This Website is now a Static Resource

February 28, 2011 at 1:42 am (Announcements) ()

We will not be adding new content.

However, you are welcome to browse the archives and read past articles–and even comment or send us an e-mail!

We may pass good stuff along via the Facebook group, so feel free to join up.  Hopefully, someday the Three Weavers will be finished, at which time we’ll share the link to its online home here and in the Facebook group.

That’s all for now, folks!

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The End of All Things Is At Hand

February 14, 2011 at 1:40 am (Announcements, Articles, Attitudes, Godly Living, Worship) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Posted by Abigail

At sweet sixteen, my Shadow and I decided to start a business, catering tea parties.  We’d grown up hosting them and it was high time to cash in our experience and make our etiquette pay for itself.  “Tea by Two” we called our party hosting, and drew out menus, business cards, flyers and wrote up advertisements.  We collected dishes and hats, tried out recipes and bought up ingredients.

You might think I’m going to say the venture flopped.

It didn’t.  It took off before we’d gotten in the cockpit!  Without even advertising, we landed several parties in less than a month, with requests to go out of town for more.  We turned over all our investments and pocketed a tidy little sum each.  It looked like we were gearing up for a roaring business.

Then something happened.

You might think I’m going to say that the venture crashed.

It didn’t.  But my Shadow came to me and said, “Um…I can’t keep up with this.  I hate to do this…but can I bail before this thing is flying too high?”

I was relieved.

We were sixteen.  Still trying to wrap up school and keep up with serving our families.  Neither of us had our own car.  Neither of us really wanted to dive into filing self-employment taxes.  We didn’t really want to travel very far for parties.  We were borrowing my family’s kitchen and freezer space.  We really only did it for the fun of having a little side deal.  And, we discovered, the pressure of performing made the tea parties not quite the same as the ones we’d hosted for friends.  After a few, it was okay to put that in our file of things that we could do in the future.

Folks seemed surprised when we relegated the project to “good memories”, deposited our earnings in the bank, gave away our dishes and hats and moved on.

But sometimes we have to lay aside even good things or things that are going well and refocus on priorities.

This blog has been a bit like my catering experience.

See, Lauren and I had become such good friends and, after she and Nathaniel got married, we talked so much about women’s issues and what we were learning—and how it was really the same, married or single—that we got excited.  First, we were going to write a book.  But book writing was a bit more intense than we were really shooting for.  That’s how we settled on a blog.

I don’t think either of us expected it to take off quite like it did.  We’re nobodies.  We don’t have famous dads or husbands.  We’re not really a part of many of the conservative movements.  We didn’t really even know there were other girls out there like us online.

Then came the dilemma.  Should we actually work this blog and try to go big?  After all, blogging is a platform to voice the things we think are true.  We were beginning to get advertisement requests, giveaway offers, reposting requests, awards, listings and even guest writing requests.  And of course, the inevitable mountains of spam as well as a few nay-sayers.  As we began to look around the web at other websites, we began to understand just how seriously blogging could be taken.

Slowly we began to be a little disturbed by how many girls there were online—and how much time was spent online—and how much girls were being influenced by online teachers whom they had never even met.  Including us.

We’d always agreed to keep the blog low priority.  I suppose some can call it ministry, but our primary ministry will always be to our families and to the folks God has placed in our sphere of natural contact.

As time has passed, Lauren now has, not only a big man to take care of, but also a little man to train and teach in the ways of the Lord.  She’s developing relationships with a great church body and trying to outreach to neighbors.  She’s been fine-tuning budgeting and homemaking skills and learning to balance time.  The internet can sure knock a hole in good time management!  And now she’s discovered a new blessing and responsibility, due in September.

So when she told me she needed to stop blogging, it was a relief.  For me, handling the webmastering had been complicated, since I’ve never actually had reliable internet.  Aside from difficult, it also made me feel guilty.  It seemed like, if we were going to blog, and people were going to read it, it needed to be done well.  Plus, we both appreciate presentation.  You know, new content, nice layout, domain name.  The works.  And I didn’t have time or accessibility for “the works.”  For both Lauren and I, we discovered that blogging began to suck the life out of our private relationship with the Lord.  If we discovered something in scripture or were convicted about an area we needed to grow in or if something rankled us or if we learned a powerful lesson or walked through a hard time, we felt compelled to share.  Like we were withholding something valuable from ladies who depended on us.  It became difficult just to worship humbly before the Lord, because others were watching.  And we became increasingly aware that, well, neither of us really need to be putting ourselves forth as teachers right now.

We’re both young women.  With lots of life to live and people to serve.  And things to learn.  And it’s lovely to share what God is doing and teaching us, but our priorities still have to be our families and those whom God has placed in our natural sphere of contact:  those who know us and see our lives, who can encourage us and grow with us and teach us and hold us accountable to practice what we preach.

And we encourage you to make those your priorities as well.

Yes, we’re bailing before this thing is flying too high.

From Lauren:

First I’d like to apologize that this post didn’t make it up a couple of months ago.  And I would cite this as just one of the many reasons I am glad to be saying good bye to blogging.  I have a lot to learn about time management (among other things)!  And, in truth, it was about six months ago that I first talked to my husband and then Abigail about quitting.  What prompted me?  Well, I read Jasmine’s good-bye post on her blog where she described the upcoming release of her new book and her excitement over all the things she would be free from and free to do once she stopped blogging.  Strangely, I found myself feeling jealous—no, not of her having a book published (that had me quite excited!), but of the freedom she expressed.  I took a walk and wrestled with what I was feeling and took it to the Lord in prayer.  It seemed quite clear that blogging was getting in the way of the things that I really needed to focus on.  And with Nathaniel and Abigail in support of the decision, I pulled away.  And what a time of refreshing it has been!  Since I am less focused on an audience, my God has made very, very clear what He wants to accomplish in my heart—and let me tell you, there’s a lot of work to be done!  His word is indeed a mirror that shows us what we really are, and His good Spirit highlights the messes He wants to deal with, accomplishing His good purpose!

And, of course, as Abigail mentioned, finding out Nathaniel and I are having another little blessing, and being currently swamped with morning sickness, taxes, and a host of other things…I have no regrets.  J  Well, except for all the unfinished series and anticipated articles that never were written…but I trust you all will forgive me and rejoice in what the Lord is doing with us now.  Maybe we will write a book one day.  😉  Blessings to you ladies who have joined us on this journey.  Your thoughts and encouragement have been much appreciated!

From Abigail:

Friends often accused me of being content.  But I declare myself innocent of the accusation!  The facts are, I rarely wept the deadly tears of the unmarried simply because I had other dreams that plagued me more than marriage.  Dreams that seemed undefined, but still powerful, hopelessly far from fulfillment and even, at times, irreconcilable with my convictions.  Sometimes I fought with myself over whether or not they were even godly.  I wrestled these dreams into a slumbering state of contentment over and over and over again.  This summer they came to life with more ferocity than ever.  In frustration, I cried out to the Lord, “You gave me these passions.  Now what am I supposed to do with them?”  Many of you have made the same demand.  Some of you face the paradox of the “godly desire” that is still unfulfilled.  For many, it is marriage.  For some it is missions.  For others it is motherhood.  For some it is just more.  Disatisfaction is a necessary part of growth.  But of this I am certain—that desires are not godly or ungodly in themselves.  Because we can worship “godly desires” by desiring them more than God.  And anything that takes precedence over God is certainly ungodly.  Godly desires are desires that are made to bow, yielded, to pay homage to God, to His Word and to His timing.  And when they are prostrate before the King, they may be pursued, time and truth permitting, as a pursuit of Yahweh Himself.  Since deciding to “exit” the blogging world, I’ve been trying to focus my pursuits.  The pathway has been very up and down!  And I begin to see how truly God is a God of creativity and ingenuity and that He abundantly bestows both as we make our way through a transient life.  I’m thankful for the ways that He’s been shaping my character, strengthening my backbone and stretching me—whether it’s finally studying medical stuff or navigating the real-estate market or negotiating services and compensation or—as of the past week—nannying a handful of children.

Once upon a time, before there was Pearls and Diamonds, I kept a personal blog.  Perhaps you will find me there.

We hope you will live your moments in light of God’s redemptive sacrifice of His Son, the Holy Spirit’s powerful filling and the eminent return of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ!  To Him be the glory both now and forever, amen!

Blessings,

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Announcing Elijah Chapman Scott!

August 2, 2009 at 7:39 am (Announcements) (, , , , , )

Here he is:  the newest member of the family!  He was born August 1st at 1:35 AM and weighed 7 lbs 9 oz.  He’s a sweetie.   The Lord was gracious to show himself strong through a few intimidating complications and baby and Momma are doing great!

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Elijah Chapman Scott

August 1, 2009

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El Gozo de la Veinte y Dos

June 5, 2009 at 4:50 am (Announcements) (, , )

Twenty-two years ago, something happened!

Guess who was born at five o’clock in the morning!

A pretty good picture

It was the first time Abigail ever cried.

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Did you miss us?

February 23, 2009 at 2:15 pm (Announcements) (, , , , , , , , )

We decided to let the last couple of posts sit and simmer…wanted to be sure everyone got a chance to read the men’s excellent feedback on “Respect.”  If you haven’t read it yet, we highly recommend taking the time to look over their thoughts and give them some consideration!

And the giveaway is about to wrap up.  Today is your last chance to enter to win “Emotional Purity:  An Affair of the Heart” by Heather Paulsen.  It certainly has brought a few lovely ladies out of the woodwork.  We’ll announce a winner tomorrow (Lord willing) and get back into the swing of posting.

We’d still love to have more additions to the “Jesus Tales” page–testimonies of the Lord’s grace in the lives of ladies!  We’ll try to get ours up soon!

Also, we’re still both grinding away at several writing projects, but we’d love to know:  is there anything in particular you’d like to see us write about?  Anything  you’d like to see added here?   Any issues you have or discussions you’d like to raise?  We value feedback–both the positive and the constructive criticism!  Anything that will encourage us to grow and learn even as we seek to share what we’re learning!

It’s been rather a refreshing break for us!  🙂  Lots of home projects are constantly calling our names!

“Lauren…Abigail…”

See?  Like that.  So it’s off to the next thing with the Lord’s reminder to do everything in His name.

Blessings,

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Be An Audio Bible Ambassador!

February 5, 2009 at 10:53 am (Announcements) (, , , , , , , , , )

Sometimes I get super excited about something. So excited that I’m basically bouncing in my seat. This is one of those times. One of the mission organizations that I’m already super excited about is Faith Comes by Hearing, a group in Albuquerque, New Mexico that records dramatized audios of the word of God in many languages for distribution all over the world. The results are breathtaking! Especially in audio visual/traditional tribal cultures the dramatized audio captures the hearts and minds of the people for Christ and brings about huge transformations–entire villages! On the cutting edge of technology, they’ve developed solar-powered players that native missionaries can carry from village to village playing the word of God and now they are taking advantage of the 21st centuries Roman Road–the internet. You can download the audio Bible in MP3 from their website–free! And here’s what I’m super excited about–they are setting up a network that functions much like Skype, using a user to user interface to store pieces of the audio Bible in different languages on the hard drives of “host” computers. You can be a host! When you download the Audio Bible you can click a little button that says “share this” and instantly you will download the Bible in languages you can’t even understand–so that others wanting to download those languages will snag pieces of the Bible from you as well as other computers for a complete recording. It makes the program super cheap, super fast, super accessible and, get this, virtually untraceable. Perfect for distribution in countries where persecution is rife. No risk of being blacklisted or blocked when the info comes from a million computers across the world. Even the third-world countries are not so third-world–the internet has infiltrated where missionaries dare not tread!

In case you’re concerned about FCBH, I’ve actually been to their headquarters (several years ago–the year the Proclaimer came out), toured their buildings and almost got to record, even! These folks are the real deal. They’re on fire, simple, sincere and are pouring their lives and hearts and minds into this work–and God is blessing it! Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God…

To download the Audio Bible click here. You’ll have access to all the languages recorded. Be sure to click “share this” if you want to be an Audio Bible ambassador! You should be able to log in and even see how many people (and approximate locations) your computer has reached! Exciting or not?

Now you can see why I’m bouncing.

Blessings,

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Coming soon to a blog near you…

January 30, 2009 at 4:27 pm (Announcements, His Perspective) (, , , , , , , )

his-perspective

We’re excited to announce our newest project:  a Pearls and Diamonds column written by men!

Sounds odd?

Let us explain.  Right now we’re collecting participants and sending out e-mail surveys for a series of pertinent topics in Biblical men/women relationships–starting with respect.  The goal is to get godly men talking about what the Bible says and how they personally understand/interpret or feel about it.  We’ll sift through the answers and snag those that are particularly enlightening or helpful to share with you!  We hope to release the results for the first survey on Valentine’s Day, February 14, 2009.

In the meanwhile, we’d love for you to spread the word!  And if you know any men who value Biblical womanhood and would be willing to take a look at the surveys every 1-2 months, send us a note (pearlsanddiamondsblog[AT]gmail[DOT]com) with their e-mail address.

Blessings,

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Subscribing to Pearls and Diamonds

December 22, 2008 at 7:58 am (Announcements) (, , , )

We’ve had a little bit of confusion lately as to how to subscribe to our blog.

Ladies, you have several options:

Click Here to subscribe by e-mail.

Click Here to subscribe in your favorite reader.

Leave a comment on this post and we will manually subscribe you.

or

Send us an e-mail at pearlsanddiamondsblog[at]gmail[dot]com and we’ll add you to the list!

Blessings!

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An Awards Ceremony

December 10, 2008 at 2:58 pm (Announcements) (, , , , )

Jasmine from Joyfully at Home has kindly blessed us with the Marie Antoinette Real Person Award.   As we stewed over ladies to pass the award on to, we were delighted to realize how many “real” ladies we know!  Ladies who seek to be true to the Lord in life and online.  We decided to give this to a few we know in person–who are really living for the Lord!

Amy at Raising Arrows blog.  Abigail used to be a part of a home-based fellowship with Amy, her husband Ty and their little ones–and looks back fondly on stirring late night or Sunday afternoon discussions.Amy is less than ten years older than either of us, but she’s already lived a lifetime of experiences–from her very young marriage and first child (while still in college!), to meeting Jesus and turning her life upside down to serve Him, to her husband’s foreign deployment, to her baby daughter’s death, to homeschooling five little arrows.  We’ve enjoyed her insights on raising daughters (take a look at our endorsed articles) as well as her honesty about the pains and joys of living for Jesus in a world that doesn’t understand.  That’s simply uplifting.

Renee’ at Self Abandonment. Abigail met Renee’ in her early teens, when both were competing in a homeschool speech and debate league.  Renee’ always proved herself a lady, gracious, well-spoken, but soft-spoken.  And she always focused on the Lord and His ways.  She’d planned to be something “important”–a politician or lawyer.  But when she met and married Curtis, she embraced the Lord’s plan for her to be an at-home wife and mother.  That’s pretty inspiring.

Connie at Chosen Child. Lauren currently goes to church with Connie–and her two daughters, adopted in their teens from Russia.  Her desire is to raise her girls to go after the Lord whole-heartedly and to learn His ways.  We find that encouraging.

Julia at Julia’s Journal blessed us with two awards. The TH for Thank You Award

and the Uber Amazing Award. Uber means “super” in German, so we searched long and hard for some German blogs to pass the award on to. But we couldn’t read them, so instead we just decided to pass along some foreign culture to some of the Uber ladies we know.

Here are the rules:You give this award to five bloggers who:

1. Inspire you
2. Make you smile and laugh
3. Give amazing information
4. Are a great read
5. Have an amazing design
6. And any other reasons you can think of that makes them uber amazing!

The rules to this award are:

1. Put the logo on your blog or post.
2. Nominate at least 5 blogs (can be more) that for you are Uber Amazing! ***if you don’t have 5 that’s okay.***
3. Let them know that they have received this Uber Amazing award by commenting on their blog.
4. Share the love and link to this post and to the person you received your award from.
We received ’em together, and we’re passing them on together to a few lovely ladies who have caught our attention:
Aslaug at Soli Deo Gloria (ladies, check out her blog!  It’s super exciting to see someone living for the Lord across the world!)
and Amy from Raising Arrows–because even if we did give her all three, she deserves them!

Thank you, ladies!  Keep blogging and LIVING for Jesus!

Blessings,

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Four-and-twenty blackbirds…er…years

November 12, 2008 at 1:30 am (Announcements) (, , )

Look who’s officially 24 today!

Happy birthday, Lauren!

Now, isn’t she a dainty dish?

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Homeschool Blog awards, and a makeover…for blogs!

October 23, 2008 at 5:28 am (Announcements) (, , , , , )

For those of you who are homeschooled, have been homeschooled, will homeschool or simply know some awesome homeschooling bloggers, the contest is open!  Visit the Homeschool Blog Awards to nominate your favorite blogs!

And that’s not all, folks.  Designer G is giving away a free blog makeover.  Check it out here!

We’re still moving slowly…Abigail’s computer is still in the shop but will hopefully be done soon and Lauren’s been super busy…well, being a wife and homemaker.  But we’re at work on some articles we hope to have finished and posted soon!  And keep your eyes peeled for our very first giveaway…any day now.

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Women’s Life and Career Choices–Research Survey

September 24, 2008 at 6:49 am (Announcements) (, , , , )

Tricia, a fellow “pearl” is conducting a survey and would love your participation!  It’ll only take a couple of minutes!  She writes:

Hi girls! Last fall I interviewed over 500 public-schooled girls in my hometown about their life and career choices. I am hoping to get at least this many responses from homeschooled girls in order to compare the results.

http://www.zealknight.com/survey/

Please send this on to your homeschooled, female, single friends!! 🙂
Thank you for your time!

We’ll let you know details as to the results as soon as we get them!

Blessings!

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First Down

September 15, 2008 at 1:00 am (Announcements) (, , )

Today marks the first wedding anniversary for Nathaniel and Lauren!

We think that’s pretty exciting. 🙂

Congratulations, Nathaniel and Lauren!

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Technical Difficulties

September 14, 2008 at 3:28 pm (Announcements) (, , , , )

Crackle.  Fuzz.  Static.  Pink noise.

Yes, ladies.  We’re experiencing technical difficulties and we beg you to bear with us!  Lauren and Nathaniel have been traveling (and barely made it out of Houston ahead of Hurricane Ike!) and so Lauren is needing a sabbatical.  As for Abigail, well, aside from regular busyness, her trusty laptop is suffering from burnout!  Literally.  Her screen is caput for all practical purposes.  Feel free to look through our archives and let us know what you think so far!  Don’t worry!  We’re not going anywhere!  Just needing some time to get our *static* worked out and *crackle*.  Yeah.  Anyway, stay tuned for more articles right after this *fzzzzzz*.

Blessings in Christ,

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Installing More Filters

September 1, 2008 at 3:28 pm (Announcements) (, , , , , )

Hello Ladies!

We just wanted to let you know that we’ve decided to run all our articles by our men–Lauren’s husband, Nathaniel, and Abigail’s father, Lane.  We had already been discussing many of the topics/scriptures with them and found much (if not most) of our inspiration and learnings from both living with them and listening to their teachings, but they both agreed this would be the best way to stave off any accusations that we are “not under authority” or “not in subjection” to our men.  We also hope it will help to keep us accountable to them and insure that we ARE honoring them and joyfully submitting to their authority.  It may slow our pace down a little, since our men are both super busy providing for and caring for their families, but we appreciate them being willing to come aboard to help us out!  Please bear with us!  And also feel free (in fact, encouraged!) to likewise run anything we say by YOUR authorities!  Our goal is to encourage our sisters to honor the Lord, to honor their authorities and to honor His people!

Blessings!

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