30 June 2007

Modesty in the News

Modest patient gowns?
New hospital gown preserves modesty
CLEVELAND, June 19 (UPI) -- The Cleveland Clinic has unveiled a new hospital gown that doesn't have that embarrassing flap in the back.

The new wrap-and-snap gown, which was designed by clinic employees, fastens on the side. WEWS-TV reported that the gown, which is longer than the old style, gives medical workers the access they need while protecting patients' modesty.

The hospital introduced the gown to patients last week, WEWS reported.

And there was much rejoicing.

In other news:

Orthodox Jewish group defends rights of Pentecostal
An Orthodox Jewish group is representing a member of a black Pentecostal church in a modesty case against New York City’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority.

Agudath Israel of America contacted Eric Stern, an Orthodox Jewish employment lawyer, to work on the case of Tahita Jenkins, a bus driver fired by the MTA for refusing to wear pants on the job, a requirement which violates the modesty requirements of her religion.

To MTA claims that wearing a skirt compromises the ability to drive, Stern responded, “There aren’t Orthodox women all over Brooklyn crashing into poles.”

Barbara Kay wrote an interesting editorial comment: "Modesty and the Church", for the National Post (Canada), regarding the recent announcement that some Catholic churches are having to come up with a list of what is acceptable to wear to a worship service. In the article, she writes, "Immodest dressing in church is more than indifference to the institution and the occasion, it is an aggressive show of disrespect for its history and its message...". Please read some of the responses to her article as well. Here is one of the great lines I read in the responses: "This is why it is so hard to live a virtuous life. Modesty requires judgment, common sense, delicacy, solidarity, strength. Maybe we should spread the word that modesty is synonymous of personal dignity and that it is worthwhile to struggle for it."

And finally, in a little different take on the term modesty, and living modestly, I found this thoughtful article in the Catholic Weekly: The 13th Sunday.

In another topic, the subject of femininity, I found this nice article in the Globe and Mail: "WAR ZONE BEAUTY TIPS: Conflict isn't pretty, but you can be." I don't completely agree with women in active military duty, but that aside, check out how this lady wants to still be a lady. I think it's lovely. :)

Lovely Things

My husband recently bought me a copy of the 2 CD set of C.S. Lewis' "The Four Loves". Read by the author. Unabridged. A 32 page study guide is included. What better way to find a way to think of things that are lovely, that make for love and kindness and affection, than to pull up a chair and listen to an older Christian man, who is a very thoughtful person, explain the meanings that he finds behind the old Greek words which we translate all into the broad word, "love".

From AudioFile
The four Greek words for our word love are "storge" (affection), "philia" (friendship), "eros" (sexual or romantic love) and "agape" (selfless love). In what is claimed to be the only professional recording of C.S. Lewis's voice, one can hear the mother of all audio programs about love and its vicissitudes. The speaker sounds stiff and academic at first--not as warm as he is in print--but this impression evaporates after a few minutes of listening because the essays are so pithy, exciting and surprisingly relevant in today's climate of impetuous relationships. The four cassette sides are integrated by the refreshing seamlessness of Lewis's thinking and many illuminating examples. For those interested in C.S. Lewis the person or those involved in any kind of love relationship, repeated listening will be utterly involuntary. T.W. (c)AudioFile, Portland, Maine --This text refers to the edition of this title which was available at one time on cassette tape.
One reviewer quoted and wrote: "For news of the fully waking world you must go to my betters": But Lewis is a Great Place to Start.

Please look into listening or reading "The Four Loves," by C. S. Lewis.

27 June 2007

"Trusting God's Plan"

Over at Oneplace.com, I came across the "Revive Our Hearts" podcasts. I found some really good thoughts in today's lesson, "Trusting God's Plan", from the series for singles. Marriage is not the only place to present the pure, sweet heart of a lady. The discussion is about how a lady, specifically a sister in Christ, can view men, not as date-ables or no-ways; but as brothers. As men. It is important for us to remember them as part of our lives, and that we treat them as they deserve. We cannot expect that they will be just what we want when we want it - especially when as a lady we are trying to really live a peaceful life of trust. So be careful where you place your focus.

If you are a Christian lady, be God's girl first of all, then a man's. If you call on any higher power than men, trust that Power and Love first, devoting yourself to the true and good things first.
It has been my experience that a lady does not run around with no guidance in life but a grasping after dreams. Her walk is balanced, her eyes are straightforward, and there is a lovely smile on her lips, for she knows how to walk in grace.

18 June 2007

A Commitment to Loveliness

Why do we have to keep re-committing?
Why isn't loveliness just a part of our nature yet?

It is so good to come together sometimes and reaffirm our commitment to things that are lovely - to remind, and to encourage.
  1. Buy flowers for the containers around the front porch.
  2. Make banana bread and apple pies.
  3. Listen to more uplifting music or radio programs and previously downloaded podcasts.
  4. Remember to use lotion and... perfume.
  5. Practice smiling and laughing out loud more.

Idea from Charming the Birds from the Trees

17 June 2007

Living Happily Ever After

A Merry Rose: Blooming as Keeper of My Home
... wrote a brilliant article on relating to the "strong, silent type". Since old fashioned ladies tend to appreciate these types of men (see Jane Austen's novels), they should learn to live with them.

Coffee Wife at The Walled Garden
... also wrote a sweet little piece with her take on showing appreciation for our knight in shining armor, which I really appreciate.

16 June 2007

The Old Fashioned Father

What is an "old fashioned father"? Can you type it into your search engine and find a good answer? This became my quest: to find someone willing to tell us what the great men of old did to become good fathers. Or at least, if they were not good, what kind of fathers were they? (Now, I love Tevye, from "Fiddler on the Roof. " Maybe he's not the perfect father, but he was a little old fashioned. No?)

The Old Fashioned Fathers

I suppose not everyone can sit down and just read Emily Post's (1873–1960) writings on Etiquette, from 1922. But she does have a few things to say about the gentlemanly behaviour of fathers. Here, from Chapter XXXVI : Every-Day Manners at Home:
No child will ever accept a maxim that is preached but not followed by the preacher. It is a waste of breath for the father to order his sons to keep their temper, to behave like gentlemen, or to be good sportsmen, if he does or is himself none of these things.
. . .

Any number of busy men scarcely know their children at all, and have not even stopped to realize that they seldom or never talk to them, never exert themselves to be sympathetic with them, or in the slightest degree to influence them. To growl “mornin’,” or “Don’t, Johnny,” or “Be quiet, Alice!” is very, very far from being “an influence” on your children’s morals, minds or manners.

A Supreme Court Justice whose education had been cut short in his youth by the Civil War, when asked how, under the circumstances, his scholastic attainments had been acquired, answered: “My father believed it was the duty of every gentleman to bequeath the wealth of his intellect, no less than that of his pocket, to his children. Wealth might be acquired by ‘luck,’ but proper cultivation was the birthright of every child born of cultivated parents. We learned Latin and Greek by having him talk and read them to us. He wrote doggerel rhymes of history which took the place of Mother Goose. He also told us ‘bed-time stories’ of history, and read classics to us after supper. When there was company, we were brought down from the nursery so that we might profit by the conversation of our betters.”

Old Fashioned Fathers Today

If I were to sum up the manners lesson above and what I think of as a true gentleman into what a modern "old fashioned father" should be, I suppose I would say that he is to be above reproach, the husband of one wife, temperate, prudent, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, not addicted to wine or pugnacious, but gentle, peaceable, free from the love of money. He must be one who manages his own household well, keeping his children under control with all dignity. Wait, that sounds like a listing for an older man who desires to be an overseer in the church. Well, it sounds like a great father too.

Some people think that trying to follow those above virtues would be difficult. Okay, don't read them as if they're in the Bible, but just as some good qualifications to be a good Dad. Look up the word "Fatherhood" on your search engine, and you'll find a lot of information that will help you to find an ideal father. I can't vouch for all the content at the following sites, but try:

The National Center for Fathering, at Fathers.com
Fathers for Life
The Father's Network
The National Fatherhood Initiative, at fatherhood.org
The Fatherhood Foundation, at fatherhood.org.au

It seems to me that there is an awareness of the longing and need for valiant fathers to come to our rescue, and protect our homes and families. It sounds a little old-fashioned. But of course, I like that.

09 June 2007

Dress with Joy this Swimwear Season

What will the old-fashioned lady be wearing this summer? I've researched this before, and last year I found several really cute alternative swimming suits for women, which I'll include in links, below. But before I provide the links, here's some thoughts on dressing modestly when it's hot outside.

* You don't have to be undressed to feel cooler. When the direct sun burns your exposed skin, or you have to slather on goop everywhere you go, you might begin to understand that there are other reasons not to go nearly-nude than just some loose definition of what is modest.

* Dressing modestly does not mean that you are ashamed of your body. I was disgusted to see that in the Wikipedia entry for modesty, there is discussion of extreme modesty being called "body shame." Modest means humble, in spite of knowing you do have something great. "Shame-faced", the Old KJ translation, might be better understood this way: I know I've got a beautiful body from God that makes men's brains go all gooey and women get jealous, and I'm not going to just show it off because I've got it- I would be ashamed of myself.

* Men do not just have to learn to live with partial nudity. How selfish and inconsiderate (and unladylike) is that attitude? How would you put up with selfish, uncaring men who treated you as if every trouble that they had was your own fault, and you'd better learn to deal with it, and stop crying? Remember consideration goes both ways.

I could probably go on, but it really isn't very lady-like to rant on and on, is it? Here, for your consideration, are the thoughts of others on the subject:

How To Dress Modestly In the Heat.

Use loose-fitting, light-colored clothing, preferably of a "breathable" material such as cotton. Loose-fitting (but still long) allows the air to pass through, as like many of those robes that people wear in the middle-east, but if long nevertheless provide decency. Light-colored will reduce heat absorption from the sun (in direct sunlight a black object can be more than ten degrees hotter than an otherwise similar white object). And avoid synthetic fabrics since they often don't "breathe" very well, thus trapping sweat and heat.

Long clothing that covers the legs to the ankles and the arms to the wrists is also good for avoiding skin cancers, and so in fact can actually help you stay cooler than being bare. A sun hat isn't such a bad idea, either.

As to swimming, decent swimsuits have not been around for decades (but I do seem to recall some place where replicas of antique swimwear can be purchased, if you are brave enough to go out in it), but one workaround for Catholics that I have heard of is that one wears some other long robe over the swimsuit until the very moment that one is to enter the water, and to be immediately put back on when one exits the water. This would at least reduce the likelihood of being seen in an otherwise inadequate dressing, along with trying to find at least some of the more conservative designs for swimwear (e. g. a one-piece for women that covers everything from the thighs to the shoulders instead of a bikini, or a man's swimsuit that looks like short pants instead of mere colored underwear).

These are stopgap measures, as it would probably be best to swim only in isolated areas or private pools, or else not at all, but I know there are those for whom swimming is a very major part of their life, and such options may still not be available for them. -from Allexperts.com

In an article I found called, "Keeping Cool in Modest Clothing", the author mentions the same sun protection factors, and explains that there are many styles of clothing to put on in warmer weather that are fashionable - sometimes you just have to look outside of the "traditional" styles of summer dress that you're used to.

Sensible clothing does not have to be overly baggy or frumpy. In cultures wherein modest clothing is the rule, you will notice that aside of isolated dysfunctional situations, people dress with joy. [I love that phrase - lm] It is either the joy of knowing that they are serving the god of their faith well by dressing modestly, or the more grounded joy of being well dressed. One may also note that people use dress to communicate their beliefs, family group, ethnicity, or other things about themselves. from ModernTraditional.com

If you please, also read the article from Lady Lydia, at Ladies Against Feminism, on Outdoor Dress, who ends her article thus: "Summer may be here in your part of the world, but please use it as a reason to dress like a summer's day, with fabrics and styles that compliment the Creation and glorify the One who made you women!"

What if I want to swim? Well, here are those promised links, if you'd like to shop online for some modest swimwear. (I'm using category descriptions from "modestclothes.com/modest-swimsuits... " - please read through Dara's ModestClothes.com if you get the chance)

- "Kind of Modest" - "includes skirted swimsuits, tankinis, modest panel swimsuits, and the like; also includes swimsuits that are skin-tight, but cover more than the usual amount of skin, like suits with short sleeves, long sleeves, longer legs, and higher necklines" [these are the clothes that look the most like the indecent swimwear out there, so men, be warned before clicking to browse these photos -lm]

- "More Modest" - "These styles of swimwear were designed by modest dressing women and teens for their religious-dressing needs. The styles are more modest than what can be found in mainstream stores."

- "Very Modest" - "I believe Muslims sell the most modest swimwear available today. It’s modest by coverage and by fit, meaning not only does it cover most of the skin, but it’s as loose-cut as possible while still being safe." [Even if you are not practicing full covering (hijab), you should check out the joyful expressions on these ladies' faces. It doesn't seem to really be a burden to keep their private parts hidden from the public eye. - lm]

Now, if you're going to say: "If I go out dressed like an Eskimo in the summer, then I will stand out in a crowd, and how is that modest??" then you haven't been reading. We're talking about dressing with joy this summer - with no fear: of looking like a tramp instead of a lady, of falling out of your swimsuit, of getting really bad burns or skin cancer, of being thought of as less than modest, of being underdressed for a nice occasion. In the end, you have to dress according to what you understand is best for you.

Did I mention that I really like the salwar kameez suits?

photo of woman on beach found online at DRENK Health Center
painting of woman reading in the shade from AllPosters
photo of Hawaiian beautiful people from Aloha Funwear