Saturday, September 15, 2018

Our Master Bedroom Reveal

I'll only get one chance at this Florida Dream House decorating gig so I better get it right. Decide the color scheme. Plan it and execute! Push always seems to come to shove wrapping things up to move in. I'm still way happy with the results. Today, I want to share with you our master bedroom reveal.

I can never leave God out of anything I accomplish because without him, I'd never accomplish anything. If you listen to God and do what he says, he takes care of all the big stuff and especially the small! The best thing about this bedroom is five years ago when I bought our master bedroom bed for our Georgia house, God encouraged me to buy the Ashley Furniture Protection Plan. This plan covers anything that could go wrong with your furniture for five years. If, in five years, you don't use the plan to replace your current furniture, you get the money you paid for the plan off the price of new furniture. The five years perfectly expired January 2018, just in time to purchase our master bedroom furniture for Florida. His plan, not mine.

The Master Bedroom

master bedroom reveal

beach pillowsmaster bedroomI ended up paying around $200 for the bed and nightstands. The bed frame is a king. I used a bunky board ($80) instead of a mattress foundation to make a platform bed which is low to the ground. King mattress from Mattress Firm $700. The lamps are from Home Goods for $39.99 each. The canvases I found at Kirkland's in Canton, GA on sale, reduced from $99.99 to $24.99! The pillows are from a Belk clearance for $80. The white quilt and shams is from TJMaxx for $39.99. The storage bench is from Amazon for $105. The drawers really work. My design on a dime for around $1300.

The Master Bath

florida bathroompinterest showerThe Master Bath is small but oh so lovely and adequate.  The Master Bath does not lend itself well to picture taking because it is narrow. The custom shower design on the right is from a late night Pinterest binge. It has a tile pebble bottom with a rain showerhead and custom window. You can't see the seat on the inside left. The vanity is shaker style matching the kitchen cabinets. I prefer overlap porcelain sink bowls, the sunken sinks are too hard to clean. lol The mirror is framed with the same coastal trim we used on all doors and windows painted white. Again, I will discuss paint colors in another blog post.

double closet doors
The double doors are our master closet. I love double doors! The bath rugs are from Bed, Bath and Beyond $24.99 each. The seahorse picture is from Rose's for $14.99. So inexpensive and perfect at the same time. I have a small linen tower holding our towels and washcloths in the right/left corner of the shower area from Walmart for $20.  I couldn't get a good picture of it. The linen tower is open and provides the ultimate area where Steve can pick up a towel and washcloth without having to bend over. Bending over restricts his breathing drastically.

The small square box you see beside the toilet is a set of scales. Weighing every day is so important at the Holiday House!

Everything else you see in the bathroom, hooks, toilet paper holder, etc. were included in the house contact.

And there you have our Master Bedroom Reveal including the Master Bath. I will post pictures and descriptions of the other three bedrooms, two baths, laundry room, living room, porch areas and paint colors later. Until then, have a good one....

Loving it 365,

Saturday, September 8, 2018



Does this picture speak to you? What does it say? The surfer has two choices; get in the water or remain on the shore. He may be anticipating the exhilaration of his morning surf? He could be procrastinating about the small swells or all the people in his way?  One thing is certain. Action is required! He can move to the water and enjoy his surf or allow his negative thoughts to rob him of an activity he loves.

bible action words

Mary Ann shared one of her favorite verses with me yesterday. Isaiah 41:10 says "Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness." I shared one of mine. Psalm 37:4 says "Delight thyself also in the Lord: and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart."  Three phrases stood out in my mind; Fear not, Be not dismayed and Delight thyself. All three require action!  My photographic memory quickly sped through many Bible verses, all requiring action from me to obtain my desired results from Him!

Jesus performed the ultimate action giving his life to redeem us. The plan is finished. Now, action is required from us. Is it too much to ask for us not to fear? Is it too much for us to be not dismayed? Is it too much for us to delight ourselves in Him? Some days, not being afraid and not being dismayed are monumental tasks! I lose my footing. I allow the enemy too much brain space. I find myself wanting to run into a cozy corner where I can shrivel up and cry uncontrollably. Who's with me?

However, those sweet, sweet days I purposefully delight myself in God's grace and mercy, the half has never been told! He makes me feel like I could ride the gnarliest crest hanging ten!  Which situation requires more action? The sweet one. The delightful one I want to wake up in every day. The delightful one I can wake up in every day if I keep my actions toward Him, in Him and for Him.

God requires action from us. Ongoing action! Action is required! Action is necessary! Action is a must! And as a gentle reminder, doing nothing is an action.

Staying active,

Friday, August 31, 2018

What Exactly is Concrete?

what exactly is concrete

This may sound like a repeat from last week but no, because this week has been rougher than last! . So many downs. Very few ups. I'm writing these words from the confines of my mom's hospital room. She continues to struggle for breath due to multiple blood clots in both lungs. You know the dread you feel when a close family member has a serious illness. I'm give thanks to our gracious God she is improving slowly. 

I have a couple of thoughts to share this week. Mom was visited by a hospital chaplain this morning. He asked "Can you have fun in a hospital?".  He shared some anecdotal stories with us that were somewhat fun, but not as funny to me as the stories I want to retell on my parents:
  • My dad was hospitalized in March after his fourth stroke. A couple of days had passed when he requested to shower. "I can do it myself" he said. I insisted we call a nurse to help him. His face lit up when a young beautiful blonde-haired nurse walked in. He quickly agreed with her help! She went to gather some bathing supplies. I asked him, "Have you ever showered with a blonde?" He giggled and said "No! But I'm about to!"  His bathing experience is a standing joke at our house.
  • My mom's doctor came to explain about placing her on blood thinners. He said "I want you to take Coumadin because it's tried and true." He waited for her approval. She answered him saying "That sounds good to me. I like spices!" Although she wasn't joking because she was thinking of Cumin, her reply has become a standing joke as well. The doctor was gracious and asked if he could use that one. 
  • Here's a couple more funny stories that are medical jokes at our house. Just click the link to read them. Sloane's kidney stone experience entitled "We had our very own Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day"  and Tammy's kidney stone experience entitled "Pande-"monday"-ium of Laughter"
Yes! We do believe you can have fun in a hospital. We do admit, however, we'd rather have fun almost any place else. 

My second thought this week involves the concrete picture. What exactly is concrete? Concrete is such an everyday term; yet do we really know what it is made of? As I was thinking about how rocky my path has been for the past couple of weeks, God caused me to visual concrete. I immediately thought Ah! yes! Concrete. I love concrete. Concrete hurts most folks' feet but it is absolutely the easiest surface for me to stand on. It is firm and solid. The non-rigid surface of concrete makes my feet and gait so happy. After a moment of sheer joy thinking about concrete, I asked why the image of concrete Lord? I looked up this explanation of concrete at Concrete consists of Portland cement, sand, gravel or aggregate, small rocks, and varying amounts of water. These ingredients are blended together to generate a paste, which is then poured into a frame, and dries hard with time. A chemical reaction occurs between the water and the cement to create a solid foundation.

I began to ponder how you can take jagged rocks and create a smooth, solid foundation. I recalled many of my struggles during the past weeks. I felt every single problem or "rock" my feet had walked over the past two weeks. I remembered the way my feet turned over when they encountered the rocks. The twisting of my feet made my back hurt. Then God whispered, "Tammy, for every rock you walk over and get tossed here and yonder, you're making concrete. I am your solid foundation. You may have to walk over a few rocks but trust me, you'll always find your footing on my concrete." Praise Jesus! I said "God, you have the biggest concrete trucks because you're pouring it out for me all the time!"

Just like the chemical reaction with concrete, a spiritual reaction occurs between my Savior and me. He takes all the rocks, gravel and sand of my life and puts them in my frame to mold me. He smooths them all out so I can walk firmly on his foundation. The process takes a while but the end result is smooth and pretty.  How firm a foundation ye Saints of Lord, is laid for your faith in his excellent word....That soul, though all hell should endeavor to shake, I'll never, no never, no never forsake.

Standing firmly 365,

Saturday, August 25, 2018

5 Things I Learned from Divorce


My week has been rough. My week contained so many variables; some favorable and some unfavorable. (I'll admit it, I have an accounting background.)  I've been blessed. I've learned things. I've been schooled. I've lost my temper. I've exercised self-control. I went to the movies. I ate out too many times. I weeded my pool fence. I broke my left prosthetic. I made me a new left prosthetic. I could go on, but you get it. It has been a week! 

My life has been enriched over the past months with my high school bff, Mary Ann. I credit Mary Ann for my marriage to Steve. God placed her exactly where she needed to be in my life to accomplish his goal for Steve and me. Shortly after the "lost my temper" stage this week, Mary Ann sent me the picture above with the following message. "I bet God finds our efforts to do anything amusing. These are plants I threw in my trash pile that wouldn't grow in the greenhouse. They are not even planted and look how pretty." God used those words to teach me but also to show me some things divorce has taught me. Here are the top 5 Things I Learned from Divorce (in no particular order):
  1. Divorce hurts. It hurts everyone it touches, especially this ex-mother-in-law. Divorce is one of those excruciating hurts like a kidney stone. You know you have a stone. You wake up feeling pretty good and BAM! Within the next five minutes the blood supply is cut off to your kidney! You immediately find yourself rolling around in the floor begging, screaming, praying for comfort, even if it's only for the shortest while. The pain subsides. You think it's over but here it comes again...worse.
  2. Divorce is necessary. My parents' 60th wedding anniversary was yesterday. Kudos to them! Steve and I will celebrate 33 years in November. Divorce was not in my vocabulary until God showed me, sometimes, it is so necessary.  I couldn't even ask him to stop it. 
  3. Divorce is ugly.  I can't find one thing pretty about divorce. My daughter's tears of sorrow are ugly. My grandchildren riding off for the weekend is ugly. The destruction of the completeness of my family is ugly. The mistrust and resentment are ugly. Being wronged is ugly. Period.
  4. Unconditional love is unstoppable. It is difficult for me to understand why I still love my ex-son-in-law so much. He makes me so mad I could rip his head off! But, I can't stop loving him. I can't stop feeling for him when he creates his own demise. I can't stop making concessions for him when he deserves none. God's love in me for him cries out for mercy, grace and above all, forgiveness. If unconditional love were stoppable, Jesus would have succumbed under the weight of the cross. He fell, but got back up, not once but three times. Praise be to Jesus for his love for us!
  5. I can't change things. This is the hardest lesson ever.
Today, when Mary Ann sent me the photo of her trash pile, it hit me. Mary Ann threw out what she couldn't get to grow. She gave up. Her plants flourished. God showed me I must give up my ex-son-in-law. Quit hoping he will grow. Stop wishing he will be different. I'm asking Jesus to help me release him so he can find his way into the good God has prepared for him. I'm praying my release will somehow help him find a better life. I can do nothing but God can morph a caterpillar into a butterfly. And that, is a beautiful thing!

Overcoming 365,

Friday, August 10, 2018

My Next Endeavor

My next endeavor is to speak Spanish. I never dreamed at the ripe old age of 54 I would wish to learn another language. We had VBS 2018 last week at First Baptist Chatsworth. I had no idea the theme of VBS would "play out" in our Kindergarten Boys classroom. It truly was "Game On" when our class of three Latino boys; Jorge, Jake and Paschal, didn't speak a word of English!

Sloane and I were dumbfounded but not defeated. My next endeavor was making Google translate our friend. We tried our best to teach them about Jesus leaving the 99 to find one lost sheep. This is harder than it sounds. Google translated the word sheep for us as orvejah. Thankfully, Google also speaks the word through their translator. I learned animal sounds are the same in any language. Have you ever thought about that? I find it quite interesting! So, in a manner of minutes through body language and an iphone, Jorge was crawling around the floor acting as if eating grass repeating the phrase "orvejah baaaaaaa"! Sloane and I giggled as the sheep imitation caught on and all of us were being sheepishly silly.

Our little guys came to VBS on night three of five. The boys were giddy after crafts the second night. My next endeavor was to communicate Jesus loves you. I taught class alone. I left wondering if anything I said stuck. I didn't even attempt to use Google without Sloane. I spoke to them from pictures nodding my head up and down looking for a knowing nod back. Not happening! No knowing nods just dancing brown eyes. After about five minutes, I said "orvejah, baaaaaa". We laughed. The boys finished their crafts.
The next night a surprising and welcome event happened that is not explicable by natural or scientific laws. I consider it the work of a divine agency. In other words, a miracle from God happened right there in our classroom. Sloane used Translate again to ask our three amigos a question. "quien ta ama?" The artificial intelligence repeated. The boys finally understood Sloane when she asked them to listen to what her phone was saying. "quien ta ama?" Who loves you? As quickly as Paschal understood the phrase, he immediately raised his small arm and pointed straight at ME! I almost burst into tears. YES! Yes! I do love you, I squealed! I'm not sure what happened during our three days with those darling boys that made Paschal feel loved. I'm just so happy it did! How amazing our God who loves us is. For people who say it's not nice to point, they've never overcome a language barrier through the holy spirit of God. Paschal's pointed finger is a blessing I will remember forever. I pray my next endeavor is half as successful as these three nights of Vacation Bible School.

Thanks to Benny Huggins for use of the photos.

Endeavoring 365,