In this month’s addition of Coastal Living magazine Sam Hunt will be sitting down with the Martinez Family at their beautiful beachside home in sunny Florida. The exact location won’t be published however the interviews and accompanying photographs are inspiring and breathtaking.
Sam,” Tell me about your childhood in Florida, you are a Native Floridian right?” “Yes, Sam I am a Native Floridian. I was born in North Florida and grew up in the small rural town of White Springs. There were no stop lights, I think we had two police officers, my father owned the local hardware store and a blueberry farm. During my earliest childhood memories my dad was a beekeeper and we would travel to North Dakota for the bees to be out in the clover fields. Clover honey is still my favorite honey and I can tell the real thing from anything store bought.” Sam: “So you would say that you came from humble beginnings then?” I think that’s fair to say though everyone around me was the same so I never knew the difference per se”.
So, Tammy here you are living in this amazing coastal home with 5 bedrooms and 4 baths, and it even has an attached guest house that is very spacious. You homeschool your children, serve in volunteer positions related to Public Affairs and are a staunch advocate for Father’s Rights. How did you get here? How did you get to this place of complete peace and tranquillity, this home, this enviable life of helping impact so many father’s and their children, worldwide public speaking engagements where you share your story and continue to promote ‘being of service to others’.
Tammy: I am a small town girl. However, I was privileged to grow up in a home with parents that loved and supported me and taught me that ‘never’ wasn’t a word because there was always a way. I was taught to dream big, work hard and set goals. I grew up listening to Art Williams, Tom Hopkins, Zig Ziglar, Tony Robbins and others.
‘Growing up in Florida around the ocean made it so that salt water was in my blood so to speak. I also had the opportunity to travel extensively throughout the Caribbean, South & Central America, and Europe for several years, so I could not imagine being far from the ocean. It calls to me. Morning runs at sunrise on the beach and then evening walks when it’s quiet and you can hear the waves lapping the shore and seagulls flying overhead fills my soul. My husband and I married on the beach and renewed our vows on our 15th anniversary just down there. (Tammy motioned to a little dune nearby) I have been an avid scuba diver for years and became a Scuba Diving Instructor back in my 20’s. My children all love the ocean and respect its beauty and power.’
”We have a farm house over in the Carolinas that we love as well and while we say we split our time evenly between the two houses, the beach house usually wins.
Sam: Tell me about the vision you had for this amazing home Tammy.
Tammy: Sam, I have to start by telling you that we used a excellent builder, but we also came to the table with some ideas of things the home had to have incorporated.
Sam: Okay I can’t wait to hear what these were.
Tammy: First, we had to have lots of natural light. I wanted sunlight to stream in from every side of our home. Skylights, windows and open spaces really helped achieve that goal. I also wanted to have a Chef’s dream kitchen. I married a chef and I love for him to be able to create for our family as well as for his clients. My husband has more space than he could ever use, at least that’s what I thought. (pause for laughter) We both wanted certain elements that over the years we had seen friends enjoy and one of those was an oversized kitchen island. An island that would be big enough to have 12 chairs fit around the sides of it. We wanted cabinets built into it to house every possible kitchen tool as well as to make organization, prep work and cooking a breeze. The island is where we gather for every meal as well as to talk, laugh and play games. We also wanted what all chefs dream of having in their kitchen… a 6 burner gas stove, subzero fridge and freezer, walk in pantry, fresh herb storage and of course a large grilling area. We made the indoor kitchen flow seamlessly into the outdoor kitchen so there was no need to have a second of everything but just an ease in accessing the main kitchen area and tools.
Sam: Wow, so what’s for dinner tonight then?
Tammy: Since leaving city life we have adopted a much cleaner diet and lifestyle all around so tonight’s meal isn’t the norm for most as we avoid wheat, dairy and processed foods. However, we are celebrating tonight so my amazing husband made beef wellington, fresh asparagus, couscous, roasted potatoes and creme bruelee. For years that has been our favorite meal to enjoy but now with a healthier life style this is something we rarely have on the menu.
Sam: I wish I married a chef, that sounds amazing! So what time is dinner, (chuckle chuckle)
Sam: Okay, so tell me more about how a chef that cooks a menu like this can lead a healthy lifestyle?
Tammy: Well, I think a chef can adapt to any client or lifestyle and my husband did his internship at the Orlando Grande Lakes Ritz Carlton so he definitely learned from the best when it comes to decadent and indulgent.
However, as we both neared our 40’s we began discussing transitioning to a healthier lifestyle not only us but our entire family. The culinary part was largely left up to the chef in the family. I had a large learning curve for certain as growing up in the south I was raised on butter and super delicious comfort foods. Anyway, we had begun eliminating dairy and main stream wheat products years before. We also had decided early in our marriage that alcohol and tobacco wouldn’t be apart of our lives.
Sam: What is life like for you now, not only with the healthier lifestyle but with 10 children in various stages of life and with your multiple businesses and volunteer obligations.
Tammy: I can say there is never a dull moment. (laughs) That’s why our beach house is such a wonderful refuge. We also love going to our little mountain retreat. It sits on a huge piece of property where my sister and parents have homes as well. We enjoy spending time with the aunts, uncles, cousins and grandparents. Plus, we have animals there we enjoy tending to and being able to garden which are important life skills. The children love our little ‘family compound’.
Sam: I have to ask, how do you fit in time for your businesses and speaking engagements not to mention homeschooling and your volunteer work?
Tammy: I have an amazingly supportive husband and family. My children are part of Team Martinez and they all help out. Living near family never hurts either. 😉 When I travel the whole family comes and we visit local museums and historical sights wherever we are. In a sense the kids feel like they are on vacation all the time. Sometimes we fly or when we can we take the RV and make it a road trip.
Sam: What an amazing life you lead Tammy. Was this all part of a childhood dream or something that you created after all of your pre married travels?
Tammy: I don’t actually think that I had a clear vision of what I wanted in my childhood or even in my young adult life. It wasn’t until I made a second attempt in the MKMMA 2015 class that I begin to ‘see’ the life I wanted. I realized that I was meant for more, that I could bring to my life the inner person I knew was in there. I began right then to shape this life, this home, this existence. I’m still an active member of the MKMMA community and love seeing others define and then achieve their bliss.