Ohio In Autumn

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Early Fall in Ohio Amish country……

 

 

 

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Leaves just barely changing next to neat white farmhouses…

 

 

 

 

 

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Wash day on a cool, crisp morning…

In The Country

Enjoying Springtime in the country……

 

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I love the sky here. I don’t think I’ll ever tire of it.

 

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America, the beautiful.

 

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Dandelions are happy little pieces of sunshine. I can’t hate them, even though they are weeds.

 

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Flowers in the field

 

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Horses grazing in the pasture on an Amish farm. This is a common sight.

 

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Our neighbor… I enjoy looking across the field, at the barns. It says “country” to me.

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Big, Fat, Ordinary Life

The Gypsy Mama

1. Write for 5 minutes flat – no editing, no over thinking, no backtracking.
2. Link back here and invite others to join in.
3. And then absolutely, no ifs, ands or buts about it, you need to visit the person who linked up before you & encourage them in their comments. Seriously. That is, like, the rule. And the fun. And the heart of this community..

Oh and Ahem, if you would take pity and turn off comment verification, it would make leaving some love on your post that much easier for folks!

OK, are you ready? Please give us your best five minutes on:::

Ordinary…

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I love my ordinary life.

This life that includes a  husband, children, a house in the country.

Cats, dogs, chickens, and a horse.

Vast open skies and fields for as far as I can see.

A huge moon that lights the night sky, and beautiful sunrises that streak the sky with vibrant purples and pink.

Land dotted with red, and white, and green, and black barns.

Slow moving Amish buggies.

New friends and heart bonding.

The sound of peace and quiet.

And the sounds of a lonely coyote at night or the crowing of the rooster in the morning.

This ordinary life of mine, didn’t start out this way.

I went through a lot to get to this place. The journey was long and sometimes painful.

And yet, here I am.

God, blessed me with this ordinary life…and I am forever thankful.

 

 

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The Creator Of It All

English: Wind chime close-up

The drive was slow and meandering.

Stopping the hurry, allows the eyes to see the still life.

White, Amish farm houses and bright red barns.

It looked like a picture from a magazine.

Golden grass swaying under a clear blue sky.

Rain, blessed rain…falling on dry parched ground.

Summer heat giving an appreciation for the cooler temperatures, when they come.

Ice cream cones that must be licked quickly.

Sitting out on the front porch.

Listening to the breeze stir the wind chimes.

So much to be thankful for, so very much.

And God, the Creator of it all.

 God saw all that He had made, and it was very good. Genesis 1:31  NIV

Taking The Time

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This was the view from my seat in the mini-van. It is not unusual for my family to see Amish, when we are out on the road.

We often say, “Out here in rural Ohio, one has to always stay aware of the Amish and the deer when driving.”

There’s one thing about being on the road with the Amish… one is forced to slow down. That is not such a bad thing.

Slowing down. Looking around. Appreciating  the journey…. and not just speeding,  in a blur, towards the destination.

Isn’t that a good lesson for us all? For how to live life?

I can say for myself, some of the best views are when I am taking the time to look.

A slower pace. Appreciating the trip…one moment at a time.

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven…Ecclesiastes 3:1  NIV

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Have a glorious Saturday, my friends. Appreciate the journey.

“Slow down and enjoy life. It’s not only the scenery you miss by going to fast-you also miss the sense of where you are going and why.”

—Eddie Cantor

Related articles

Living In Amish Country

Thank you to all my readers for your patience.

I had my mom, sister, and nieces here for a visit. We had a lot of fun and stayed busy, so I wasn’t on the computer very often. I thought I’d share some pictures from our outing yesterday…nothing like a late afternoon drive through Amish country.

As I have said before, I love Autumn in Ohio. The leaves are beginning to change in earnest. O’ happy day!

Americana at its finest.

My family travels this road often…and this is what we see.

 

Isn’t it peaceful watching horses grazing in the field?

Perfect day for doing laundry…obviously.

You will go out in joy
   and be led forth in peace;
the mountains and hills
   will burst into song before you,
and all the trees of the field
   will clap their hands. Isaiah 55:12  NIV

Feathering The Nest

Pumpkins, photographed in Canada.

Image via Wikipedia

Okay people….I know it is only August 30th. I also know that regardless of the ACTUAL beginning day of Fall on the calendar, I consider Labor Day the time to begin decorating. The night temperature actually got down to 57 degrees here. This means that Fall is right around the corner. It had better be! After a long, hot summer, I am more than ready for the days ahead.

I’m ready to pull out blankets and fluff pillows.

Get out all my apple spice, cinnamon, and pumpkin pie scented candles.

I will begin dreaming of pumpkins and gourds.

Warm sweaters.

Cozy socks.

Cool days and chilly nights.

Harvest moon.

The sound of tractors as they move through the fields.

Corn shocks put up the old fashioned way by the Amish.

Meandering drives through back country roads.

Apple butter.

Bonfires.

The smell of wood smoke.

Walks through the woods.

Leaves in fiery shades of orange, red, and yellow.

Football games.

Hot chocolate or mocha lattes.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year!

 

Jesus Fingerprints On Me

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Image via Wikipedia

I love my kitchen. Handcrafted cherry cabinets…beautiful work done by some Amish friends. Granite counter tops. Big picture window to frame the country views outside. I only had to wait 41 years to get it. Perfect. Just perfect.

I sat down at the island counter this morning, like I do every other morning of the year. Everything seemed in order. The early morning sunshine streamed through the window.

Fingerprints on the stainless steel.

Smears and smudges on the counter top.

Pet fur accumulated around the baseboard.

What I thought was beautiful, has imperfections. Many.

Life leaves a residual mess.

It’s easier to see each smudge when the sun shines on it…

It makes me think about THE SON.

How often do I believe I have it all together?

And yet…

God humbles me. He lovingly shows me my imperfections when He allows His Son to shine on them.

His Son is perfect, and the Heavenly Father wants me to be more like Him.

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!  2 Corinthians 5:17 NIV

Slowly, the cleaning process begins.

The grime, dirt, and smudges of me.

The things that hold me back or keep me down.

The pieces of my life that are stained with imperfection.

Sometimes the clean up seems easy, on other days the scrubbing hurts.

It’s a work in progress and I am forever grateful that Jesus is patient…and persistent.

The only fingerprints I want others to see, are those of Jesus, on me.

Eating Lunch At The U.N.

Amish schoolchildren

Image via Wikipedia

My elementary school lunch table consisted of kids, my friends, with last names like Polignone, Kavalish, Slobodnik, Modi, and Jurf. Italians and Poles, Hungarians and Indians,  those of us with European ancestry and Kuwaitis. We all sat together. We were friends.

I got to thinking about this the other day. I’ve had the privilege over the years to get to know a lot of people from diverse backgrounds, races, and religions. It’s been pretty interesting.

When I was in elementary school, my best friend had the last name, Modi. She was Indian. (Eastern Indian as opposed to Native American) I remember as a young child going to visit at her house. We played ping pong down in the basement. Her mother wore the most beautiful saris. I remember thinking how I liked the bright colors. I also found the “red dot” on her forehead to be interesting. It wasn’t until I was much older that I realized it was a bindi that she had on her skin, and it was red because she was married.

Throughout my school years I continued to have friendships with kids who didn’t all look like me…..

When I got to college I met up with Sofia. A hall mate from Memphis, Tennessee. Now, I have to paint you a picture of this girl. She had skin the color of dark chocolate and a smile that she flashed at everyone she met. She had a crazy personality that invited everyone in for a visit. One morning I met up with Sofia in the bathroom. (oh, the joys of community bathrooms in college dorms) She was griping about her “nappy hair”. Now, me being the inquisitive person that I am said to her, ” What exactly does that mean when someone says their hair is nappy? Just curious.” In a flash she grabbed my hand and shoved it in her hair. She said, “You feel that? My hair is all kinked up next to my scalp, and it’s straighter on the ends. THAT IS SOME NAPPY HAIR, GIRL!”  She gave me my hand back, and my lesson on black hair was done for the day. She smiled at me. I laughed.

I taught with a black woman who was happily married to a white, Jewish man. She told me they married in the 1970’s, in the south. It wasn’t accepted by a lot of people, but they didn’t look to others for approval. She converted to Judaism.  Her in-laws survived the concentration camps of WW II. I saw pictures of them in a traveling Holocaust museum that my kids and I visited.  I had a new understanding.

When my husband, kids and I moved to Ohio we befriended some of the Amish that helped to build our house. My husband and I have formed as especially close friendship with one young couple. I enjoy visiting their home, where no matter what the young woman is doing (besides maintaining the home, they have 4 children, 4 years and under) she always makes time to talk to me. She told me early on that she had questions about the “Englishers” and if I answered her questions she would gladly answer mine about the Amish. As much as the English are different from the Amish, there are so many things we have in common. I know that her life is not filled with the same conveniences as mine, but I certainly can appreciate the simplicity and strong ties that are found in the Amish community.

People…. interesting and diverse. I’m glad I’ve had the opportunity to get to know all types of people. I’m glad I was brought up to believe that all people are special because God created them and that I shouldn’t let differences scare me. My life is better because of it.