Friday, July 27, 2007

A Promise...


Before God, our family, and friends...
An outward sign of our inner convictions to...

... Remain physically pure
... Guard our thoughts and emotions
... Not give away our heart or hand until God's timing
... Keep our heart and mind fixed on Jesus instead of passing attractions
... Strive to live a life of purity with our Father's help
... Fall in love with Jesus and give our hearts completely to Him.

Anna's Ring
I received my purity ring on June 1st, 2007 as a gift from Luke and Michele. As part of a thank you for helping out / early graduation gift, they told me that they'd buy me a purity/promise ring last April. Luke researched and found many different kinds of rings, and my job was to get my finger sized (I'd never really worn rings much before) and choose which ring they should order.

I settled on the one pictured to the right, for I appreciated the beauty and simplicity of it. There were many beautiful rings, but this one clearly portrayed that I was dedicated to guarding my heart. The single diamond in the center of the tiny heart symbolizes two different things for me. First, it reminds me that I am guarding the treasure (purity of body and mind) inside my heart, where I hope it shines for the world to see. In addition, it reminds me that I am saving my heart for one man (the single diamond).

Before I even imagined that I'd get a purity ring, I didn't see much of a need for one, other than the fact that it would be pretty to wear. I was already committed to "waiting, not dating", and my convictions were strong. When Luke and Michele told me they'd get me a purity/promise ring, I grew very excited, and was even more so when I began to page through the possibilities. The first day I wore the ring, I was so excited, and kept looking down and admiring it. Since then, I've discovered that it's very helpful in keeping me focused. All I do is glimpse down, and I'm reminded once again that I'm saving myself for one.

Miriam's Ring
I received my promise ring as a birthday present on November 17, 2005 from my parents. It was a total surprise to me, as I didn't wear much jewelry and much less rings. They always got in my way. But this ring had new meaning to me. It was given to me to signify the promise I had made to keep emotionally, physically, and spiritually pure. Mother and I had been talking about a month earlier and she asked me if I had decided to let them guide me in my late teen years and follow their decisions for me until I'm of age to make sound decisions on my own. I said that, yes, I definitely wanted their help with the difficult decisions that would come with growing up.

On my birthday, they surprised me with this lovely ring and told me that "it represents your commitment to the Lord and to us to keep yourself pure in thought, word and action".

The diamond in the middle represents my promise and purity, and though the three hearts on either side do not significantly mean anything, I like to see them as my six siblings helping to guard me. I also look at my ring often when I'm wearing it and thank the Lord for such a beautiful, but also helpful gift. For whenever I look at it, I'm reminded of the promise I have made to purity.


"Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life." ~ Proverbs 4:23

"Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God." ~ Matthew 5:8

Blueberries!


Since we moved to Alabama around 13 years ago, summer and blueberries have become synonymous. We made some good friends after we arrived, who just happened to had blueberries bushes absolutely loaded with berries. Every summer, we'd go over to their house a few times to pick berries, having contests as to who could get the most. Around 4-5 years ago, we got some blueberry bush shoots from them, and daddy has planted them on our property, lining our dirt road. They didn't produce much the first few years, but are finally beginning to give us quite a crop of berries.

There's nothing quite like a blueberry. It's absolutely sweet, melt-in-your mouth taste is just delicious! It's nice to be able to walk outside and snatch a few off the bushes as you walk past, popping them in your mouth and savoring the sweetness. The best time to pick is early in the morning, before the blazing sun comes out and begins broiling. I've spent many-a-morning out there, enjoying the serene morning sounds, the one slightly-cool part of the hot Alabama summers.


Blueberries are also fun to cook with! They make delectable pies and muffins. They're also wonderful to have on your cereal, something I've been doing nearly every morning since the berries first appeared.

Do you have any favorite recipes that uses blueberries? Please share with us in the comment section - I'd like to have more things to make these yummy berries into!

Praise God for His abundance!

Picture Results

Well, the results are in!

The winner is....

#3 Up to Something... with 13 votes
#5 Friends Forever came second with 9 votes
#6 Up a Tree was 3rd with 3 votes
#7 Brainstorming had 2 votes, and
#1 Maidens of Worth had 1 vote.

Thanks for voting, everyone! The sidebar picture will now be changed. We may use some of these photos on the sidebar later as well. =)

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

His Ways Are Higher

The future. For those nearing the end of high school, the word can strike terror in their hearts. For their whole life, their education has been laid out for them step-by-step, as they advance from one grade to the next. Then suddenly, before they realize it, they're 18 and graduated, and wondering what the next step will be. When they were little, they couldn't wait to finish school, but where did the time go?

Almost without fail, as soon as people learn that I'm about to enter my senior year of high school, their next question is, "So, what are your plans after that?" That's when I have to give a little smile, sigh, and say, "Well, I'm not quite sure what I'll be doing." Why did everything become so complicated?

When I was little, I had my life planned out. In fact, I thought that those older folk (high schoolers) who didn't know what to do must have something wrong with them! To me, it was crystal clear. I'd go to Belhaven College, major in dance, perhaps dance with Ballet Magnficat! and when the time was right (hopefully sooner than later), get married and have children. However, as I grew, my dreams slowly dimmed. I wasn't extremely impressed with what I saw of Belhaven's dance department... I learned that I'd probably never advance far enough to dance professionally, and as time went on, realized that I no longer wanted to. My dream of being a wife and mother remains strong, but I've become a bit wiser then my eight-year-old self, and have realized that husbands don't just appear for the asking. =) So, I'm left with the question: What do I do?

These questions are nothing new to me now. As my family can attest, I've been debating them for almost the past two years. As I'm about to enter senior-hood, they only become stronger. "Is there something wrong with me that I can't figure out what to do?" I cry to God with desperation. "No, that's not true," He reminds me yet again. "Wait. I have a plan for you."

All these things were swirling in my head as I attended Ballet Magnficat's Intensive. I spent much time there praying about the future, and discussing different possibilities with Jennifer. And God was faithful to give me an answer - though it's not as clear-cut as my human heart desires.

On the evening of June 28th, we participated in Creative Worship - a time to seek God and worship as we felt led. Picking up my Bible, I randomly flipped to Isaiah 55:6-13. Verses 8 and 9 especially stood out to me:

"'For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways,' declares the LORD. 'As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts.'"

I read it through. Then I read it again - and again. Not wanting to forget, I took out my notebook and began to scribble...

God's thoughts are not my thoughts; neither are His ways my ways. I seek Him while He may be found. I don't have to worry about my future... What I will do... What I think is the best direction for me. His thoughts are higher than mine. He has great things in store for me. I may not ever have my life planned out, but He does. He knows what I need... What I should do. My job is to seek Him. He has greater things in store for me than I could even imagine. Trust Him, Anna! He is faithful!

"I may not ever have my life planned out, but He does..." As someone who enjoys planning and figuring out what I'm going to do, it's extremely hard for me to not know what I'll be doing in a year. However, as I can't stress enough, God is faithful! Through all the uncertainties, I've learned so much about trust. I do trust Him, that at the right time, He will lead me down the right path. Does that mean that I'll never doubt again? No. Sometimes I take my eyes off of Jesus, and begin to get anxious and fearful. Yet each time, God is faithful to gently point me back towards Him.

"Is that it?" you may ask, "Your just sitting back and waiting?" I am waiting on God to guide me, but I'm also preparing for different possibilities. I'm continuing to study and learn different things, and continuing to gain expertise in the homemaking arts. I took the ACT in June in case college is in the future, but I'm also researching other ways of learning, as my heart leans towards home. I've asked the counsel of many family members and close friends, to get their opinion on what they think I should do. But above all, I continue to seek my Father, for He knows me best.

"Wait for the LORD; be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD."
~Psalm 27:14

3 More Days...

There is still 3 more days till voting for our new side picture ends. On Friday, we will post the picture that got the most votes.
Don't forget, if you haven't voted yet, then swing by and vote here! Thanks!

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Alliterations by Anna...



... from the Almighty's Account

For years, my father has faithfully led family devotions, nearly every weekday morning before he goes to work. We go through a book of the Bible, and each read the chapter for the day, answering 5 questions to share with the family:
  • What is this chapter about?
  • What do you learn about God?
  • What do you learn about Man?
  • What is your favorite verse?
  • What is a personal application from this chapter?
Ever since we could read and write, we've been expected to participate. I've always enjoyed doing alliterations (as you may have noticed from some blog titles), and after a while I began telling what each chapter was about, using alliterations. It's fun to think of ways to do this, and now my family has come to expect them and I have to keep them up!

Upon the urging of my brother Elijah, I've now put a lot of them online to share with the world. On DancerAnna.com, there is now an Alliterations by Anna page, where I have shared alliterations I've done for different books of the Bible. If you're interested, and need a laugh (some are quite funny!), click over to read some of the alliterations. As you'll notice, I've had more creativity and time to think about some more than others. Some are long, some are short, but all are fun to do!

Enjoy!

Monday, July 23, 2007

Creating a Writing Portfolio

Today I kept busy putting together a writing portfolio. For quite a while I had been meaning to print off most of the things I have written and compile them in a notebook for easy reference. Having nothing pressing today, I decided to put off procrastinating and get the job done.

After quite a bit of time spent copying, pasting, and printing off many articles from my blog, Anna's Writing Portfolio is complete! Now all I have to do is make sure that I print off each article, essay, or musing as I write it.

I have long enjoyed writing, and having a notebook that I can page through each time I need to find something I've written is quite handy! Though I've only just made it, the notebook is already quite full; the result of two past years of blogging, I suppose! As one who writes better when sitting alone and using a good, old-fashioned pencil and paper, the writing portfolio will be handy to use when I need to reference a past post. Plus, in the event that I ever want to have someone read something, I can put the book into their hands, instead of having to run and pull the article up on the computer.

For all of those who enjoy writing, may I suggest that you create your own portfolio? The computer does store things nicely, but somehow there's something special about holding what you've written in your hands. Printing articles corresponding to different topics on different colored paper is something I did, and it makes it easy to find things in that particular topic. Whatever your methods, creating a portfolio is very simple - all it takes is a binder, page protectors, and paper.

Enjoy writing and keeping what you've written for years to come!

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Blocking Anonymous Comments

This is yet another blogging announcement. Sorry to say, we have un-enabled anonymous comments. We were getting tired of the very insulting comments left by some anonymous people. So, only those with a blogger account will be able to leave comments. I hope this doesn't discourage any of you from commenting - blogger accounts are very easy to get, and you don't have to have a blog to sign up for one. We, with advice from our family, thought it best that we didn't have to read the harassing comments from some anonymous.

Thanks for bearing with us!

Saturday, July 21, 2007

New Domain Name

Announcing:


After redesigning our template, Elijah searched and found out that maidensofworth.org wasn't registered. So, without much ado, we decided to switch our domain name to maidensofworth.org. Our old address will still forward to the new address, and we're still using blogger, so not much has changed except for our domain name. It's shorter and therefore easier to tell people and easier for them to remember. So, if you've linked to us, please change your links to point to maidensofworth.org instead of maidensofworth.blogspot.com. Thanks again goes to Elijah for graciously registering the name for us and hosting us on his server!

Thank you all so very much!

Friday, July 20, 2007

Pick a Picture

The picture on our sidebar has gotten kind of old, so we decided it was time to replace it with a summer picture. However, we need your help in deciding which one is used for the sidebar. In the comment section, vote for your favorite picture. On Friday, July 27th (1 week from today), voting will end and the winning picture will be placed on the sidebar. Thank you for your votes!


#1. Maidens of Worth

#2. Faithful Friends


#3. Up to something...

#4. Two of a kind

#5. Friends Forever

#6. Up a tree (Maybe we're not always as ladylike as we'd like...) =)

#7. Brainstorming

#8. Pink and Blue

#9. Back to Back... Shoulder to Shoulder

Under Construction


Miriam and I are in the process of redesigning our blog layout. If this page looks really weird for now, please bear with us as we work on making a new look for Maidens of Worth.

*Edit* Everything's finally done! Let us know what you think. Thanks to Elijah for all of his invaluable help!!

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Two Great Reads


How Great Is His Faithfulness
I have "known" Ella through email for a year now. A year ago June, I received an email from her asking if we could be email pals, for we had quite a few interests in common. She had found my first blog through a poem I'd posted and sent in to Above Rubies, which then sent it out in their e-newsletter. Although we're both busy and didn't get to write as much as we wish, I've enjoyed getting to know this sister in the Lord through email.

At first, Ella's blog was by invitation only, for privacy protection. However, she now sees her blog as a ministry to young women, and has begun to expand her readership. How Great Is His Faithfulness always has something fun or thought-provoking to read, and has been a great encouragement to me. I've enjoyed reading the writings of another young lady who lives and blogs for God's glory. If you have the chance to do so, take some time to check out her blog. You will be blessed!

Mayden Fair

Newly started by Laura Hines, with Anna S, Emily, and Danielle, Mayden Fair seeks to "Encourage young maidens on their path of life in Christ." Although just started, there are many good things to read and get one thinking on the blog. It presents us younger maidens with a great resource to read and learn from these maidens who are a little further down the path of life. Everyone can be encouraged from what they have to say. If you have the time, make sure that you check out Mayden Fair as well!

Proverbs 31 Maidens on GodTube

Last month, we posted the Proverbs 31 Maidens slideshow on YouTube. However, YouTube does have some objectional content, and because of this a friend (and perhaps others) has blocked the site and was unable to see the slideshow. Because of this, I've now uploaded it to GodTube - a Christian site like YouTube. Here is the slideshow again, for those of you who may not have seen it, or would like to watch it again.

Monday, July 16, 2007

What I Never Thought Possible

It was July of 2004. I was 14 years old, sitting in a class at the drama camp at Pensacola Christian College. The teacher was going over each of the roles that had to be filled to produce a play. When we got to the role of director, I wasn't too interested. "I'm never going to be a director," I thought, "Telling everyone what to do is simply not for me." I enjoyed acting and didn't mind working with costumes or props. But directing? Not for me! Or so I thought...


Fast forward to August 27th, 2005. Five families from our home church were presenting Esther-Ordinary Faith. I played the part of Esther... and I was the director. Everyone had a wonderful time working together and the Esther musical was presented well after a lot of hard work. (You can read the rest of the story about this musical in Perseverance Pays Off and see pictures here.)

So what changed? How did I go from being adamantly against being a director to directing a musical. I did it because there was no one else to do it, but in the process learned that I could do something very hard for me - that is, organize a musical production (with a lot of help from others!) and speak up enough to tell others what they needed to do. God helped me so much as I trembled and stammered my way through especially the beginning rehearsals. Through my weakness, He showed strong. Okay, so maybe I could be a director. But actually write a musical? I don't think so!

Some time passed. Because of the fun we'd had with Esther-Ordinary Faith, everyone was interested in doing another musical. I searched and searched for a good one, but was unable to find one. Every Bible story I found had too many boy's parts and not enough for girls or was extremely silly and took too many liberties with the Biblical account.

Our family attended the San Antonio Christian Film Festival in October of 2005; there, we were privileged to see George Sarris present the word-for-word books of Esther and Jonah in great dramatic form. Inspired, mom assigned me the book of Ruth for Scripture memory that year. Dutifully I memorized it, using a scarf and different voice inflections to bring each character alive. While doing so, the story of Ruth began to come alive in my head. Her desperate pledge to Naomi, her sojourn to find food gleaning in foreign fields, her midnight plea to Boaz to be her kinsman-redeemer, and their happy wedding - I could see each scene so vividly. An opportunity never arose for me to dramatize the book of Ruth, so I put it aside and stopped practicing. However, the story stayed in the back of my mind, not willing to be discarded so quickly.

In April 2006, we saw Ballet Magnificat! present their ballet of Ruth. The story was changed and set in a more modern Spain which I didn't appreciate too much, but it was still very powerful. The theme of the Ballet Magnificat! Summer Intensive 2006 was Redemption, and I learned many new insights while there. I knew that it would be an amazing story to present as a musical, so I began searching specifically for one to use. The story of Ruth also definitely involves more female roles - a big plus for our mostly-girl group of families! Try as I might, i just couldn't find a musical like the one I was looking for.

Back in my head, the story of Ruth still simmered. Perhaps I could write it out... but no! Surely I wouldn't be good enough! I had written two different plays for my eighth and tenth birthdays, but they were pretty silly and short. Who was I to attempt a musical? Yet, the idea continued to grow. I heard Fernando Ortega's song, "Take Heart, My Friend" and knew it would be a perfect one for Ruth to dance to Naomi. Nicole C. Mullen's "I Know My Redeemer Lives" would sound great as a finale. And so it went. I set my pencil to paper, and the story began pouring out. I started writing it in the fall of 2006, then set it aside as things got really busy. Finally, in the spring of 2007, I began to set about finishing it. I spent hours researching different songs to use, for I knew that I couldn't write songs! This too was proved wrong, as I ended up writing words to two different instrumental pieces I had on CD to be used expressly for the Ruth musical. I edited time and again as my family helped me proofread the script, and finally found enough songs to use. A musical was born, titled Ruth: From Rejection to Redemption. The author? Anna Naomi Lofgren, following the Biblical account quite closely, with many direct quotations from the book of Ruth. God is truly the Author, however, for He is the One Who planted the vision for it in my mind and heart.

In June 2007 I finalized all of the little arrangements, finding and editing music to use in and between scenes, and asking for permission to use a church building for our practices and presentations. I also sent information about it to different families, inviting them to be a part of Ruth: From Rejection to Redemption. Once I arrived home from dance camp, it was time to begin.

Last Thursday, July 12th, marked the beginning of rehearsals for Ruth: From Rejection to Redemption. Around 25 children and teens showed up to participate, and we recruited some dads to help fill out the men's roles. I held tryouts, and by God's grace was able to figure out who would play each part. In addition to directing, I will be playing the part of Ruth, for I greatly enjoy acting, with Miriam Rebekah as Naomi and my dear daddy playing the part of Boaz.

It's not perfect. The script will take some work to portray, and will probably be revised many times as we seek to bring it alive. I've got choreographing to do for the dances and planning to figure out who will be where when. All in all, I can't do it by myself. God is my Strength and Help, and I'd appreciate your prayers as we put everything together. As in everything else, I'm sure that this will be a huge learning experience for me.

What have I learned so far? With God, nothing is impossible. Oh - and never say never. You just don't know how things will turn out!

To God be the glory! Great things He has done.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Ballet Magnificat! Summer Intensive 2007

Reflecting on the two weeks spent at dance camp, the time seems to have sped by so quickly. So much was packed in the time there - so much to learn, so much to remember.

Mom drove Jennifer and I up to Jackson, Mississippi on Sunday, June 24th. After the almost 5 hour drive, we arrived and unpacked. Settling into our dorm room, I realized that it was merely two doors down from the room I'd stayed in the year before. It didn't feel like a whole year had passed since I'd last stayed at Belhaven College. However, this year I was more excited about camp, for I'd be sharing the whole experience with my twin!

We took the placement class that evening, and thankfully were placed in the same level. It was nice for us to be able to take the same classes together. Monday dawned bright and early, and we settled in for 2 whole weeks of dancing. The days seemed so long at first, but by the end of the intensive, they seemed so short. It's funny how one's perspective changes. We began to get into the routine. The alarm went off at 6 a.m., to groans and our reluctant rolling out of bed - the night always flew by far too quickly! We had our personal devotions, dressed, and went to breakfast. After morning chapel, we took ballet technique for nearly 2 hours, then went straight to lunch. The afternoon brought 2 more classes, either in variations, improvisation, modern, jazz, pointe, or conditioning (or, as Jennifer deemed it, ballet boot camp). After going straight to supper, we usually had a few minutes to recuperate before heading off for an evening activity: small group time, Bible study, creative worship, or a Ballet Magnificat! concert. There wasn't much free time, but what we did have we spent writing letters, journaling, reading, or bonding with our small group. We had a wonderful counselor named Martyna, who was originally from Poland. It was so much fun to talk with her and hear her wonderful accent! She was also very much on fire for the Lord, and really encouraged us in our daily walk.

God was so good to allow me to dance at Ballet Magnificat! for two weeks. Following last year's intensive, I'd been pumped up and ready to be challenged and work even harder in ballet. Then, last February, dance started to have to slow down as I developed peroneal tendonitus in my left ankle. I did what I could, but finally had to stop taking ballet class altogether in April, although I continued to teach. After my teaching wrapped up, I rested my ankle for quite a while, vising the chiropractor, icing it, and praying a lot. It was a lot better when I went to the intensive, but not yet fully recovered. I was also out-of-shape after having to take a break from dance, although I had stretched out and done what I could without taxing my ankle. So, needless to say, I headed off to Ballet Magnificat! with some trepidation - for what if I ended up not even being able to dance? But, God was so faithful... so good. Although the ankle hurt a little on-and-off and I had to wear a small brace to help support it, I was able to dance, only sitting out occasionally during jumps or pointe, for they often irritated it the most. God taught me a lot about trust during the whole ordeal of tendonitus. And now, I can report that my ankle is almost entirely free from pain. Praise God!

It was so inspiring to spend time at Ballet Magnificat! They have such a wonderful ministry! Not only do they focus on us growing technically in dance ability, they focus even more on us growing in our walk with the Lord. The theme of this year's workshop was "Hiding Place". We studied so many verses about how Christ is our Hiding Place, and how we need to run to Him for everything. We focused on Colossians 3:1-4, digging deep into God's Word. It was so encouraging to be under the tutelage of teachers who encouraged us to dance for God's glory alone - to focus on worshiping Him more than getting the combinations perfect or having flawless technique. If not for Him, we have no reason to dance.

It was so nice to be with Jennifer for the entire two weeks, talking late in the night even when we really needed sleep, praying together before bed, sharing somewhat silly moments, growing closer in our friendship, and even celebrating our birthday together! We decorated our dorm with verses, putting a new one on our door each day. They really helped remind us to focus on God, even when we were having a hard day. I am so blessed to have such a friend as Jen. We were so close, and seemed so alike to everyone, that we were constantly being mistaken for sisters!

We celebrated the 4th of July by wearing our patriotic garb and decorating the hall in our dorm. Sadly, we missed fireworks and the parties back home, but we did manage to celebrate a little, and paint fireworks on our cheeks.


We made the most memories on July 5th, when we celebrated our 17th birthdays. We really confused people then, by wearing our twin skirts and both celebrating our birthday on the same day. People got strange looks on their face when we explained that we didn't even live close, but were from Alabama and Nebraska, respectively! We tried to explain, but things are a bit complicated! So many thought that we must be twins until we explained that we weren't - quite. Everyone sang "Happy Birthday to us in chapel, and we got so many birthday wishes throughout the day. Dressed in our skirts and headbands, we weren't hard to miss. We took some birthday portraits on the lovely Belhaven campus and reminisced about how old we'd become. Where has the time gone?


The next day was our last day. We went to our last classes and danced a duet in the student concert, which my parents came up to see. After saying fond farewells - it's hard to leave those who become like family for two weeks - we drove off into the night, leaving Mississippi, but carrying home many memories inside.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Miriam Lofgren's Blog


So, another sister has joined the ranks of Bloggerhood! Miriam recently started a blog called Not Her Own - notherown.blogspot.com. She's posted some great stuff, and I look forward to reading more. Almost all of our family now does something on the web. =)

Welcome to the blogosphere, Miriam!

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Baking Spree

The fruits of yesterday afternoon's labor:


I think I've missed baking too much. =)

With my sweet assistant, little Sara, I started out to quickly make Anna's Banana Cake, using up the old bananas we had laying around. After deciding on an omlett and muffins for supper, I determined that I'd use the zucchini we'd been given by some friends, and make zucchini muffins. Without thinking, I grated the entire zucchini - then stared at the shredded mound. There was no way that I was going to make that many muffins! So, I ended up making Chocolate Zucchini Bread as well. My family didn't mind; we're all enjoying the baked goods.

Baking is so fun, and so rewarding! I really missed doing it for two whole weeks...

Monday, July 09, 2007

A Note From Anna

Hello all! I haven't posted in quite a while! Miriam has done a wonderful job of keeping the blog up and running, however.


Jennifer left this morning. After spending three weeks together, the house feels somewhat empty without her here. She's looking forward to getting back to her family, but I shall miss her terribly. I thank God for the wonderful time we've had together!

We arrived back home from Jackson, Mississippi around 3 a.m. on Saturday, July 7th. Needless to say, I'm still trying to recover from all the lack of sleep! We had an amazing time at the Ballet Magnficat! Summer Dance Intensive, and I shall post pictures and more from that as I get the time. Right now, I'm simply trying to catch up on all that's been going on during my 2 week absence.

So, this note is to let you know that I'm alive, well, and back home. When possible, I shall post more. Right now, I'm enjoying the visit of my sister Maria and her 3 children, and am trying to prepare for Ruth: From Rejection to Redemption, the musical I am directing this summer, starting Thursday. I'll post more about that later as well. So much to write, but not enough time! =) Hopefully things will be slowing down a little more soon.

I've missed you all! Thanks for all the comments and things you left while I was gone. And thank you, Miriam, for running the blog so well while I was gone!

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Weston Connor Hart


Mother woke me up this morning at 1:45 a.m. and told me that Ginger was in labor. So, we headed over to their house. We set up a blow-up pool in the living room and filled it with water, so she could have a water birth. Almost four hours later, at 5:36 a.m., my nephew, Weston Connor, was born! He weighed 9 pounds 6 ounces, and is 21 inches long. And he's wonderfully healthy! Praise the Lord!!!

Friday, July 06, 2007

The New Room - Part 3

Putting in windows and doors.

Shingles on the roof and vinyl on the outside walls.


The wonderful sheetrock on the inside (actually, it's horribly dusty!).


And...we painted it yellow!


Eating breakfast with Papa this morning. Last night was his first night here.

All of us grandkids are thrilled to have Papa here with us. It is definitely a new responsibility, but children should learn how to care for elderly folks, in my opinion.

The New Room - Part 2

It's starting to look like a room now.

We have a roof!


A glance on the inside.

Joel pauses from his hard work to grin for the camera. =)


The extended porch and porch roof.

By the way, I'm doing the pictures in stages so I won't have to do one really long post of pictures, because we have a lots of pictures.

The New Room - Part 1

The "before" picture of our house.

The piers that hold up the house.


The framing of the floor.

Rolling sealant on the floor.


Yay! They almost have all the skeleton up.




Thursday, July 05, 2007

Happy Birthday, Anna!

Today is the 17th birthday of my dearest friend, Anna Naomi!

I had actually wanted to write a much longer post today, but I wasn't able to.
So, I'll just say that Anna is the most wonderful, loyal, sweet, and caring friend I've ever been blessed with, and I thank God all the time for giving her to me!