26 August 2016

Femininity Friday: Helping Your Daughter

The Artist with Her Daughter - Vigee-LeBrun - Public Domain

I saw a mother-daughter pair at the grocery store the other day and could not help but notice the difference between them.  At the same time, I realized that the beautiful mother must have looked almost exactly like her daughter when she was her daughter's age:  wild red hair, freckles, a body somewhat chubby but not significantly overweight.  She reminded me of a young Deruchette.  What really caught my attention, though, was the resentment-filled look the daughter gave her mother when the mother's back was turned.

The daughter was jealous of her mother.

I wondered what mom could have done to help her daughter to feel better about herself.  It likely would be helpful if a daughter could talk about her feelings of insecurity, so keeping communication open remains vital.  I perceive that showing the daughter photographs of herself as a young woman might help, too.  Sometimes daughters believe that their mothers never experienced an awkward phrase.  

A buying trip to a skin care and makeup counter,; a session with a hairdresser who knows how to cut coarse, curly hair; appropriate diet and exercise: all of these would help with whatever insecurities a daughter feels about her looks.  

What would matter most, though, it seems to me, is knowing that mom loves her daughter unconditionally and completely.  

As always, I hope that my little woman-to-woman ideas have helped.

Agape always,

19 August 2016

Femininity Friday: Dignity and Refinement During Election Season

Elegant Ladies Taking Tea - Delphin Enjolras
I have heard, although I have not confirmed the rumor, that my fellow Americans may be electing a president this year.  

If only that statement were true!  In fact, I cannot listen to any of my favorite radio shows without them nattering on about the two New Yorkers running for president.  As November draws closer, opinions will become more entrenched, and "The Wave" versus "Madame Pantsuit" will polarize an already touchy citizenry.  

We fascinating ladies can hardly help being affected by it all, but we can maintain feminine dignity and refinement during election season by taking the following actions:
  • Remembering that many people feel frustrated over the changes made in the past few years, so tempers are likely to be short.
  • Praying for God's will to be done and for all the people involved in the election.
  • Saying "I respect your opinion" even if we cannot share the person's opinion.  Sometimes this simple statement will diffuse an angry situation.
  • Following the righteous leading of Mr. Husband, if we are married ladies, or Mr. Father, if we are single ladies.
  • Refraining from making disrespectful remarks or gestures about any of the candidates.
  • Voicing our opinions in a soft, feminine way only when we are asked.
  • Delighting even more than usual in our four feminine roles and taking comfort and contentment in the fact that we can make our homes havens no matter what is going on in the world.
As always, I hope that my little "woman-to-woman" ideas have helped.

Agape always,

17 August 2016

Wondering Wednesday: What if my husband doesn't want to homeschool?

Courtesy of Microsoft
Many husbands, I believe, are concerned about educating their children at home, particularly during the high school years.  They may think that they and their wives lack the basic education or the depth of education to teach the traditional subjects effectively.  Given the plethora of curricula and other support services available, this fear can be addressed.

Husbands, too, may be concerned that home education will come to dominate the family, and I believe that most people involved in home education have seen this happen at one time or another.  The head of household becomes an object, a means to an end.  The children are involved in this, that, and the other activity in addition to several hours of schooling each day.  The children's activities' dominating the family can happen no matter how the children are educated, but public schooling is compulsory: husbands don't have a choice.

Whatever the reason, I believe that the final decision about the children's education rests with the earthly head of household, also known as Mr. Husband.  Mr. Husband is ultimately responsible for what occurs in his family, so he must retain reasonable authority over the policies and procedures the family will follow.  

I have known of two women who felt so strongly about homeschooling that they ended their marriages rather than follow their husbands' leads.  
  • Mr. F proposed that the children be educated at home for elementary school, at a religious school for middle school, and at a public school thereafter.  Mrs. F disagreed, and eventually a divorce ensued.  Mrs. F lost both physical and legal custody of the children, and the children ended up going to private school and to public school with no homeschooling at all.  
  • Mr. G wanted his wife to return to work and to send the children to public school.  Mrs. G filed for divorce, retained custody of the children, and home schools them; however, she and the children live at a much lower standard (welfare and food stamps) than they did when the family was intact.  
Each of us must decide what we can and cannot abide.  As a general rule, however, it seems to me that the ultimate choice of education remains within the purview of Mr. Husband.  

As always, I hope that my little "woman-to-woman" ideas have helped.

Agape always,

16 August 2016

When You Feel Resentful about Being a Wife...

Courtesy of Two Hearts Design

I thought of this song earlier today as I was cleaning the bathroom counter top.  I remembered my husband's whiskers scattered over the sink and counter of our old home and how much I miss wiping them up. I listened to several versions of this song before choosing Vikki Carr's, which has a torch song quality to it that I hope you enjoy.

Agape always,

12 August 2016

Femininity Friday: How I Found Fascinating Womanhood (a do-over)

Courtesy of Two Hearts Design

Dear Ladies,

This week has been "one of those weeks," when everything seemed to go wrong, so I decided to repeat a post from 2011 that I thought you might enjoy.  I hope to return to writing next week.  God bless you.

Agape always,


I was fortunate to find FW when I was a teenager and prepared myself for marriage and family life primarily through Mrs. Andelin's work. I first read Fascinating Womanhood after a cousin and I overheard the older females in our family criticizing Mrs. Andelin and the book. This took place in Santa Barbara. At that time, the Andelin family lived in the Santa Barbara area and my cousin attended school with Mrs. Andelin's youngest daughter.

With all the criticism, we couldn't wait to read the book! We went to the local discount store and purchased our treasure. Reading FW angered us at first because it was counter to everything we had been taught. As we thought about the teachings, though, we were reminded of how the women in our family treated their husbands and how most of the marriages in our families barely hung together. We were very young, not even thinking about marriage for ourselves, really, but we knew we wanted good marriages, not "barely there" marriages.

While dating, I listened and observed men carefully to see if I truly could accept them at face value, with no changes. I incorporated the traits of respect, admiration, and empathy into my personality, and I improved my homemaking skills as well as my social skills, both of which made me a hit with the fellows.

I dated frequently--but very carefully--and eventually was blessed with a marriage to Braveheart, which began and continued very happily until his untimely death late last year. About two years into our marriage, Braveheart said, "I don't think there is a man in the world happier than I." Although our marriage endured great stresses--deaths of relatives and close friends, multiple deployments, relocation, etc.--our love grew over the years and we were very happy together.

I wish the same joy to everyone.

Agape always,

Doves and Heart clipart is from www.TwoHeartsDesign.com

(post edited)

05 August 2016

Femininity Friday: Husbands and Homemaking (and an Update)

Courtesy of Microsoft
This month in the Fascinating Womanhood Yahoo! Group, the reading assignment centers on Masculine and Feminine Roles, including the division of labor.  Although I am a firm believer in romance, I also believe that one of the big considerations in a marriage is who does what and when.  Inevitably, in this feministic age, the question arises, "How much homemaking should a husband have to do?"

It seems to me that if a man is working full-time and his wife is at home full-time, the answer is "only the heavy work that she cannot accomplish independently."  

The problems arise when fuzziness ensues, as is seen in many contemporary marriages.  In some areas of the United States (and I am guessing that this is true other places, too), finding a job is easier for a woman than for a man, so we see the increase in the number of men living as "househusbands."  The househusband is not a new thing; however, in times past, a man usually only stayed at home while his wife worked for pay outside the home if he was disabled or retired.  If a husband and wife find themselves in the "he stays/she goes" arrangement, then I perceive that roles are flipped for homemaking, too, and assuming that Mr. Husband is physically able, a woman should not be expected to work all day and be responsible for the homemaking.

This situation, like much of life today, is backwards.  The Christian scriptures are clear:  women are to tend the to their families and to the home (1 Timothy 5:14, Titus 2:5).  Women, it seems to me, should not be asked to leave their families--particularly when there are children under the age of sixteen--to pursue a job or a career.  If a husband makes working a submission issue, a woman may have no choice.  If a husband dies or becomes disabled, a woman may have no choice.  

Whatever our situations, I suggest projecting an image of feminine joy while going about our homemaking.  Show our husbands, children, friends, and neighbors that we love our roles in the home, that taking care of our families' needs is our preferred way of serving God.  If a husband has to be at home for a while, I suggest avoiding emasculating him, referring to him by demeaning names, or in any way lessening his manly feeling of self-esteem and dignity.

As always, I hope that my little "woman-to-woman" ideas have helped.

Agape always,

PS:  The update is...I have added a Marriage Preparation class to my offerings. If you or your daughter would be interested, you may find information here.

03 August 2016

Wondering Wednesday: What can a wife do when tempted to disobey her husband?

Photograph courtesy of Wikimedia - Public Domain
Let me tell you the story of Norm and Edna.  Norm and Edna are based on real people, but I change their names to protect their privacy.

Norm and Edna married, but they didn't establish a residence together until a year afterward, owing to his deployment. 

Soon after their first anniversary, along with their honeymoon baby, they set up housekeeping together and made adjustments to each other as they learned to live together in love.  Although Norm and Edna belonged to the same Christian denomination, one of those adjustments concerned where to attend Church.  

"Why would that be a problem, 
since they belonged to the same denomination?"

Remember, the practice of worship and the organization of religious communities differs greatly from one congregation to another, even within the same denomination.  

Edna was a good deal more conservative than Norm; in addition, Norm had a great attachment to a certain group within their faith, and that group had a congregation within blocks of their new home.  In fact, their building was the closest Church to their home. Edna wanted to attend a more traditional congregation, about ten miles from their home; Norm wanted to attend the more liberal congregation, less than a mile from their home. 

Edna explained her feelings to Norm and begged him to attend the more traditional congregation; however, Norm stood his ground and informed Edna that the closer congregation would be their religious home base.  

Edna asked for my thoughts, and I had the distinct feeling that she wanted me to tell her to disobey her husband.  

Would Edna have been justified in disobeying her husband?  Some will think that I am wrong, but it seems to me that Edna might have been justified in disobeying her husband IF something immoral, illegal, or against their religion was occurring at this congregation.  Such was not the case.

After we chatted, Edna decided to honor God's word (Colossians 3:15, 18; Galatians 5:22-26) and Mrs. Andelin's teachings on humility, unselfishness, and family leadership in order to follow her husband's lead.  Doing so was not easy for her because she really did not like attending that congregation.  Much later on, however, her husband suggested that they attend her preferred congregation on special holy days, a decision that gladdened Edna's heart.

My suggestions are as follows when a wife is tempted to disobey her husband:  1) Prayerfully consider whether Mr. Husband is asking for something immoral, illegal, or against the published teachings of one's religion and 2) Consult with a religious authority, if the issue is an undecided matter of controversy 

For me, if my husband were asking for something legal and moral that did not conflict with my religious teachings, then I would follow my husband's lead.  

As always, I hope that my little woman-to-woman ideas have helped.

Agape always,

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