Thursday, January 31, 2008

Concerns of a Young Man

This comes from someone who lived in Georgia, part of the former Soviet Union. Your encouraging comments are most welcome!

Dear Lydia,
I've read through some of your articles and am very impressed by them, especially few instances where you made mentions of the issues of feminism. I have some few questions to ask you but have not been adequately or properly answered by others to whom I gave similar concerns.

A few months ago I had a conversation with a good friend of mine and he said something to the effect that in the near future, probably around three to five decades from now (years 2030-2050), that as a result of the ever-growing influence of feminism humanity will be altered to an extent that we will not even be recognizable as men and women any longer but will be likened unto the wild hyenas (those animals who have the ability to alternate their sexes at will). He calls this race a "rise of the unisex race".

Ever since that prediction of his, I have been terrified by that, so much that it has been on my mind night and day (literally). As I also reflect on our current trends I have also lamentably noticed that feminism is just becoming more and more stronger like a deadly juggernaut.

Even this recent decades I've observed that women are entering into certain occupations which universally have been solely held by men, I see more growing numbers of female police officers lately, they're almost a 50/50, I've observed that now women are entering into the military, there are hundreds of thousands of women at war as we speak in Afghanistan fighting alongside men, I see more women holding positions of power, like female senators, politicians, corporate executives, females now outnumber the males in the University Campuses by a large margin (at least in Toronto) and even most recent running for presidential candidacy, even in my country where I'm originally from (Georgia on the black sea) on the recent presidential election there was a woman running for the office (something which is totally unprecedented in history).

In reverse I also observe men increasingly growing ever so effeminate in all ways, they too are beginning to occupy feminine rolls as nurturers and homemakers, I see this new phenomenon of the so-called "stay-at-home dads"; husbands who stay home as nurturers while their wives are at work providing and protecting. This is the most accursed trend that I have yet come across, they're no less abominable than homosexuals and transvestites.

When I observe these shifts, changes and fads I grow terrified because these things are a blueprint to our future world, since this recent decade they have been escalating at an astronomical scale, just imagine how worse this will become within another two or three decades later, all these practices will become generalized.

What do biologists and scientists say about sexual differences? Are they interchangeable as our government is trying so hard to make us believe, I mean just recently in 2000 they've began to enforce the Cadet school to admit girls in their Academy and now they're side-by-side training with boys as soldiers. Have they finally proven their point that there is absolutely no difference between men and women, since now that they have become soldiers and do everything as well as any men can do, what uniqueness and distinction do we find in sexes now? (Since I always thought that men were much physically stronger than women, have they finally proven that a myth which was socially constructed in some pre-historic era?).

What do all the Psychologists and doctors and experts say on this? Tell me, do you think that all this will start to change and will begin to go backwards undoing all these abominable transgressions that has taken place recently? Or is humanity really doomed and these trends will continue to rise. Because frankly I do not want to become a father and a grandfather to the "unisex" children.

I'm trying not to be so pessimistic but I don't see any positive changes at all, all I see is that the feminists are just pushing and pushing and pushing their agenda in campuses, in governments, public schools, movies, etc... Or do you think they will only go so far that they will start to crumble, do we see evidence of it?

If so what is the evidence that the feminist agenda will succumb to its ultimate demise? So far I see that its more vigorous than ever. I seldom see a woman nowadays who is willing to stay home with their children, I mean even there were many in the mid 90's but now they have almost been evaporated, someone on the Internet actually commented that traditional roles have become antiquated.

I am trembling by such a thought, why isn't God restraining their enterprise, why is he suddenly letting this happen when nothing like this ever happened before?

Sometimes I am almost convinced that we're living in the last days and Christ is finally returning to judge this awful world. I really need a positive answer and a consolation to my constant worries, are my fears groundless? I sure hope that they are, otherwise I will never be able to live in such an dreadful world.

Please tell me it's not true and that it will finally stop somewhere but not too far. Please answer it adequately and really think about what I wrote, I beg you to comfort by troubled soul. I would also ask you to post this on your site or on a forum somewhere where I will be receiving some comments and views. I've tried to ask other similar bloggers on this but they haven't taken enough effort to adequately address my concern. So I hope to hear from you soon, I beg you to help me.


Wednesday, January 30, 2008

How Do You Make it Without Getting A Job?

This is a long over-due post that answers a question that was sent in a long time ago when I was discussing the importance of mothers staying home with their new babies. One young woman commented something like, "Do you live in the real world? How do you expect us to make our house payments and pay insurance and buy groceries if we don't go to work? How do you do it?"

Well ladies you do it the way most people did it before this current time. The women were not thinking about the things they had to pay for or the things they wanted (or needed) as much as they were thinking about where they were needed the most: the home. None of my forebearers were rich and yet all the women stayed home and managed it full time, and had a nice supper for their hard working husbands when they came home.

This is the way they did it:

They didn't have to have two cars in the family. That eliminates a lot of expense: insurance, fuel, repairs, tires, payments.

They didn't have to have new furniture. Most people cannot pay cash for it and end up with a high credit card payment for furniture that will look like junk before they get it paid off. They were content to improvise and make do. Sometimes end tables were storage boxes covered in pretty cloths.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Dressing and Keeping A Home

Our small dwelling after the snow this week.

Smaller dwellings require special care to keep them them looking clean and spacious. It is quite easy to get in over your head in a small space, especially if you have things you like to do that have to be stored. Rubber stamping and paper crafting, sewing or quilting, or entertaining, all require special places to put things.

When morning comes and that small house is a total shambles, where does a person begin to dig themselves out and create order? It seems that there are as many techniques as there are people, but here are a few offerings.

Dressing as though expecting company is very helpful. It makes one feel that they are in charge of the job rather than the house controlling them.

Being sure to keep your stamina throughout a day of housekeeping is also a plus. Stopping several times and eating foods that consist of good amounts of proteins and natural fats and whole grains, will keep your moods level and your energy strong. It will give you the mind to go on and finish up just when you are getting the most discouraged.

If it is absolutely unmanageable, use the technique of starting at the door and working clockwise, picking up and moving things, discarding, and straightening, until the front room is presentable.

Most people seem to give the front room (lounge, living room, parlor, entry way) priority in cleaning, just in case someone comes by. Even if the rest of the house is not presentable, having the room that is first viewed by a visitor is much easier on the nerves, and so the first room to deal with will be the living room.

One possible way of tackling an insurmountable upheaval, is to put all "like" things together. Rescue first all clothing, then cloth items such as throws, blankets and pillows and put them aside, to be distributed to their places later. Children are a great help for this, as you can sometimes enlist them as runners, going back and forth to put things away for the homemaker, while she attends to the task at hand.

Gather all books from the mess, and then remove all paper items. Draw from this all the things that will be discarded, and file all the things that will be kept.

Toys are next, and they are pulled out of the pile and examined. This is where it can be decided whether or not to keep them. I quite like some toys, especially a doll, an animal, wood blocks, and any normal old fashioned toy that makes a house look like a real home. (Nothing too scary, and not too noisy!). Some toys will stay in the room to rest on the couch or put in a shelf. If you do not have children, it is still fun to have a few toys around for variety and feeling.

After pulling out clothes, books, magazines, papers and toys, survey the results. There are probably still some stray things that do not belong in any category but can be put in their place. Maybe a phone, a drinking glass, an empty box, or some correspondence needs a special trip to where it belongs.

By now, the furniture should be bare of clutter, so it is a good time to arrange the pillows and brush off the crumbs and put the knit blanket over the back of the couch and chair, neatly.

The floor is next. Everything should be off the floor except furniture and maybe the boots and shoes where they are parked after coming in the house. Group the footwear according the the mates and the owner. If there is no real place for it, make one underneath a little table or put them in a corner or a basket.

When everything is picked up from the floor, it is time to sweep or vacuum. Opening the windows or door while sweeping really helps keep the dust down and makes it smell so much better.

The worst is over and next comes some things that are a little easier. It is time to go around and check all the surfaces: the shelves, mantels, piano top, end tables, coffee table, desks, buffet table and book shelves. The tops of everything is what will be focused on.

- Remove anything that does not belong.

-With a clean rag, slightly damp and maybe with a tiny bit of dish detergent added, wipe the surfaces with one hand and lift the lamps and other objects with the other.

-This could be a good time to give your house a different look by re-arranging things like books, pictures, plants or hand-crafted items.

A front room or living area that has been cleaned, still looks nice with a book out that someone has been reading, or a basket of hand work that is being worked on, or anything that shows some evidence of life.

The kitchen can be a daunting black hole that creates a lot of fright, but there are some methods of cleaning it that can raise your spirits while getting the job done.

It seems to work better to clean up the perimeters of the kitchen before washing the dishes. Fill up the sink with hot, soapy water and add the dishes. Let it set while you clear off the table and wipe it. Sweep the floor. Clean of the top of the stove. Wipe the counter tops. Stack the dishes or put them in some kind of order to be washed. Put away food items. Take out the trash. There is a reason to do it this way. If you just start in with the dish washing, the rest of it remains a mess and that can be discouraging. Cleaning up the mess around the sink and the kitchen first, and do the dishes afterwards creates a less chaotic atmosphere. If someone walks in, your jobs looks three-fourths finished when the tables are cleared and the floor is clean.

The dishes have to be washed in hot water, but they should be rinsed in the hottest water you can get, and it should be renewed often if you have a lot of dishes to wash. Wash them, rinse them, and put them in a drainer, upside down so the water will drain out of them. Never sweep the floor while there are clean dishes draining, or while preparing food, and avoid vacuuming if the table has already been set. It just creates more dust and your work has to be done all over again.

As the drainer fills up, dry the items with a clean cloth that is used especially for the kitchen, and put everything away. Then wash another batch, rinse, and drain. In my house, I usually wash the pots and pans and cooking preparation items first and then draw clean water for the rest of the dishes. If I have a lot of dishes, it is possible I may be too tired to wash the pots and pans, and that is why I always wash the hardest- to- clean things first. That way, the washing gets easier towards the end.

Once all the dishes are washed and rinsed and put away, wipe down the kitchen surfaces with a dry towel, paying special attention to the faucets and the sink back splash. Leave everything dry and add something cheerful like a vase of flowers or a lit votive of your favorite home scent. A table looks good with a cloth and a center piece. Centerpieces do not have to be traditional flowers or candles. They can range from sea shells to birdbaths. Anything will do as long as it pleases the eye and has a meaning to you and your family. Cleaned tables also look good with two place settings left on them, looking as though waiting for someone special---your own family.

Desks or writing/business areas of the house is often the most complicated to look after, but the same method can be used as in the other rooms. Gather all like objects, such as writing utensils--pens and pencils. Sometimes you can find a box that fits them perfectly and will also fit in a drawer. Then papers--clean and unused, those that need to be thrown away, and those that should be kept. These all go in special files and are kept in drawers. The top of the desk looks great with a letter in progress and a few pieces of mail waiting to be answered.

The bedrooms can be done in several different ways depending on the amount of room you have and the amount of convenience. One way is to remove everything from the floor and put it all on the bed. Then, sort according to type of thing (clothes, books, papers, and so forth) and when that is all put away, make the bed. The other is to first make the bed and then pick things up from the floor and then go around the room paying attention to the surfaces and tops of things.

Children can learn to clean a bedroom just by watching and listening to what their mother does. She can show and tell them how to do it by first making the bed and saying, "This is how we clean your room." After the bed is made, she can collect all clothing items and dispose of them either in the laundry basket or put them neatly in a drawer or closet. The toys are then picked up and put in their places. The books and papers are dealt with. If there is a desk, it is cleaned, and the floor is cleaned. Once a child has a sense of the routine, he can manage just about any mess himself. Finished bedrooms look nice with a blanket folded at the end of the bed, and a favorite book on the lamp table.

It is reassuring to know that even Adam's garden had to be dressed and kept. (Genesis 2:15) The garden began perfectly, but still needed to be maintained. Once the house is cleaned, it will need to be maintained. To prevent those awful days when things are piled so high it is impossible to know where to begin, check periodically throughout every day for little "infractions." Pick up anything automatically and learn to spot potential problems. Things that are set down in the wrong place seem to attract more of the same. The family can help the situation by being sympathetic to the homemaker's goals of orderliness and beauty. They can be courteous and aid in the maintenance of the home by taking care of their own belongings.

A home is not just a place to sack out and be at our worst. It can be a glorious place that makes you feel like dressing up and behaving with dignity. Dressing it and keeping it gives the home dweller a purpose: to glorify God and to serve others.

Editor's note: There are over 300 articles here and only a few have been labelled so far. My "staff" and I are working on getting everything in order. In the meantime, if you are looking for something, be sure to click the older posts, down at the end of the page. Type your request into the google search area on this page and maybe what you are looking for will come up.