This article is a part of "The Amish Cook Column", a weekly series of featuring a story & recipe from Gloria Yoder, Amish wife & mother of six from Flat Rock, Illinois
We were all huddled in the downstairs bedroom, a storm was brewing. At that moment I felt suction from the east window which was partially opened. I knew this must be it- a tornado for real. In an instant, it was all over.
I gazed out the north window and there, above the treeline in the clouds, was what I have for years dreamed of seeing. Three angels floated around the blue clouds. As I took it in, an unspeakable peace and tranquility swept over me. My being relaxed from the inside out. I knew nothing. Absolutely nothing outside the will of God could possibly hurt us. Life was fully complete.
“Could that only have been a dream?” I wondered; why was it as real as day. I relaxed and fell back asleep. But soon:
“Ring, ring, ring!!” It was the telephone- and yes, in the middle of the night. Stumbling to the kitchen I over and over told myself, “It’s nothing bad, it’s almost morning, someone just needs something simple.
Picking up the phone, I realized someone, whom I did not even know, had dialed the wrong number. I checked the time- 3:00 a. m.
Flopping back in bed, I felt shakier than I cared to admit. My adrenals were running in high gear the moment I awakened. By now a storm really was gathering, I wondered how much longer the children would
sleep. Another clap of thunder, my mind returned to the dream I just had, “Well at least I know there are angels watching over us,” I assured myself. (On that last thunderstorm before Daniel passed, I distinctly and fondly recall how I just didn’t care about the high winds and raging storm as I told myself, “I have Daniel and God, why be concerned?”) Now I missed Daniel’s leadership and practical way of knowing how severe the storm was, or when it was time to head for the basement; nonetheless, I was comforted.
After a blinding strike of lightening followed by a thunder to match its severity, cries for Mama erupted.
My two arms reached around as many children as they possibly could.
“Mom, shouldn’t we go for the basement?”
I debated. I really felt like it would all be okay, yet I knew how comforting it would be for them.
When I gave the okay it was only a matter of moments until we were in the spare room where I fixed up a corner with Daniel keepsakes, my baskets of cards from you dear ones, and perhaps the most special of all, a chair for Jesus. Since we cannot see Jesus in person I chose to place a chair, draped with a blanket from a church in California, in that room to remind us of Jesus’ presence.
In the stillness of the night, amid the rumbling thunder, we thanked God for the rain and prayed for protection and for all out there who could be hurt from the storm.
It wasn’t long until the storm system moved on. We piled into our little bedroom upstairs and as dawn was breaking we fell asleep, thankful for some rest before getting everyone ready for church at 9:00.
This afternoon when the children went out to the pony they discovered a dead skunk on the concrete pad right in front of the shop. No one knows for sure, but it chances are, it was hit by lightening- and yes, the shop is safe.
No matter where you are at, God knows your story, no bit of it is hidden from sight, not even the most severe storm of life.
On the flip side of all this stormy stuff, we are grateful for fruits and veggies produced by rain and the simple touch of God. If you have the time and energy, you may want to try this fruit basket. Last week in a baby shower, my cousin cut a watermelon in carriage shape and even made the ‘baby’ to go with it. Of course you also have the option of cutting the watermelon in half, with a scalloped edge if you like, then filling it with fruits of your choice for any occasion.
Baby Carriage Watermelon Tips
- Use a sharpie or marker to outline your design
- Be sure to cut a small slice off the bottom so you have a flat "base."
- Feel free to swap out fruits or add fruits. Kiwi, pineapple, and grapes are refreshing additions!
Watermelon Baby Carriage
- 1 cup large watermelon
- 1 cup cup of strawberries
- 1 cup cup of blueberries
- 1 cup cup of melon chunks
- 1 cup of raspberries
- 1 cup banana slices
- 1 cup apple chunks
- 1 large orange or grapefruit
- Using a marker or sharpie, cut the outline of a carriage on the outside of the melon.
- Cut a small slice off the bottom of the melon so you have a stable base.
- Cut melon into a “carriage” and using an ice cream scoop, scoop out all of the melon and put into a bowl.
- Then fill the “carriage” with fresh fruit include balls of watermelon.
- Stir. Put excess fruit into a bowl so you can refill “carriage” as needed.
- Take an orange or a grapefruit and put on top of fruit, make “eyes” out of blueberries inserted into the orange or grapefruit with toothpicks.