December 17, 2007

Soup Contest Winner

Drumroll please....and the winner is...

Cox Family!

Baked Potato Soup
8 potatoes, baked as usual
18 Tbsp butter
1 and 1/3 cup flour
12 cups milk
1 lb cheddar cheese
1 tsp salt
1 16-oz package sour cream
8 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
1/2 bunch green onions (optional)

Take baked potatoes and scoop out the pulp; set aside. In a LARGE saucepan, melt the butter. Add the flour and stir until mixed completely. Slowly add milk while stirring constantly. Heat to a boil, stirring often! (It’s important to keep stirring to keep the milk from burning). Heat until mixture is thickened. Add cheddar cheese and salt. Mash the potato pulp and add to the batch, stir to combine until all the cheese is melted. Take the soup off the heat. Add the sour cream and stir to incorporate. Serve in a bread bowl or regular bowl. Can top/garnish with bacon and onions, if desired.


Congrats and please email your mailing address to email(at)maidensofvirtue(dot)com so we can send you your copy of the 28-page The Hope Chest Record Book! (Please email within 7 days or we will have to pick a different winner).

Thanks to everyone who entered the contest... it was a tough decision to pick the winner!

December 8, 2007

My Finished Apron

I mentioned in my post, "Random Musings on Aprons," that I was making myself a "frilly" apron. Well, true to my word, I did! One thing I learned - I do not enjoy sewing with stripes! :-) But I am still happy with the way it turned out. And here are a couple of pictures:
Apron Front
Apron Back
If you like this apron, I made it with Butterick brand pattern #6816 (don't laugh, it's a Mrs. Santa pattern) out of calico fabric. If you would like to make it exactly as I did, I made my own ruffles instead of using eyelet trim as it calls for in the pattern (it includes a "guide for ruffle" for each of the different ruffles and I just used those as if they were regular pattern pieces, and then made very narrow hems along the bottoms). I also did two pockets instead of one, and did not put ruffles on the pockets, and I just cut my own instead of using the pattern piece provided (but you could use either).

I think the only thing I did differently as far as the actual sewing was that it said to leave one section open on the strap (by the ruffle) for turning it inside out but I didn't and just sewed it and it worked fine (hope that made sense). By the way, for keeping the shoulder ruffles from getting caught in the stitching, it works well to sort of roll them away from where you will be sewing and pin them in place. I think that was all!

If you don't know how or don't want to sew one, there are some lovely feminine aprons and

December 5, 2007

This Blog is "Moving"...

Due to some "issues" with Blogger, I am switching The Girlhood Gazette to a WordPress blog. The new web address is:

So for any of you that have this blog bookmarked, etc. you should change the address. The new blog also has a lovely new design. From now on I will be posting all my posts on the new blog.
I hope you all enjoy it!

November 22, 2007

Reasons to be Thankful that You are a Daughter...

...instead of a son!

• You have the wonderful privilege of being able to be kissed and hugged by your father no matter how old you are... sons don't always get that! Hugs, maybe, but kisses usually stop when they get older.

• You have the opportunity to serve in a way that sons can't. A daughter holds a special place in the home - as well as in the church and community.

• You get to have the fun of learning all kinds of skills that boys don't learn: sewing, cooking, baking, knitting... the list goes on.

• Let's face it - the clothes that daughters get to wear are much more interesting and pretty than sons' clothes! I infinitely prefer a lovely dress or skirt and blouse to the pants that sons must wear; which is a good thing, seeing as I am a daughter!

• You can embrace different relationships with your father and mother than a son does. Both the father/daughter and mother/daughter relationships are precious and beautiful when properly cultivated; and you would miss this if you were not a daughter.

• You have the protection of your father and brothers, if you have any.

• You can be a "corner pillar" in your father's house, adorning, serving, and supporting your parents and family.

What a blessing! Be thankful that you are a daughter.

November 14, 2007

I've Been Tagged...

Mrs. C tagged me to share 8 random things about myself, so here goes...

1. I am notorious at our house for forgetting about my wet laundry and leaving it in the washer overnight - trying to correct this!

2. One of my favorite things to cook/bake is apple pie, much to my father's enjoyment.

3. I love photographing nature, especially flowers.

4. I have several odd, unofficial "collections," including pitchers and old fashioned keys.

5. I have played the piano for 8 years.

6. I love history, especially the Medieval, Colonial and Civil War eras.

Only two more to go...

7. I never wear pants, one reason being that I do not even own any (that fit, anyway), and the other reason I will not mention because it would take up a great deal of time to explain.

8. Roses are my favorite flower, though there are several others that come very close...

Whew... who thought it could be so hard to think of 8 random things? Now I am supposed to tag 8 others and I hope my friends will forgive me for picking on them but I don't know anyone else...

Lauren S.
Raeanne C.
Anna V.
Megan C.
Hannah D.
Dawn B.
Joanna E.
Ashlei L.

November 6, 2007

Soup Recipes Wanted!

Winter is nearly upon us and there is nothing like a steaming bowl of soup on a chilly winter day. I'm looking for good soup recipes to use throughout this winter.
And if you give your favorite soup recipe, you have a chance to win a copy of the 28 page "The Hope Chest Record Book"! This contest is open to anyone. All you have to do is comment on this post with your favorite soup recipe, and the person with the best recipe will win the book. You are welcome to enter more than one recipe if you wish. When commenting, please do not select "Anonymous" as your identity, as I will need actual names when announcing the winner.

The deadline for this contest has been extended to December 15th, 2007. Winner will be announced here on December 17th.

October 17, 2007

Random Musings on Aprons

I love aprons.

I don't mean the kind of apron you usually find in a department store, that has nothing pretty about it except maybe the fabric. I'm talking about "girly-girl" aprons - the old-fashioned kind that is gathered at the waist, has two ties that go over the shoulders and meet the ties at the waist; the kind that has ruffles at the shoulders and around the hem. That is what I call an apron. The other stereotype "aprons" should be called clothing protectors or something.

The value of the apron has been lost over the generations. Aprons used to be worn all the time. If you think about it, it really does make complete sense. An apron is worn to protect the clothing, and if visitors arrive or Dad comes home, the apron can be whisked off and there you are, fresh and clean. Probably the concept has gradually been forgotten as women have started to dress more casually and pants have less risk of becoming soiled.

Now, all that said, I admit that the majority of the time I do not wear an apron around the house; but I beg to say that the reason is that I do not yet have a "pretty" one as I mentioned earlier. But I am planning to make one, and trust that I shall begin wearing it regularly once it is finished!

The benefits of wearing an apron:
It keeps your clothing clean and consequently ready for anything! :-)
The skirt of an apron makes a very handy "basket" for laundry, veggies from the garden, and other sundry items
It lends a sense of femininity and-
It can even give you the motivation to do your housework with joy! (Or at least do it {smile})

Several months ago, my grandparents on my mom's side came for a visit, and you know how grandmas are always bringing you things that they found in their closets or picked up at Hobby Lobby. Well, this time my grandma (Oma, we call her - it's Dutch for grandma, and my mom's side of the family is Dutch) came armed with a very special thing - my great-great-oma's apron! She (great-great-Oma) wore it everyday, except Sunday because she had a special white Sunday apron. It's still in wonderful condition, and almost looks brand new, which tells me she took great care of it. What a treasure to have something from so long ago, and from my own family!

Well, I hope this hasn't bored you, but rather inspired you to begin wearing an apron regularly - a real apron.

October 9, 2007

The New Hope Chest Record Book

Guess what... I have just recently published a new version of The Hope Chest Record Book, which was (and still is) available through the Maidens of Virtue Shoppe. This new version is hardcover, so it is created to last and be passed down for generations to come. And it has 100 entry pages, instead of 28 like the original paperback, combound version. Yes, it is more expensive - but you are getting a keepsake with a lot more room for filling that chest to overflowing! You can purchase this through Maidens of Virtue (on the same page as the original) or from Fairhaven Press.

September 25, 2007


I am not usually a big video person as far as blogs go, but this otter one was just too sweet to not post it! An adorable picture of motherhood!

September 14, 2007

Patience Rewarded

This is a post I wrote for our family blog, and thought maybe you girls might enjoy it too:

Here at our lovely home, we were sure that there must be hummingbirds around. We had seen a few even at our old house in a subdivision, and one would think that here, with so much open land and fewer houses, we would find more wildlife.
Well, we were right.
We have two hummingbird feeders out, and have had them filled for quite some time. We've waited and waited, and then we saw a hummingbird a month or so ago, but it didn't seem very interested in the feeder. So we added more sugar, which proved more effective. We now have a little "resident" hummingbird who stays around all the time, and what is more, we see every day what is apparently rather unusual. We see it sit. Most people spot hummingbirds in flight, but our little friend has a favorite perch on our Japanese maple, right by the deck, and we see it sitting there quite often.

Here are 3 shots of basically the same view:

It was very fun for me yesterday morning, which is when I took the first two shots. The hummingbird was sitting on her usual branch, and so I grabbed the camera and decided to go outside and see if it would fly away. It did, but was back in a moment and I was able to get those pictures with our "super zoom" lens. Then it flew off again, so I moved closer and waited to see if it would come back. I was standing about 2 feet or so away from the feeder, and then the hummingbird came right up to it! What a neat experience to be so close to one of these amazing creatures. Unfortunately the camera would not focus fast enough and I was not able to get any close-up shots.
It is amazing how fast their little wings go - when they hover, they don't make much sound, but when they move, it makes a whirring noise. Very neat!

God's creation is MARVELOUS!!!

September 10, 2007

Another Contest!

Well, girls, it's time to start sewing! Modest Handmaidens is now offering a sewing contest for young ladies ages 9 to 19 (three separate categories). All you have to do is send in 2 pictures of one of your sewing projects with a submission form!
The deadline is October 15, 2007.

Click here for more info!

P.S. The winners of the essay contest put on by Modest Handmaidens are now announced! Click on the same link above to see the results!

September 4, 2007

"Nice Blogger Award"

My mom tagged me for the "Nice Blogger Award" which is:
“This award is for those bloggers who are nice people; good blog friends and those who inspire good feelings and inspiration. Also for those
who are a positive influence on our blogging world. Once you’ve been awarded please pass it on to 7 others who you feel are deserving of this award."

So now I am supposed to pass it on to 7 others, but I don't know 7 bloggers, so here's what I do have:

My friends:
Anna Joyce

Megan Rose


Mrs. Guenther at Teacup Talk

Miss Taylor at Godly Girlhood ~ Taylor's Blog

Lovely blogs, ladies... now it's your turn to tag!

If I find 2 other good blogs, I'll add them too! :-)

September 1, 2007

New Poems!

I Will Live for My Redeemer
By Miss Baylie W.

I will live for my Redeemer ~
All earth’s joys are but a name,
When compared to Christ my Savior,
Through all ages still the same.
Oh, how can I help but love Him,
Who for me God’s judgment bore!
Showered love and blessing on me,
Bid me fear and weep no more.

I will live for my Redeemer ~
He and only Him I’ll praise,
Who has purchased my salvation
And who keeps me with His grace.
O the joy of sin forgiven,
Hell and death I fear no more!
Death for me holds no more terror
For it opens heaven’s door.

I will live for my Redeemer ~
‘Tis the debt to Him I owe.
Oh, I can withhold Him nothing
Since He deigns to love me so!
O what boundless grace and mercy;
His own life for me He gave.
Out of love I pledge forever
To be His most willing slave.

I will live for my Redeemer ~
‘Till my life on earth is o’er,
And throughout the endless ages
I’ll adore Him more and more.
Laud and honor to the Savior!
Praise and blessing to the One
Who did purchase my redemption
By the death of His own Son!

Deliverance and Patience
By Miss Baylie W.

In a wee and stout fort
On the shore of the James,
Lived a small group of settlers,
Determined and brave.
They had battled the natives
And suffered much pain;
Now starvation threatened
To dig them their graves.

Discouraged and weary,
They gave in to despair.
Setting sail for their homeland,
They left Jamestown there
Amidst their dashed hopes and dreams.
On the shore frontier
They had tried, and now failing,
Old England looked fair.

But lo! In the distance
Two ships did draw near,
With supplies and provisions
To last them a year.
God had, in His providence,
With safe passage blessed
The Deliv’rence and Patience.
History tells the rest…

So ‘oft in our lives
We begin to despair,
And abandon the vision
That once seemed so clear.
Then God lovingly sends us
Deliverance from fear,
And Patience, the fruit of
Our trials and tears.

Press on, weary pilgrim!
Never fear or despair.
Deliverance is coming,
I see her just there.
And Patience along with her,
God’s promised reward
For those who are faithful.
Stand strong in the Lord!

My Girlhood
By Jill Novak

My girlhood is a pleasant place
Where life and love abound,
For here it is that all I am
Is waiting to be found.
In play I spend an endless time
Where only I can go,
A child still inside the girl
A pure-white, budding rose.

My girlhood is a time for God
His hand, His voice, His face,
His steady stream of steadfast love
Within my days I trace.
I rest assured of this one thing
He'll never leave my side,
For in my girlhood heart of hearts
He always will abide.

My girlhood home is all I need
To learn of servant-hood,
For here my Father and my Mother
Seek only what is good.
They take the time to teach me well
And help me understand,
That girlhood is a time of life
To lend a helping hand.

My girlhood is a priceless gift
A training ground, you see,
Where love for others, sisters and brothers
Will always be the key.
For God will cover my girlhood years
In all I do and say,
'Till someday a woman I will be
When girlhood passes away.

Taken from The Gift of Family Writing by Jill Novak
Used by permission of Remembrance Press •

August 13, 2007

This is Adorable!

Someone sent this to my mom, and it is so cute I just had to post it here! This little girl is precious!
Click the red arrow to play.

July 31, 2007

Summery Salads

Since summer is definitely upon us, a salad is the perfect meal for a hot day. Refreshing and healthy, salads are one of my summer favorites! Here are couple of my most-liked recipes:

Southwest Layer Salad
Serves approx. 6 to 8 people

1 1/2 cups sour cream
3/4 cup salsa (chunky works well)
1 (15 oz.) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 large orange or yellow bell pepper, diced
2 to 3 medium tomatoes, diced
1/2 cup diced red onion OR thinly sliced green onion (with tops)
12 to 16 oz. (or about 10 cups) iceberg lettuce salad mix
1 to 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 cup sliced black olives

In a small bowl, stir together the sour cream and salsa. Mix well and set aside.
After preparing the vegetables, layer the beans, bell pepper, tomatoes, green onions, and lettuce in a large bowl (shallow is better). Evenly spread the sour cream/salsa mixture over the top and sprinkle on the cheese. Top with the black olives and refrigerate until ready to serve.
Note: Because of the layered nature of this salad, it is easiest to serve it with a large flat spatula, as you would serve lasagna. If you prefer, you can toss it all together instead of layering it.

Miss Kathryn's Pasta Salad
Serves approx. 6 people

1 tsp. Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp. dried basil
1/3 cup Italian salad dressing
3 cups penne pasta (or other pasta), uncooked
20 pitted black olives
16 cherry tomatoes
1 medium cucumber
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

In a small bowl, whisk together mustard and basil. Gradually stir in dressing and whisk until smooth. Set aside. Cook pasta according to package directions; drain in colander. Rinse with cold water and drain well. Place pasta in large bowl.
While pasta is cooking, cut olives and cherry tomatoes in half. Cut cucumber in half lengthwise, peel, and remove seeds if desired. Cut cucumber halves crosswise into slices. Add olives, tomatoes, and cucumbers to pasta in the large bowl. Pour dressing over pasta mixture and mix lightly. Add Parmesan cheese and toss. Cover and refrigerate for 30-60 minutes, and serve.


July 24, 2007

New Resource

I started another resource site to go with Maidens of Virtue and this blog. It's made with a site builder called Squidoo. There's a kitchen section, and a sewing section, (and more!) plus you can buy books, CDs, and other products. I update this site monthly so be sure to check back! Take a look here:

June 25, 2007

Speaking of Modesty...

Have you seen the Modest Handmaidens Essay Contest?

This contest is for girls ages 13-17. It begins on June 30th, and the deadline for submissions is August 31st (2007). The subject is "Maidens Modeling Modesty in an Immodest World."

Lots of great prizes are being offered, and there will be 1st, 2nd, and 3rd prizes awarded. Click here or on the image to the left to get the full details!

Happy writing!

June 19, 2007

Summer is coming...

... and with it comes the heat and the challenge of staying modest! Swimming is one of our favorite activities in the summer season, but I think it goes without saying that finding an appropriate swimsuit in the stores is like searching for an invisible needle in a haystack. That is why I would like to provide you with a couple of modest swimwear resources, that, I hope, will be helpful to you.

Modest Swimwear Solutions
This site provides a swimsuit pattern, ready-made suits, and custom-made suits, as well as swimsuit fabric if you are sewing your own.

Wholesome Wear
This site features 3 styles of swimwear - culottes, skirted, and "slimming," which is like the skirted only not gathered at the waist. There are currently 4 colors of the slimming swimsuit on sale!

So far these are the only sources that I know of, but if I come across any others I will post them here!

June 13, 2007

The Beauty of God's Creation...

I have a little hobby of taking floral photos, so I hope you enjoy!

If these pictures do not show up for you, I apologize! I will try and fix it as soon as possible.

May 15, 2007

Maidens of Virtue Poetry Contest Results!

I am very pleased to announce the winners and honorable mentions of the Maidens of Virtue Poetry Contest! It was a great blessing to see the talent of so many young ladies.
All right, let's start with the 10-17 year old category, "Serving Your Family"...
The grand prize winner is:

Miss Rachel Krause

Read Rachel's poem, A Tale of Two Maidens, below! We liked the creative approach that she took on the subject, turning the poem into a story.
Honorable Mentions for this category are:
Miss Kajsa Nickels ~ Serving My Family
Miss Robyn Gould ~ Helping Mother

Be sure to read their poems below as well.


Now for the 18-15 year old category, "The Proverbs 31 Woman"...
The grand prize winner is:

Miss Leah Shoop

Read Leah's poem, Gold Mists, below. We were pleased with the flow of the rhythm and with how a theme, her hands, carries thoughout the poem.
Honorable Mentions for this category are:
Miss Kathryn Inyart ~ Far More Than Rubies
Miss Jessica Burks ~ For She Has Gifts

All the poems are below, and can also be found on

Now, I can't end without a huge THANK YOU to the sponsors of this contest who generously contributed to the grand prizes:
Roses and Teacups
Hope Chest Legacy
Modest Handmaidens
Family Memories Alive

Thank you so much!

Please feel free to leave a comment congratulating the winners and honorable mentions!

10-17 Grand Prize Winner

A Tale of Two Maidens

By Miss Rachel Krause

As the Father looked below He saw upon a glance,
Two houses, two homes, two families, two girls,
This happened not by chance.

One home He saw held a family of eight, six children and two parents,
Five boys all growing kept their sister sewing
For they didn't have two extra cents.

Money was saved, pennies were pinched, mother and daughter were thrifty
But conserving their spending, neither borrowing not lending,
Meant both hands had to be nifty.

When mother fell sick and didn't have strength to work every day with her daughter,
The girl persevered serving her brothers dear
And making glad her father.

Clothes to be mended, floors to be scrubbed, dishes to wash and to dry,
Windows to sparkle and bathrooms to clean,
All done without even a sigh.

At the end of the day, Hannah paused to reflect on the service that she gladly gave,
When two of her brothers came sat down beside her,
And the work that she did, they praised.

But more than the thanks that her brothers returned, the girl internally knew,
That her father was proud, for the Lord had found
A maiden saying, "Your will I will do."

The Lord Jesus smiled, so pleased and so proud, that this girl was serving her family,
But His smile quickly faded as this view was traded
For a picture not so very pretty.

Again, a house was within His view, full of five, no, four, lively people,
For the fifth of this clan always said, "But I can't!"
And appeared to be daily quite feeble.

For whenever the words, "Help," "Will you?" or "Work," were pronounced in Caroline's presence,
The looks on her face made you think she might faint,
"Besides," she said, "work is for peasants."

And although the mean words never slipped her small lips, she thought of them all the day long,
While she struggled and strained, her lounging to maintain,
Immersed in her selfish grey fog.

The delicate fingers, neither calloused not scratched, held books and hankies all day,
While poor mother slaved, house function to maintain,
Caroline on the sofa lay.

"Oh, mother," she complained, "how my head aches," and, "Oh! What is that smell?"
"Dinner must have burned, Mother, when will you learn?"
"And, someone, go answer the doorbell!"

So on went routine, (her laziness, I mean) causing Mother and Father much grief.
"What shall we do?" Father and Mother dismayed,
"She's not even earning her keep."

At the end of the day, Caroline again lay, Lounging and lazing luxuriously,
But something within her, not happy she seemed,
And the tears began falling down furiously.

Happiness and peace, she could never enjoy, for Caroline did not understand,
That the greatest joy ever is laziness NEVER,
But lending a work ready hand.

So to you, fellow maiden, I offer two choices, you must make the right one today,
Serve the Lord Jesus by serving your family,
For service to God is well-paid!

10-17 Honorable Mention

Serving My Family

By Miss Kajsa Nickels

Setting up the crockpots with soup and rice and beef,
Scrubbing up the dishes and brushing sister's teeth.

Feeding my small brother his rice and apples too,
Chopping up the veggies for beef and bean stew.

Organizing cabinets and stacking things just so,
Packing bags of food and such when it's time to go.

Faithfully changing diapers of any smell or color, :-)
And when Baby gets upset, I take him to his mother.

Joy-full and peace-full, this servanthood is rest;
Because I know this is God's will, I'll do my very best.

10-17 Honorable Mention

Helping Mother

By Miss Robyn Gould

Every evening it is my job to help with supper cleanup, but best of all is washing the dishes with my mother dear. We talk and laugh about the day and from things of the past.
I love helping mother.

Sometimes I vacuum for my brother. Sometimes I wash the floor when mother dear is busy.
Sometimes I clean the kitchen or pick up all the toys.
I love helping mother.

Sometimes I stop to bandage sisters knee. Or pick up baby dear.
And sometimes I help my brother get out his bin of toys or help him reach a book.
I love helping mother.

But sometimes there are unpleasant jobs like doing dirty laundry, and I try not to grumble as I see the mounds of laundry or the dirty messy room, so I think of a song and it helps all the time, and soon I am thinking on pleasant things.
I love helping mother.

But sometimes there is dinner to make and Brother tries to help, and spills the sauce and meat all across my nice clean kitchen floor! And then what do I do? Do I yell at him? No, for I try to be patient and tell him no, but he says, "I am sorry," and then I clean up and it is clean again.
I love helping mother.

But best of all is nighttime when I snuggle into bed knowing that I have done my job and that’s a guarantee.
I love helping mother.

But sometimes there’s a struggle to be patient, loyal and kind, for I must treat my family like royalty and I must help them out, for I am mother’s helper girl and I must help her out!
I love helping mother.

I like serving my family because that’s what God calls us to do!
For when I am helping mother then I please God and I want to please God as well as mother.
I love helping mother.

18-25 Grand Prize Winner

Gold Mists
By Miss Leah Shoop

The silver needle darts through cloth
While pulling tight its scarlet thread,
With hands grown skillful yet still soft
To guide its course across the red.

Those hands create by candle wax
Fine linens fit for royalty,
They deftly work with wool and flax,
Spin silks, weave purple tapestry.

Stretched to the poor the hands extend
With gifts of clothes and food,
They freely give, they freely lend,
And sensitively offer good.

They are a mother's gentle hands,
And she delights to use them well.
To nourish life, God-blown through sand,
She cooks, and hunger's quickly quelled.

She raises daughters, trains her sons,
Wraps them in blessings warm and light,
While to her husband she becomes
A glory glowing ruby bright.

It's more than charm of glance or face,
Slight form, hair straightened smooth or curled.
She shines in mists of holy grace,
Gold mists that meet and mark the world.

18-25 Honorable Mention

Far More Than Rubies
By Miss Kathryn Inyart

A woman of godly virtue, is worth far more than rubies,
And pursuing godly character, is one of our greatest duties.
To be as the woman of Proverbs, we must fear the Lord,
It’s character, not beauty, that we are working toward.
Her example we must follow, more closely with each day,
Not only in our actions, but in what we think and say.

She did her husband good, not evil all her days,
With eager willing hands, she did her work always.
Her husband had no need, of spoil of any kind,
Because she was trustworthy, he could rest with peace of mind.
Industrious, never idle, she worked with cheerful heart,
Not lazy, for she awakened, before the day did start.

Strength and honor were her clothing, she did rejoice in time to come,
She spoke the law of kindness, and opened her mouth with wisdom.
She was generous to all, even gave unto the poor,
Shared willingly with them, from her hard-earned store.
Children rose up and blessed her; her husband gave her praise,
Others did virtuously, yet she excelled them in her ways.

Like her, may our works, bring praise in the gates,
As we learn from her example and follow her virtuous traits.
Let all that we do, ever honor the Lord,
For, “My servant, well done,” is our greatest reward.
May we shine for our King, more than rubies so red,
Not seeking charm or beauty, but godly virtue instead.

18-25 Honorable Mention

For She Has Gifts
By Miss Jessica Burks

Her life is rich because she waits for God to give a man
For she has gifts - of thought, of prayer
Where hope is ripe from fertile trust in God who has a plan.

To serve her man with all her heart does show her love for him
For she has gifts - to praise, to share
A joyful home for God's true work and love to come from them.

She trusts in God to guide her path and know her dream and goal
For she has gifts - of love, of care
To raise a child who loves the Lord with all her heart and soul.

Such love and virtue can be lost without a man around
For she has gifts - so fond, so fair
Which brings to hue a pallid face and echoes from no sound.

The time when God does grant this man will be a joy for me
For I have gifts - I say, I dare
To love his life and join my soul with his in harmony.

April 27, 2007

No Bakes (Mountain Bars)

Submitted by: Anonymous

2 cups sugar
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 cups quick oats
1 cup ground coconut (optional)

Boil sugar, milk, butter, and cocoa powder for one minute, then take of stove. Add peanut butter, then add vanilla and oats. Stir, then scoop on to cookie sheet(s). (Note: when you add the vanilla and oats, you can put some coconut in it, too.. about 1 cup).

April 18, 2007

Just A Reminder

A quick note to remind you that there is less than two weeks left until the submission deadline for the Maidens of Virtue Poetry Contest! Remember, entries must be received or postmarked by April 30th, 2007 to be valid.

Click here to submit an entry electronically.

April 14, 2007

Some More Recipes

The BEST Apple Pie

4 cups or more sliced apples
½ cup sugar
4½ tsp. cornstarch
¼ tsp. salt
Juice of ½ a lemon
Cinnamon, to taste (optional)


¼ cup cool water
2 cups flour
1 cup (2 sticks) butter
¼ tsp. salt

Preheat oven to 450°F. Combine sugar, cornstarch and salt in a small bowl. Peel and slice apples, tossing as you go with a spoonful of the sugar/cornstarch mixture and a squeeze of lemon juice, until you have used it all. Add cinnamon if desired.
For the crust, remove 1/3 cup flour from the 2 cups and mix the 1/3 cup in a bowl with the ¼ cup cool water, until it forms a paste. In a large bowl, cut the butter into the remaining flour and salt with a pastry blender or fork. Mixture should be crumbly. Add the paste to the flour/ butter mixture and stir using the back of a fork (or a dough hook on a kitchen mixer) until dough forms a ball.
Divide dough into 2 equal pieces. Heavily flour rolling surface and rolling pin. Roll out bottom crust to 1/8 inch thick; place in a 9-inch pie plate. Fill with apples and dot with butter (optional). Roll out top crust, place on top and crimp edge with a fork. Pierce the top of the pie a dozen times. Bake at 450°F for 10 minutes, then reduce heat to 350° and bake another 50 minutes. Let cool completely before cutting.
The crust recipe can be used for any pie, including savory pies, such as chicken pot pie, etc. I was a novice at pie baking when I first used this recipe, and the crust came out perfect!

Great Grandpa Herald's Winter Potato Soup

Contributed by: Tiffany

Have a large iron soup pot nice and hot. Have a pound of thick sliced bacon cut into quarters. Fry until crispy around the edges. Fry 1 large or two medium onions in the bacon fat. Add garlic at the last if liked, last add 7 medium russet potatos cubed. Brown slightly and have 4 cups of hot water ready to go. Add this to the pot, allow to boil up and add two cups scalded milk. Stir down and season with lots of black pepper. Cover and simmer until the soup is thick rich and bublly. Serve with good homemade bread and hot cider.
Make this when the wind howls and the snow flies outside.

Banana Bread
2 cups flour
1 tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. salt
½ cup (1 stick) butter – very soft
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 cup mashed ripe bananas
1 Tbsp. vinegar plus milk to make ½ cup liquid

Sift flour, baking soda and salt; set aside. Grease loaf pan. Cream butter and sugar until smooth. Add eggs one at a time. Add flour mixture alternately with bananas and liquid, beating well after each. Pour into loaf pan. Bake at 350°F for 50 to 60 minutes or until done.

April 11, 2007

A Great Deal...

For a long time we have been keeping our eyes open for cast iron skillets at a reasonable price. Cast iron is supposed to be healthier to cook on (as long as it is not coated with a non-stick finish) and lasts forever. We had found some, and though they were inexpensive, we hadn't yet ordered them. Mom wanted to hold off a little longer just in case something better came along.
Well, our little bit of extra patience paid off! Mom received an email with a great deal - a set of 3 pans (7, 9 and 11 inch), for only $9.99! Plus, there was a coupon code that brought the price down to $7.49! So we got 3 sets, one for use now, and one for me and one for my sister to put in our hope chests.
I thought I'd pass on the deal... so here is the link:, and the coupon code is: PR247.

Happy cooking!

April 10, 2007

Work & Play

By Miss Emily Grace Wengerd

I like to work as well as play,

But work sure does more good,

And every time I work for Mom,

I'm doing what I should.

And when I play instead of work,

When Mom says that I may,

It sure feels good to run around,

Enjoying all my play.

Sometimes when Mom gives me a job,

I'd rather not do work,

But it is good to faithful be—

My duty not to shirk.

Used by permission of Keepers at Home Magazine - 1.800.852.4482

March 28, 2007

A Special Night for Mom & Dad

I just wanted to share with you girls an idea of how to create a special surprise for your mom and dad. My sister and I did this for our parents, and they really liked it!
In order for it to be a surprise, you will need to have your parents gone for the evening. Maybe you can drop a subtle hint that your dad should take your mom out for dinner or something. The night when we did our surprise, Dad took Mom out, so we had the evening to prepare.
The idea is to make their bedroom look like a room at a hotel or a bed-and-breakfast. We did the bed-and-breakfast. First, we cleared out any clutter that was hanging around and moved it into the spare bedroom. Then we put a pitcher of (silk) flowers on their dresser. In the bathroom, we folded two sets of towels the way they do at hotels: Take the largest towel (the bath towel) and fold it in thirds; then fold it in thirds again, with the edge inside (see illustration). Set it on the bathroom counter (if it isn't firm enough to stand by itself, you can fold it in half again). Now take a hand towel (not the washcloth), and fold it in thirds, as you did in the first step of the bath towel. With the edge down, lay it over the top of the bath towel, lengthwise. Now take the end that is on the outside, and partially open it up. Fold the bottom up, and tuck the sides around the back, forming a pocket. Now take the washcloth, "accordion" fold it, then pinch it in the middle and fold in half. Stick it in the pocket so that it fans out of the top. Voila! (Now, did that make ANY sense??).
After that, if you have any miniature shampoo and conditioner bottles, maybe from those little bags they give you at the airport if you're flying overnight, put those on the counter in front of the towels too, or in the shower. Another nice touch would be to put a still-in-the-wrapper bar of soap on the counter and/or in the shower.
For the actual bedroom, you can create some ambiance by lighting a few candles and putting on some quiet, classical music. If you happen to have live flowers handy, especially roses, you can sprinkle some of the petals on their bed. Be sure to dim the lights!
My sister and I wanted to put a chocolate on each of our parents' pillows, because they do that in high-end hotels. Alas, we didn't have any in the house! Not being easily daunted, however, we melted some chocolate chips, poured it into 2 heart-shaped molds, and put them in the refrigerator to harden. When they were done, we wrapped them in foil and put them on the pillows.
For the final touch, I made up a brochure to look like a bed-and-breakfast brochure. We just moved to our new house, and were considering names for the house. One of them was Fairview, so I made the name of the B & B the "Fairview Bed & Breakfast". The brochure is folded in thirds. Below is a sample of the brochure I made. When making your own, make up creative names for the different rooms and "amenities". For instance, at our house, the kitchen table, where we generally eat breakfast, has a deck outside the window and there are always chipmunks running around out there; our cats go crazy watching them! So I called this "The Chipmunk Ridge Breakfast Parlor" and I assure you, my parents got a kick out of it! The "Conservatory" is really a small greenhouse, "The Beach at Glacier's Mirror" is our pond. Do you get the idea? Make it sound like a resort, while at the same time giving it a humorous twist. Click on the images to enlarge.
^ This is the front and the inside flap of the brochure.^

^This is the inside of the brochure.^

Alright, the last thing we did was to make a small card which we set by their telephone that reads, "Please Dial {insert your phone#} for Room Service."

Well, I hope you have fun creating a special evening for your Mom and Dad!

March 22, 2007

Scripture Name Acrostics

Here's a great idea for a cute and fun project. Take a name (you could also do a word if you wanted to), and then fit a Scripture verse to each letter of the name. For example, "Kathryn":

Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life. (Prov. 4:23)
As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God. (Ps. 42:1)
rust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. (Prov. 3:5)
He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God? (Micah 6:8)
Righteous lips are the delight of kings; and they love him that speaketh right. (Prov. 16:13)
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. (Ps. 23:4)
Not unto us, O LORD, not unto us, but unto thy name give glory, for thy mercy, and for thy truth's sake. (Ps. 115:1)

These would make very nice gifts; create a Scripture acrostic in the receiver's name, print it out on feminine paper in a pretty font (unless you are giving it to your dad or brother!) and then place it in a frame.

Enjoy making up your own acrostics!

March 20, 2007

A Mother's Instruction

By Anonymous

My dear, (my mother said to me), beware how you spend your days,
By idling the time away, a fool you're apt to be.
Guard your heart from sinfulness and keep a watchful eye,
For the world is full of sin and will tell you a lie.

Cooking and cleaning, washing and baking: these are good skills to learn,
But all of these are half as good as a difficult turn.
A turn away from sin and death, a turn to joy and life;
A turn of heart, a turn of mind, a turn away from strife.

Mold your character and be a woman fit for praise,
And may our God, the Lord of all, bless you all your days.

March 19, 2007

Homemaking Conference Update

The online Christian Homemaking Conference was great! We gathered in our home with about 15 mothers and daughters from our church. Despite some technical challenges, we managed to hear 2 wonderful sessions, the first by Mrs. Jennie Chancey and the second by Victoria, Anna Sophia and Elizabeth Botkin. They were very encouraging, and I would definitely recommend that you get the recordings when they become available!
It was great to see how many ladies were online listening; there were women from all over the world! Australia, England, and others across the United States. It's so encouraging to know that we are not the only ones out there who believe the way we do!
A big thank you to all those who worked to make the conference a success! I hope they will do it again sometime...

March 16, 2007

A Picture of Purity

Last year, my father, sister & I attended the Vision Forum Father/Daughter Retreat, at beautiful Callaway Gardens in Georgia. The grounds of the resort were just lovely! On one of our walks, we passed a small pond, and at the edge was growing a lily. Looking at the picture we took of it, it reminds me of what we "maidens of virtue" are striving to be; pure, blameless, rising above a world of awful impurity and corruption. In this picture, we see the lily, white and spotless, and beneath and behind it we see the mud and grime of the pond's edge.
I just want to encourage all of you girls out there to stay pure and faithful to what God has called us to be, and not be defiled with the "dirt" of the world.

March 14, 2007

New Recipes

I've added 3 new recipes to the Maidens of Virtue recipe page:

Baked Oatmeal Breakfast Casserole
2 cups oatmeal
2 cups cottage cheese
2 eggs
1 cup milk
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1/2 cup honey

Mix all ingredients together. Bake in preheated 350 degree oven for 40 minutes. Serve with maple syrup if desired.
Variations: Add cut apples, blueberries or other fruit to the mixture before baking for a different twist.

1 lb. ground beef
about 4 cloves (or more J) garlic, pressed
1 small onion, chopped (optional)
3 to 4 (14 ½ oz.) cans diced tomatoes, NOT drained
1 to 2 (14 ½ oz.) cans black beans, drained
about 2 to 3 Tbsp. of chili powder

Brown beef with garlic and onion in a large pot over medium-high heat. Drain off fat. Add remaining ingredients, cover and simmer till heated through, about 15-20 minutes.

Simple Beef Stroganoff
1 (10 ¾ oz.) can cream of mushroom soup
1 (14 ½ oz.) can beef broth (chicken broth works too)
1 lb. beef stew meat, or round steak, cut in 1" pieces
1 cup sour cream
3 to 4 cups cooked noodles

Combine soup and broth in slow cooker (crock pot). Add meat; cover and cook on high 3-4 hours. Reduce heat to low and cook 3-4 more hours. Stir in sour cream and noodles. Cook on high for 20 more minutes.


March 12, 2007

My Biggest Dream

"What is your biggest dream?"
Have you ever been asked that question? I have, and when I try to explain what my biggest dream is, people seem disappointed. "You 'just' want to be a mom? But, your you could do so much more with your life! Why not choose something more... well, fulfilling or something to benefit the community?"
My biggest dream is to be a helper meet for my future husband. I want to support him, submit to him, build him up and help him to carry out his vision. This dream includes having children, as many as the Lord shall see fit to give me. I want to bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord (Ephesians 6:4); to have to privilege of teaching and training them myself, not leaving it to others. I want to cook their meals, kiss their bumps and bruises, and do those tasks that many women consider menial. In doing so, I will be shaping part of the next generation! Many have heard the saying, "The hand that rocks the cradle rules the world," but I wonder how many actually comprehend the truth in that short quote. Mothers are the ones who are determining the direction of the world! Isn't that a sobering thought? When a mother sends her children off to public school to be taught by politically correct teachers, she is, essentially, tearing down her house with her own hands. In my biggest dream, I want to do the opposite. Raising godly children will be the way in which I benefit the community, rather than leaving home and going around doing "good things" on my own, apart from my family. Is this choice going to be easy, exciting and glamorous? No. Worthwhile and fulfilling? Yes.
"That's as big as your biggest dream gets?"
Well, I don't think it could really get any bigger.

March 9, 2007

Poetry Contest!

The first ever Maidens of Virtue Poetry Contest has just been announced! The contest is open to girls ages 10 to 25. There are two categories:

Young ladies ages 10-17
Subject: Serving Your Family
Write a poem describing how you can help either your father, mother, brother, sister, OR the family as a whole.

Young ladies ages 18-25
Subject: The Proverbs 31 Woman
Using your own words, write a poem describing the Proverbs 31 woman, using Proverbs 31:10-31 as your guide.

Click here for a list of the great prizes awarded to the Grand Prize winners!

Contest begins March 10th, and is open to submissions until April 30th, 2007. Complete rules can be found at

March 7, 2007

Tea Time Charm

Do you love tea? I do. I always have, suffice to say that I used to load it with milk and sugar. I have fond memories of visiting my Oma (grandma) and we would always have tea and cookies. As a matter of fact, we still do. My Oma tells me that we (my sister and I) used to ask her all the time, "Oma, can we have sweet tea?" Now, perhaps we don't have it quite so sweet, but tea and cookies is always something we do together.
I hope you and your mother and sisters, if you have any, have tea time quite often. We recently moved to a beautiful 6 acre property, and while exploring the land the other day, discovered several picturesque little spots that would be perfect for an informal tea party; there is a little screened garden house down by the garden, and under one large evergreen, the lower branches had been cut away creating a big "room" underneath, high enough for me to stand up straight. Now, isn't that just the perfect spot for a "woodland tea"?

Tea Time Charm
By Miss Kathryn Y.

Tea Time…what does it bring to mind? I think of little girls dressed up in hats and gloves, sipping tea out of white porcelain teacups with roses painted on them. But Tea Time doesn't have to be just for little girls; older girls enjoy it too.

For me, Tea Time is the perfect opportunity to be a "young lady". It is the time when good manners and proper posture are at their peak. What girl doesn't love to put on a pretty dress, curl her hair, and play at being a "lady"? Sadly, girls these days are usually too caught up in cell phones and goofing off to appreciate the value of having tea. Tea Time offers a welcome rest from the hectic rush of the day. Even if you don't "dress up" for it, Tea Time gives a sense of femininity and grace; there is a certain old-fashioned charm about pouring out tea, and asking your companions if they take cream or sugar?
Tea Time need not always be a "tea party"; it can be informal, or very elegant. Invite your closest friends, or just share a cup of tea with your mother. When girls grow older, too often they shut out their parents, and do what "they want". What a mistake! Having Tea Time with your mother is such a lovely way to keep acquainted, so to speak. Somehow, it seems easier to talk to your mom over a cup of tea.
Don't think that just because you are older than 10 you are too old to have Tea Time; I'm 13 and I love it! I have a tea party for my birthday every year. It's so fun!

So, two sugar cubes or none…either way, it's Tea Time, young ladies!

Article used with permission of

Christian Homemaking Conference

On March 17th we will be gathering with about 20 mothers and daughters in our home for this online Christian Homemaking Conference! The conference is featuring speakers Jennie Chancey, Kim Brenneman, Jennifer McBride, Lydia Sherman & Lillibeth Humphrey, and Anna Sophia & Elizabeth Botkin.
We are greatly looking forward to this event! I will be sure to update on it here. You can find more information on this conference at

March 6, 2007


Welcome to The Girlhood Gazette! This is a blog for Christian young ladies who have rejected the world's idea of womanhood and desire to live a virtuous life for God's glory.

I hope to post recipes, poems, and thoughts on girlhood as they occur to me. There will be some of the same things on this blog as on, so don't be surprised to see some similarities! Thanks for stopping by and I hope you'll come back soon!