Missing those I lost, loving those I still have…

It feels so painful  to write.

I started a blog a bit over two years ago, tragedy struck soon after and I haven’t been able to figure out how do a lot of things since…

Many of you who make me me are so far, I wanted to open this little  window into our lives to you so you could peak in from time to time. Or grab a cup of tea and “catch -up.” I wanted to share my kids’ laughter, rude bodily noises and new-found hair growth with you all. (Remember when my kids couldn’t grow hair for ANYTHING! – I don’t think anyone saw us moving to Oregon imagined an explosion of hair growth.)

A few weeks back, a good friend found this need inside her to put pen to paper and use is as therapy. she shares her life and passions and walk with God. I thought I should write then. I started to imagine typing in my head and I realized that Cory wasn’t here any that somehow felt like a barrier so huge to writing again – still does actually. Today it’s exactly two years ago today that we lost Wendy and Cory. I snuggled my Cory pillow so tight last night for the couple of hours I was able to sleep. I also recall trying to write at the one year anniversary, but Russell was dying of cancer, so I didn’t write then either.

So family and friends. Today hurts so much, Dad’s cancer is back, Mitch’s family is having some things too – (please keep them in your prayers as it’s not a public thing yet but it’s a rough concern and weighing heavy on us and Jackie.) What I do have to say today is that I love you all so very, very much. These things remind me that I started a blog because I love you all so much that my heart aches to not be with you. I want you all to see all the fun and joy in our home sandwiched right there between the times of grief. These two kids are growing so fast and doing sooo many amazing things and you should all know.


I will fill you all in.  And soon… Shelby starred in a blog yesterday. YEP! Seven years old and she has stolen the heart of a blogger and has taught us all a thing or two (although that is nothing new.) Check it out here… Riley is having the summer of achieving excelling at everything he touches, and it’s not even half over.  

These hard moments show that life IS indeed shortly, too short for some.

THANK YOU Anna for being more on the recovery side of things than the OH NO side!

In summation, what I wish I had used the last two years to say over and over and over again how much I love all my friends and family and am so glad to get more time with those that I have more time with.

So today I will remember those I love that have recently passed.

I will remember Cristi calling me to go bail Cory out of jail in Mexico and him calling me in high school because he woke up to a cops gun in his face when he fell asleep in the pool house of his friends party and everyone went out to breakfast and turned the alarm on with him still inside. I will also remember that he was the best hugger this planet has ever known, his hugs could dissolved away evil, I wish he had hugged his own evils away. I will remember Russell randomly showing up at my door at 3am, 4am, or whatever; even in other countries, completely un announced. Or calling me at midnight to meet him at Denny’s for “a snack”. Russell is the only person in my life that has visited every home I have every lived in.  Uncle Walston for being an amazing Rock while Russell was sick and introducing me to the only family I have in Oregon, I barely got to know you, I thought we’d have so many more times to get to hang out. To Wendy, the perfect mate for my nephew. How you two parted ways and fate brought you back to us all. You were exactly what our family was missing and we didn’t even know. Mom, you were my only mom, I remember everything.  I will remember all the beauty, fun and, let’s face it, completely unacceptable moments… this is my family after all. I will cry as I need to but try to laugh more today.

Here is the biggest cyber hug I can muster to anyone reading this. 

Love Tami- because this is really written to my family




Our hearts are broken

At 5:25am last Friday my phone rang. I heard it from the other room and didn’t move. I thought about moving, but I didn’t. I wondered who would call at this hour and wondered if it was on purpose, which would mean somethings serious was happening. I started to go see who called, but Hubby’s phone rang, it was serious, both my nephew and his wife were dead.

There are no words, as some of you know. There are just no words. There is sobbing. Chest palpitating, blood rushing, room spinning sobbing. There is grief. the grief that feels like your soul is a vacuum. And there is disbelief, a dizzying disbelief mingling with a gazillion other thoughts, emotions and sweet, bittersweet memories.

Cory, I ache that you were hurting. I ache with a deep desire to go back and do something different. I will miss your smile, your sincerity, your huge personality that would completely engulf those you love and your joy and your zest for life. Wendy, you were a blessing to our family, not just Cory, to us all. You were a perfect fit, like you were supposed to be family all along and your marriage was fates way to correcting that error. Being in the home you two created was being enveloped in warmth and acceptance, laughter and joy.

Our hearts are broken and will never be the same.

WOMM the #RefreshVox

So I received the Influenster RefreshVox in the mail and as my first box for Influenster, I am thinking WOW! I just got sent A LOT of free stuff just for the cost of time to review it 🙂 Here’s the legal disclaimer: I received these products complimentary for testing and review purposes from Influenster 🙂

Here’s what was in it:

Montagne Jeunesse’s New Face Masque: Black Seaweed.  If I was the company, I would have people review it too, It is black. Like night time here in the forest black. BUT, it made my skin feel soo good. Basically, you smooth it on and then let it sit. Hubby had a back ache that night so I put it on, convinced him not to be afraid and rubbed his back. 10 minutes and it peeled right off and I felt bright and shiny. In a good way. I really like it and would use my money to get more. BONUS: they are 2 for $3 at Ulta right now. Find more information here: Montagne Jeunesse Website, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

DenTek’s Flossers in Comfort Clean Floss Picks OR the Fun Flossers. These are great! Who doesn’t love a pre-made flosser that you can take on the go. However, what was REALLY GREAT was the Fun Flossers. They are bright colored mini flossers for kids and my kids LOVE them. They just want to floss for no reason. They come in flavors too 🙂 Here is a coupon code so you can try them on the cheap: enter INFLSV15 for 15% off your first order of $20 or more. Use it here@DenTek @Influenster #GoFlossYourself #Contest

Orgain Nutritional Shakes: These are nutritional and TASTY protein shakes (Finally one that tastes good) . Check out their story here, it’s pretty cool! This is a shake you should check out! It’s organic which is good because many people who consume protein shakes consume a lot, so it better be something not harmful to your body in other ways 😦 @DrinkOrgain @Influenster  #orgainwellness.

Those were some highlights, I also received #L’Occitane Shea Butter Comforting Cream, this is great facial cream, light, supple, seems to suck the wrinkles up and it’s great as a primer, it is worth a try but a bit pricey 🙂  There was also a #SkinnyGirl Snack bar, let’s just say it was gone in a flash. Hubby even got in on the action, I will be buying those again, probably again after that. Go try one yourself! The #BeanitosChips were a plus, we are excited about any healthy snack that tastes un-healthy… lol. These are chips made from beans and baked, we like the nacho flavor, not so much the regular ones. The Covergirl Ultra Smooth foundation is incredible! Light and looks perfect, I would buy it again!

Finally a pack of Listerine travel breath fresheners. The ones you pop in your mouth and it erases the yummy, yet breath bomb of a lunch you just ate. Not something new but not something I spend money on either. Overall, pretty excited about my box. For the time it takes me to bust out a blog and share my opinions, they sent me full size samples of the above. If you want to get your own box, sign up at and see what they send you.

Word of Mouth Marketing…

Word of Mouth Marketing (WOMM) is pretty much like it sounds, but more exciting, because it involves fee stuff! It’s just one person telling other people about a product. The twist is that the company, to some degree, is encouraging the “marketing” and you use social media to spread the good or bad news.

Point in case… my S.I.L., female entrepreneur, and brilliant blogger over at Mom o’ Three I Be, wrote a blog on WOMM. She promoted the services so well that I signed up for one of the companies that she works with;  Two days later, not only did she get a perk for inspiring me to join, I also got an email alerting me to a box of full size items for me to sample and provide honest feedback that was headed straight for my mail box. Continue reading Word of Mouth Marketing…

The Birthday Season has Begun…

If you know me personally, you know that February 5th starts the 40 day run of 4 kids birthdays. I know! I bet your next question is… it’s the 6th today?? How do you forget to write a blog on your kid’s birthday? Let me just walk you through my “blogger” failures here so we can move on:

  1. I took ZERO pictures to post
  2. I didn’t get it published on his actual birthday

There, it’s out in the open, we can move on… My Ryan, my step-son Ryan. Although I was not there at when you burst upon the scene, I experienced your toddler scream that could stop warring nations, I have changed more than my fair share of diapers and you clung to my leg on your first day of school… then you let go, never looked back and I cried.

You are a handsome young man inside and out! You are a star athlete, a kind, gentle and funny guy and I love you like my own. You were just a little chubby strong headed fellow when you graced my life with your charm, you were one of my favorite people on Earth long before I married your father. Again, I LOVE you to pieces, to infinity times infinity ( I say this a lot during b-day season.)

So Why is my post a day late? Because we were having experiences and making memories! I wish we would sometimes put down all the technology and social media that we need to get back to and LIVE a little bit of extra life! We hung out, we talked and we laughed. We hung out until the little kids were completely unable to control themselves. We had steak too, it was like putting pieces of heaven in our mouths, I digress… Thank you Lizi for your home so we could cook and enjoy an evening of just being you guys… so fun, such good memories, you all get to hear about it today.

If you know my kid, call him and tell him how much he means to you, it will mean the world to him.

A need has arisen…

the Homestead taniqua's blog tajmahal 86

As many of you know, I blog for a living. By Oregon standards, a fairly good living… Thanks California Security Pro! However, this sometimes leaves me bursting with content that I think needs to be put out into the world, random as it might be.

You see, I write about all things security. However, my overactive mind thinks about all things…   just all things.

The need for an outlet has arisen. The need for WordPress has arisen. For many people who will follow me, the need to see and hear about my children that were sadly ripped out of some people’s lives when we moved to the forest has arisen. And so, my blog has arisen.

I hope my friends and family find happiness here in my rantings as I send you news from the forest.