If These Walls Could Talk
Faith, fear, and the truth that is setting me free.
Why Temper-Tantrum Parenting Might Just Help You Make the Rapture
Yes, being a flawed mom is OK
How the Gospel Is Wrecking My Life
Foster care, adoption, and the American Dream
The Little House That Could
How to thrive in family life

Happy Birthday, Tiffiney!

Hi Everyone.  I’m 40 today!
———

Thanks for dropping in to wish me a Happy Birthday on my BIG-40.

I’ve got lots to celebrate, because not only am I forty today, it’s also the launch of my brand new website: Welcome Home Ministry.  (Yeah!)

Forty is a big mile stone, so I had to do it big.  And seeing this site launched is truly a dream come true for me; and I’m so glad you’re a part of it.

———-

My first post is dedicated to…

a very special lady, my Aunt Barbara, who is virtually my second mom.

My Aunt Barbara has always been the wind beneath my wings.  She changed my diapers, bounced me on her lap, lovingly disciplined me when needed, was always in “my business,” and mentored me from my earliest memory.

She introduced me to Christ when I was 16 years old.  She walked into my bedroom and presented me with flowers when I was lying in bed, four months pregnant with morning sickness.  I was so full of shame.  I couldn’t believe that someone like me deserved flowers; but that’s just the kind of woman she is.

Of course, teen pregnancy is nothing to celebrate, but she looked beyond the situation and saw my deep and intense hurt and pain.  She told me that very day how much Jesus loved me and what my life could be like if I accepted Him into my heart.  I surrendered right then and there, lying on my back, hiding from the world, and I immediately experienced a sense of peace that I can only describe as indescribable.

Today, Aunt Barbara is lying on a hospital bed, reportedly “dying” from cancer.  (At least that is the doctor’s report; but we shall see what the Master Physician says.)  She told me about 10 years ago to continue working on this ministry when I was struggling in my family life and nothing “good” seemed to be happening for me.  She’s been a constant source of strength and spiritual renewal for me and my entire extended family.

Well, Aunt Barb, I made it! (Or at least I made it to having this website.)  And this post is especially for you.


Thanks for your love, the talks, the reprimands, the days out at your job, the trips to the Sea Port, the gifts, the special birthday dinners, the marital counseling and ongoing involvement in my kid’s lives.  Thanks for everything!

I love you dearly with all of my heart and I hope this site makes your heart dance and sing. I’m looking forward to 40 more years with you!

———-

About my Little House on the Freeway Blog…

This blog is where I chronicle the extraordinarily ordinary, yet wonderful journey God has – and continues to – take my family on.

**Warning**: this could translate into posts where I…

  • chronicle the daily goings-on in my family life,
  • confess what happens in my home,
  • ramble on endlessly – or sometimes succinctly – about various things (and sometimes “no” thing at all) for any or no particular reason, or
  • actually write content that directly promotes healthy marriages and family life  (**think…think…think…Nah**)

(Do you see what you’re in for?)

I named it Little House on the Freeway because I love the Little House on the Prairie TV series and the Little House books by Laura Ingalls Wilder.

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I also live on a freeway – complete with four lanes of speeding traffic and a bus that virtually stops right in front of my home.  (If that’s not a freeway, I don’t know what is!)

Here’s our Little House family portrait.

=

We took this back in 2004.  I’m not so sure that Mrs. Ingalls would have worn boa feathers around her neck, matter-of-fact, I’m certain that she wouldn’t have.  But that’s just the difference between her and I.

I hopewhat you read tickles your fancy, makes you erupt into spontaneous laughter and causes you to cry (only sometimes) in reflection.  I hope it makes women love and appreciate their husbands more and think about ways they can make the most of the limited and fleeting time they have raising their children.

And I praysomewhere in between all of that, that Jesus Christ is exalted in the hearts and homes of women as they discover how God can transform their home life into something that’s beyond their wildest expectation!

Let the fun begin…I’ve got a birthday to celebrate!


Remember to post a comment!

Tiffiney

Comments

  1. Hi Tiffiney! Happy Birthday! I really enjoyed reading your post about your Aunt. You’ve told me your story, but it’s good to see it in writing. Your joy comes through in your writing. Love, Heather

    • Heather?! Could this be THE Heather? The one I haven’t spoken to in sooooo long? The one I love and miss? The one (and only person) who walked up to me and my hubby the first day we attended Mt. Calvary Church and befriended us? Couldn’t be. But i think it is! (Yeah!)

      How did you find out about my blog-site? Who told you? (Was it me with that blast text message I sent to every contact in my phone?) 🙂 Anyway, I’m so happy that you stopped by to check it out and wish me a Happy Birthday. I really miss you Heather. You are an excellent sister in the Lord and such and example to me. I missed you like crazy when you weren’t there. You are always in my thoughts. I hope you and your hubby are blessed beyond your wildest dreams and we definitely have to do dinner soon. Really!

  2. Hey Tiff,
    I had a great time at your party!! And I could tell you really enjoyed yourself. God bless you with many more great birthdays. Love the site…I wish you the best.

    • Habiybah! My electric slide buddy!

      It was so great having you. And thanks for celebrating with me. Yes, i had a tremendous time and having people like you and your mom (Ms. Marcia) there made it even better.

  3. Hey Tiff – Happy birthday! Your website looks great and I wish you the best of luck with all your efforts. I’ll be looking here often for some inspiration! I looked up that movie “Babies” and it’s not in the theater anymore but it looks like it will be released on DVD on Sept 28 – we should organize a screening. Here’s to birthdays and babies! – Jenny Fitzsimmons

    • What’s up, Jenny! Thanks for stopping by. I’m glad to hear that you’ll be back to visit. That means there will be at least six people visiting: you and five of my kids! I told them that if they didn’t post a comment every time I blog, they’re grounded for life! 🙂 And yes, your math is correct, I do have six kids, but I exempted Alexis since she’s only 3 and unable to post yet. 🙂

      That “Babies” screening sounds great. Looking forward to it!

  4. Happy Birthday Tiff!!!! I know i’m 15 mins late however your birthday text was on time. Hope you had a Blessed Day and congrats on the site. Look forward to stopping by and seeing the updates. -Kia

    • Hi Cous. Yes, your birthday wishes still count since you text me before 12am. Thanks for stopping by. I hope what you see encourages you.

      Tootles!

    • Timmy, thanks for stopping by! I love you so much and i miss you dearly. Sorry you missed my surprise B-Day party, but i guess it would have been pretty tough to make it considering your in Japan. Kiss the kids for me. I love you.

  5. Happy birthday Tiff enjoy sorry, I could not make it you know me working. I wish you all the best love you and wish you mean more birthdays. oh yea I almost forgot ” you thought I was a donut – you tried to glaze me”. I know alot of you don’t know what Im talking about but Tiff does. Love you always

    • Teter: (is that really how you spell your name?) For all of you who don’t know, Teter thinks that i am a corn-ball because i used to sing that line (in quotes above) to her when i was “much” younger. Well, Teter, I am a corn-ball, and I’m proud of it. 🙂

      Thanks so much for stopping by, Cous! Hope to see ya soon.

  6. HAPPPPYYYY BDAYYYY!!! Congrats on turning 40 I had a wonderful time at your party. I wish u many more bdays

    • Thanks for your well wishes, JR. Your such a handsome young man and I am very happy that my Ashley has someone as wonderful as you in her life. Looking forward to dinner. Maybe we’ll let Ashley come to! 🙂

  7. Mommmyyyyyyyyyyy!!!!!! Sorry for taking soo long but i was working hard with everyone trying to make your day was special. You are the most precious person in my life. I can only have one mother and I am honestly glad that it’s you. I love you sooo much….

    Thanks for being my mom.. and..HAPPY 40TH!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Ashely, my darling Ashley. Mommy loves you so much and i am so very proud of you. You are so special and i am so happy that God has placed you in my life as your mom (remember that I’m your mom!) 🙂 I’m writing to you like it’s your birthday, but it’s just that i love you so much. You’re so beautiful and your smile is infectious.

      Thanks for your well wishes!
      Mommy

  8. HI TIFF WISHING YOU A WOUNDERFULL BRITE BIRTHERDAY ALL DAY LONG.MAY GOD CONTINUE TO RICHLY BLESS U AND YOUR FAMILY. ENJOY BECAUSE U DESERVE IT.FRIENDSALWAYS PAT.

    • What’s up Pat? Yes, we are definitely “friends always.” And I’m looking forward to God making us even closer in the future. Loved your yellow rice. It was the bomb!

    • Hello Johnson Family! I love you all so much. But what’s this “Johnson Family” thing all about? There are seven of you, I want to see a post form each of you! 🙂

      But just in case you don’t, I’ll go ahead and say that Pastor Johnson, you’re a wonderful Pastor! Maggie, your such a godly woman! Johnson kids: Leah, Melissa, Robert, Ryan and Victoria, you all are wonderful kids! Tell your dad to take you all out for ice cream for perfect church attendance on a Thursday night! Love Ya

    • Aunt Renee? I can’t believe you stopped by! thank you so much! It means the world to me. see you around.

  9. Praise God for the Extraordinary and Wondrous things He has done!!!

    To my Beloved, Bestest Best Friend, Tinny

    I have spent this week reflecting on our two decade relationship. I realized that our friendship is the longest and most constant friendship I have ever had and for that I truly Praise God. You have been the anchor of my ship, my voice of reason, my sanity in an insane world and at times the cause of some of my insanity- Smile. I would not change one bit of our relationship or ask for anything to be different. You, Tinny, are God’s special gift to me. I bless the day that the Lord placed you in my life, I had no idea the journey ahead for the two of us, but the Lord knew and He knew that I would need your humor, courage and down-to- earthiness along the way. Thank you Lord for Tinny…

    Girl, there is truly no other person on this earth like you… You are tender, hyper, thoughtful, courageous, tenacious, extremely intelligent, compassionate, generous of heart and spirit, wise, gifted, pretty, sensitive, fun, creative, passionate, beautiful – inside and out, sexy – I know Mal would agree, quite simply YOU GOT IT GOIN’ ON GIRL! You are the Father’s ARCHITECTURAL MASTER PIECE, the DESIGNER’S ORIGINAL. I am so glad that you are not only my best friend but you have been especially handed picked by the Father to embark on life’s journey with me. I LOVE YOU TINNY… My heart is failing for expression of how much you mean to me.

    My birthday wish and prayer for you, my friend, is simply: ENOUGH. I wish you enough of life’s joys and happiness that your heart will be filled all the days of your life. I wish you enough life lessons that you will experience God’s grace and love. I wish you enough success and accomplishment that you are always amazed at what God is doing with you and through you. I wish you most of all enough love and contentment that your days will be filled with much laughter and great peace. HAPPY BIRTHDAY MY BELOVED BESTEST BEST FRIEND!!!!!!!!!

    CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!!!!! on the launching of your website. You have held this ministry in your heart and spirit from many years and I am so happy and blessed to see the fulfillment of what God has placed in your heart. You are called and anointed to minister to families in this way, always remember that. Go, Git ’em Girl!!!!!!!!!!

    With great esteem and love,
    Dell

    • Oh my! I don’t even know what to say. Shadell, my one and only best friend in the entire world, I love you so very much. This comment is like a dissertation on friendship, the best kind of friendship, that is. Not because it’s long, because it’s not – it’s perfect! But, because it’s a masterpiece about friendship; and thank God, our friendship. With it you have touched my soul in a way that no one else seems to be able to do.

      I had no idea myself, what kind of relationship was being forged between the two of us, back when I thought that we were just casual church friends. Then you moved out of state and I started to doubt my reason for existence. 🙂 God has really given us a “David and Jonathan” relationship.

      When I read your comment, I laughed out loud. How could I be the reason for your insanity? It’s all in your head I tell you! And could it be possible to use any more verbs to express what kind of person I am? Remember you said that the next time I visit you and get on your nerves.

      Thanks for all your well wishes and particularly your prayer for “Enough.” From your mouth to God’s ears.

      Love,
      Your best friend ever,
      Tififney

  10. Tiff I have known you for a very long time now and you have been such a wonderful blessing to me and my son Joshua. In all the time I’ve known you I have never seen you down ONE TIME!! You have always so positive so up beat and focused on Christ… It has just been simply wonderful to know you and share a little slice of this life with you. You are a beautiful sister a wonderful mother and I know Jamal would agree AN EXTRAORDINARY WIFE!! I look forward to posting something on this site for your 80th Birthday! SUPER BLESSINGS TO YOU AND A VERY VERY HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU! Hope the weekend is a blessing and you and the family enjoy this milestone God has allowed you to see. Grace Peace and Love to you sis ;o)

    • Oh my goodness, Troy! I am so touched by your expression of love and well wishes to me. Who exactly were you talking about? 🙂

      It’s been a blessing knowing you and Josh, too and I’m so glad that you both are in my life.

      I’m holding you to your promise of posting on my blog when I’m 80. We only have 40 years to go! Until then, looking forward to visiting with you in church.

  11. HII Aunt Tiff omg Im sorry for being so late but hey I guess better late then never lol. Well Im just here to wish you a Happy Birthday and I hope you have a wonderful and successful time blogging. :] 🙂

    • Now I get a response from the son that I never gave birth to!

      Thanks Carrell for your well wishes. Aunt Tiff is so touched that you stopped by. Only John’s, Angel’s and Josiah’s friends are crazy (or young enough) to be up at this hour wishing me a happy birthday.

      More ice cream for you, too.

    • Thanks Tiffany (Angel’s friend.) You’re such a doll.

      The next time you come over it’s straight to Cold Stones for you!

    • Malachi, I am so flattered that you would remember that my site launched at this crazy hour. I love you young guys. Maybe there is some good that can come out of letting your kids text and Aim all night long? Then again, maybe not?

      Thanks for your Birthday wishes. See you in church on Sunday!

    • Hi Jeff….I mean Jonathan! 🙂

      What are you doing up at this hour?!

      Thanks for stopping by to wish me a happy birthday. You really tickle me. I love you young people.

      See you the next time you come over to visit the boys.

  12. Firstly, Sweetheart, I would like to wish you a VERY HAPPY BIRTHDAY. And I thank God that He has given us these sixteen years together, even though I’ve known you for over 30 years now.

    Secondly, this site was a long time in coming, and I am glad you have accomplished this milestone. Enjoy your birthday! I want the whole world to know that you are TRULY the WIND BENEATH MY WINGS. I am proud of you.

    You go, Girl!

    Your Loving Hubby, Jamal

    • Mal, you’ve been so supportive. Sometimes I think that you wanted this for me almost more than I wanted it for my self.

      It’s been sixteen years, but I’m looking forward to 40 more!

  13. Mommy, I love you and I want to wish you a happy birthday!!!…I think you are the best mom ever and you are doing a great job being a mom. Thanks for all the sacrifices you make for us and all the things you gave us…Thanks!!!

    Love you!
    Your daughter,
    Angel

  14. HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! i hope u have a very special 40th birthay! thanks for allways bein there for me!! i hope u have a very successful website and I LOVE U from your favorite son siah lol

    • Thanks Michelle!

      You are the best site designer ever. Thanks for holding my hand all along the way and accepting emails and calls at every hour. I can’t wait to see what my new and improved site will look like in two months.

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