Saturday, October 29

sunflowers and squirrels

Must be a long hard winter ahead because the squirrels are just crazy this fall.  They are getting blatantly brave right now with their primary spot being our front deck as they empty out the sunflowers from the birdfeeders despite our and the dogs best efforts.
Then this week I looked out my bedroom window and noticed a squirrel swaying on the sunflower stalk that I had stuck into my cornstalks by our kitchen door porch. (Note all those cute little pumpkins that came from my garden and the big ones, too!)
He kept grabbing the seeds out of the sunflower which was really quite fascinating to watch, but I soon got tired of him ruining my fall decorations and opened the kitchen door to scare him away while noting that the other sunflowers that were part of the decorations were now eaten away.  Guess it's a good lesson on how God provides for ALL his creatures, eh?

Thinking of the weekend ahead, my heart goes out to those on the East coast and their significant snowy last weekend of October forecast.....yikes!  

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Friday, October 28

the quilts of fall 2011

It is one of my favorite times of the year!  Amy's semi-annual Quilt Festival!  I wish I had a quilt to enter, but alas, my quilting time has been non-existent for quite awhile.  But if you are a quilter, I encourage you to stop over to visit Amy and take a tour of hundreds of creative beautiful quilts that will be posted by participants around the world.  




Enjoy!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Tuesday, October 25

upside down YUM

It may be old-fashioned and the younger generation may not have even heard of such a thing, but it is the yearly choice of my husband for his birthday - pineapple upside down cake.  It's most delicious served warm right out of the oven with a scoop of vanilla ice cream to melt into the gooey yumminess.  

Enjoy the picture and perhaps make one for YOUR family!

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Monday, October 24

rejoice!

As I was looking through my posts, I realized that I had never published my first post of the month which is always my calendar post.  There it was still sitting as a draft. Completely ready and set for publishing.  It made me wonder about what distracted me that day.  Then I thought back to the first day of October and remembered that I had an early morning check-out from a hotel with a day of waiting in airports, flying over our country, and driving home.  That was only a few weeks ago, yet it feels like it was much longer than that as life quickly picked up pace as soon as I returned home.  

So, here's the original post for October first and a good reminder for me as we get close to closing out this month....
Honestly, I cannot believe how fast September went by :::::blink::::: and it was gone!  I'm looking forward to things perhaps slowing down a bit once we get through the first week of this new month.  

I love the happy sunflowers on this calendar page as it reminds me of my happy sunflowers growing in my garden this summer.  Even more, I love the verse that goes with October:

"Rejoice in the Lord always; I will say it again, Rejoice!" ~ Philippians 4:4

We don't always feel like rejoicing, do we?  Perhaps that is why Paul needed to say it again....REJOICE!

When I look back over my life at some of the difficult moments that certainly didn't feel like ones that were worth rejoicing over, I can see now that God had a plan for those moments for GOOD.  Those moments actually formed my character in positive ways.  Realizing that as well as seeing God's faithfulness firsthand makes rejoicing a little easier task.

Try it!  When life is difficult, say out loud or even in a whisper, "Thank you, Jesus!" and see what happens......


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Friday, October 21

taking a flying leap

Whenever I download my camera onto my computer, there's always a few pictures that are a surprise to me.  Sometimes my kids will quickly grab my camera to take a picture of interest. Here's two of the latest surprises that showed up:
Apparently while the girls were sitting at the kitchen table doing their schoolwork, they noticed a squirrel out on the deck who was robbing the birdfeeder of sunflower seeds.
As soon as one of the girls opened the screen door, the squirrel took a flying leap!  

Both of the pictures are kind of neat, don't you think?

Of course, the pictures immediately made me sad as the brillant colors of that day are long gone as our woods is now back to the browns and grays that will remain until spring....

Enjoy your day whatever the color!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Wednesday, October 19

about the inside

There is no doubt in my mind that homeschooling allows parents to place a wonderful godly foundation into the lives of their children.  It is a wonderful gift that we can give our children as we can freely talk about God in any subject area of their schooling.  As they memorize Scripture and come to know God's Word through their studies, their knowledge of who God is deepens.  Yet, this morning I was reminded of the hollowness that can be there.....

"These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.  They worship me in vain;  their teachings are but rules taught by men." ~ Matthew 13:8-9 (see Isaiah 29:13, also)

As parents, all we see are the outsides of our children.  We can even go through a checklist of all the things we see as positives in their faith in God. Yet, we as parents cannot see their hearts and can so easily be deceived by what we see on the outside.  Only God sees the heart.....

"But the LORD said to Samuel, 'Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him.  The LORD does not look at the things man looks at.  Man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.'" ~ First Samuel 16:7

We can continually pour knowledge about God into their lives which is a wonderful and honorable thing, but if their little hearts within remain unchanged it is meaningless.  

We cannot change their hearts, only God can.

As I consider how much darker the world around us is getting, my heart pleads with those of you who are in the midst of parenting to get on your knees and tap into the power of prayer for your children.  Pray for the Holy Spirit to work in the hearts of your children as they recognize the work Jesus Christ did on the cross for them to become their Lord and Savior. This will allow them to  grow in their love for their Heavenly Father and give them the ability to use all their knowledge about God to spread His love, forgiveness, and hope in the world around them.  

Truly, your prayers have much more influence and power than all the knowledge in the world. Use prayer OFTEN and trust God to do His work in heart changing so that the inside matches the outside!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Friday, October 14

what if thanks

One statement has been stuck on my mind all week long.  It was a simple question that someone had as their Facebook status:

"What if you woke up today with only the things you thanked God for yesterday?"

What if?

Immediately I was thankful for having had children in my house for so many years as our prayers have been simple and thankful:

*Thank you for our warm house.

*Thank you for providing work for our dad.

*Thank you for our garden and yummy things to eat.

*Thank you for watching over our brother so far away.

*Thank you for the clothes we have to wear.

*Thank you for keeping us healthy.

And the list continues.......  

There has been a good blend of thankfulness with requests and the children have witnessed God's faithfulness as He has answered their simple requests and they have responded with thankfulness.

Perhaps at times the prayers have seemed repetitive, yet a pattern was set in their lives to be thankful for all things, especially the daily basic needs. 

So, back to the question which I think is more relevant for adults than perhaps children.

"What if you woke up today with only the things you thanked God for yesterday?

What if?

Are you mindful of the extravagant outpouring of God's love that is present in your life whether it be during trials that come or for your daily basic needs?  Don't worry about being repetitive about simple things as you consider thankfulness. Ask Him to open your eyes to the little details that He provides and remember how much your Heavenly Father wants to hear from you as you thank Him for His provision for your life.  He loves you.  He cares for you.  He wants a relationship with you.

"Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name.  For the LORD is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations." ~ Psalm 100:4-5


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Tuesday, October 11

nomination time



It's that time of the year again!  If you are a homeschool blog hopper or writer, NOW is the time to nominate your favorite homeschool blog in one of TWENTY possible categories.  There are prizes to be awarded to those who will win in the various categories.  My favorite part of this process will come in November when the lists of nominations are available and voting begins.  I love meeting new homeschool bloggers through this process :-)

If you are interested in learning more about these awards and the various categories and prizes available OR if are ready to make a nomination or two, please go to 7th Annual Homeschool Blog Awards

Have fun!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Monday, October 10

Simple Woman's Daybook for October 10



For today October 10th


Outside my window.....the skies are once again blue as a beautiful day ahead is forecast.

I am thinking.....that I would love to sit outside in the yard all day and not move since it could be the last day this warm and beautiful for months.  I just want to soak it in!

I am thankful.....that the Lord is soooo faithful and I have nothing to fear.

I am wearing.....summer-like clothes for one last time before I put them away in the closet for next summer.

I am hearing.....birds cawing out in the field by the house.


I am wondering.....when some things will be your "thorn" or when they aren't meant to be your "thorn" and change needs to occur.  Does that make any sense?


I am creating.....a list of people that need thank you notes. I don't like getting so far behind on this task.
 


I am going.....to head to the garden this morning and plant my garlic.


I am reading.....only my devotional and Bible right now.
 
I am praying.....for a family who suddenly lost their wife and mother last week.
 
I am remembering.....how a cousin and I were both due with a baby on Columbus Day twenty-five years ago.  She had her baby about two weeks before that date and I had mine about two weeks after that date.

I am hoping.....that since several main events are now over that life will really truly settle down into a routine.  It will happen, right?


On my mind.....is my daughter and her family who are still looking for a place to call HOME.  You keep hearing about how incredible the housing market is right now but that hasn't been their experience.
 
From the learning rooms.....my children have been working quite independently and I need to catch up on checking their schoolwork.

Noticing that.....
the woods is looking mighty bare as most of the leaves have already fallen. 

I am looking forward to.....catching up indoors now that the outdoors work is completed for the season.  There will be leaf raking left to do yet, but that doesn't feel like a MUST DO as we always do it in the spring, too.  

Pondering these words.....
"No verse of Scripture yields its meaning to lazy people.
" ~ A.W. Pink

From the kitchen.....are all the jars of carrots that were canned yesterday.  I need to write the number on the lids and put them away in the food pantry downstairs.

Around the house
....are flip flops which the girls seem to think they'll wear until the snow starts flying.

One of my favorite things.....is the scent of autumn which is alive and well each time I step outside.

A few plans for the rest of the week.....include getting some boxes in the mail, many projects for work, Bible studies, and in general a slower pace.

Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you.... 
A peek at some of the jars full of carrots before canning them yesterday.  Carrots are the prettiest brightest things to have on my pantry shelves.


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


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Thursday, October 6

never useless

Love what I read this morning:

"We cannot be useless while we are doing and suffering God's will, whatever it may be found to be.  And we can always do that.  If we are bringing forth the fruits of the Spirit, we are not useless.  And we can always do that. If we are increasing in the knowledge of God's will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding, we are not useless.  And we can always do that.  While we pray, we cannot be useless.  And we can always do that.  God will always find us a work to do, a niche to fill, a place to serve, nay, even a soul to save, when it is His will, and not ours, that we desire to do;  and if it should please Him that we should sit still for the rest of our lives, doing nothing else but waiting on Him, and waiting for Him, why should we complain?  Here is the patience of the saints." ~ Anthony W. Thorold

I hope you found this as encouraging as I did! Remember......you can always do that!

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Wednesday, October 5

peace on the horizon

"What is meant by the peace that passeth all understanding?  It does not mean a peace no one can comprehend.  It means a peace that no amount of reasoning will bring.  You cannot get it by thinking. There may be perfect bewilderment and perplexity all round the horizon, but yet your heart can rest in perfect security because He knows, He loves, He leads." ~ A.B. Simpson

My heart is thankful for encouragement right when I need it! If your horizon is currently full of bewilderment, perplexity, confusion, uncertainty, you name it -  turn your heart to the One who knows, loves, and leads!  He is faithful!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Monday, October 3

patiently loving

As I glanced at my calendar and the busy full week ahead, I knew there was no mistake in the timing of this paragraph in my devotional this morning:

"Bursts of impatience only demonstrate that we are more concerned with our own agendas than with the needs and struggles of others.  So let's all take a deep breath and turn our focus away from ourselves by patiently loving others instead of ourselves in the midst of stress." ~ Joe Stowell

Thinking I've had enough more than enough experiences to make me an extremely patient person, God has ways of gently humbling me to grow more of this fruit of the Spirit by giving me opportunities to be stretched a bit more.  

This will be a week of practicing that very thing and it will begin this morning when I head to the Department of Motor Vehicles to renew my driver's license.  I'm guessing this place in my area is no different than others around the country - long lines with lots of people who have unusual questions when they finally do get to the window which makes everyone in line wait more.  

Now that I've read this devotional this morning, I'm going to challenge myself to see how I can show the love of Jesus even in a long line of people at the DMV.  Think I can do it?

What about you?  Have a challenging situation coming up that will need patience that is over and beyond your usual levels?  Take a deep breath, forget yourself, and focus on others!

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Saturday, October 1

grasping the possible

Faith is a grasping of Almighty power;
The hand of a man laid on the arm of God;
The grand and blessed hour
In which the things, impossible to me,
Become the possible, O Lord, through Thee.
~ Anna E. Hamilton




Blessings,
Tammy ~@~
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