Monday, December 10, 2012

This week on Jean: A new farm and home are in the planning stages for Jean and her family.

Jean is old order Mennonite from New York State. Jean and her husband David and family live on a dairy farm, and travel their community using horse and buggy. She tells her story exclusively on Amish Stories.

  Jeans very last post for Amish Stories will be on Dec 17

After Hurricane Sandy our discussion started on us building a new house. When we bought our farm from David’s parents, his parents bought a farm down the road a little way. My parents lived down the road the other way. As my brother’s and sister’s grew, and  married, they moved a little further away. Then my parents moved and finally David’s parents moved. They all bought farms and moved over on the road that Martha and Joseph live on now. 

To get to their farms by car is only about 15 minutes, but going by 
buggy takes  longer. Not only that our house sits on the road and we would like a house that sits back further. When my parents came to stay with us when David had to go to the Fire Station during Hurricane Sandy-this worried David that we were not near the rest of the family. Also, we are running out of room.

We did divide Susan’s room in half and made two bedrooms from one, but still we could use more room for foster children and visitors. So we got out the old plans for the new house we were going to build and updated them. We bought property from two farmers. Part is from Martha and Joseph and the other part is from their neighbor. So we have a place for the house, barn, my greenhouses and farming. Martha, Joseph, the children, David and I like that we will be neighbors now. David’s parents, and my parents are just down the road a little way. Even a couple of my brother’s and sister’s with families live on the same road. As David and his Dad are fireman, it would be much closer to the Fire Station.

We had a real estate broker who is also a fireman, like David, come out and appraise our farm. With all the improvements we made after the fire, we would get a great deal more for the farm than we thought we would. The next thing we have to do is to get plumbing and electric put on the lot with inspection by the town. As the houses on either side of us have it, there should not be any problem.

Even though, I still wanted it all on one story, our new house will be two stories. We also are going to put on an addition, a little home attached in case my Grandparents or later, either David or my parents want to move in. I don’t know when we will start building-probably not until Spring. We would like to sell the farm, but are not going to list it. Right now, we are putting word out that it is going up for sale among the Mennonites and Amish. We would like one of them to buy it. Of course the relative we had that said he would buy it if we ever wanted to sell it-changed his mind. But, we will trust in the Lord.

So we are back to building again. We will have to pay for the cellar going in, the lumber and supplies for building the house. But our people will get together and build the house. Most will be Mennonite, but some Amish and English will come, too. The outside and the floors will be done in a day. The dividing the rooms, insulation, plumbing, electric, cupboards, porches and more will be done when we all have time. Most of the time, the interior takes longer than the outside. We are excited and nervous. 

Edward and Michael are planning what they are going to do when we get into the new house. Susan is torn as we will be moving away from several of her friends, but closer to some others. We have lived by our neighbors for many years and they have become friends both Mennonite, Amish and English. It will be a bit hard moving, but we will not be that far away. so we will be able to visit.
Thought I would tell you our latest plans.
Be With God,

Mennonite Oatmeal Bread

2 cups rolled oats (preferably coarse)
2 cups boiling water
1/2 cup molasses
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup lukewarm water
1 teaspoon sugar
2 packets yeast (about 2 tablespoon)
Chopped nuts (optional)
Raisins (optional)
About 6 cups all-purpose flour

Pour boiling water over rolled oats; stir and add molasses, salt, brown sugar and shortening. Let stand until lukewarm, then add yeast dissolved in warm water with sugar. Mix in flour until it requires muscle. Then knead a few minutes on well floured surface. Put dough in bowl; cover. Let rise 1 to 2 hours in warm, draft-free place to double its size (rolls and buns take less time to rise and bake; can make various shapes). It is risen enough if the dent stays when you press your fingers deeply into it. Nuts or raisins may be added with flour or kneaded into individual loaves. Divide into 2 loaves; let rise again until smooth and round over tops of pans, about an hour or more. Bake at 400 degrees F for 35 minutes.

Rye Bread variation:

Use half rye and half all-purpose flour and use 1/2 cup molasses as part of the liquid. Recipe from www.Recipegoldmine.com.                       


I've created this website out of my own interest in the Amish/Mennonite culture and of living in the country. Its a place for people who are interested in the Amish like myself, and its also a place to share Images of the beautiful country side that is all around me. my name is Richard, and I live very close to an Amish settlement here in Pennsylvania. This site is dedicated to my mother, who had started all of this by taking me as a child to Lancaster,pa from our apartment in the Bronx projects..........THANK YOU MOM............... Richard