RSSAmish Cook - Lovina Eicher
Lovina Eicher offers a column about the Amish lifestyle, her daily schedule, her family and favorite recipes.
We had 200 gallons of propane delivered here this morning. The price was $2.69 a gallon which is probably the most we have paid since we started using it.
When we lived in Indiana we didn’t use propane. It makes one eager to see spring and the arrival of warmer weather. Also, with the days getting longer and staying daylight longer it will also help not to use the propane lights as much. With using the lights for heat on those really cold days it emptied that tank fast. We had our 500-gallon tank filled right after Christmas just before the price went up to almost $5 a gallon. We sure felt relieved that our propane supply held out till the price came down this much. We use propane for our water pump, water heater, refrigerator and the heater we have in our pump house.
This morning the mercury dipped down to 4 degrees but it sounds like warmer weather is on the way for the weekend. We are hoping that holds true as we want to butcher 4 hogs. On Friday evening we will dress 4 big hogs.
We are having thunder, lightning, and rain right now. The temperature is just over the freezing mark so it turns the driveway into a sheet of ice. It’s a challenge to walk on and for daughter Loretta so much more.
She fell on her way out to the bus this morning. I hope she did not hurt herself. She is so ready to see the snow go away. It makes walking on it so difficult for her. She says she can’t wait until it warms up and she can sit outside on her swing again.
Our school closed on Tuesday because of the 5 – 6 inches of snow we received Monday evening. Last Friday and Monday the children didn’t have school either as it was their mid-winter break. I was hoping they would cancel the mid-winter break due to missing so many days already this year. The children ended up having a 5-day break. I hope they won’t have to go to school longer at the end of the year.
We are still having temperatures below zero on some mornings. We also received a few more inches of snow. The local paper said we have had 41.5 inches of snow this year and the average temperature has been zero.
We are getting an idea of what life feels like in Alaska! There have been very few days that the temperature was warm enough for the children to go outside to enjoy the snow. On days that were warm enough they enjoy sledding, building igloos, etc. The boys had Stormy the pony to pull their sled. Pulling a sled is a good way to exercise the ponies in the winter months.
Benjamin and Joseph built a wooden sled and now are getting to enjoy it. I think the sled will outlast the plastic store-bought ones. This seems to be more like the winters we had when I was growing up. I have fond memories of going places with the big bob sled hitched to our team of Belgian work horses or two of the driving horses. I remember sometimes on a Sunday morning Uncle Chris and family would come driving in to pick us up with their bobsled to go to church. Sometimes another family on the way to church would be picked up also. We didn’t mind being crowded on those cold rides.
We are already into the second month of 2014. Many, many inches of snow have fallen already this year. Our neighbor cleaned our drive again yesterday. We have some pretty big snow banks that have accumulated from the drive being cleaned out quite often.
We are finally experiencing a real Michigan winter. Haven’t had one since we moved here 10 years ago. This morning our thermometer showed a cold 9 degrees. This cold weather makes us still enjoy working on 1,000-piece puzzles when time allows and in the evenings. We are almost halfway done with the sixth one this winter. Some are harder than others. It depends on the picture and the shape of the puzzle pieces. This last one is not as fun as a lot of the pieces are the same shape. You have to be careful a piece doesn’t get put in the wrong place. It can look like it would fit in easily when it’s not where it belongs.
Yesterday, Feb. 5 was Susan’s friend Mose’s birthday. Susan wanted to take supper in to his family in honor of his birthday. I helped her make the food which consisted of pizza casserole, lettuce salad, freezer pickles, hot peppers, chocolate pudding, angel food cake dessert, peaches and Swiss roll bars. We frosted the top of the bars so we could put “Happy Birthday Mose” on it so it could work as a cake since he likes the bars.
It is Thursday morning and the temperature is 14 degrees. That seems warm after all of these subzero temperatures we’ve had all week.
The children returned to school this morning after being off since last Friday due to the extreme cold temperatures. My husband Joe and daughter Elizabeth were home on Monday and Tuesday from the factories due to the bad weather. We barely saw any traffic go by during those two days. It was still dark on Tuesday morning when a lady came to our door asking for help to get her car out of a ditch close by our house. She was on her way home from work and said our house was the only one with lights on. Joe and the boys went to help shovel her car out of the snow and get her back on the road. They had to dress warm and were cold by the time they were back in the house. The temperature was 18 below zero with the wind chill even colder.
Yesterday was the funeral of my Aunt Frances, age 79, from Berne, Ind. We regret that we were unable to attend because of the bad weather. Our most deepest sympathy goes to the family. They too are without both their parents now. That makes such a lonely feeling and I can sympathize with them. Frances is my Dad’s sister and is the 4th of the 13 siblings to pass. Life sure brings changes in different ways.
Happy New Year to all you wonderful readers. I hope 2014 will be a great year for everyone!
Here in Michigan, 2014 is bringing us frigid temperatures and lots of snow. Around 8 inches of new snow was dumped on us New Year’s Day. It made for some very pretty scenery. This morning our mercury on the thermometer dipped way down to minus 14 degrees. It only warmed up to 13 degrees all day.
On New Year’s Eve, my husband Joe, our eight children and I, Timothy, Mose, and my sisters Verena and Susan, all went to sister Emma and Jacob’s house for the evening. We all stayed the night there so their house seemed pretty lively with 21 people there. The children were excited to be able to stay up playing games until midnight and shout “Happy New Year” to the dark world outside. Four air mattresses were blown up to help make enough beds for everyone.
This my final column of 2013. This is Friday after Christmas. We had a very nice enjoyable Christmas Day. We made a big breakfast casserole the night before with the ingredients being scrambled eggs, shredded potatoes, onions, green peppers, diced cheese, bacon, ham, and then topped with sausage gravy.
On Christmas morning we put it in the oven to heat while we opened gifts. Everyone was very happy and excited for their gifts. Although it is exciting to open presents at Christmas time, may we always remember the true meaning of Christmas: Jesus, our Savior, was born! After all the gifts were opened we ate breakfast, or more like brunch. Then the dishes were washed while Christmas carols were sung.
The rest of the day was spent playing games, enjoying new gifts, and just relaxing. What a nice family day to all be together. Snacks were also enjoyed and goodies given from the neighbors. Later we had a light supper of grilled cheese sandwiches.
As I write this, Christmas is six days away. I do not need to look at the calendar to know, as the children remind me every morning. Jesus is the reason for the season. Let us rejoice on the day Christ was born. May each of your holiday seasons be filled with all the joy and peace on earth.
My husband will have off work after today until Jan. 2. The school will give the children a two-week Christmas vacation. Daughter Elizabeth isn’t sure if she will get 1 or 2 weeks off yet. Anyway, it looks like the next 2 weeks will be lively here at the Eichers.
Today is laundry day again. I also have dough rising for bread and cinnamon rolls. I made two batches of cinnamon rolls yesterday. The children want to give them to their teachers for Christmas. Daughter Susan made all the frosting for me for the rolls. She is always the one I get to do that for me.
Oh my! Looking at the calendar Christmas is only 13 days away. It seems such a short time between Thanksgiving Day and Christmas this year.
The year 2013 went so fast, although it seems every year does. We are having very cold single digit temperatures this week. We also have several inches of snow, so it gives a person the holiday spirit.
Benjamin,14, and Joseph,11, built a sled and they are patiently waiting for a big snow so the ponies can pull this sled around. We have enough snow for the children to slide down the hill with the boughten sleds, but this homemade one is a bit too heavy for that. I hope for their sake it will provide hours of fun once the big snow arrives.
We are in the first week of December, the final month of 2013. I went to town yesterday to take son Kevin to the dentist. Everywhere you see reminders that the Christmas holiday is approaching fast. It gets dark early so it was dark when we left town. Kevin enjoyed watching all the Christmas lights.
The girls made a breakfast meal for our supper last night. On the menu was bacon, scrambled eggs, toast, and cottage cheese. It is nice to have the girls make supper when I have to leave for an appointment. When they were all younger I would have to make supper after I was home.
My husband Joe and daughter Elizabeth are back to work after being off Thanksgiving week. Although it is nice to have time off from work that also means no payday. The Good Lord will provide, though, if we keep our trust in Him.
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