December 26, 2008

New Custom Boa Scarves

boa picI am now offering my plush boa scarves in the Maidens of Virtue Shoppe as custom made - you pick the color. I had been selling these before but with a few set colors from which to choose. But I decided that it would serve my customers better if they could request the color they wanted, and then I could give them some specific yarn colors that match their request.

All the scarves will come in a homespun style yarn (an example is on the site). I will, however, try to accommodate requests for other types of yarn, such as chenille, bulky, feathery, or cotton, etc. (Depending on what type of yarn, this may necessitate a price change - therefore, default yarn is the homespun, and if you want a different yarn, make a note of it in the note section when ordering).

What do you think? I would appreciate any comments on whether you think this is a positive or negative change.

December 24, 2008

Singing the Psalms

Psalter, Vision ForumA while ago our church purchased a bunch of Psalters and we started singing them in our services each week. We as a family also purchased one and use it in our personal family singing.

These are literally the entire book of Psalms set to music. We have really enjoyed learning them in 4 part harmony (I am soprano, my sister is alto, my self-sacrificing mom sings tenor when possible, and Dad is bass).

Singing the Psalms are a great way to memorize them, and these are not "childish" tunes as many Scripture songs are; these are more like hymns - some of the Psalms are actually set to hymn melodies. Of course, the Psalms are "edited" to fit the verses (not word-for-word out of the KJV).

If you have not already purchased this book, I would strongly recommend that you do so! You can buy it from Vision Forum HERE.

Also, if you want to learn these in 4 part, you can get tutorial CDs. Each CD has the Psalms with the full-harmony, and then afterward the parts are broken up so each person can learn their part. Great for learning the Psalms in the car! (We have volumes 1 and 2, and I can't remember which one it is but one doesn't have very good audio quality - still it's helpful if you do better learning by ear):

O Sing A New Psalm: Learn to Sing the Psalms in 4 Part Harmony, Vol. I

Songs of the Remnant (Vol. II)

Nations Praise (Vol. III)

December 13, 2008

Thoughts on the Temperance Movement

Before you think, "Where on earth did she get the idea to write on the temperance movement?" let me explain. My sister just celebrated her 15th birthday and for that special occasion she received a huge stack of Isabella Alden books. We love these books and between the two of us, we are already well on our way to finishing the whole lot of them. :-)

Ok, so how does this tie into temperance? If you have read many of Isabella Alden's books, you may know. Ms. Alden was very fond of incorporating this subject into her stories. It was something she was obviously passionate about. However, I find that I disagree with her stance on the topic, though she errs on the side of caution.

In reading Ms. Alden's books you will find that many of her characters hold the view that all dancing, card games and drinking is a sin. There are no exceptions to the rule; in fact the reader gets the impression that anyone who does any of these three things is not a Christian. I do realize that dancing and card games back then were probably different than now - card games were played exclusively for money, for example - and therefore the characters have good reason to choose to not do them. Ironically, Ms. Alden's Christian characters are very much in favor of women speaking and praying in prayer meeting; so it is interesting to note that while the Bible does not speak of dancing, card games or drinking (in moderation) as sin, it is very clear that women are not to speak in church!

The Bible clearly condemns drinking in excess.
"Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise." (Prov. 20:1)

"Be not among winebibbers; among riotous eaters of flesh: For the drunkard and the glutton shall come to poverty: and drowsiness shall clothe a man with rags." (Prov. 23:20-21)  (Winebibber = a habitual drinker of wine)

"Who hath woe? who hath sorrow? who hath contentions? who hath babbling? who hath wounds without cause? who hath redness of eyes?
They that tarry long at the wine; they that go to seek mixed wine.
Look not thou upon the wine when it is red, when it giveth his colour in the cup, when it moveth itself aright.
At the last it biteth like a serpent, and stingeth like an adder.
Thine eyes shall behold strange women, and thine heart shall utter perverse things.
Yea, thou shalt be as he that lieth down in the midst of the sea, or as he that lieth upon the top of a mast.
They have stricken me, shalt thou say, and I was not sick; they have beaten me, and I felt it not: when shall I awake? I will seek it yet again." (Prov. 23:29-35)

"Woe unto them that rise up early in the morning, that they may follow strong drink; that continue until night, till wine inflame them!" (Isaiah 5:11)
Yet it does not condemn the drinking of wine in moderation (with the exception of those in the role of priests, elders, etc.). In 1 Timothy 5, Timothy must have been prone to some illness, and Paul recommends that he take wine for it.
"Drink no longer water, but use a little wine for thy stomach's sake and thine often infirmities." (1 Tim. 5:23)

"[The Lord] causeth the grass to grow for the cattle, and herb for the service of man: that he may bring forth food out of the earth;
And wine that maketh glad the heart of man, and oil to make his face to shine, and bread which strengtheneth man's heart." (Psalm 104:14-15)

"Thou shalt truly tithe all the increase of thy seed, that the field bringeth forth year by year.
And thou shalt eat before the LORD thy God, in the place which he shall choose to place his name there, the tithe of thy corn, of thy wine, and of thine oil, and the firstlings of thy herds and of thy flocks; that thou mayest learn to fear the LORD thy God always." (Deut. 14:22-23)
That said, there are those who do not believe you should drink wine and the Bible does not wish us to drink it if when we do it we cause another to stumble.
"For meat destroy not the work of God. All things indeed are pure; but it is evil for that man who eateth with offence.
It is good neither to eat flesh, nor to drink wine, nor any thing whereby thy brother stumbleth, or is offended, or is made weak." (Rom. 14:20-21)
Ok, so you get the point. Now we can get to the temperance movement. :-) (Long intro, eh?)

The temperance movement actually began by advocating the moderate use of alcohol, rather than total abstinence. Later it changed to a complete rejection of alcohol, which is the stand that Isabella Alden takes. The temperance societies would hold large rallies with lectures on the evils of drink from all angles. They also endeavored to shut down as many saloons as possible. They saw the damage these businesses were doing to men's health and family life as drunkeness was often the cause of abuse.

Now, all these things are good; it is good to get rid of saloons and it's good to educate people about the effects of alcohol; but the problem with the temperance movement was that, though many churches and Christians were involved, they were so preoccupied with alcohol itself that they missed the root problem: sin.

If they had focused more on addressing the issue as sin instead of treating the surface problem by shutting down saloons, this and a host of other problems would have been resolved. If you simply treat the symptoms and not the root issue, you won't get very far. Suppose they had succeeded in closing every saloon in the country and completely abolished the manufacturing of alcohol. The alcohol problem would have been "solved"; but sinful men who are addicted to something will not simply give up on their own. They would go and find something else equally as disastrous or more so.

So all this to say that though the intent of the temperance movement was good, I think they went about the business incorrectly. Signing the total abstinence pledge will not keep an addicted man (or woman for that matter) from drinking; only Jesus can!

(All that said, I still heartily recommend Isabella Alden's books. :-) Just be aware you will encounter this subject often in reading them!).

I hope you will forgive my rambling on so long about this - it just happens to be the topic that I've been thinking about the last couple days since reading the books! :-)

December 5, 2008

Tagged Again!

And guess what... it's Sarah from Destiny of One who did it - again! :-)

However, this one I like because it's not just the usual "random things about me"...

6 to 10 Things that I do daily:

1. Have my quiet time (read the Bible, pray, journal)

2. Do chores

3. Check my email

4. Pet and spoil the cats

5. Make lunch

6. Check blogs

7. Generally write something - letters, stories, blog posts, nature journal

8. Practice my instruments (piano & harp) - sometimes this gets missed but I'm trying to do better about doing it EVERY day

9. Wait eagerly for the mail

Now I am supposed to tag 5 people (this is usually the hardest thing for me - I always end up tagging the same people!)

R.J. (


Emily Jo

Miss Jocelyn (

Jessica McDonald

For those of you who have been so amazingly blessed to be tagged :-), here are the rules:

*Post the six to ten things that you do on a daily basis
*Link to the person who tagged you.
*Tag five other people
*Leave a comment on the blog of the person that tagged you letting them know that have posted this to your blog.

December 3, 2008

New from Sense & Sensibility


That's right. Patterns that you download instantly after payment. You purchase, download and print them yourself! Obviously some pieces that are larger will need to be taped together since you can only print what will fit on 8.5 x 11" paper (unless you have a special printer...) BUT I think it's worth it since the e-patterns are priced MUCH lower than the regular patterns. Besides, Mrs. Chancey's regular patterns come printed on heavy paper and you have to trace them onto tissue anyway, which isn't that different than taping pieces together.

This is a great option for someone who needs to make a last minute project and can't wait for a printed pattern to ship. Almost all the regular patterns are available in the e-pattern format. Check it out!

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