My Amish Home: The chill followed us down to Florida

My Amish Home: The chill followed us down to Florida

"Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem, Saying, where is he that is born King of the Jews? For we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him. And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him; and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts: gold, and frankincense and myrrh." Matthew 2:1, 2, 11

Greetings to all from Florida. Yep! We are down South, supposedly soaking up sunshine. But, alas! This past Sunday was quite cool but mostly sunny. Monday and Tuesday, cold and cloudy. Monday was actually drizzly, too. But I guess back home they have real winter with subzero weather, snow, frigid winds.

I wish you guys up home would close your doors. We've had a cold north wind for two days now. We even had a drizzly rain Tuesday. Heavy clouds, really dreary.

When we first got here, it was fairly warm and sunny. Oh my, wonderful! We soon decided this gift vacation was a mistake! Now we'll want to do it every year! Then we have these cool, cloudy days and the spirit kind of died down.

I was actually wondering if we were supposed to come down here.

We were getting stuff all ready Tuesday after Christmas, as we were to board the bus at Yoder's in Arthur at 2 p.m.

An hour before we were to be picked up at home, I was putting food items in the ice chest. I was going to set it outside. I reached down to pick it up, and something went "zzzzt" in my lower back. I got spots before my eyes and things started to go black. I hurried and sat down and put my head down until that all passed. But then I could hardly walk. I hurt bad. I rubbed some pain cream on it and took pain pills. If it helped, I was sure glad.

I was really glad to see that Ray and Dorothy Schrock were going on the same bus. Ray helped us with our luggage.

I tell you, my trip down was rough, but I made it. One of the first things I did after we had lunch with hubby's brother, Melvin and Annie Ellen Otto, was to find a chiropractor. I got one treatment then and another one on Friday, and now all I well. I have never had back problems, ever. Why now? But it is OK now.

Being here in Florida, across the street from the Pinecraft park, is a real treat. If you don't mind lots and lots of people, that is. The park has shuffleboard, volleyball and basketball courts. On warm, sunny days, you never saw the likes! People walking, three-wheel bikes — some are battery powered — two-wheelers (some of those are battery-powered), scooters, hoverboards, you see it all. Oh, yes — golf carts, too.

And one day, as I was indulging in my favorite pastime — people-watching — I saw three boys on three-wheelers they had set up in train. The second boy had his front wheel in the rear basket of the first, and the third one had his front wheel in the basket of the second, and that is how they went down the street. If you don't have your own bike, just hitch a ride with your friend by standing in the rear basket holding on to his/her shoulders!

This past Saturday evening, there was a grilled-chicken benefit dinner in the park. I tell you, I never saw so many bikes at one place. Actually, it was worse on Wednesday evening, when they had a shuffleboard tournament. It was a sight to behold. Also, they had a music festival in one part of the building. Nelson Coblentz was there, and yes, cars, trucks, people walking, so many people!

And young folks will play basketball until midnight. I often hear the thump of the ball late at night.

I did my laundry on this Wednesday morning, and would you believe I had to wear a coat to hang out the stuff, and my hands were really cold?!

In closing, joy is the byproduct of obedience to God.

This would be a good casserole for a cold winter evening. In a hurry? Use Bisquick or tube biscuits.

CHICKEN-AND-BISCUIT CASSEROLE

For biscuits:

2 cups flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons sugar

1/2 cup shortening

2/3 cup milk

1 egg, beaten

For casserole:

1 quart chicken broth

1 tablespoon chicken seasoning

1 cup chopped potatoes

1 cup chopped celery

1 cup chopped carrots

1 cup peas (optional)

1 cup cooked chicken

4 tablespoons flour

*chopped onions could also be added

To make biscuits, mix dry ingredients together, then cut in shortening until crumbly.

Combine milk and egg, then stir into other mixture until crumbs are just moistened. Pat together and place on flat surface; roll and cut.

Bake at 350 degrees F for 30 to 35 minutes.

To make casserole, in a 6-quart kettle, blend broth and seasoning, then add potatoes, celery, carrots and peas and cook until tender.

Blend flour with a bit of water to make a paste. Stir into boiling vegetable mixture. Put into a 9-by-13-inch baking pan and top with biscuits.

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Topics (2):Food, People