Category Amish

A Whitish Christmas

This Christmas could hardly described as a white one, but neither was it completely brown. I do believe the best adjective would be “whitish.” The landscape was covered with a dusting of snow just thick enough to cover its modesty but not so thick that, had it been human and out in public, it wouldn’t […]

Elegy for Emma

A few nights ago, there was an unexpected knock at the door. At first, I assumed that Paul had been on Amazon again. I thought it was odd for a delivery to be made so long past dark, but I opened the door fully expecting to sign for something. It wasn’t a deliveryman, though; it […]

Little Doe

For the past two months, a deer has been grazing placidly alongside the sheep in a neighboring field. When she first appeared, I thought it was a fluke, a lovely four-legged passerby who would vanish within days. But she’s still there, and she’s gone from being “the little doe in Toby’s field” to “Little Doe.” […]

Good Neighbors and Cozy Bees

As I took advantage of a rare sunny day to haul a bag full of sawdust from my Amish neighbor Jacob’s sawmill–a prize destined to become chicken bedding and then ultimately reincarnated as compost–I reflected on how fortunate I am to have such good neighbors. When my husband and I moved into our house almost […]


“Show me your garden, and I shall tell you what you are.” –Alfred Austin I’ve been haunted by this quote for years, judging myself by the contents of my own garden. Every year I start out with good intentions: This year, the garden will be as neat and orderly as those of my Amish neighbors. […]

The Bovine Visitation

While washing dishes one day, I caught a glimpse of motion in the yard. “Is a chicken loose?” I wondered. “Or maybe the dog?” Sherlock Holmes I ain’t. A further inspection revealed that neither chicken nor dog was responsible for my vision; instead, it was a bull who had apparently gotten bored and decided to […]

The Arrival of the Bees

I’d always associated beehives with the traditional square-shaped Langstroth hive—there’s one right across the field that stoked my bee dreams every time I looked up from doing dishes. (It’s an old one that my Amish neighbor Jacob happened to have when a swarm landed in our wild plum tree a couple of summers ago. Alas, […]