Tuesday, September 29, 2009

To My Parents...

Legally I'm now considered an adult, not really a big deal to me as I consider that I'm still (Biblical speaking) under my parents authority, and will be until the Lord sees fit to bring me a husband. I am so grateful for my parents as they are not making me seek my own way but always to do the will of the Lord in how they train and care for their children.

And for making all those years ago when Caitlin started school, the decision to teach us at home, protecting us from the world's schooling system and allowing us to pursue our own and interests and expand on the things we truly enjoy doing.

I think I was probably the most difficult of us to teach as I was the most obstinate, and stubborn of us girls, my parents were very patient...

I praise the Lord that they went against the flow in the training of their daughters, teaching us to be keepers at home, young women of meekness with quiet spirits, but strong in the Lord. At least, that is what we strive for.

I pray that I may one day be able to walk in their footsteps, and that the Lord may grant me grace to train my own children as well as they have done for us.

Thank you, Mother and Abba for everything you have done in the past 18 years, from the moment I was born to now, teaching me the will of the Lord, that I may praise Him and serve Him in every aspect of my life.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Even Princesses Can Slay Dragons

A discussion between myself and some of the ladies in our church took an interesting direction this past Sunday. One older lady said she had a question that she had wanted to ask me for some time but had not really had an opportunity before. She wanted to know how I ever got started in fencing and collecting/carrying knives. (Apparently that's not a "normal" thing to do.:-)
I had to sort out my answer a moment, " Well... my interest in fencing/swordfighting started when I was a very little girl." I loved watching it in movies and the plastic tent sticks with and X shaped connector for a hilt made the perfect sword(Hannah & Megan know this one). I slayed many imaginary dragons and for a long time never felt a need or desire for a "knight in shining armor", much less a "Prince Charming".
Later when we moved to Montana, the "land of the cowboys", :-) I transitioned quite easily into the cowgirl & horses mode. Though never could really bring myself to be a gunslinger.It was still the sword that captivated me. And when I got an opportunity to learn the sword I (ahem) lunged at it. And have thoroughly enjoyed everything I've done with it the past couple years(despite injuring myself several times).
Explaining all that was the easy part. It was something fun and different that I had an opportunity to do very easily with really no extra expense.
" But what's with the knives?" was her main question. I sat silent a moment trying to formulate my answer. I mean yes, carrying one is okay and can be quite helpful for cutting boxes open and can come in handy in other ways as well. But why 5 or 6? (which is what I typically have on me). It was really just fairly recently that I started getting in to all that, a little over a year ago. And quite honestly I do not have legitimate reason to give for it.
But as I've been thinking about it some of the underlying reasons are 1) a desire to be different. Most girls have a penchant for shoes or jewelry, which I will admit I am not without ( I am female). But I never liked to go with the cultural norm. I guess I'm just a rebel at heart.
And I think for me it's also a way of expressing certain points of my character. Being the tom-boy that I was, I still sometimes struggle with remembering my femininity. When I was 13 I did a total switch-out, still had those "tom-boy" instincts, but felt like I had to repress them. I went from jeans and a t-shirt to flowery skirts with frilly white blouses. And while I did learn to enjoy the more feminine, "girly" things(long skirts, sewing, knitting, baking, etc.) I felt restricted and like I was acting a part, it wasn't actually me. Eventually I started finding a balance, I discovered you could climb trees and build forts while still being a lady. I didn't have to always have teapartys, it was okay to learn how to hunt and go out target shooting. And I transitioned from the frilly, flowery to more long, denim skirts and clean-cut, simple outfits, easily accessorized.
I abandoned the "page-boy" hair cut and now have waist length, curly hair, the envy of my sister Jillian(though I think her's is gorgeous too). I had the joy of walking through Wal-Mart in a floor-length skirt, and my hair down, and heard a little girl say, "Mommy, look! There goes a princess!)
But also being able to stand my ground with the sword, bow and arrow. Still slaying dragons. :-)
I guess I kinda strayed away from the knife thing. I suppose I enjoy carrying them not just because it's different but it is in a small way helping me to say: "Yes, I'm a princesses, and a feminine woman, but I'm also a strong woman, a warrior for Christ, and shieldmaiden of the Lord."

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Hayley and I !

... and the truck. ;-)

Friday, September 18, 2009

Midwifery Seminar

I spent the past few days in St.Ignatius at a midwifery seminar, it was a wonderful experience, I feel like I really learned a lot and look forward to moving even further along in my studies of nursing and midwifery. Learning about all the different things that are involved in the birthing of a child, has made me even more interested in pursuing this study and being able to help in bringing new lives into this world. It truly is one of the most beautiful things!

In the car on the way up to St.Ignatius. I rode up with Mrs. Rickel & Paige, and Kristen Haymond. It was about a two hour drive, which compared to what a lot of the ladies there had to do was extremely easy, there were some from Michigan, California, Tennessee, Colorado, South Dakota, and many other places.

The cabin Kristen and I stayed along with two girls from South Dakota, this was on an Amish family's farm, so no electricity!

Taking a brisk stroll after lunch.
L. to R. Rachel Christensen, myself, Paige Rickel, & Katie Christensen.

Kristen and my bedroom, this was taken sitting on Kristen's bed then you can see the foot of mine on the right, to the left is the door. We also shared this room with at least one mouse and I suspect more. :)

Jaclyn one of my room-mates using my arm to learn how to take blood pressure.

Laura, one of our instructers, and a lay-midwife. She was a lot of fun to listen to and I love the way she presented everything.

Patti and Mary Ann our other instructors, I am so thankful for both these ladies and their knowledge, and that they bless us in sharing it.

Jaclyn and I "delivering" our first baby!

Monday, September 7, 2009

Why Do We Fear?

As human beings we have many things that we are afraid of. It seems that our greatest fear is the unknown, we fear death greatly, why? Because we have no idea of what it leads to. We don't know if it the end, like falling asleep and not waking up, simply no longer existing; if it is the gateway to a better life, or if it truly is something dark and terrible that we should be afraid of.
Some though fear more in living. Everyone has something they fear, often it is what motivates us to do or not do certain things; it dictates how we live.
Everyone who gains power is afraid of losing it. This can apply to many other areas as well. The American lifestyle for example, we spend half the time trying to get things and the other have worrying about losing them. We fear what others think of us, so seek things that will make us more confidant in ourselves and will, we think, make others think more highly of us.
But when it comes to being a follower of Christ these things should be abandoned. We ( if we are truly seeking Him) should not care for the material things others seek after. Yet we still have an unhealthy fear. We very often fear what others think of us not wanting to seem strange and weird or feel like outcasts. So we try and take the things of the world and copy them in a way that fits our religion. The church is afraid of the world and so uses the things of the world to make it seem like it is a part of it. Yet it wants God as well. In seeking to serve both masters it has weakened and almost destroyed itself.
As believers our live should reflect a spirit of courage, and a confidence which portrays that we place our trust in something higher and better, something that has complete control so that we know that anything and everything that happens is for our welfare.
God has promised us the victory, we have been assured of winning the battle. And yet we still fear the fight, we cower in our buildings that we call the church, discussing and debating the demands given us in Scripture, rarely do we act upon them.
What is it we are so afraid of?
We are fighting a battle we know we will win. Do we truly trust God and believe His Word? Do we have the faith it takes to have full confidence in battle, to fight with as assurance that we can not lose? Marching into battle alongside the soldiers of Christ, holding His banner high, absolutely fearless. Because we know where we are going and that our Master has gained full victory over death, setting all of His servants free from it's grasp.
If we are fearful, it shows a doubt, an uncertainty of our Saviour. This is not only cowardice on our part, but it dishonors our Lord. What kind of testimony are we showing unbelievers when we are fearful and doubting/ We are saying with that attitude, that, although God is great, He is not strong enough or He does not care enough about us to protect us and guide us through all storms. God's love for us is being put into question when we have doubts and fears. But in Scripture we have been given many assurances of His love, so unless we do not truly believe the Word that He has given us, there is absolutely no reason to fear anything at all.
Therefore, let is rise up and take our arms, obeying the cammands of Scripture to be strong in our faith and not fear our enemy. Put on our armour and know that it will protect us. Go forward with Christ at the head, knowing that because He is before us our steps need not falter and we shall never have to retreat.
"If God is for us, who can stand against us?"

I'm Finished...

Finished my dress this morning, and how can you not when finished with a costume try it on. I really like how it turned out, though it was a little shorter than I expected. Can't wait for the next costume party so I can wear it out somewhere.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

In Progress

I ran into a few snags while getting started so it's not as far along as I was hoping to have gotten done by now, but here's what I do have.

The belt is on it just so I could see kind of how the overall effect would be.

I changed the sleeve from how the pattern did it as I already have one with that sleeve and find them most impractical. These I made up and so far their turning out alright.

Wouldn't be fun to wear our medieval dresses and roam around a place like this?