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An Amish Summer Courtship
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The wooden yoke was one of them. Joe was ready for me and got right to work. He had all the production steps organized for me to photograph. He trusted me to shoot only the materials, machines, and tools that he used. Out of respect for his beliefs, I was careful not to include his face in the photos. We moved smoothly from station to station. In less than half an hour, Joe had taken raw wood and produced his useful yoke. I had to stay alert to keep up with him. Joe was that efficient and prepared. I was mightily impressed with his skills. Only after we had finished the assignment did I realize the significance of his yoke product.

What he makes both eases a difficult job and provides more comfort for off-the-grid people everywhere. They sling the yoke onto their shoulders, which distributes the weight of the heavy items they have to carry.

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Perhaps those who use the yoke ride a horse-drawn cart or raise livestock, too. Filed under Amish , human interest , Ohio , Ohio's Amish country , photography , rural life , writing. Tagged as off the grid , shoulder yoke , togetherness. After a tease of springtime in late March, April brings us all back to reality in short order. Indeed, this week we had our pick. Filed under Amish , nature photography , Ohio , Ohio's Amish country , Photo of the Week , photography , rural life , weather , writing. Tagged as April sunset , sunset photography.

Good Friday is a sacred day in the life of Amish. Most Amish church districts hold a long church service, usually for adults only. The focus is to remember Christ dying on the cross for humankind. Filed under Amish , holidays , human interest , Ohio , Ohio's Amish country , Photo of the Week , photography , rural life , writing. At first, school days began in the dark. The upside was that we had more daylight time in the evening to play and do chores. That seemed like a fair trade to me.

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Excuse the pun, but times have changed since the origin of DST. Believe it or not, DST originated in ancient times before clocks existed. Various civilizations adjusted their schedules, not their clocks, to the natural lengthening of warmer months. Evening recreation. Great Britain soon followed suit. In one form or another, DST has been around ever since. Altogether, 70 countries use some form of DST. Despite its semi-annual adjustments, folks still get confused by the change of time.

A simple rule is spring forward an hour in March and fall back an hour in November. Farmers often get the blame for initiating DST. In fact, the farmers I talk to hate it, especially if they milk cows. Late evening wagon train. Others apparently used the art of compromise. Clocks were set back a half an hour. Perhaps these methods were mild forms of protest. Whatever the reasons, people always seemed to know what time it was regardless of what the clocks said. This simple idea led to some chaotic timekeeping. In , the state of Iowa had 23 different start and end dates for DST.

Even the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul, Min. Well, mostly. For good or for ill, the intent of this checkered history of playing with time was to save energy. Research has shown that concept is flawed. I can see both sides. Earlier risers would just as soon avoid manipulating the clocks twice a year. Those who desire extra playtime after work or school are happy for the extended daylight. That remains the justification for DST.

The tactic merely adjusts the clock to accommodate more daylight for more citizens. The child in my heart, however, still enjoys the adjusted daylight. Filed under Amish , history , human interest , nature photography , photography , rural life , weather , writing. Being a weekly newspaper columnist, I pay attention to the calendar. I have to if I want my columns to appear in print. If I miss a deadline, well you know. I only just recently noticed the quirkiness of the calendar. For instance, February, the shortest month, had five Mondays.

If you are reading this on Feb. Go figure. That got me delving into the rest of the year. My research revealed several interesting tidbits of facts and silliness. Every month has at lease one cause, and many weeks have more than one reason to celebrate. Digging further, I discovered a wide diversity of day designations that I never heard of. I guess I need to get out more.

January and February are history. For the sake of space, I picked the most notable ones, minus the standard holidays. April is no better. The sign says it all. I like August. Nutt Day. With 18 endorsements, October is a highly regarded month. That brings us to December. It seems like will end goofy, too.

Take Dec. Say what you will, the calendar is used to promote a variety of legitimate to questionable causes and remembrances. Leave a comment. Filed under Amish , birding , birds , holidays , human interest , news , Ohio , Ohio's Amish country , photography , rural life , weather , writing.

Tagged as calendar , designated days , goofy calendar , humor , winter solstice. Even in a blowing snowstorm, this light blue door stood out from the blandness that surrounded it. Blue is one of the few colors permitted by the Swartzentruber Amish, the lowest order Amish. They are the plainest of The Plain People.

But for the scholars and teacher of this Amish one-room school, it might be the only splash of color they see in their stark schoolyard. Filed under Amish , architectural photography , Ohio , Ohio's Amish country , Photo of the Week , photography , rural life , weather. The fully-involved structure burned to the ground. A month later, blessed insurance arrived in the form of neighbors, family, friends and church members who raised a new building in a day. They started at first light and had the barn roofed and sided by evening. Barn raising. My parents influenced my appreciation for the agricultural lifestyle.

Dad introduced his five children to farm life early on. Being an avid sportsman, Dad loved to hunt and fish. Dad knew the importance of building trust with the farmers to be allowed to tromp around their property. Dad listened to their stories, and they returned the favor. Rural sunset. My wife and I built our first house on a bluff overlooking two tributaries of the mighty Killbuck.

Manicured farm fields fanned out to the west from our front yard.

Thick stands of mixed hardwoods that glowed in the fall filled the surrounding, steep hillsides. When it was time to till the garden, Farmer Jim came up from his field to do the job. I offered to pay, but he just winked and smiled and advised using Triple 12 fertilizer. When we moved northeast 16 miles 36 years ago, we hoped to experience the same interactions. We did that and more. Check out this article on CNN. I used to be such a stickler for expiration dates on food.

I am not talking about fresh foods since we all know how hard it is to keep a banana for longer than two days and how quickly milk can sour. Pasta, candy, and coffee are some of the things I buy once they reach their final destination at the bent and dent shop. My aunt threw such a hissy one time about buying a pack of gum from a vending machine that was a month outdated. There is nothing wrong with it just like there is nothing wrong with the box of fruit snacks whose box was ripped.

Fruit snacks that I purchased for a dollar. I see a dollar trend happening here. I do not claim to be an expert on food consumption or expiration dates so please read the CNN article I shared or do your own research to see just how wasteful we can be. This is a picture of my loot. You can see where the boxes are slightly damaged and none of these purchases are expired. Grand total for the day was fourteen dollars not everything I bought is shown.

Here are the candy bars I mentioned that were five for a dollar. Why buy one for a dollar when I can buy 5 for a dollar? I say buy the misfits and savor every bite. I like to give myself a little pat on the back for money saving abilities. What do you think of my goods? Have I intrigued you enough to perhaps try a bent and dent store? If so, then my work here is done.

I can go on to the next mission…. Michelle Dawn is a coffee-addicted, donut-loving gal who enjoys all things Amish. She started Destination Amish with two goals in mind: to share her love of Amish country and spread the word about Amish fiction. Destination Amish has become a popular place for many authors to visit and is known for really fabulous giveaways.

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Working with the motto Destination Amish…a place where books come to life…Michelle brings the pages of your favorite books to life through pictures and ramblings about consuming vast amounts of Amish pastries. Connect with Michelle: Website Facebook Twitter.

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The Amish have been in Kansas since the s. My daughter and I recently spent an afternoon exploring Yoder. We started at a wonderful restaurant, bakery and gift shop known as Carriage Crossing.

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I was tickled by this sign. You will notice some distinct difference between the Kansas Amish near Yoder and their cousins in Pennsylvania and Ohio. Here in Kansas, many of the Amish use tractors for field work and travel to town although each church district has its own rules on this issue. However, travel to church is always by buggy. She drove off on a tractor.

I think it would be warmer traveling enclosed in a buggy. It was the quilts. March in Yoder means two things. Over quilts are on display at the businesses in town for the entire month.

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We started out at the restaurant and ended up at the Yoder Furniture Company. The quilts were the star attraction, but seeing the beautiful Amish crafted furniture was well worth the trip. You can learn more about this unique Kansas community here. Pat lives in central Kansas with her daughter, two grandchildren and three dogs. In the summer, this town is full of color with their beautiful and vibrant flowers. The variety of flowers decorate the grounds outside stores, restaurants, along the medians and in the yards.

Butterfly gardens were plentiful. Our buggy ride, the Amish driver told my husband and I that the town works hard to create this color display all season. He drove us by the restaurants, stores and Menno-Hof. The Menno-Hof is an informative and interesting place. The Amish and Mennonite beliefs and lifestyle are depicted through talks and displays in several different rooms.

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A lot of Anabaptists Name of Amish and Mennonites before they split. Next we shopped at the Shipshewana Flea Market. I found wonderful handmade Amish dolls, and enjoyed talking with a beautiful elderly woman. She was a delight, and her stitches on the doll are perfect. I felt quite blessed to have met her, because the flea market is very commercial and this was one of the few Amish offerings.

I would recommend it if you like flea markets, but wear your comfortable shoes! It has about vendors! It was clean and it had great finds for your kitchen and home. It is open Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Of course, the food was delicious in the restaurants. We had fried chicken, green beans, mashed potatoes, corn, and my favorite, butterscotch pie! Tressie, a local Amish woman, has made the majority of pies for the Shipshewana Auction Restaurant for over 28 years! I enjoy the lush pastures, handmade furniture, and Amish history, but our trip was cancelled due preparations for an Amish wedding.

The Amish man apologized but beamed telling us his daughter was getting married. He said the women were busy making food and arranging the barn to make room for the hundreds of people that would attend. The ice cream shop inside was an added bonus. I swam in the large pool, and it felt so relaxing after walking all day! Fascinated by the Amish history, culture, Molly perused her passion to write about the Amish people.

Romantic Times gave Change of Heart 4. Molly enjoys time with her family, friends, traveling, swimming and golf. New books, cover reveals, coupon codes, giveaways, first-look excerpts and much more. New books, cover reveals, coupon codes, first-look excerpts and much more. These are a few photos from my a trip to Amish country in western Pennsylvania.

An open buggy. Another Amish home. It grows like a family grows. You can: —Walk the Pumpkinvine trail. As you can tell, Shipshe is one of my favorite travel spots.