In my introductory post, I talked a little bit about my past.  Now, my present.  The Amish Cook column is over 20 years old.  I created it and still edit and shepherd it to readers each week. I’m very proud of the work we have done, continue to do, and will continue to do as long as readers will have us into their homes. But there is more out there for me to do and I want to find out what it is. I have some ideas.  Currently I am working on my first full-length fiction novel.  It was originally called The Amish Appeal,but I have changed the title to Abraham’s Redemption.  Fiction is a beast, let me tell you.

And speaking of beasts…I will have been married for 4 years this September (no, the beast is the rhino, not Rachel). Rachel and I got married at The Wilds, a conservation park in eastern Ohio. Isn’t Rachel a beautiful bride?

The wedding in many ways was and is a microcosm of my life: quirky, full of peril and promise.  We had family and friends as guests…there were many bonnets and hats in the audience, as a contingent of my Amish friends from Michigan attended.  So that was unusual, as were the many furry, horned, and long-necked guests: the animals.  The animals we knew about.  There was one more guest (or gust?) that arrived who wasn’t invited and his name was Ike.  Ike came from Africa, like many of the animals at the Wilds.  But Ike came by sea, forming off the coast of Africa as a harmless tropical depression at the end of August.   Two weeks later on Sept 13,  after laying waste to Cuba, Ike stormed ashore at Galveston, Texas and then put Ohio in its dying cross-hairs.   Ike huffed and puffed across the Midwest, knocking out power to much of Ohio becoming the second costliest hurricane to ever hit the US in the process.  The Wilds was on the edge of the hardest hit area, but chairs for the wedding became sails and Rachel’s veil became a kite.  Guests began receiving text messages from back home alerting them to damage and power outages.  It was a wonderful, memorable day.  We just wish Ike had RSVPed to let us know he was coming.

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