Dear Monday…changes

photo credit here

I am a busy little bee lately…LOTS of answers

some yes some no’s…all gifts

while busyness is all around my spirit is S   L   O   W moving right now.

SO -

I feel behind on visiting you all – behind on one of my best friends life – behind on New Day – behind

on laundry and housework.  Just plain ole behind.  And you know what?  I’m going with it because

when we are at that place with God and there has been prayers going up wrapped in gratitude and

we are in that place of forbearancewe must wait so God can do His work KNOWING He is making

all the necessary preparations.

I have been praying sweat over something that I can’t wait to share with you all…it is coming!

Oh..and don’t you just love the boots, flowers and the chair in that picture?  I can just dream myself right

into that little office can’t you?:)

also – Brooke McGlothlin will be with us this be sure to come check out her words and

her new ebook  Warrior Prayers…praying the Word for boys.  It is only 5.97.

Many changes coming my way that I can’t wait to share with all of you.

Are you noticing any changes in your heart lately?  Maybe share a way you are able to slow down and enjoy life knowing God is making a way?


Robyn Q - Love it! Can't wait to know more about what's ahead. I'm stealing the "just go with it" phase today! Blessings~

Rachel - That is a great picture, and I can't wait to see what changes are coming your way.

I have had impressed upon my heart lately that I have to stop waiting for something that is already here: life.

Patti - Love that picture and all the colors! It screams 'spring'.

I've been in that slow mode lately too. God has been waving at me from the sidelines telling me to slow down and sit a while with him. (I didn't do it right away) He's so patient with me though. I finally put some time with him in priority…and an amazing calm came. Don't you love that. You're running along frazzled and he taps you on the shoulder and asks you to sit a while. I'm excited for your 'things to come'. HE brings amazing blessings!

Stephanie - It is good to be still and know that He is God. Sometimes our hearts need a little room to grow, and it sounds like you are experiencing some tremendous growth right now! Awesome, and I can't wait to hear about the many changes! Waiting on God can be hard until we finally learn and accept that He doesn't give up, that He is working even in the stillness, once we can accept that, waiting becomes restful, rather than worryful (LOL, I just made up that word, LOL)! Blessings Tiffini!!!

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Jennifer - I love how you said, "And you know what? I’m going with it." :) Prayers wrapped in gratitude. Beautifully said Tiffini!

Erin @ It's Gra - Love the office, especially the table.

Praying for you :)

kristin - Can't wait to see what you have in store!
I know there are never enough hours but it's ok…..enjoy don't stress. Thanks for your e-mail, I'm behind you 100%, follow your heart!

I hate hotdogs

I HATE hot dogs!

so much so that when I was little…at the sitter’s…I snuck the ends of the

hot dogs in the plant that sat on the table.  To this day I have trouble eating the ends.

that being said…these are delish…

Super Bowl Series: Oven Baked Turkey Chili Cheese Dogs

Click here for these Oven Baked Turkey Chili Cheese Hot Dogs.   I appreciate this healthier version.  It MIGHT just make me eat a hot dog

every once in awhile;)

you have got to try this one!

FYI – put in more filling than it says to though. Next time I will put 2 cans of chili and more of all else.  Just try it once and you can adjust to your preference.

The hot dogs I  used  are only 40 calories compared to 120 in regular hot dogs.  With that being said go to the grocery store and make a treat your whole family will love you for…

see ya on “Dear Monday”…savor your weekend & enjoy a hot dog will you:)?…xoxo


We also have Brooke McGlothlin sharing  her heart with us on Word women Wednesday next week.  I will be giving away 2 of her prayer warrior ebooks…so be watching for more information.  I would love to join Brooke and her share her book.  would you join us?


eileen - That hot dog looks really good. We rarely eat hotdogs but when we do it is always the turkey dogs too…but my 7 year old son won't touch a hotdog. Will have to give this recipe a try!

Patti - These look good! I have to be in the mood for a hotdog…I like the toppings! This is a great idea for bbq weather which will hopefully be here soon!!!! =)

Stephanie - Yummmo! That hot dog looks awesome! I have to admit, I love hot dogs. But…for the past week or so I have been limiting myself to 1200 calories per day. But…I never thought about low calorie turkey dogs! Yay! I will have to give this a try!

LuluMusing - It's a good thing that hot dog looks so good otherwise I wouldn't even think about eating it!

lissa - I LOVE hot dogs! I have no problem eating the ends. :) and that picture made my tummy growl!

Michelle DeRusha - That looks yummilicious! I don't mind hot dogs…but I can certainly see what you mean about the ends — a little grody!

Amy Sullivan - T,
I only eat hot dogs at baseball games, but I must admit. . .I'm kind of craving them right now. Can't wait to hear what Brooke has to say. Always enjoy the voices you have here.




The last couple of days we our weather has been in the 50′s…today 70 before we plunge back to the freezer…

dreaming spring…are you:)?


we’re learning day by day that ” the most foreign country is within.”  We are

our own dark continent, we are our own savage frontier. Many marvels

await discovery as we continue on the path to authenticity.

-Alice Walker-



photo credit here

Today I am stopping to slow down and savor…gift

no harried hurry here today….just SIMPLE savoring each moment…one at a time.

Sharing for the first time over with Cheryl @ Culture Smith for her Saturday Simplify series.

The Simplify Journey




Glenda Childers - Ah, it is spring like in Chicago too, and I am enjoying a little spring in my soul, as well. Also reading Ann Voskamp's book. Want to buy it for everyone I love.



Stephanie - So I did not know who Alice Walker was. But, I looked her up, and her quotes…she is one phenomenal writer! I found a quote to use on my Friday post that just pierced my heart! Thank you for introducing me to her!

Paula - I am so enjoying your new header! I just love it!! Savoring the beginning of this spring like weather!

Jen Ferguson - It's in the 70s here today and praying that nothing below 60 comes our way anytime soon. Enjoy your day…every moment, to savor.

Michelle DeRusha - I really like that Alice Walker quote.

And yes, it's been warm here this week, too — nearly 70 on one day! It makes me feel like skipping…although the cold weather is coming back in this weekend. I knew 70 degrees in February in Nebraska couldn't last long!

Jose - Great Site and I like your color coded lists but I thought you might want to look at my laouyt for the lists and maybe combine the ideas to a make a calendar to see the year at a glance. I would love to send you my file so you can use it.Thor’s Gal

word women wednesday & a giveaway

Meet Stephanie..a woman who has the courage to be imperfect. It is our vulnerability that makes us beautiful. That connects us to each other.  May this just be the story for others to bare to be beautiful.

We are imperfect and wired for struggle BUT we are worthy of love & belonging so let’s take a step to let go with all of our hearts…of what we think we should be in order to be who we are

Brene Brown

acottageinthewoods:   dontblamemilquetoast:  vintagerosebrocante:  charmingages:  starsmasquerading:  suziebeezie:  gypsy purple

Photo Credit here


I often don’t have words to describe my journey over the past several years. There have been good parts, and bad parts, breathless parts, and joy filled parts, nervous parts, and closed off parts, happy parts, and sad parts. But, over all the word “parts” just seems to fit. Parts, pieces of a whole, or parts, things that can be divided or separated, or even joined back together again. Parts are really very versatile things.

For quite a while, I lived my life somewhat compartmentalized. There were the parts that I showed publicly, and the parts that only existed privately. The parts I showed my kids, my husband, my parents, my friends, my coworkers. Some of these parts stretched across multiple roles, and some parts existed in just one. It was only when some of the parts I preferred to keep private starting oozing out into the public parts that I began to struggle. It seemed that things that I had always been able to keep a lid on, were now jumping and bursting to get out of their box. And so began the fight to keep them down! They were like disobedient dogs that kept jumping on my leg, and no matter how much I told them to stop jumping, they just jumped longer and higher. I panicked.

And when I say I panicked, I mean it literally. I literally started having full on frequent panic attacks. This is when I sought counseling for what I called “performance anxiety”. Which eventually led to the realization that the part of me that I had kept hidden for 12 years, the date rape, it was the culprit.

After it happened, I was 15 at the time, the division began. I quickly learned how to wall things off into their own cells. It seemed like an excellent skill. No one could hurt me, because they didn’t have access to my inner parts, only the surface parts. But it all got so confusing, the parts kept dividing and dividing until I could no longer figure out what I was supposed to be to who and where and when. Stephanie, who’s that? She was completely buried in the charade, and I didn’t even know who I was anymore.

The process of counseling, I’m not going to doll it up, it was excruciating. It was like surgery that you had to stay awake for. Wounds were cleaned out, infections had to be removed, things were cut open, others forced shut, and the whole time I felt more alone than I had ever felt before despite the friends and family surrounding me. It was rough.

But in the end, the parts became a whole. Not the made up parts, the parts others wanted me to be, the people pleasing parts, the self loathing parts, the phony parts – those had to be removed. But the real parts, the ones that were there that I didn’t want to own, the ones that I thought I had lost, and the ones who make me myself, those got to stay. God continues to form them into something more beautiful than I ever imagined. These parts aren’t perfect, but they are unique and custom designed by the King of Kings, and that’s what makes them beautiful. No more disjointed living. No more flailing on the floor wondering which parts go where while reading directions in a foreign language. God put me back together. He had to do some breaking, but He put me back together.

Father, I pray for the women reading this post, if there are any parts that they have abandoned, please show them the beauty you see in the parts they see as ugly. No more disjointed living God, unite us as a whole within ourselves, and unite us as a whole with each other so that we can do the work you have called us to do. You are amazing. I love you! In Jesus Name, Amen.


Do you have parts you’d like to linkup today…something that is imperfect but God has made beautiful?  a way in which you were vulnerable? or courageous?  Just linkup your post exact URL…you know the drill:)  I put the WWW button in the post today.  No perfection allowed here … so no pressure. no guilt OK?  Let’s just keep finding each other & connecting ok?


to enter — leave a comment and then head over to Stephanie’s on Friday to see if you won!  She is going to use a random number picker to choose one of you warrior WORD women…can’t wait to see who wins…

Get Out of That Pit: Straight Talk about God


Amy Sullivan - Stephanie,
Thank you for bravely sharing your story. This is so well-written. I must say one of the reasons I enjoy reading your words is because you either really make me think (like now!) or you really crack me up (like over at your blog with the big girl panties comment).

Love that you do this. I know I don't link-up, but I always enjoy your guests. Thank you for hosting.

Stephanie Clayton - Amy, that is such a compliment coming from you – you always blow me away with your writing and your amazingly generous spirit!!!

Tiff, It is such a priviledge to be guest posting over here! Thank you so much for the opportunity :)

Holly - Love love love reading your blogs Stephanie…they are truly God speaking thru you!

amy in peru - it's scary to let ourselves be vulnerable… even to God, who sees it all anyway… but He's so good at putting broken things back together, making us beautiful, if we just let Him! I know this to be true, practicing as if it's true is another thing sometimes :)

amy in peru

eileen - Beautiful, beautiful post Stephanie! I love how God is able to take those ugly areas of our lives and turn them into something so amazing. I have no doubt that He will use your testimony to speak to other women who need to hear it! Thank you for sharing it with us!

tkilgore - it is scary to be vulnerable! the very thing that scares us is the very thing that can heal us. Steph..I am grateful for your sharing. It is all of us…women who long for our own heart changes. sharing those..inspiring others to change and so the change begins for others.
Don't worry about linking up…may not be the direction www is supposed to go…at least every week:) Really…so just want it to be what God wants it to be..ya know?
love you all!

kendal - beautiful, stephanie. thanks for sharing your life. your honesty. your heart.

Patti - That was an amazing post. Thank you for sharing! God just knows who he wants us to be and what we can do. We always short change ourselves and discourage ourselves with beliefs we let other people teach us. I'm guilty of it too. We are not what our situations experiences make us to be…we are what God made us to be….beautiful. With him all things are possible!! =)

Abby - Dear Stephanie, Thank you so much for literally opening yourself up and for your heart that is evident.

This part was so raw and therefore in the courage it took to live and write it, beautiful:

It was like surgery that you had to stay awake for.

What a powerful image and wow, He really is the Great Healer, isn't He? Praising Him for you and your fight to be real! Blessings:)

Erin@It's Grace - Stephanie, what an amazing story and testimony you have. You are so brave to share it as well as your beautiful heart. I loved this part "God put me back together. He had to do some breaking, but He put me back together."

Beauty from ashes.

Blessings to you and Tiffini,


Jen Ferguson - Oh, Steph, you know, you've alluded to the abuse in your posts before, but I didn't know the story. I just want to thank you for sharing this story, for allowing the beauty of His redemption to flower in you and reach others. You are doing a mighty work, friend.

Stephanie Clayton - Thank you all so much for the amazing feedback. It's always a little scary to lay out your dirty laundry for everyone to see, but God blesses my socks off every time I get the courage to do it. Love you girls! You all have blessed me today with your kind encouraging comments.

Robyn Q - This was a powerful post and strikes close to home. I've walked this path with my husband. Every word you write about the healing process I've witnessed. I have the greatest respect for you, for him & the millions of broken hearts that can relate to these wounds. The most beautiful beautiful picture is to see God arranging the broken to make SUCH a masterpiece…like a quilt or stained glass. The process is healing me – me with different "stuff". THANK YOU!

Blessings ~

a tower…lie bricks & God breathed words & WWW giveaway

As I sit there..alone..the light streaming in from the holes in this tower mortared with pain lies I’ve believed…He shows me the first lie brick in my tower.  God is not good and cannot be for me.  Come again…it is time.

a random word blows loosening the mortar…gently waiting… to be noticed.  Pain can be so loud.  Have you ever noticed that?  I sit there thoughts circling..I go around and around them thinking all over the last weeks..I turn  go pick up a book..what? go pick up a book

the pain laced lies back down as I stand…which book?  I had several laying there so my hand just went to Streams…heart  racing…He was going to say something and I knew it.  I opened to February 5  and He breathed.

Here are God Breathed Words

Isaiah 52:12  ” you shall not go out with haste.” ( altar card )

for a couple weeks my wrestling  has been between my orphan mentality and my daughtership.  Pain , the mortar used to lay each one down. Years in the making…built high…to high for my flesh to tear down and hold together..but flesh has controlled and predicted for so long.  You see - I am no longer an orphan…but I live like one.

go pick up a book?  again?  February 11 He breathed.    I had just finished asking Him about a house…I go pick up the same book and He spoke

Here are God Breathed words

Joshua 3:13 { altar card }

as soon as the soles of the feet of the priests…shall rest in the waters…the waters…shall be cut off.

OK really? I posted on Joshua here. He leaves me wanting more of Him.  Something He is speaking to me…

If I don’t put my foot in the water where the situation is impossible God cannot stop the waters. I took a brick down and with the sole of my foot… I stepped out of the tower and INTO the truth that GOD does care and wants my/our good.

Here is the lie brick:

God is not good and cannot be for me

Here is God Breathed Words

Exodus 33:14

the LORD ( YHWH) replied, ” I will personally go with you, Moses {Tiffini} and I will give you rest-everything will be fine for you.”  { altar card }

This is wrestlingthis is choice…this is “am I going to choose to be the orphan or am I going to choose to be the daughter of the King ?”

I could feel the heat and energy in His breath over my soul.   I had a choice set before me…I wrestled exhausted.  I ate.  I chewed them up small and His Spirit made them edible for my soul.

My sole was in the water and my soul was a daughter and it cried Abba, Father!

I will leave us with this from Rose Marie Miller.  I think it represents us. women. would you put your name in the blank with me?  { altar card }

” _______________, you act like an orphan…you often live as though the Holy Spirit never came, could never help you live in impossible places and do impossible things.  You act ( or live ) as though there were no Father who loves you….

~ “Path” by Linn Photography ~ posted by acottageinthewoods

I’m still on this journey… thank you from the depths of my heart that you are walking with me…

Do you have lie bricks that you have built up walls with? Do you live as an orphan or a daughter?

This Tuesday I’m resting in the presence of friends @ Finding Heaven…would you come?

Come back tomorrow for Word women Wednesdays…and meet one of my kindred soul sisters Stephanie from The best is yet to be.

She is giving away a copy of Beth Moore’s ” Get out of that Pit”! So come and join in the linky party and link up any post that

encourages women to keep going in this journey of life.  It is never to late for God to do the impossible.  See you tomorrow:)

Photo Credit – Nantyglo Round Towers , a cottage in the woods


Stephanie Clayton - Tiffini, this is beautiful. I have no words to add other than that :) Love you girl, and it's a pleasure to be traveling buddies with you!

Robyn Q - Love your words! So true…the wrestling. Love the simplicity of the question – “am I going to choose to be the orphan or am I going to choose to be the daughter of the King ?” My friend, today I will choose to be the daughter! A noble.

Jen Ferguson - This is beautiful. God often speaks to me in a similar way, telling me to read this or that. So glad that we are daughters of the King on this journey together.

Rachel - That was powerful. The idea that the we truly need to act as if we believe it is true is truly touching me. Thanks for sharing.

Christy - This is beautiful. I often think more as an orphan but I am working on it. It is a slow and arduous process but I am thankful for the breaking down of my walls lie brick by lie brick. I need this reminder today Tiffini.

kendal - you bet i have lie bricks. and i think i've dumped them somewhere far away and then i find them again. and choose them.

LLH Designs - This post reminds me of the verse that says, "deep calls unto deep." I love your deep reflections and deep desire to know the heart of God.


Glenda Childers - Tiffini, This reminds me of what I read this morning . . . from Ann Voskamp's new book. " I wake and put the feet to the plank floors, and I believe the Serpent's hissing lie, the repeating refrain of his campaign throuh the ages: God isn't good."

What a liar, the enemy is.

Great post.



Amy Sullivan - T,

These pictures are amazing. Been thinking of you and I've been meaning to email and check in. I haven't been getting around to visiting much, but I am always reminded of how much I love your place every time I click over.

As for me? I think I bounce between daughter and orphan, but don't we all?

Abby - So beautiful and so true…when you started to talk about daughter/orphan–I thought right away of Sonship Discipleship course (I just talked about it in a post). Anyhow, Rose Marie's husband Jack Miller developed Sonship and it is so much the son/daughter vs. orphan. Are you reading a book of hers? I read one after my son was born and I'm blanking on the name…

Well, simply gorgeous and this is perfect:

"My sole was in the water and my soul was a daughter and it cried Abba, Father!" Amen and Amen to live this life wrapped tight in this:)

Kim - Your photos are beautiful, especially that last one, the path. So often I act like an orphan, forgetting I am his beloved daughter. Words like yours remind me…and help tear down the lie bricks, one at at time

Melissa - Your words and pictures are beautiful, Tiffini…all beauty from our beautiful King. I can so relate, having spent many days hiding away like Rapunzel in a tower — held captive by woundedness, lies, fear, insecurity (unbelief,)…misery. But beauty was meant to behold, and the beauty of our beautiful God must bloom in us wild and free, like the flowers of a field, holy given for all to see. The more we see Him, the more we become like Him, the more we bloom and blossom, laying our lives down for the world around us in a living display of majestic color, fragrance, love…thank you for releasing His beauty here!

Thank for all your encouraging comments at my place as well. I treasure every one of them!


For the beauty of the King,