Monthly Archives: June 2007

Shady Acres is gearing up for the Annual July 4th picnic.

Some pictures from last year to whet your appetite–

July 4th picnic --  The Famous Jones Express

We plan to have the train again– so come on, kiddoes!

July 4th picnic --  Caleb and Kaleb

There will be big friends and little friends.  These two have the same name — Caleb and Kaleb

July 4th picnic --  Fixing the hamburger 1

We plan to have food — Maybe not crabs this year, (but we won’t turn them down, Loretta B.)

July 4th picnic --  Fixin' the H'burg

Hamburgers and hotdogs in aplenty.  Youngest Daughter with her favorite condiment.

July 4th picnic --  five cousins

Bring your friends and your cousins — pose for a picture or two.
(These five are all Mark Yoder, Sr.’s grandchildren
From left to right, Tim (Mark, Jr.’s) Carmen (Alma’s) Maria (Sarah’s) Rachel (our’s) and Holly (Mark Jr.) 
These five were born in less than four years.


July 4th picnic --  frying hamburgers 2

Certain Man runs the grill, and JR often helps out.  Here, Joel lends a helping hand, too.

July 4th picnic --  Nice perch

And you can always find a place to sit!  We watch out for the small fry, even when they are in the middle of the road!

July 4th picnic --  getting on the swing

It is fun to twirl away on the swing.  Here a little Mast lady gets her turn.



July 4th picnic --  relay races 2

What good is a picnic on a hot Fourth of July without water relays???  Young Mr. Wilkie does his part.

July 4th picnic --  MIC Loretta and Robert

And then there is ice cream to churn.  Tsk, tsk.  Mr. Robert sits while ThisisLoretta does the work!

July 4th picnic --  MIC Mike

With neighbors and church family and relatives and friends, short order is made of hand churning three big tubs of ice cream.

July 4th picnic --  sudden squall

A sudden storm can put a damper on things in a hurry!

July 4th picnic --  storm wet people  Rach

Literally.  But it didn’t stop the fun!

July 4th picnic --  storm garage 2

Oh.  Scary!!!

Happy Laundry

Several days later, all is pretty much back to normal.

The purpose of this post is just to let you know that if any of you can make it, we’d be glad to have you!!!

Wednesday afternoon, any time after 3:00 at Shady Acres Farm
.  We plan to eat at 5:30-6:00. 
Bring potluck picnic foods, we supply hamburgers and hotdogs.
Help with the drink is always appreciated.

Hope to see you here!

(By the way, if you want to see all of last year’s pictures, go to my posting on July 6, 2007.  That was a LONG, long version of this one and it tells the whole tale.


Filed under Uncategorized

A year and a half has passed. . .

For most of the first year
My hands were on “automatic.”
My mind was on “pause.”
And my heart was on “broken” and “numb.”

And then one wintry day, A Christmas Carol
And the ageless story of a Baby,
Come to carry my sorrows,
Broke through my Decembered grief.
And Spoke Life.  And Healing.  And Comfort.
To what I thought was the coldest grief of all.

And I believe the healing will go on,
Though now I’m feeling it all again.
The “doing because I must”
The paralysis in my brain.
The silent wounded heart.
The scars in the ground belonging to people I love

So much to rejoice about —
A well-fnished course.
A son home from a far country.
A marriage proposal on the beach.
Youngest Daughter’s new job.
Bible School in full and happy swing.
Enthusiastic, energetic teachers and helpers.
Family reunions.
Company Coming

And I do rejoice.
But looking in the mirror this morning,
I see the eyes looking back
And am startled by the sadness.
Something bigger than the joy
Is sitting on my mind and heart.
And my hands feel like they
Weigh a ton.

This will never do!
The LORD is here.
In every crazy, mixed up minute.
In every sorrow, burden, worry.
He is Here!
He is here to keep His promises.
He is here to bear the burdens.
He is here to never go away.
He is here to stay my restless, weary heart.
He Promised!!!
He will do it!


Filed under Uncategorized

For some great pictures of our offspringin’s and Beloved Son in Law and Girl with the Beautiful Heart

 go to:


Those seven people surely do light up our lives!



Filed under Uncategorized

Today, Certain Man’s pickup went to the shop.  Something in the catalytic converter blew back and messed up something in the muffler.  I don’t understand it exactly.  It was supposed to be fixed by tonight.  It isn’t done.  “Tomorrow” says the repairman.  There was more wrong than anticipated.

Certain Man took Certain Man’s Wife’s beloved mini-van to work.  Coming home, the transmission blew.  (I’ve been a little concerned about that, to be honest with you!)  Certain Man is sitting at Laws Mennonite Church where it conveniently coasted, waiting for the tow truck.  His usual optimism faileth him. 

Certain Man’s Wife is feeling quite remorseful.  About six weeks ago, she talked him into fixing the air conditioning on the van instead of trading it in.  Alas, it is another case where it appears that CM really did know best.   

But now, since there is so much money in the air conditioning, Certain Man is saying that we will have to fix the transmission.  “We can’t afford to throw a thousand dollars down the drain!” he explains patiently.  “We need to drive this van another year and half to recoup our investment!

Sometimes life just comes to fast.  I am especially thinking about the fact that Certain Man’s pickup really needs replaced and that it does not even have air conditioning.  He drives it cheerfully and enthusiastically.  It meets his needs, he says, and he sees no need to get a new (read, “Different!”)  one.  Youngest Daughter loves to drive it, though she and her sisters have affectionately named it “Stinky,” and have good cause to have chosen that name.

It will be interesting, indeed, to see how all the people get to work tomorrow from Shady Acres!


Filed under Uncategorized

I came down to the early morning darkness of Friday with a great sense of need.  The things done this week were things that I really felt like I needed to do, but it was Friday already, and we were getting weekend company.  And I was nowhere near ready.  There was shopping left to do, food to prepare, house to clean, beds to make. 

 The first morning hours flew by as lunches were packed and ladies were bathed and dressed and fed and finally out the door to their respective centers.  Youngest Daughter needed a ride to work, and so I decided that I would take her, swing by the grocery store on the way home, and then “do my best and leave the rest” as far as housework was concerned.

I was playing a CD on my car stereo as I pulled into the parking lot.  I sat there, listening to the words as the music swirled around me.

If He Hung the Moon  (Talley)

In the beginning of time,

He was the Creator,

And into existence He spoke the heavenly blue,

And with one mighty swoop of His hand,

He threw out the stars,

He knew where they’d land,

So if you think, you’re just drifting along,

I have good news.



And if He hung the moon,

I know He will help you,

And if He holds the sparrow in flight,

He’ll hold you too,

Just consider the lilies of the field,

How much more He loves you,

In the beginning of time, you were on His mind,

When He hung the moon.



Now you may feel like the world,

Lays hard on your shoulders,

And even your closest friend in life is pulling away,

Though you have tried so hard and lost,

There is still hope,

Just look to the cross,

There you will see just how much the Savior really,

Really loves you today.





In the beginning of time,

You were on His mind,

When He hung the moon, Oh, Lord,

When He hung the moon

I knew that if I thought about it too much, I would cry, so I whispered a prayer to my Heaven and said, “Lord Jesus, I don’t know how you will help me, but I believe that you can — that you WILL– see me through.”  And I gathered my coupons and purse and headed into the store. 

While I was heading down the coffee aisle, my cell phone rang.

“Where are you???”  asked a familiar voice. My Youngest Sister.

“I’m in the store.  Where are you?” 

“I’m here, at your house.  I came to help you clean, and you aren’t here.”

“I know, but I had to take Rachel to work, and now I am getting groceries . . . I can hurry straight home, though.”

“No, don’t rush, but what can I do until you get here????”

And so, I gave her some things to keep her busy until I got home, and got on with finishing my great shopping expedition.  I finished up, came out of the store, and got into my van. 

“And if He hung the moon. . .” came on all over again, and this time, I didn’t even try to not cry.  The presence and love of the Heavenly Father came crashing over me in waves.  And it was such an encouraging thing.  I came home, Younget Sister stayed to help to an amazing finish, and this whole weekend has been just way better than anticipated.  When I am tempted to forget, I am reminded of His special care over me on Friday, and trust that it will all work out for good.

What a Mighty God we serve!


Filed under Uncategorized

Wow!  The last three weeks have been one incredible jumble of activity and joy — and sorrow!

May 24th — Middle Daughter Graduated from Nurses’ Training.

May 28th — We had a Memorial day cookout as a graduation party, and Oldest Son began his trek home from Nepal.

May 29th — Gracegiven’s sweet baby was born, my Uncle Johnny passed away, and Oldest Son arrived in Columbus, OH to begin debriefing.

May 31st — Certain Man made a decision at 10 PM to go and pick up Oldest Son  in Ohio.  We had made other plans to fetch him home, but when Certain Man learned of Oldest Son’s intense desire to have his dad come, he couldn’t bear not to go.

June 1st — Certain Man and Youngest Daughter left at 4 AM to go to Ohio and were back in Delaware before 9 PM that night.  A thousand miles later, and Oldest Son WAS HOME!

June 3rd —  The viewing and calling hours for Uncle Johnny.  So many wonderful people.  Never enough time to talk.

June 4th — The funeral for Uncle Johnny.  Uncles and Aunts and Cousins by the bushel, a cousin’ choir, and wonderful memories.

June 5th — Youngest Daughter begins her first “real” job!

June 6th — Dover appointments with my Sweet Mama.

June 7th — Church picnic at the Browns Branch County park for a 16th birthday party

June 9th — A trip to New York City for a graduation.  A fun side trip into Chinatown. While on the subway, Certain Man’s Wife’s cell phone rang. It was Youngest Son calling from the beach.  He had news.  Girl With The Beautiful Heart said “YES!!!”   Certain Man and His Wife give thankful praise.

June 10th — Birthday brunch for Friend June.  Church at Followers of Jesus Mennonite Church.  Lunch at 51 Logan Street — Then home to Delaware.

June 12th — Case Manager visit, and Our Girl Nettie’s yearly physical.

June 13 — Morning at my Sweet Mama’s house, and then to Lewes for an afternoon psychiatrist visit for Our Girl Nettie.  Small group tonight.

Whew!!! Believe me, I have hardly had a spare minute on my computer.  And I am trying to be better at controlling it, too, since Certain Man gently indicated last week that he thinks I spend too much time in here.  Well, I guess he just might have a point.  And with company coming this weekend — this house is in serious need of  some concentrated domesticated activity.


Filed under Uncategorized

Today we said “good-bye” to another Yoder Boy.  There were eight of them, by the time the last one came in 1932.  The funeral had the flavor of the other one.  My Daddy’s.  There were alot of the same people.  It was at the same place.  We ate almost exactly the same things.  The Cousins’ Choir sang.

The nieces and nephews have become better friends in the last decade.  We’ve gotten older.  Family ties mean more.  But also, thanks to the internet and a strange family group named “Yodelings”  (I don’t know how we came up with that — I wanted “Yoderlings.”) we KNOW each other.  And for the Yoder funerals, it has become a tradition that the cousins who can make it, sing together in a  “Cousins’ Choir.”  We sing our Grandpa Dave’s favorite song, “If On A Quiet Sea” and also a song that is picked by the family of our loved one that we are laying to rest.

The service today was full of song.  Meaningful Song interspersed between meaningful words.  “Praise to God, Immortal Praise”  and “There’s a City of light” sung by the congregation.  Then,  “Hand and Hand With Jesus” and “The Lord is Coming, Are You Ready” by the male quartet of which Beloved Son in Law is a member.  (I like all four fellows in that quartet, but I really do like our son in law the best!)  Then our Cousins’ Choir sang, “The Hem of His Garment” and “If On A Quiet Sea.”  The congregation had another song, “Lift Your Glad Voices” and then, in a different twist, there was a “canned’ song at Aunt Dottie’s request.  “Leave Me a Message” by Kirk Talley. 

It was an altogether fitting and proper meeting.  From the graveside service (held before the memorial service) ’till the very last of the food was erased from the premises.  It was a most rewarding and special day, and I am quite grateful for the opportunity to be there and to be a part. 


The Greenwood Community did what it does best today.  Incredible working together;  good friends, good help, good food, good support, good, good people.  I really don’t think there is another community that is quite like this one when it comes to the different churches working together.

I was specifially thinking about all the hands involved in making things go so smoothly today.  Hands that set up for the funeral, then the ones that took down chairs and set up tables and covered them and set the chairs back in the space of less than a half hour, and then cleaned everything up afterwards.  There were hands that were small, big, rough from working in chicken houses, chapped from dishwather, wrinkled with age, smooth, young and strong.  Everyone did what they could.  We had dads and grandpas and sons and brothers and moms and grandmas and daughters and sisters all working together to make the work light.  When I looked at the clock tonight and realized that it was barely six o’clock and everything was pretty much finished up, I was so proud of the Body of Christ and the tangible way they spoke love today.

And Yes, Eldest Son is HOME.  I hope that I can post some photos later.  After some time to recuperate a bit!







Filed under Uncategorized