden, it truly doesn't take much to get me excited.  In fact, I could spend all my days out there puttering if I didn't have this other life of kids and a house and a job.  Well, maybe not all day as the mosquitoes are nasty first thing in the morning and last thing of the day. But I really do enjoy being out there in the rows of my garden.

Soooo, when we can finally begin eating the fruit of our labor life becomes even more exciting.  Like last evening when I picked and ate THREE radishes that were PERFECT!  I know this may not sound amazing to anyone else, but having perfect radishes is a big deal as they typically get wormy quickly in my garden.  The spinach is looking pickable and the first head of broccoli is about to be cut. Yippeeeeeeeeee!  

Now back to your regularly scheduled summer day :-)  

Tammy ~@~

Monday, July 11

please put on your new toga

From commentary found in my Life Application Bible:  "In Roman society, a youth coming of age laid aside the robe of childhood and put on a new toga.  This represented his move into adult citizenship with full rights and responsibilities."

YES!  Why did society ever drop that visible sign of moving into adulthood?  No one could continue acting immature and live childish because there was a visible sign of accountability that came with adulthood as they walked through their days.

Such does not seem to be the case in today's society. Although the marker may be coming of age at 18, there does not seem to be a move into adult citizenship with full rights and responsibilities.  There is no question that they do want the full rights, but the responsibilities?  Ahhhh, that often seems to be the part they want to forget about until they are older.  Often they can forget about that until they are older because there are people in their lives that allow them to continue in a lifestyle of immaturity.

Such is the continual struggle when dealing with the society saying one thing to your young adults and you as a parent believing quite the contrary.  

It is hard parenting young adults who still live under your roof.  How do you set boundaries and consequences when society says they have rights, but your household rules say they are not taking care of their responsibilities?

Ahhh, the age old question.

May God continue providing me with wisdom and discernment as I hoe these harder rows of my parenting garden!

Tammy ~@~

Saturday, July 9

lilies in the pink

Following a spring filled with blossoms is a summer filled with blossoms.  My peony bushes were recently full of heavily scented flowers which filled vases in my home. Right now my lilies are beginning to bloom.
This light pink one is loaded with blossoms that are ready to open.  I think this is only its second year, so I'm delighted with how well it is doing.
The color is delightful and a nice change from all the yellow and orange lilies that are more typical around here.   

We've been so dry in our area that I've needed to make a point of watering all the flowers, especially since they've all been so abundantly and spectacularly flowering this year. The extra work is worth the smile in my heart each time I look at the beauty all around me.

Enjoy the glimpses of beauty God sends your way this summer!

Tammy ~@~

Tuesday, July 5

a boxful of encouragement

Once upon a time many many years ago, I enjoyed doing crafty things with my small children.  Then my family grew in numbers and the amount of free time I had shrank as I also watched my creativity disappear into thin air.   POOF!

As our household has been shrinking over the last couple of years, I haven't witnessed my free time growing, however, I'm feeling more creative again.  It's been fun to do a thing here or a thing there.  

Only a couple of problems now.  My eyesight is becoming a problem AND I'm all thumbs!  In other words, I'm a klutzy krafter!   Craft projects have become a real challenge and I've kind of decided I'm not going to spend the time pursuing them anymore.  I'd much rather enjoy watching others do crafting projects quite well like my daughter-in-law.  

Then this weekend I ran across a craft project that I was going to do this past winter until my husband broke his leg and any free moments I thought I would have I suddenly didn't have.  

It was to be a simple craft.  Cover a shoebox with some pretty scrapbook paper that I picked up.  There was the box. There was the paper.  There was the long weekend to do it.

I figured out a template so I could overlap where I needed to on the corners.  Found the glue, a paintbrush, a ruler, and a scissors.  Grabbed the shoebox and the four sheets of pretty paper.  To the kitchen table I went to conquer this craft project.  

Once I stopped laughing at myself for having one of those multiple thumb moments AGAIN, I actually got the paper to stick where it needed to stick.  It didn't turn out perfectly, but it did turn out.
The colors and flowers make me smile.  
The lid fits tightly since I decided to line it, but it'll hold my treasures snugly inside.
And I didn't want to waste any of the scraps so I randomly glued pieces of them inside on the liner.

On my desk at home is a place where I keep encouragement notes that I can look through and find a smile to chase away any discouragement.  Tomorrow my special box is  going in to the office with me to find a place on my shelves as a keeper of the encouragement notes that come my way while I'm there which will help chase away any discouragement that may come my way while I'm working.  

A bunch of thumbs and glue?  Imperfect!

A boxful of encouragement!  Perfect!

Tammy ~@~

Saturday, July 2

independently choosing wisely

As I think about the upcoming celebration of Independence Day which gave our country freedom from Great Britain, it reminds me that we do live independent lives which allow us freedom to make choices daily.  Have you considered your choices in this way:

"Men are choosing every day the spiritual or earthly. And as we choose we are taking our place unconsciously with the friends of Christ or the world.  It is not merely what we say; it is what we prefer." ~ A. B. Simpson

We can say anything, but what does our heart really prefer? To follow Christ or to follow the world?  

This morning as I was reading through Second Corinthians chapter five, the focus of my choices was brought in an even clearer light as I kept coming back to the beginning of verse fourteen and had to look up all the different variations of one word.....

"For the love of Christ.....constraineth(KJV, ASV), controls and urges and impels(AMP), compels(NKJV, NIV), controls(ESV, RSV, NLT, NAS)

Those are strong words!  Does my love of Christ have such power in my life that I would no longer desire to make choices that would revolve around myself, but would instead choose to make choices that would please God?

Live like a new creation!  Live like Christ's ambassador! Live like a fellow worker encouraging those around you!  And do it all for the love of Christ!

Tammy ~@~

Friday, July 1

in the middle of beauty

Did it slip through the door when I wasn't looking?  Could the year really be half over already as this morning I turn the calendar page to July?
"He has made everything beautiful in its time." ~ Ecclesiastes 3:11

As I grow older I can a little more easily understand the concept of time in God's eyes....that a thousand years are like a day to Him (Psalm 90:4).  It's only when you are young that time passes oh so slowly.

Yet with time passing so quickly, I do not want to miss the beauty He has provided in each day.  In its time.  In its perfectly created time.

May my eyes - and my heart! - be opened to what He sees as beautiful in the coming days for if I'm too busy and caught up in my world I'll miss it.....

Tammy ~@~
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