THE AMISH COOK
BY GLORIA YODER
It was 530 on Wednesday evening. I stopped at moms to chat with her for a bit before going to my husbands office to fax my weekly column. While I was there I picked up the telephone to get my husband, Daniel, a quick call. He was at home taking care of Julia and Austin.
"Gloria, I'm not sure what to do, "he said. “Austin is kind of fussy and my brother John is coming, oh and Josh and Nathan, too!”
“I’ll be right home,” I responded. I recognized the names as three men from our church who are on the school board. Running across the yard, through the woods, and up the hill to the house, my mind was spinning at t op speed.
“Whatever do they need at our house?” I tried to figure it out. And then it clicked.
It hadn’t worked out for one of our teachers to finish the school term. No doubt they were coming to ask Daniel if he’d be willing to step in and finish up the term. I was out of breath by the time I reached the door. I stepped inside. Sure enough, there they were sitting in the living room talking with Daniel. And, yes, they were in search of a teacher. At first, Daniel was not convinced that it was a good idea at all. He never imagined that he’d be the type of person to sit behind a teacher’s desk.
In our Amish parochial schools, there’s no extra degree of education needed to be a teacher. While education is of great importance a lot of emphasis is put on having teachers who are committed to the good of the children and out for the good of their spiritual and emotional well being. In spite of his initial misgivings Daniel felt at first, after praying about it, he just couldn’t turn the school down.
So on Monday morning Daniel was at Pilgrims Christian School in his classroom with his 10 students in grades 5-8. His co-teacher was with her students in grades 1-4 next to his.
We are quite blessed to have the school house next door to our home. In fact, the first morning Julia (3 years old), Austin (5 months old), and I joined him at school.
“Julia, you may take some of your writing supplies along, I told her. Excitedly she picked out one of her coloring books, crayons, etc and carefully put them in her backpack. Her face glowed as I helped her slip it on to go see Daddy.
Upon arriving at school, Daniel moved a little desk into his classroom for Julia, right next to his. You can only imagine how excited she was. She loves writing, coloring, and cutting and now she had a desk of her own! It took some time and several reminders for her to understand that she needs to be very quiet. I tried to explain to her that it’s kind of like being in church.
Julia, Austin, and I enjoy visiting the school every now and then or going down to watch the scholars play softball during recess. We’ve had some gorgeous spring days this past week which are just perfect for playing ball.
People keep asking “so how is school going for Daniel?” We certainly can’t complain. The children are doing well and Daniel has put his heart into it and found it to be both enjoyable and rewarding. They’re working on organizing and planning a spring program. I will fill you in on more details in a few weeks.
Tomorrow evening we plan to have Parent Teacher Association meeting at school. The meeting is opened with several songs. Next there is a brief devotional and prayer by one of the men followed by a board member giving a report of how school in going or sometimes asking for input on a project or something the children would like to do such as going on a field trip, etc. PTA meeting gives the parents an opportunity to come to school, fellowship together, and each have a turn to personally talk with the children’s teachers.
Since this will be last PTA meeting for this school term, the board decided to make it special by having each couple bring along a finger food for after the meeting. Daniel and I are looking forward to it, what a blessing to have the support of the entire church!
Packing Daniel’s lunches is something I enjoy doing. At school they have an oven where he can heat wrapped sandwiches. Of course they always have to label to know who’s belongs to who. One of Daniel’s favorite sandwiches are these "ham and cheese melts". I like making a pan full and saving the leftovers for later use.
HAM AND CHEESE MELTS
6 hamburger buns
1 /2 pound ham
6 slices baby Swiss cheeses
1/ 2 can onion and chive cream cheese spread
1 teaspoon dried onion flakes
1 1 /2 teaspoons Worcestshire sauce
1/ 3 cup brown sugar
6 tablespoons butter, melted
2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese
Preheat oven to 350. Spread cream cheese on one side of bun.. Top with ham slices. Spread 1 tablespoon sauce mix on the other half of bun. Top with cheese Spread remaining sauce on top of prepared buns. Bake 10 minutes uncovered then 10 minutes covered or until brown.
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