1) How long have you been blogging and what/who gave you the desire to blog?
I started blogging in 2006, and what initially drew me to it was the fun and friendships that were forged through women of like minds. Homemakers sharing their lives, showing us what they were crafting and cooking and motivating others, offering kind words and laughs and wisdom. Blogging has changed so much since I first started and I can't say that I like the new blog world, I much prefer the old way.
2) How did you choose the name of your blog and why?
I wanted a cute catchy name, I kept seeing all these blogs with the coolest names out there, so cleverly picked....but nothing was coming to mind. So I decided to just keep it simple and go with what it really was, just a Diary of a Stay at Home Mom.
3) What variety of topics do you post on your blog (examples - home decorating, family, gardening, recipes, adoption, homeschooling, crafting, etc....)
Oh boy, I think I'm an open book and I tend to post on a myriad of topics, everything from family, to military life, to recipes, gardening, homeschooling, crochet, period dramas, books and simple living. Mostly, it's just a journal about my daily life as a Christian Military Spouse, the ups and down, the laughs and the cries.
4) Tell us a little about yourself and your family.
My husband is a Tech Sergeant in the United States Air Force. I have two children, an almost 14 year old girl and an almost 10 year old boy, Jasmine and Nicholas. They are the lights of our lives. We are a military family, striving to do the best we can with what comes our way, loving God, and trying very hard to live a simple life. On a normal weekend you will find us taking walks with our two pug girls, Lola and Bella, bike riding, gardening, visiting local history museums or just playing a board game or watching a movie. We love spending time together.
5) How would you describe your decorating style?
I love primitive, country, simple home decorating. Truth be told, if I could, I would totally live in the Little House on the Prairie's tiny home. I don't think we need to be surrounded by too many things, the essentials are just fine for me. Everything in my home screams cozy, lived in, and again simple.
6) What's your favorite color and why?
Pink, and funny enough I never used to like it when I was growing up, I found it too girly. Ha! But over the years I have completely embraced the girly thing, and now it's my absolute favorite color, I think it because it tends to portray me as a woman, as a homemaker as girly and ladylike.
7) Tell us a few of your favorite things (collections, things that make you happy, etc.).
Cookbooks. I collect them, I love them, I read them all the time and I have learned so much from them. I also collect items from Cath Kidston, her color combinations and the home items just make me smile. Oh and yarn, you can never have too much yarn right? Or books? Or Candles? Or OLD books? Come to think of it, I may collect a lot of things.
8) What do you like to do in your spare time (hobbies, crafts, etc..)?
Crochet is my love. If I'm not puttering around the house, I am usually sitting with my crochet hooks and yarn and making things for my home. There's something very relaxing about the rhythm of the fingers, intertwined with the yarn and the progression from a single chain to a beautiful item for the home.
9) What does your dream house look like? (Describe and/or include photo)
I've always wanted to live in an England Cottage. I know, it's kind of silly since I have never even been to England, but I would like nothing more than to live in a white cottage with a thatched roof, pink tulips growing out of window planters and surrounded by green grass. Simple white walls inside, quilts on the beds, a fireplace in the living room, crochet blankets draped over comfy chairs...and a big kitchen with beams on the ceiling and flowers on the window sill. A girl can dream.
10) If you could visit anywhere, anytime, where would it be and why?
England. Without a second thought. I'm a huge Anglophile and have been in love with England for as long as I can remember. I would like nothing more than to visit old castles, Stonehenge, Dartmoor and Cotswold.
11) Would you share with us a favorite homemaking/organizing tip or recipe, etc..?
I would love to share this chocolate cake recipe, Mix in a Pan Chocolate Cake. I love it because you can make it in a small pan which is perfect for our family of 4, and I don't have to worry about a lot of leftover cake.
12) Tell us something about yourself that we might not already know from reading your blog. (something unusual, etc..)
I think everyone knows me pretty well, but I'm not sure if many people know that I can't swim. LOL And that I really don't like driving, if I could get away with never doing it, I would be fine.
13) I know you guys are a military family. First of all, we thank your family for the sacrifice you all make by serving our country! I know it’s not easy! Would you tell us a little bit about life in the military? (Anything you’d like to include here, Sandra, where you’ve been stationed, how it affects your family, your thoughts, future retirement…anything on this from any angle you choose).
Thank you Tammy :) I will have to start by saying that military life is not easy, at all. I think the hardest part is not being able to put down roots, have our own home where we can say that our children were born, spent their childhood, grew up etc. I have been a military wife for 16 years, my husband has been in for 22 years and we are currently looking at retirement, as soon as May of this year. We were stationed in Idaho for almost 10 years, our children were born at the base hospital and we grew to love the area, and then got orders to Arizona and have been here now for almost 6 years. The ups and downs of military life are hard, not just on the military member who constantly has to leave his family behind to get in harms way, but for us wives who are left behind holding the fort, being mom and dad and dealing with the "falling apart" of everything, the minute he walks out the door. It's almost a joke amongst us military folks, the minute there is a deployment we know that everything will break, go wrong etc. It's equally hard for the children who don't always understand why daddy has to leave for months at a time, in their mind there is nothing more important than daddy being home, so when they cry at night for daddy it's heartbreaking. You quickly learn to say you understand when you don't, and you quickly learn to hide your own heart breaking so that you can comfort your children. But with all that said, I wouldn't trade this life for anything in this world. It's a blessing to be a military family. No, it's not easy, and if you are not committed to each other, it's very easy for it all to fall apart. But we push through and we do our part for this beautiful country.
14) I know you guys are also a homeschooling family. Could you tell us a little bit about how you came to homeschool, life as a homeschooling family, etc….(anything you’d like to tell us here, Sandra, from any angle).
My children went to public school for a few years, and everything was going well, then we moved to Arizona and suddenly were faced with the worst school district ever. We tried to stick it out, but it got to the point where my children cried every morning asking me not to take them to school. They were being bullied not only by other kids but the teachers as well, and that is where I put my foot down. My husband and I tried to do things the right way, we contacted the teachers, we contacted the principal and nothing was done, the bullies were protected, the teachers were excused and because we took a stand, they came down on my children even worse. We tried the school district and our calls were never answered and when they were they were NEVER returned, it was like fighting a losing battle. So we took the plunge and it was the scariest decision I've ever made, I was terrified of messing up my children, not doing the right thing. But we never looked back and now, 3 years later we are beyond happy, my children love homeschooling, we love it as a family and I've been able to brush up on many skills that I had long forgotten, every day is a learning experience.
15) Tell us a way God has blessed you and/or your family.
Let me count the ways. We have definitely had our problems and have faced some very hard times, through sickness and health, through wars and family deaths and two miscarriages. God has continued to bless us daily and we wouldn't be where we are today without Him in our lives. We believe that God brought us together.
16) Share any words of wisdom and/or a favorite quote you'd like to leave with us.
Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful. ~William Morris
Words from Tammy: Thank you so much, Sandra, for coming over for a Sunporch Chat. Whenever I visit your blog, I feel a strong committment to family and home, and I love that! It is evident that you take you role as wife and mother to be the highest calling! I so admire your sacrifice and committment as a family to our great country. Again, our family thanks your family for serving our great country! And of course, I love homeschooling families too! And I love your crocheting projects! Thanks for being my guest. :)
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Sandra and I thank you for joining us today. I hope you enjoyed the visit, the pecan pie, and coffee! You know I love your comments here, but Sandra would love for you to also stop by and visit her corner of blog land, Diary of a Stay at Home Mom, and follow along!
Have a great day! :)
Have a great day! :)
♥ Tammy ♥