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“That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God. Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and long suffering with joyfulness; Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of light, who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and has transferred us into the kingdom of his dear Son.”

                                                                      Collosians 1: 10,11,12,13

This is Wednesday afternoon as I write, a very beautiful summer day, blue sky, fluffy white clouds, a light breeze, quiet. I love it! Yesterday (Tuesday) was also an awesome summer day.

We did have a thunderstorm during the night -- just an ongoing rumbling, some lightning and a little bit of rain.

To me, it was sort of soothing, a reminder of who is in control. It was not harsh and stormy with lots of strong winds, just a rolling, rumbling noise. We did actually have a bit of hail. Not a lot, just a little pecking against the window.

We went to town today after work to pick up a bouquet of fresh flowers for daughter Rachel’s birthday. I was going to have them sent out, but Rachel left for the day so I just brought them home and set them on her washer. I hope she will be surprised.

MY AMISH HOME: It's never too late for a sandwich

While in town I guess I did my good deed for the day. We met Erwin’s sister Esther and Andy Mast. We visited a bit, then Esther said she wanted to get ice cream but forgot her cold bag. Well, I didn’t want them to be without ice cream. I mean, being without ice cream is not to be thought about. So I said she can borrow ours. I keep it on the buggy at all times. She can give it back Saturday morning as we Otto’s plan to go to Yoder’s for sister Irene’s 70th birthday. We weren’t using ours anyway.

On this past Saturday, in a drenching downpour of rain, Jonathon Creek School was grilling chicken for their annual fundraiser. The poor people, they had a choice of standing in the rain or a smoke-filled environment. They had to put up pop-up tents. And yes, the tents were soon filled with smoke. They only grilled 6,000 pounds of chicken. Can you imagine? That is three tons of chicken pieces. But you know what? That stuff is the best! I bet a lot of people in the community ate chicken for supper Saturday evening.

This past Monday, as I sat at my desk, writing my community newsletter, I thought I would have a heart attack.

I looked up in time to see Rachel disappear into their buggy shed and then I heard this terrific BOOM! I don’t know if my heart stopped or was just racing so fast I couldn’t feel it.

I got up on shaky legs that didn’t want to support me. I didn’t know should I race up there or call 911 first. Then I saw it! A pickup truck pulling two gravity bed wagons had stopped just before it got to the corner. The last wagon was leaning drunkenly to the side. It had blown a tire. The wagons were loaded with grain.

Later on I saw the guy there fixing his tire. Then I had this worst case scenario run through my mind. I could just imagine the jack reeling and dumping grain, possibly on the man. I was relieved when I saw he was leaving.

And talking about worst-case scenarios. This past Saturday evening, son-in-law, Lloyd, left on the bike, leading one of their horses. Sometime later on, here comes the horse in the drive, lead rope swinging free. What? Where is Lloyd?

Of course I envisioned him lying in the ditch (or road) with head injuries or something, by being knocked off balance by a runaway horse, It was not the case. I watched a while, then I saw him coming on the bike. I always think leading a horse while riding a bike is not the smartest thing to do. But then, I did the same thing back in the day when I was young and dumb.

I admit I did some crazy stuff on the bike. Two things I never did were standing on the seat while playing a guitar. The main reason is I never could play the guitar and I needed my feet to pedal.

This week was my turn to take a meal to the neighbors, Lonnie and Hanna Brenneman. They had twin girls a few weeks ago, so the church ladies were taking turns taking in a meal. I always enjoy doing it, but something always has to flop. This time it was the bars I made. I have no idea (well, maybe) what I did wrong. They were edible, but sure wouldn’t have won any prizes in a bakeoff.

In closing: 

There is nothing better than a good friend, except a good friend with chocolate!

Here is the bar recipe. I hope you have better luck than I did!

Cappucino Muffin Bars

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2 cups flour

3/4 cup sugar

2-1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon cinnamon

2 tablespoons instant coffee granules

1 cup milk

1/2 cup butter, melted

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 cup miniature chocolate chips

Frosting: 

8 ounce package cream cheese, softened

1 teaspoon instant coffee granules

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 cups powdered sugar

2 tablespoons milk

1/2 cup miniature milk chocolate chips

In a bowl, dissolve coffee granules in milk. Stir until dissolved, then add butter, egg and vanilla. Combine dry ingredients and mix with liquid just until moistened. Fold in chocolate chips. Spread into a greased 9-by-13-inch baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees fro 20 to 25 minutes. Cool and spread with frosting.

Frosting: Mix coffee granules and milk. Add cream cheese and other frosting ingredients and spread on bars.

Never miss a home trend

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Millie Otto of Arthur is a member of the Old Order Amish. Contact her by writing to 1584 CR 2000N, Arthur, IL 61911.

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