finding the center

farmish momma bike


the colorado trip has been postponed.

don’t feel sorry!  or sad for me old bean.

i’m not sad about that.

there is time.

plans needed to be changed.


instead we will probably go out to georgia .  .  .  or is it down to georgia

sometime in october.

that is where the marine’s son is stationed.  they have a lovely home there.


master/sgt mike will deploy to a war zone sometime again in april and it will

be a chance to see him before then.


which do you think i’d rather do if i can’t do both?

see age old mountains that will always be there?

or a beloved nephew .  .  .

the marine’s only son ~ and loved by me like my very own son.

not hard to answer that!


in the meantime i am going to buy myself a bicycle.

it’s going to be an old fashioned bike.  the brakes will be in the pedals

not a bunch of gears and wires.


it will have a basket to carry library books and other treasures.  maybe water.

yes.  of course water.  i’ve become a devout water drinker.

since my dehydration episode i prefer to get my hydration from drinking it

rather than needles in my veins.


when i turned 30 years old i told bob that for my birthday i wanted a bicycle.

he .  .  .  being a man .  .  .  and knowing what HE would choose .  .  .

surprised me with a 16 speed sleek specimen of technology.

we had a home on two and a half acres near tulsa at that time.


it had a long gravel drive to the house.

i exclaimed my surprise and tried hard to be delighted

and not show my disappointment.


i got on the bike.  which was also too high for me.  i’ve lost an inch now .  .  .

but i was 5′ 2″  at the time.  it looked huge to me.

he held it while i climbed up onto the seat.

then he explained the gears.


i took off down our driveway and at some point i flew right over the handle


he came and picked me up from the gravel.

the bike was totally unharmed.  not even a scratch.

given its cost that was a small blessing!


i on the other hand had bloody knees and elbows and looked like i’d been in a

fight.  and i had lost.


i didn’t cry.  i shakily stood there picking out the gravel from my wounds.

i said .  .  .

” honey could i just have a plain old bike? “


and that is my life.

i just want plain old.


especially now when i’m plain and old myself!


i envision riding it down all the lovely tree filled streets that encompass my

apartment complex.

there are no hills.  no reason to ‘change gears.’

no need for fancy brakes that i might forget how to use.


the feeling of childhood and knowing instinctively how to brake with the


that’s for me.

and a basket.  and even a bell.  and maybe a light of course.

though i doubt i’ll be doing any night riding.  but one never knows.


i will think of my bob when i ride it.  and laugh again at that wonderful

birthday when my beloved tried so hard to give me a wonderful surprise.


this year has been very very hard in many ways.

and for my vicki . . .  and my sharing her loss of jack . . .  it goes on.


and for my m/sgt mike .  .  .  the ever present concern until he can retire from

his dangerous work .  .  .  it goes on.


but life has a way of trudging on.  dragging our heart aches with it.

i’m learning that again.

i thought i had already learned that.


we apparently have to learn it over and over.

for those of us who are innate ‘ fixers’  it’s hard.

it’s very hard to feel helpless in the face of other’s suffering who are dear to us.


so.  i’m tring to learn to accept that.  and to find my center again.


to revel in the little birds that flew through the early morning air as i sat

reading my book .  .  .


to watch the pool boy as he methodically sieved the leaves from the surface

of the calm blue water .  .  .


to feel the steam from the fragrant coffee i sipped to bring me awake  .  .  .


to anticipate lunch with my marine and try to help solve the world’s problems

the way we always do!     if the world would only listen to us.    🙂


it takes so little to be happy really.

not mansions.  not tons of money.  not vacations.  not fancy food.


i guess it just takes finding one’s center again.

righting the little boat back on its course.


helping where one can.  suffering along with the absent loved one .  .  .

and remembering

that however hard it all is living on this planet .  .  .

and it is hard in every way

it still is very dear.


til soon old bean.

til soon.


picture is courtesy of


    • tammy j

      it will have to be in your dreams sean.
      and i’m taking that in a GOOD way! not in a way that insults my riding of course!!!

  1. Linda Sand

    Oh! I just gave Goodwill a beautiful woven wood bike basket. If i’d only known you were going to want one!

  2. Several years ago I researched like crazy (I always research like crazy) a bike just like you are describing. To my great surprise I found a great one with a vintage look to it on and they sent it to the store, all for a 100 bucks!
    I rode it twice. And then it just sat on my front porch. (I guess I wanted my old 10 speed that I had years ago and the body I had then too!) LOL!
    Sigh, so I gifted it to my niece for her birthday. She loves it.
    (It’s a “cruiser” and it was cream and light green in case you decide to go through Walmart!)

    • tammy j

      thanks for the tip!
      another friend told me she saw the kind i want at target for the same price.
      that must be the going rate. if one doesn’t have it maybe the other will.
      i haven’t started looking yet.
      thought i might look over this weekend. XOXO♥
      of course i’m romanticizing already… cruising through streets with colored leaves
      and the crispy crunch under my bike wheels! and i’m wearing a cherry red sweater! 🙂

      • I just checked out to see if i could find that bike and Whoa! they have a lot more now than they used to have! and a lot of them come with the baskets on front!!!
        It almost made me want a bike!
        Almost! LOL!

        • tammy j

          I know! apparently they’re really popular again! who knew?
          you should get one!
          we can be biker babes. lol.

  3. “I just want plain old. especially now when I’m plain and old myself!” Greatest line ever, Tammy! You enjoy that bike…

  4. Becky

    I can totally relate! Just did that very thing last fall…a bike with brakes that stop with the pedal. Been riding high around the Florida neighborhood. Wish I could send you my bike which I will have to give up when we sell our house and move from Florida. We have no wish to pay the high prices of trucking our home furnishings north to Iowa. So…Habitat from Humanity will get our things if we can’t sell the house fully furnished (which for any snowbird buyer would be a wonderful thing).

    • tammy j

      my goodness. what an amazing opportunity for any buyer.
      especially coming from a lady whose profession it was to make a beautiful home.
      it indeed would be a wonderful thing.

  5. I’m so happy for you! As you know, one of my favorite mantras is, “The quality of our lives depends on how we focus our energy and our attention.” You’re making a great choice. 🙂

    I also love empowering questions. One of my favorites is, “What one step can I take right now to make myself happier?” Except now I don’t even say it, I go over to my easel and draw this doodle. It usually lifts my spirits to look at it.

    Thank you for telling us what you’re doing to lift your spirits. I’ve been worried about you.

    • tammy j

      thank you monk. what a darling little doodle!
      and i also always like your cartoons.
      and the snow pictures made me feel wonderfully cool.
      i just kept arrowing to the right and looked at them all. 🙂

  6. I’m happy for you that you got the bicycle you want and i enjoyed reading about the other one, lol. Hope you have many nice days riding around the streets near you. i agree it doesn’t take much to make a person feel fulfilled, blessed and happy. It’s a lesson i learn almost every day – another layer of a false reality of gimme gimme being peeled away. pretty soon I won’t even have any clothes to wear, lol. well that’s not true.

    have fun pedaling.

  7. Evening Tammy….
    Lovely post….you always make me feel….and think….and wonder….
    I like that!
    I hope you get your bike…
    Did your camera arrive yet?
    Vivian started JK today…♥️…I will email you a pic…
    Take care my friend…
    Linda :o)

    • tammy j

      hi cc girl
      I don’t have it yet. I plan to look for one this weekend.
      it’s still extremely hot here. yesterday it was 35. has been most of the week.
      but they’re saying we’re to have a ‘cold front’ and drop it down to at least 30!
      got my camera. dragging my feet on replacing the necessary card for it.
      i’m queen of procrastination. but it will be fun to carry when I go on the bike.
      can’t wait for the pic of miss v. so don’t forget! ♥♥

  8. I’m not about to get a bike, it is a very long hill near my new place & of course it’s not in a non-busy traffic area to start with…

    Thinking about doing things…you have done before, for reasons for/against…

    I also just had a chat with a friend about my compost bin – I said I was giving it to my nice neighbour here and she said “but you could have a veg garden again at your new place”….I said all in good time, I may do so but right now it’s about getting used to being somewhere else…and I might never do that again (the veg plot)

    I also said to her, that it was a big bin – which suited me when I wanted a big veg plot…now I’m not in need of it (well for now…)

    so it’s a bit like your bike purchase – something simple with less hassles…

    • tammy j

      oh my yes. always something simple with less hassles.
      you could even garden in large pots.
      i know a lady who grows delicious tomatoes that way.
      she also grows mint in a pot for her iced tea. all on her patio. 🙂

  9. I haven’t ridden a bike since my teens. I sometimes think about buying one but there’s nowhere in the house to store it, plus I don’t want to get rained on! But I’m sure cycling is fabulous exercise. Tell us how you get on….

  10. DARN IT!!!
    I just lost my big, long reply to your post…briefly- glad you are going to see your nephew.
    Love the old bikes best- mine is now a garden bike with flowers in the front basket.
    Take good care. I am going to try posting this one more time. I entered the “code” three times and then it knocked me out. Grrrrr…..xo Diana

    • tammy j

      oh nana d … good grief.
      I am SO SORRY. that has happened to me too on other blogs. i thought he’d changed the captcha.
      after my robot hacking incident he won’t let me be without one but i know it’s horrible.
      and I would have loved hearing your big long reply!

  11. Plain and simple – that’s me too, Tammy!
    And I find that the older I get, the plainer and simpler I like things.
    My Bob got me one of those 16 speed bikes too, way back when. I don’t think I ever rode it. I now have a $100 Schwinn ,pink and blue, from Walmart -just perfect!
    So glad you’re going to see your nephew!
    Maybe you can talk the captain into coming to Georgia to visit you!

    • tammy j

      isn’t plain and simple wonderful susan!
      i’m glad you have a bike too. and a plain and simple one.
      i’m going to have to go with a child’s bike. a 20 inch one.
      it’s perfect for my height and most important… i can lug it easier up and down the stairs.
      i live in an upstairs apartment and i have to be able to get it up and down easily enough.
      and i can also easily put it in the car if i want to drive to a lovely area and then ride around.
      i think i have found the perfect one! 🙂 i’m sure i’ll look like i borrowed my grandchild’s…
      but that’s okay! whatever works. and it will work for me. 🙂

  12. The vision of all 5’1 of you peddling around town in a classic cruiser, with a basket full of books (50 shades of gray perhaps?), waving at everyone and ringing your bell, makes me smile. Cruisers are in trend now, and can easily be purchased fairly inexpensively. I miss my pink and white Schwin…my first and still favorite bike as a child.

    We ride bikes often, especially when in Florida. It’s so flat!

    Sorry your trip was cancelled, but you’re ok with it, so it’s all good. 🙂


    • tammy j

      LOL! well… 50 shades of beige maybe… with some racy red every now and then thrown in for good measure!
      never read the gray though.
      i rode jacob’s bike when we went out to Georgia last time.
      i’m thinking though i do want a cruiser… i’m going to have to go with a kid’s 20″ bike.
      it’s a better option for me. i rode jacob’s just fine. and it’s much lighter than the cruiser.
      i can haul it up and down the stairs easier. a lot safer for me to handle.
      not as wonderfully nostalgic as a cruiser… but better for my situation! 😀

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