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Lovina's Amish Kitchen: Joyful wedding preparations
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The first day of autumn is bringing cool, rainy weather with the temperature at 51 degrees this morning.

Church services were held here on Sunday. It was council meeting, so we served everyone lunch throughout the service. Around 11:30 a.m. a few at a time come in to eat. We had one table set for men, one for women, and a smaller table for the younger children. On our menu was chicken noodle soup, cheese spread, peanut butter spread, bologna, pickles, red beets, hot peppers, grape jelly, butter, homemade wheat and white bread, several kinds of cookies, tea and coffee. Sister Emma made the soup for me. She made four twelve-quart kettles of soup.

We appreciate all the help we have had with Dustin’s pole barn and getting ready here for the wedding. So many have sent over meals or a casserole to make my workload easier. May God bless their kind hearts. It is greatly appreciated.

Last night, nephew Benjamin and niece Emma’s husband Menno helped on the pole barn. The east side of the pole barn is now closed up. It looks like Dustin’s cousin is over there today. I think they are installing the two overhead doors. The rest of the doors and windows are installed already. It looks like we will actually get done on time.

I have my dress, cape, and apron to sew yet for the wedding. I plan to do that today.

Saturday we will set up all the tables. The plates, silverware, and glasses will be set and then we cover all of it, so it stays okay until next Friday for the wedding.

Yesterday, my three head cooks came, and we went through the recipes to see what all we need. It takes a lot of head work to come up with a grocery list for over 1000 people. Now it’s time to go shopping. Do I ever have a list to get! I should’ve started sooner, but I’ll wait until after Saturday when the cooler will be here to get the groceries that have to stay cold.

The wedding cook wagon, cooler, and dishes all come Friday afternoon. The tent will be set up next week. This is where the cooks can work to peel potatoes, mix dressing, etc. We have around 50 cooks but I’m sure a few of them might not be able to come. There will be a lot of activity going on next week around here. Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday the cooks will each come for a day to help prepare whatever needs to be done such as bake bread, pies, etc.

During this busy time, my oldest grandchild Abigail started school. She goes four days a week and she loves it! She tells all kinds of stories about school and her new friends. Life has changed for daughter Elizabeth. Abigail kept an eye on the two little ones. Now it sounds like T.J., 2, and Allison, 1, are into everything. T.J. cried when Abigail left the first day and said he wants to go to school too. Nephew Steven is in the eighth grade so when sister Emma and daughter Elizabeth were here helping one day Steven and Abigail came off the bus here. She had made beads for all the other children here. Such a sweetie!

Our three loved ones are so missed over this time. They were always here to help out with the other weddings. We try not to dampen Loretta and Dustin’s excitement, but our hearts still ache so much. Rest in peace Mose, Susan and Jacob!

God’s blessings to all!

No-Cook Fruit Pie Filling

2 cups fruit, such as blueberry, cherry, apple, blackberry, etc.

1/4 cup clear jel

3/4 cup sugar

1 cup water

Put fruit in 8-inch pie shell, piling in a peak in center. Mix sugar and clear jel and pour over fruit. Pour water over everything and mix gently. Bake for 1 hour at 350 degrees.

For apple pie, add brown sugar and cinnamon.

For cherry pie, use more sugar and add almond flavoring.

For blackberry pie, add 1 tablespoon lemon juice.

Lovina’s Amish Kitchen is written by Lovina Eicher, Old Order Amish writer, cook, wife, and mother of eight. Her newest cookbook, Amish Family Recipes, is available wherever books are sold. Readers can write to Eicher at PO Box 1689, South Holland, IL 60473 (please include a self-addressed stamped envelope for a reply); or email LovinasAmishKitchen@MennoMedia.org and your message will be passed on to her to read. She does not personally respond to email

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