Monday, August 28, 2006

New Rebelutionary Things

The Rebelution now has a lot of new things! In addition to their blog, Alex and Brett have just set up a resource page, Rebelution Tour page (which includes a stop in Atlanta, Georgia on August 4, 2007!), and Rebelution forums. In addition, the whole look of their blog has changed, since they have now switched over to Wordpress. Why don't you go check it out?

Hart's Happenings

Well, it may be quiet around Anna's house, but not around mine. I think the only quiet time in this house is when everyone is asleep. Tonight our homeschool band is going to be playing at the EFCA Orientation. EFCA is our legal church school covering, and the orientation is just to go over the different things that will be open for homeschoolers this next school year. We're going to be playing before the meeting, and then after the meeting there are tables that advertise the different activities. Normally I just wander around with Anna looking at tables and talking to people we know.

Tomorrow morning we're going to a funeral. My grandfather's wife died yesterday and we're going to be busy. Though I'm really sorry that she died, I have to admit that I never really knew her, so I don't feel very sad. I don't want to appear as unfeeling, but well...
Our grandfather took it better than we expected and my dad stayed the night with him.

I know I don't post often, but Anna more than makes up for it. :) But I'll try to be better!

Saturday, August 26, 2006

A Scavenger Hunt

Last night Miriam Lofgren, Jubi and I put on a scavenger hunt for the 5 Morton children. Miriam kidnapped them and brought them to our house on her way home from work, and we gave Mr. Kevin and Mrs. Candi a free evening together. We had a lot of fun, but it was kinda too hot with all the running around we did!

1. Line up at the front door, then play Follow the Leader around the house, until we grabbed the next clue.

2. Play Duck, Duck, Goose! on the basketball court

3. Play Go Fish! in the tree house

Kaleb was on my team... but we still lost

4. See how high you can jump over people's arms on the trampoline

Even I did it =)

5. Take turns swinging on the rope swing - while watching out for a tree!

6. Eat pizza and drink pop

7. Get led blindfolded down to a little clearing Jubi made in the woods, where we enjoyed some grapes

8. Find "treasure blocks" in the front yard, filled with candy

9. Use the candy you found to make ice cream Sundaes - a great, cool way to end all the stuff outside!

Thursday, August 24, 2006

A Small Family

The house is quiet. Too quiet. It may be because I'm the only one awake, but it feels so empty and quiet, because now I am the eldest sibling at home. Yes, I'm the 6th of 7, but from now on I will be the oldest living at home. It's all too strange - and I miss my siblings! Being one of the youngest may have many advantages, but it also has many disadvantages, this one of the greatest. All my older siblings go off and leave, and I've watched them go one by one.

Lydia was the first to go this fall. She's been home and gone now for two years, to a Bible school in Colorado, a French school in Quebec, and an internship in West Africa. I still miss her when she leaves, however. This time she's off to college in Toccoa Falls, Georgia. She's most likely majoring in music, with perhaps a minor in Outdoor Education.

I miss her when she's gone. I miss all the games she'd play with Jubilee and I. I miss her caring ways and humbleness. I miss her cheerfulness... And yes, I could go on.

Elijah left with the parents yesterday afternoon. My big brother Elijah, off to college! It is so hard to believe. He's going to LeTourneau University in Texas, and will be majoring in Computer Engineering. I'm excited about all the opportunities he'll have to learn, but it's sad to see him go.

I'm going to miss him a lot. In age, he and I are the closest, and we've been close pretty much our whole life. We've done so much together... and now he's gone and I'll be doing it on my own. I'll have to drive myself, with him no longer here to act as chauffeur. I'll have to get my own doors, and will miss his gentlemanliness greatly. I'll miss our talks, from things ranging from his latest computer update to what I want to do when I get older. He's taught me so much computer jargon, yet I'm still lost when he excitedly tells me that Ubunutu Dapper Drake 1.02 or such has come out! =) I'm just plain going to miss him. I hope our computers don't have too many problems while he's gone... He always kept them in such tiptop shape!

Now our family seems so small. Two parents and two children, the perfect family of 4 some may say! But, I always did like our family of 9, though there was only a few times when all of us lived in the same house. Now with two siblings married, and 7 nieces and nephews, our family is far from small when we all get together! But, now only Jubilee and I live at home, and this big house is so empty. What will I do as the oldest at home?

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Tiered Skirt

Yes, I sewed again. =) I just can't help it! I'm wanting to make a few long skirts for the fall/winter, and I made the first today. It took a little while to do all the gathers, but it was entirely worth it! I so enjoy tiered skirts. They are so pretty, feminine, modest, comfortable, and fun to wear. What more could a girl want? I can't wait to wear it tomorrow!

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Comment Moderation Enabled

Hi all! I'm just letting you know that comment moderation will be turned on for now. So, your comments won't immediately show up anymore.

The debate going on in the comment section of a recent post has been interesting, but not very uplifting. Our purpose in this blog is to encourage, not to tear down. Now, I know that not everyone believes in the way we do things. That's fine. Feel free to ask questions - nicely - and we'll probably answer them. Feel free to discuss the post and state where you differ, but don't start attacking us and assuming things you don't know, or your comment probably won't be approved.

Thank you!

My Happenings...

My niece, Riley Marie Hart, spent the night with us Saturday night.
Riley's almost 8 months old and a joy to be with.

Let's see, my day today is rather a normal week day. My school work includes Algebra 2, Earth Science, American Government, and American History. I have other bookwork too, but I'm working into it as the school year starts. I also practice the flute and piano, and will soon be starting choir with Anna, and Youth Orchestra with two of my brothers.
Tomorrow my oldest brother turns 27, and we're having a birthday party here. I get to cook most of the meal, and I'm looking forward to that. I really enjoy cooking. I'm going to make bread rolls and Mexican chicken. Hope to post again soon.

Back to the books

Yesterday summer official ended for me, as I once again got back to the books. This year I'll be in 11th grade, and the prospects of what I'll be doing are exciting!

Bookwise, I'll be doing Saxon Advanced Mathematics, The Human Body, and various other books my parents want me to read for History and English. I wasn't going to do Advanced Mathematics, for my parents aren't making me, but surprisingly I've found myself actually liking math! Shocking, I know. =) I'll be doing The Human Body: Fearfully and Wonderfully Made by Apologia for Science, and it looks interesting. We decided that studying the human body would be much more useful for a dancer, and hopefully future mother, rather than Physics! Try as he like, daddy still hasn't quite been able to link Physics to ballet. :-) Previous years I've done History and English textbooks put out by Bob Jones or ABEKA. This year, however, we've decided that I'll probably learn more reading different books about different periods in history, and I'll be reading a book about punctuation entitled Panda Eats Shoots and Leaves. I'll also most likely be writing quite a bit! For Bible, I'll be continuing Memlock, and hopefully memorizing the book of Ephesians.

In addition to book work, I'll be getting training in many of the arts. I'll be continuing dance training, and will in fact be teaching two different The King's Praise Ballet classes. I'll also continue playing flute in the homeschool band, and will probably start piano lessons again. (I've taken for almost 2 years, when I was around 10). In addition, I'll be taking choir, and perhaps separate voice lessons. Daddy would like me to, but I need to make sure I don't get way too busy!

So the year ahead does look very full, but I'm looking forward to all of the opportunities that come my way. In all that I do, I hope to bring glory to God.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Practice Being a Mother

This past week I have had a lot of practice being a mother. On Saturday Dad, Mom, Lydia, and Elijah left to take Lydia to college, and to visit JAARS. The same day, Jubilee and I got to go spend some time at the Harts house. On Sunday afternoon, we were brought back home, where Maria, Ron, James, and Sara were awaiting us. Maria and Ron left Monday morning, and Jubi and I were left to take care of the children, since Mom, Dad, and Elijah didn't get back until late Monday night.

Maria and Ron got a much-needed vacation together to the beach, and we had an enjoyable time with the children here. I certainly got a lot of mothering practice in! =) Sara (2 1/2 years old) stayed in my room, so naturally she got a little attached to me, as I put her to bed at night, and she woke me up in the morning. I dressed her, changed her, fed her, and all around took care of her. I also spent quite a bit of time with James (5 years old), the little guy with a lot of questions and things to say.

In addition to child care, I did the rest of the usual things this week, baking bread, making the meals, cleaning, baking, band, and so on. I must say, I'm quite worn out! I can understand why Maria gets tired - and I still didn't take care of the children all the time, the others did their fair share as well.

Not everything was fun and enjoyable. There were moments when things seemed out of control, and moments when things were a little irritating, but I learned a lot. There were a lot of precious times as well...

The house is quiet now, which is a relief, but it does feel rather empty with the two little bundles of joy gone. I'll miss sweet little Sara, with her serious little expressions, that would turn into delighted giggles when I tickled her. I'll miss saying "I love you" to her, to which she would sometimes respond "I wove ewe!" in her sweet, soft tones. Even though it was sometimes quite disappointing to hear her already awake, her little voice saying "Anna!" in the morning when she woke up and was trying to get me out of bed was quite cute! I'll miss James as well, the bundle of information, although there were times when I wished he'd stop talking for just one minute! :-) He and I could carry on quite intelligent conversations, especially since he contained a wealth of facts about various animals and fish.

No, motherhood isn't just rocking sweet babies to sleep and making perfect meals, there are tiring times when you think you can hardly stand to hear one more word or see one more mess, but it's worth it. Someday I hope that I shall be a good mother of many children, but for now, I just practice whenever I can.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Music...A Language In Itself

What do you feel when you hear a beautiful melody on the piano? Or when you hear that gorgeous solo played by a violin? You might be insensitive to it. Or you might just say, "Well, wasn't that nice". Or you might sit there and just let the music go through you. Well, I don't know about you, but when I hear that melody, I feel a sensation, and want to hear it over and over again. I may be listening to a orchestra concert that seems like the same thing over & over (and sometimes it is), then a little phrase will jump out and show me just how it's different and unique.

When I first started taking piano lessons, I enjoyed it, but my respect for it hadn't quite developed. As I've gotten older and become more advanced, I've come to love the instrument that I practice everyday. I love making music with it. For me, the piano and flute are a way to give praise to God. As Anna praises the Lord through her dance, it is my prayer to do so through music. It has never been my goal to become a concert pianist (not possible because of memorization difficulties!), but I would like to maybe one day teach to others the wonderful,
beautiful, God-given language of music! To come out of my room to get something, I risk being distracted by the piano. Just walking by it, I want to sit down and play something, and normally do. Then I'm satisfied and can go on about my business if I haven't forgotten it by then. Though I know that everyone doesn't share my sentiments, I sometimes wonder why other people don't go crazy over it like me. :) Thankfully my family does love music, too. I could probably go on and on about music, but I do better when I'm talking about it, not writing.

The LORD is my strength and my shield; My heart trusted in Him, and I am helped; Therefore my heart greatly rejoices, And with my song I will praise Him. Psalm 28:7

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Maidens of Worth

The name of our blog is Maidens of Worth. However, you many not quite know what we're about, so I hope to explain a few things.

Our theme verses are 1 Peter 3:3-4 - "Your beauty should not come from outward adornment such as braided hair and the wearing of gold jewelry and fine clothes. Instead, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God's sight." (emphasis mine) So, through these verses we find that a gentle and quiet spirit is something we should strive for, because to God, it is of great worth! Plus, it is everlastingly beautiful, beauty that won't ever fade away. Wouldn't you like that? Yes, we can make ourselves stunningly beautiful on the outside, but eventually it will fade. We want to have an inner beauty, cultivated by God, that will never fade. Does this mean that we can't braid our hair, or wear jewelry and nice clothes? No! It's okay to want to look nice, but our outward appearance should not be where our beauty comes from. If you have an unfading inner beauty, it will shine through... not matter how you look on the outside!

1 Timothy 2:8-9 even tells us how we're to dress: "I also want a women to dress modestly, with decency and propriety, not with braided hair or gold or pearls or expensive clothes, but with good deeds, appropriate for women who profess to worship God." Again, I don't think it's wrong to dress well, in fact the women of the Bible often were reported to be wearing beautiful clothes. But, they shouldn't be our focus, instead, we should dress with good deeds.

Another verse that communicates our message is Proverbs 31:10 - "A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies." (emphasis mine) Obviously Miriam and I aren't wives yet. However, we can begin to build up, with God's help, a noble character, so that one day we will be wives of noble character worth far more than rubies. How do we do this? Well, Proverbs 31:11-31 goes on to describe all of the things a wife of noble character does, and it's quite an inexhaustible list! By studying each verse and trying to put them into practice, we can learn quite a bit, and begin developing a noble character.

We can also learn a lot from the older women who have gone before us, such as our moms or other ladies we know. Speaking about the older women, Paul says in Titus 2:4-5 - "Then they can train the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God." Again, we don't yet have husbands or children, but there's still a wealth of things to learn to do from these two verses.

And one day, when we do marry, we hope to be wives of noble character. Proverbs 12:4 says "A wife of noble character is her husband's crown, but a disgraceful wife is like decay in his bones." I'd much rather be a crown rather than decay, wouldn't you?

Now we know what we want to be worth, but what is a maiden? The dictionary defines a maiden as "a young unmarried woman." Obviously this describes Miriam and I. We could have easily called this blog "Girls of Worth" or "Young Women of Worth", but there's just something about the word Maiden that sounds so beautiful and feminine. In fact, to be maidenly is to be "like a maiden; gentle; modest" - all things I hope to be.

Now, although this blog is mainly geared to maidens, we hope that you will be encouraged, be ye a maiden, mother, or man. There will most likely be quite a variety of topics addressed through our writings. There'll be everything from essays, to musings, to poetry, to simple daily happenings in our lives. Through everything, we hope to bring glory, praise, and honor to our Father God, and hope that you will be encouraged and refreshed as you read the blog of two maidens, who are quite unlike the "normal" teen girls of today...

"Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen." - 1 Timothy 1:17

Friday, August 11, 2006

Growing Through Pictures

Our very first camping trip together - we loved each other even then!

Miriam, Anna, Joel, and Elijah - the foursome in 1996...

...and in 2004. We do grow! =)

Anna's 8th birthday

Yes... we did a lot of dress up! We still enjoy taking pictures all fancied up, even at our "old" ages of 15 and 16. A girl's never too old to dress up!

A camping trip in 2002

Our first spring band concert when we were 12. Miriam was short, but she did grow eventually!

Friends in 2004

Together at Frontier Days

Our Circle of Friends at our girls Christmas Party in 2004. Rebekah, Miriam, Elizabeth, Anna, and Rebekah.

Friends of the heart - 2005

We still love to dress up... and be old-fashioned. =)

Friends Forever, August 13th, 2006

Friends Through the Years

Our families met when we were very small. In 1994, the Lofgren family moved to Alabama, and the Harts were there to help them move in. Our families had somehow met, probably through home schooling, and for a while after the Lofgrens moved, we both went to the same church. We don't remember much of each at the time, but every once-in-a-while, we would be able to play together, and that was always at lot of fun! We lived 45 minutes apart, and still do, so especially when we were young, we didn't get to see each other that often.

One thing that our families always did was the semi-annual camping trips! Almost every spring and fall, we would get together, with a lot of other families, and go camping for the weekend. Our very first one was when we were 5 or 6. As we got older, we often were allowed to share a tent, which was always great fun!

Our brothers, Joel and Elijah were slightly older than us, and we would play games and hang out together. We haven't been able to get together, just the foursome, in a long time because of different schedules and lots of business. Elijah soon goes off to college, so things will be quite different around here. However, we try to find every opportunity to be together!

Anna: When I was 12, and Miriam was soon-to-be 12, we started playing in the home school band. My siblings, Lydia and Elijah had played in it for years, but I hadn't really wanted to until I learned that Miriam and Joel were going to be in it that fall! I decided that I too would play, and decided that the flute was my favorite instrument, which, incidentally, was what Miriam was going to play as well. I eagerly walked into band the first day, excited to see Miriam... but she wasn't anywhere to be seen. I soon learned that she was a part of the band in Montgomery, while I was apart of the one in Prattville. It was disappointing, but I quickly started enjoying band, because the flute was so fun! We still play the flute, and are now in the advanced band. Thankfully, there's now only one band, in Prattville, so every Thursday Miriam and I have been able to see each other, and it has become the highlight of our week.

Miriam: I remember feeling so sorry for Anna. Walking in to band and me not being there! I was disappointed that we wouldn't be able to do it together, but the last 3 years have absolutely made up for it!

Our friendship started growing pretty fast when we were 12, as we began to email each other quite a bit! It was fun to have a friend to write to, and whenever we actually got to see each other, for band concerts or home school events, we had the greatest time!

The summer Anna turned 13, our families began to have a home fellowship together. For a few months, it was just our 2 families, but after a while our church grew to be around 7 families. Each Sunday we would either meet at someone's house or at a park, and spend almost the entire day together. We'd have service in the morning, eat lunch, and then often times have the whole afternoon to spend time together. We both quickly became inseparable, and we were so glad to finally find a soul mate and kindred spirit, after not really finding any lasting friendships. We also found close friends in the other families of our fellowship, and pretty soon there were 5 of us, and we named our group The Circle of Friends. Such memories we've made! =) Last year our home church began to diminish, and last spring it totally dissolved. All of our families had become very busy, and the distances between us (up to an hour and 45 minutes for some) had become just too far to drive. We miss all the wonderful fellowship we had, but thank God for the wonderful 2 ½ years we did have together!

We are alike...yett very different. We are pretty much opposite in looks, Anna's big bluish eyes and shorter reddish/brown hair, to Miriam's small greenish/hazel eyes and long medium brown hair, but because we are so close in spirit, we're often asked if we're sisters.

Anna was much taller than Miriam for most of their growing up, but last year she began to grow, as Anna stopped growing, and she is now only an inch shorter, and may surpass Anna in height still! Our personalities are somewhat different, yet still somewhat the same. Over the years we've kinda rubbed off on each other! Miriam grew up with a lot of brothers - 5 in fact, and 1 sister, and Anna grew up with 4 sisters and 2 brothers, so Miriam turned out a little more of a tomboy, especially when she was younger, while Anna was almost always more of a girly-girl. We both have the personalities of middle children, yet she has a little bit of oldest in her, being the oldest girl, and Anna may have a smackling of youngest in her, due to the 5 years between her younger sister and her.

Miriam and Anna have always gotten along. Guess we were just made for each other! We've never been in a fight, and have always enjoyed being with the other.

We're both somewhat of romantics, but Anna more so than Miriam. Miriam kinda helps balance out Anna hopeless romanticism! =) Anna's a bit more expressive, especially in the area of writing, so if you notice more posts by Anna on this blog, don't be surprised!

We're both maidens waiting on God for true love, and are committed to not dating until we are ready to be married. It's wonderful to have found another with much of the same convictions, and it's been great to have the encouragement of the other.

Miriam's favorite color is blue, while Anna's is pink, so we decided that for this blog, a template of purple, a color made from mixing blue and pink was very appropriate! Thanks so much to Elijah for helping us put this together!

Miriam and Anna have now united to do this double blog, and we hope you will be encouraged as you read about our daily lives and thoughts on different things.