Thursday, November 14, 2013

on birthdays...

Today is my birthday.   I've had A LOT of them.
The year that I turned 40, I wanted to pretend that it didn't Nov 14th was just another day.  This year, celebrating my "29th" birthday, seems so surreal.

This morning as I woke up early, I realized that I don't get excited for them any longer like I did when I was young.  After all, my adorable "little" has a birthday in just 3 days....and that is my focus.

Making his birthday magical

Making his birthday wish come true
Planning his party
Celebrating him

Who could not love this missing tooth smile!

He is after all, my birthday wish.

So happy early birthday little buddy!  I can't wait to celebrate with you for reals in just a few days!

with love,
Mommy Tam-Tam

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Discovering the Star in You

He's 5.  He's not a soccer star, but he thinks he thinks he is.  And that is what is important.

We have done soccer for a few years.  Always fun and pretty laid back.  Most of the time, he is in his own world during game time.  Pretending to be some superhero, or flying a plane.  Practices were always good, learning the drills, following the coach's direction.  This season started out the same way...until he made his first goal during the game.  
That flipped the switch for him.  Now, he IS soccer.  Scoring BIG every game...wanting to win, wanting to score.  Last game, six goals, week before five.

Seeing this transformation in him has really made me see how powerful a "win" is in your life.  It boosts the ego, changes a mindset, ignites faith.  A little success goes so far.  As his momma, I realize how important it is for me to help him get that success.  I can't win for him, but I can celebrate his win.  And when he realizes that he did it:
  • motivation
  • hope
  • faith
  • fun
  • laughter
  • excitement

"Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen."
Hebrews 11:1 

All I have to do is help see the unseen.
That star that was in him the whole time...once unseen is now seen. 

And that's a BIG WIN!

with love,
Mommy Tam-Tam

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Gaining Wisdom...

This week, I've been given a little wisdom.  Specifically, two thoughts that have kept me from doing....well just about any dream I've had.

1.  Linking Negative Events.  What kept Lewis and Clark motivated and ultimately successful on their mission?  They never linked negative events.  Looking back, I've linked negative things together each day.  Giving them power in my life that they never should have had or even been able to obtain on their own.  It was me, not the event, that held me back.

2.  Favor.  Yes, I have favor almost daily.  Again, how I see it determines how it impacts me.  Most of the time, I pass right over it; not recognizing favor for what it is.  Lucky, coincidence, or just ignorance is many times how things are seen, if they are seen at all.  But its favor and every time I'm thankful for it, appreciate it, it spurs me on to more.

Little things, big things.  Introductions.  Relationships.  Ideas.  Parking spaces.  Hugs.  Insight to hearts.  Smiles.  Friends.  Career.  School.  Memory verses for the Little that remind me of this favor.

O Give Thanks To the Lord, for He is Good. - Psalm 188:1


Who knows, someday that book that I want to read just may be written.

with love,
Mommy Tam-Tam

Friday, September 27, 2013

The Wiggly Tooth

Today is the day
Weve been waiting so long
That wiggly tooth
Is finally gone

A special box
Was given at school
Tiny and blue
For a tooth so cool

Under the pillow
Now quickly to sleep
Expecting the tooth fairy
Dont make a peep

Quietly she enters
And makes the trade
A tooth for cash
The exchange is made

So tomorrow as he wakes
Hell see the surprise
The box holding the tooth
Instead holds his prize.

with love,
Mommy Tam-Tam

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Making a Difference

This morning, my son and I met at the flag pole before school.  We prayed for his school, our country, our leaders and our friends.  He prayed for his teachers and firemen and military who protect us.  He prayed his friends have a good snack day and fun at recess.  He prayed what was in his heart.  And that melted my heart.

Too many times to count, I find myself "busy" with things that seem important at the time.  Busy with work, busy with dinner, busy with laundry...the list goes on and on.  I want to make a difference, however, in all of my craziness, many times I miss what "should" keep me busy with.   So today, as we prayed before school at his school's flagpole, and I saw a glimpse of what was in his young heart, God reminded me that in my lack, He fills in the voids.

He fills in my voids with my husband, our church, our leaders, our teachers and our families.    My friend recently shared a quote, "If the relationship we have with one another is only in formal settings, then we simply have a crowd and not a community."  We all need relationships because we need "someone" to fill in our cracks.

My son is growing and learning every day.  I'm so thankful for my church, for his school and for our family who fill in my cracks.  His teacher at school starts out the day with the Kindergarten Creed.

This is the day that the Lord has made.  I will rejoice and be glad in it.  Today, I will grow as Jesus grew, becoming strong in my spirit, in my mind and in my body.  God is working in me to act according to His good purpose.  I am made in His image.  I am a child of God because Jesus is my Lord.  God's love has been placed in my heart.  Everywhere I go, I plant seeds of love.  People are blessed because of my life.  I am bold, strong, able and very courageous.  I will do great works.  I fear not for God is with me.  I am thankful to God I live in America and I will always speak well of it.

While this is not all (there are 2 more sections to learn), they memorize this and recite it daily - and it is in his heart.  He is living this out and teaching me along the way.

Yesterday his devotional at school was about sharing God's love.  He wanted to do it that day!  He is bold in his faith.  There was music that neighbor kids are playing; the type of music with bad words and things we don't listen to.  He comes up with the idea of playing his music instead, outside, so they can hear God's love.  Driving home last night, he has his window down, praise music up, worshipping God.  He wants his friends to know God loves them.

His faith is simple, but that is how it should be.  Childlike faith.  I think we complicate it.

I think I complicate a lot of things lately.  Just watching my husband, how he takes time to simply explain his daily things to Jarrett, I learn a lot.  He is kind and gentle with our son.  He brings a sense of confidence and peace in our home when I rush in with a flurry.  He is a great example to me and I'm so blessed to have him as a husband and father to my son.

The Kindergarten Creed is now going to be my creed.  I need it in my heart just as much as he does.

...God's love has been placed in my heart.  Everywhere I go, I plant seeds of love.  People are blessed because of my life...

with love,
Mommy Tam-Tam

Friday, September 20, 2013

Art Appreciation 101: My Life, My Inspiration

There are two Georgia O’Keeffes. They’re closely related, but one is far more interesting than the other.
-Holland Cotter, New York Times, 2009 

Sometimes I feel the same way about myself - that part of me is far more interesting than the other.  I have always been interested in lots of things, educated in some, good in others, terrible in lots; but in all of it, having fun.  Tonight, the artist in me got to come out.

Together with my sister-in-law and friend, the three of us headed out on a new adventure of painting on canvas.  Rochelle, gifted in art; myself and Stacy, just beginners.  Tonight was our 1st experience (and definitely not our last) with Brushes and a Bottle.

Starting out with smiles and a blank canvas, we quickly transformed into our "other" self as we painted a masterpiece in white.   My comfort level that a masterpiece was a sure thing quickly altered as the process from white to color made my artsy-fartsy self a bit nervous.

Greens - that was comfortable, even fun.  Red...possibility is and yellow...I'm scared!

Black and is this all going to work.  Yes, I got out of my chair and stepped back to "appreciate" my art.  The water jar become my best friend many times during the evening.

Somehow, it all came together.  And the smiles never left our faces all night.  I loved the giggles from the older ladies behind us.  They reminded me that no matter my age, art is timeless and fun with my friends helps keeps me young.  Our instructor, Rachel, was amazing.  We really got to experience the fun in the art - not worrying about whose was better, closer to the real "Poppy, 1927".  It wasn't reproduction, it was inspiration.

 Many times, with the day-in, day-out, I forget that I need inspiration.  It helps me keep fun in my life.  Not worrying about bills, budgets, reconciling, making sure the lights are turned out, laundry, cooking, etc.  I need inspiration for me.

How many times have I caught myself this week alone, sounding tired and irritated, at nothing really.  Irritated to get shoes on, irritated to get ready for school, irritated to get ready for bed, rushed to go here, rushed to go there.  There is no joy in my voice, no appreciation for life, no inspiration for any "little" to want to be like me.  Maybe now, when I get ready in the morning, or actually take the time for a bubble bath, I will look up and remember to "appreciate" my art, my life, my loves.

The first thing I did when I got home was hang it.  It deserved to be hung - not for the quality of art I created, but for the quality of inspiration that was and is so desperately needed in my day-to-day.

"But O’Keeffe’s stake in it was not commercial or social or formal. Abstraction was simply the only kind of art, she said, that let her express her deepest feelings."

Maybe that is why art, writing, blogging, photography, cooking, the things I'm both good and terrible at all the same time, are my ways to express my deepest feelings.  Most you read here; a few are just for me.  

Until the next class.....

with love,
Mommy Tam-Tam

Keeping it in perspective....

Being a momma is one of the most difficult and most rewarding tasks I've ever had.  I remember before he was born.... oh how perfect of a parent I would be.....of course to my perfect child...who never disobeyed....who would never talk back....who would eat all vegetables....

...and then came delivery...and everything changed.

Sometimes it seems so difficult to penetrate all the way to the heart....How do you get it in there?  Where do the attitudes come from?  Why is this so easy some days and so challenging the next?

One thing I've really come to realize this week in my "mommy-ness" is that the best thing I can do, is give him Jesus.

- I can't preach it, although my speech should reflect His Word
- I can't force it, although I must enforce discipline just as God corrects those He loves
- I can't expect him to live it, if I don't live it first
- I can't just sing it on Sunday, worship must be everyday for us - for me, and for him

While I can have plans for him to grow and develop and expect great things, ultimately, his Heavenly Father knows the thoughts and plans HE has for him.....and that is really all that matters.

What doesn't matter?
- how he wants to do his hair
- how he wants to dress (mis-matched)
- what he wants to dress up as for harvest party
- that he may not eat his vegetables everyday

What does matter?
That I love all of it, with everything, to the moon and back again.  And as much as I love him and show him that...he needs to know that Jesus loves him even more.

keeping it in perspective....

with love,
Mommy Tam-Tam

linking up today with Casey Leigh

Friday, September 6, 2013

The Road Not Taken - Robert Frost

Sitting at our campfire one morning at one of my favorite spots in the world, I turn around and this is what I see.  While I'm excited to write more and share more, I'm not even going to pretend that my words can capture what Robert Frost did years enjoy!

The Road Not Taken

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth; 

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim
Because it was grassy and wanted wear,
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day! 
Yet knowing how way leads on to way
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference. 

Friday, August 30, 2013

My Happy Place

Do you have that place?  that Happy Place?

For me, its the mountains, in my trailer, no cell phone coverage, with my family.  And in just a few short hours, I will be there.  I just love, long holiday weekends....just for this reason!

Last night, packing up the trailer, even though I was tired and wanted to be done, knowing that soon I would be at my favorite place....

Happy, Happy, Happy.

The trailer is small, but I like that.  Of course, I have a few choice items that are my style.

Paul Frank Magnets on the oven hood

Lodge quilt on our bed, making me believe our tiny trailer is a cabin by the lake

And of course, one of my favorites:  a little something I picked up on a trip to beautiful Leavenworth....
Wood sign hanging on the "living room" wall.

Now, time to jump in the car, turn up the tunes, and head for the hills.......

Happy Camping!

with love,
Mommy Tam-Tam

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Its a Big, Big World.....

Today starts the beginning of something new for us....kindergarten.

Dropping him off at school was a bit surreal.  The flashes of phone pics from the "mom-arazzi", finding his desk, taking his 1st day picture, seeing who he is sitting by, seeing friends he knows, making new ones....seeing the tears in some of the mom's eyes as they say goodbye, then stand in the corner to watch and make sure.  Its too much for this momma.

Of course, he handles it like its nothing.  But to me, all I can think of is that this is 'real' school.  There are report cards and home work, will his feelings get hurt or will he hurt someone else's feelings.  Its a big, BIG world out there.   Did I do enough to get him ready?  Five years went by so quick, there is still more to teach him.  

Then I'm reminded of this.....

Jesus loves me this I know
For the Bible tells me so
Little ones to Him belong
They are weak but He is Strong.

Yes, Jesus loves me
Yes, Jesus love me
Yes, Jesus loves me, 
The Bible tells me so.

He is strong - and he doesn't belong to me, he belongs to HIM.  And while its hard to imagine anyone loving my son more than I do, He loves him more than I ever could..  

So this year, Jarrett...
Learn Lots
Love More
Enjoy yourself
This is your year!


"All I Really Need To Know I Learned In Kindergarten"
by Robert Fulghum
Most of what I really need

To know about how to live

And what to do and how to be

I learned in kindergarten.

Wisdom was not at the top

Of the graduate school mountain,

But there in the sand pile at Sunday school.

These are the things I learned:

Share everything.
Play fair.

Don't hit people.

Put things back where you found them.

Clean up your own mess.

Don't take things that aren't yours.

Say you're sorry when you hurt somebody.

Wash your hands before you eat.


Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you.

Live a balanced life

Learn some and think some

And draw and paint and sing and dance

And play and work everyday some.

Take a nap every afternoon.

When you go out into the world,

Watch out for traffic,

Hold hands and stick together.

Be aware of wonder.