A typical day at the Yoder family home

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I loved the suggestions you sent back on what you like to hear me write.

An idea caught my attention: an ordinary day at home. And what better than a typical day at home?

Okay, so typical or common doesn’t look like it did before back to school or before dad went to heaven. I still love Ms. Lehman’s catchphrase, “Life is all about how you handle plan B.” I had no idea that simple truth could be so heartbreaking. As you walk through this “normal” day with me, know that even though it is a good day, it was freshly carved in stone. We couldn’t cut our way, so Master cut it for us. Remember that you may want to bring tissues with you, as tears are part of everyday life at home.

I don’t go through an alarm clock to wake me up because my husband isn’t there to set it like he always has; I ask God to wake me up whenever I need to get up that morning. Usually at 6 a.m. I wake up in time to watch the day dawn. First, I walked over to the recliner in the kitchen, where Daniel often sat with children climbing on him while waiting for me to get my meals off the table. I read Sarah Young’s book, Jesus Calling, as well as some Bible passages, and spent time talking to God. Some mornings, like this, I then come into contact with you.

At 7 o’clock in the morning, it’s time for the schoolchildren to wake up. I try to balance things out while they dress up and have personal devotions.

Editor’s note: I like to point out from time to time that Gloria belongs to the New Order Amish church. It is still a “horse and buggy” Amish church, but the New Order church often has a more evangelical outlook and lifestyle than the Old Order Amish. While the Old Order Amish Church is Bible-Based, It’s Less Evangelical – Kevin Williams, Editor

Julia takes care of packing the lunches while Austin sets the table and prepares the dishwater for Elijah, who does the dishes after breakfast. Hosanna, first grade, sleeps a little longer because she is very tired after being at school for whole days.

At 7:45 a.m., the four-year-old boys woke up and dressed; OK, well, Jesse prefers having breakfast in his trunk which he finds more comfortable than his homemade pants. He has mom’s permission to do so as long as he happily puts his pants on after breakfast.

Now we all gather around the table; this morning we’ll have Austin’s favorite, quinoa. It was something new to all of us a year ago, and now most of us like it served with cinnamon, honey, and fresh goat’s milk. While the kids are eating, I take a few bites myself, then I read some inspiration, and then we often chat about it while they give feedback. Recently Jesse had the idea that since dad died and went to heaven, maybe he will die in heaven and come back to us! Her innocence and optimism melted my heart. The older children’s eyes widened as they said, “In heaven, we don’t die!”

Well, a scruffy head just popped up here in the office. Jesse is a born cuddly bug; I wrapped him in a blanket next to me. Oh, this is Elijah…he’s now nestled in my lap as I try to write; not only that, there’s a minute left until 8 a.m. I’m going for a run to get my morning moving.

Hi again, I’m back 24 hours later to try to do more writing quietly, or as quietly as possible, with three early risers.

True to my plan, we had breakfast a day ago and got the school kids out at 8:15. Only this time it turned out quite colorful. Despite my best efforts, little Joshua cried for most of breakfast. It looked like he wasn’t feeling well… the challenge for me sometimes is to stay calm and confident, not to give in to despair of having every need met at the same time or the school kids gone. I pray a lot for God to fill me with him; I cannot provide for our children alone, but I know that God can and will.

So once the three older ones are ready for school, I hug them, then pray this little “homemade blessing” upon them: “God bless you, your teacher, your friends, your day, at name of Jesus, we pray.” They left, rushing through the woods to find their friends at school.

I go back to the kitchen, blink my eyes, say a little prayer, and often just spend a few moments with God before getting into my day.

I’m not even halfway through my day, and it’s already time for a recipe. Wait for part B until another day!

Jesse and I were discussing what would be the perfect recipe to pass on this week. Have you ever tried my hubby’s Ultimate Sticky Buns? I concocted a recipe based on Daniel’s taste buds. Every time I did this to her, her eyes would widen in wonder and love. Although it seems almost too special to even print the recipe, I want to give you a chance with them. And will you do me a favor? Since we can’t provide them to Daniel, why don’t we all make it a point to share some with a neighbor, a widow, or an inmate? Thank you, and God bless you!

Ultimate sticky buns

6 hamburger buns

½ pound of ham

6 slices of mini Swiss cheese

½ box onion and chive cheese spread

SAUCE:

1 tablespoon prepared mustard

1 teaspoon dried onion flakes

1½ teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

⅓ cup brown sugar

6 tablespoons butter, melted

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Spread 1 tablespoon of sauce mixture on one side of the bread.

Garnish with slices of ham.

Spread cream cheese on other half of bread.

Spoon remaining sauce over prepared buns.

Cook 10 minutes uncovered then 10 minutes covered or until browned

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

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