Amish Cook: Organized mind, organized life


It’s early in the morning. I was up with two of the children at 4:30; after a while, they settled down, so I decided to stay up and enjoy a few quiet hours. My usual quiet moments in the morning had fizzled out the last few weeks as the children had a little cold, just enough to disturb their sleep. At any rate this morning I am double thankful for a refreshing night of rest. In spite of the trial of being in and out of bed all night, there is a specialness all it’s own in spending extra time with those needing mama. At any rate, it seems like God can use any negatives in our lives and in one way or another twist and tweak it to bring good out of it, only some days there don’t seem to be any positives in sight. But if we hang on to our faith it does come back together again.

One aspect that I’ve been challenged with was simply feeling like my ends didn’t come together when trying to do weekly cleaning, finish dishes, or even just keeping the house presentable. I know it’s been good for me, but it has also been a stretch. So yeah, I’ve needed to relax and just let go so many times, I’m hoping these challenges will help me grow up and not worry so much what other people think.

Earlier this summer, something I had started doing each evening was making a list of of little things I’d like to get done the following day. If you know me you can imagine that after a couple of weeks I drifted from these high ideals, then recently when I was lamenting to Daniel that I just can’t seem to be able to get my ends to meet with my daily duties of being a stay at home mom, he asked if I’m still making lists? Gulp, no — how did I get away from it? So yes, I am in full swing now, and I love it, my days go much more smoothly. Now I’m talking about simple things like organizing the pantry after your 1 and 3-year-olds put the groceries away before you had a chance to get to them or washing off Jesse’s permanent marker scribbles from walls. I try to keep the list basic enough that I can get it squeezed in my day one way or another, even if they aren’t crucial things I feel like I’m still going the right direction. Funny how it works, once I have something written on my list it feels like the task is already half done, perhaps because just the mental cloud of having a bunch of projects that need to be done is almost worse than doing them.

Today’s list consists of things like, “Do something nice for Daniel, help Julia record her birthday gifts in her baby book, leave Rayni and Jesse in God’s hands (the caseworker is coming today, and there is a slight chance of getting an update on what’s happening with the adoption), and make a ‘welcome home’ sign for cousin Owen who was gone on a trip for a few weeks.”

We look forward to having cousin Owen home again. Since he started living at our house over a year ago, it just wouldn’t seem right not having him staying here. The children are all excited to see him again. Last week we were all surprised and delighted when a flower delivery vehicle drove into our lane and delivered flowers and five balloons—one for each of the children. There was a little note of thanks on the flowers for what is being done for him in doing his chores and such while he’s gone. The children spent hours with their balloons. They were intrigued with these balloons that would go straight up to the ceiling instead of coming down like the regular ones. The children each picked out one to claim as their own. With Jesse’s fascination with heights, he was especially impressed with his balloon that would always go up as far as it could. He was bound and determined to take his outside and watch it go up. Mama and Daddy knew the tears that it would cost once it went out of sight, so his balloon stayed indoors until it had a toy tied to it to keep it from going on up which he wasn’t very pleased with.

The following morning Jesse knew exactly what color balloon belonged to which child, he had it down pat better than I did.

Okay, enough chit-chat, for now, I’ll see you next week!

Now here you go with our apple goodie recipe! It was the first recipe I used.

Apple Goodie

8 cups chopped or sliced apples

1/2 cup sugar

2 tablespoons flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon cinnamon

Mix dry ingredients with apples, spread in a 9 by 13 inch cake pan.

1 cup oatmeal

1 cup brown sugar

1 cup flour

1/4 teaspoon soda

1/3 teaspoon baking powder

2/3 cup butter, softened

Mix into a crumbly mixture. Spread on top of apples and bake at 350 for 30 to 45 minutes or until browned and crusty over the top .

By Gloria Yoder

Gloria Yoder is an Amish mom, writer, and homemaker in rural Illinois. The Yoders travel primarily by horse-drawn buggy and live next to the settlement’s one-room school-house. Readers can write to Gloria at 10510 E. 350th Ave., Flat Rock, IL 62427

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