I dressed my clan in red.
And took them to.....
a lovely strawberry farm for berry picking!
My friend "Sally", with whom I taught first grade in California, was visiting Ohio for a cousins' reunion (we see her once a year, because she has family near us). We were blessed to have her meet us at the farm with her sister and brother-in-law. She now lives in Washington state and travels to Africa for short-term mission trips to orphanages, where she teaches reading. She is in the States until August. Regular readers might remember that she brought me to the Lord fourteen years ago--answering all my questions and leading me into a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. She continued to answer my questions and study the Bible with me, and mentor me, for two years.
She has had many hardships in her life, including infertility (she adopted two newborns), the suicide death of her husband, the death of her first grandchild from meningitis, wayward children, ovarian cancer, and widowhood for going on twenty-something years. And yet, she has the joy of the Lord! An incredibly inspiring person. I asked her spiritual questions because I saw in her something I wanted......peace, joy, contentment. Praise the Lord for people like my friend!
My only wish is that I had a prayer warrior in my midst, holding me accountable all these years. How the Body of Christ needs that! If we could pair everyone in the Church with an accountability partner, how fast we could defeat Satan! Most of the time, I really think he wins, sadly. If someone would simply be bold enough to say, "How is the study and prayer going?" we would all work harder to have a good answer, the next time they ask (which would hopefully be often). The Christian walk goes nowhere without a life-long study and prayer habit....one that doesn't have fits and starts, but is truly consistent.
We saw many Amish farms, Amish buggies, Amish clothing hanging on clotheslines. This strawberry farm is not owned by the Amish, but it does partner with them, selling their vegetables in their farmer's market, and employing many young Amish people.
As I drove through the area, contemplating the simplicity with which the Amish live, I wanted to be Amish. But that feeling died fast when I saw many Amish girls in the fields, picking strawberries in the humidity with their polyester dresses and thick stalkings on. Oh, my! I wilt fast in heat, which commonly happens to those of us with fairer skin. We need more water, more shade, and can feel sick quickly when temps climb. God protects our skin by having us react more strongly to the sun, IMHO. ( It's not that we're wimps!)
There was a petting barn at the farm also.
My little ones were troopers, picking lots of strawberries, and enjoying the whole experience.
For a U-pick farm near you, check this website: