#RohrerRamble

“We don’t have chickens, we need to get away” announced the man of the house.

And you know me. When it comes to travel, I don’t argue.

We kicked a few ideas around, but in the end, we just hopped in the car and headed 33 east.

“If I’m going to have a good trip, the first thing we need is new windshield wipers” stated the man of the house

After a quick stop, we were all ready for a good trip.

And that honestly was how the entire weekend went.

Impulsively.

“Hey I heard they are building a new dairy complex” and next thing we knew we were easing back the farm lane.

“Hey I remember a thrift store on the left right out of Orange”

“Hey can we stop at the BBQ Exchange in Gordonsville?”

Our only rules for the trip was “no chain restaurants and no interstates”

Admittedly I couldn’t believe how many thrift stores/antique shops we stopped at and how patiently Ben waited in me to peruse through the plunder. We found some great treasures. ☺️

“Hey I’ve always wanted to see the Northern Neck”

“Look at those murals! Can we stop?”

“Let’s find seafood for supper” so Ben called a friend that was kinda local and he directed us to a delicious stop in downtown Montross, AND called ahead and covered our tab. Wow

Day #2 of our ramble found us heading west through central Virginia. Mostly it was unchartered territory for me and familiar roads to Ben who basically custom farmed the entire state of VA at one time or another.

“Let’s eat here. I’ve had lots of meals from the place, but have never eaten inside.”

“When did they put a coffee shop here?”

“We drive along and it’s flat like this and then suddenly it’s like you’re going down a mountain.”

The Blue Ridge Parkway was the crowning glory of our ramble. We travelled a section that I’d never been on before and stopped at every overlook that struck our fancy.

Feat Massanutten Peak

500 miles later, we turned into our little town of Singers Glen, refreshed from our adventure.

So thankful to the Giver of Every Good Thing for the many ways this weekend was a dream come true to me.

Praise Him,

Kendra

Preserving Memories

The spunky little lady stood there holding the Disney themed children’s place set in her hands- so firmly that I didn’t think there was a chance she’d sell it to me.

“Well this was my granddaughters and she’s all grown now and the country she lives in doesn’t have Disney. I’m moving to a retirement home so I have to get rid of this. But it’s so many memories. How much would you pay me? This is really hard on me.”

At this point I realized that I didn’t have enough money in my banking account to purchase this item. Instead of seeing the potential customer in front of her- I could tell that her memory was pulling up a little girl with tiny ponytails, in a high chair, eating spaghetti and jabbering about the Snoopy fork and spoon.

“Well, would you pay me a dollar?”

“Yes, ma’am, I sure would! I can assure you that my nephews will love this well.”

As I paid her and slid the set into my backpack and hurried away, I kept feeling like I’d purchased something almost sacred.

How much can one pay for a lifetime of memories?


Snapchat scares me sometimes. Everyday it creates a little story with Bitmoji’s and the storylines follow my thought process a little too closely. (The other very exciting yard sale bargain from Saturday was a pressure canner)

This was Sunday’s story:


These days I am preserving memories as hard as I can go:

One of the last memories canned I guess should be labeled as “Sardines” or “Pishhh” 😂 Both Julia’s and Cousin Twila’s twins were at the pond. Aunt Em found some earthworms and helped each of the boys catch multiple Bluegill with a tiny fishing pole left by a guest. Each catch (no matter the size) was properly celebrated and the entire evening a riot. “MOM! I JUST CAUGHT THE TINIEST FISH I EVER SAW!!”

Spring ‘21/ Spring ‘22

Apple Delight: the Apple Tree in our backyard was gorgeous again this year. Trying to take a pic on self timer was ridiculous. How do you tell a dog where to look and when to smile 😂 this is the only pic that we got that was half decent.

Hopefully a lot more actual preserves comes from our attempt at gardening. Ideally the resident watchdog will sit on the edge and keep the critters at bay- and not turn the place into a series of Dirt Digging Festivities 😅

I’m happy that we’re preserving memories because we sure aren’t preserving mushrooms 😂 Ben and I still enjoyed an afternoon of rambling around in his family’s woods even if the only thing we brought home was an old stump for our flowerbed.

Years from now, I don’t know what will bring back the most nostalgia for me. But if I could literally can a moment… As children, we spent days riding with Father in his cabover, grabbing a bite to eat occasionally (when he wasn’t too busy to remember to be hungry😂.) Watching the twins get to experience some of the same fun gives me all the feels.

I’m savoring this current life we’re living as much as I can. I hope that I never forget this feeling of awe/incredible blessing. I can’t get over how much fun it is to set up our own house. I hope this honeymoon stage lasts for another 50 years. Two months in- we should be good, right? I’m storing memories regardless.

Ps 16:5 Lord, you alone are my portion and my cup; you make my lot secure.
6 The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; surely I have a delightful inheritance.
7 I will praise the Lord, who counsels me; even at night my heart instructs me.
8 I keep my eyes always on the Lord. With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken.
9 Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices; my body also will rest secure
10 because you will not abandon me to the realm of the dead, nor will you let your faithful one see decay.
11 You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.

Pause for a moment and savor the memories you’re canning today ❤️

Kendra

Easter Weekend in Scottsville, KY

The fact is, while I’ve savored every.single.minute of being at home, packing my suitcase and slipping out the door to my waiting van felt like an old friend.

Another aspect of the “old friend” on this adventure was the fact that there was room in the van and in my mom’s hectic schedule for her to join me. The stage was set for a super special weekend.

The community of Scottsville, KY lives “pre-motor” meaning that everything is done with raw horse power or brute strength.

On the way in, we stopped by the feed mill and bakery. I was sorry we missed seeing the 10 horses grinding feed, but the tour was still educational.

Ms Ina showed us her bakery and sent us away smiling with several loaves of her famous tomato bread. She had whipped up “oh about 140 loaves” for the sandwiches for the wedding the next day. (Recipe for this amazing bread at the end of the blog.)

This was the story of our visit .

Everywhere we went, our friends welcomed us graciously, showed us around happily and sent us away with arms laden.

A few more of my favorite “stealth photography shots” from the weekend:

We stopped by Habbackers Variety Store and the employees sent a note for us to deliver to the owner. Not having a telephone would definitely change communication.

This community has weddings on Sundays during the regular church service. I didn’t make it through the entire 3 hour service, but I showed back up in time for the food. The servers marched through with sandwiches 3x, a variety of cookies and fruit 2x, and mint tea and tang every time in between (5x) Observing different cultures is one of my favorite things.

And lastly, the lady that hosted part of our group very thoughtfully got the horse on the treadmill to do laundry before we left. She releases the brake and he walks on the treadmill to operate her wringer washer.

This weekend was a treasure for sure.

So thankful that Jesus Christ’s death and resurrection is timeless, no matter what era or culture we find ourselves- He’s Alive today!

Happy Easter,

Kendra

Bonus:

Scottsville Tomato Bread
2 1/2 c warm water
1 1/2 Tbsp yeast
1/2 c sugar
1/2 c oil
1 1/2 Tbsp salt
1 1/2 c tomato sauce (15 oz can)
1 tsp basil
2 tsp oregano
2 tsp garlic powder
10 c flour (approximate)
Dissolve yeast in water. Add other ingredients Knead into a soft dough
Bake 350° 35-40 mins

Aaaand look who welcomed us when home 🥶

In Celebration of National Poetry Month and my favorite Poet

Did you know that April is National Poetry Month?

The fact is, poetry is pretty much in my DNA.

My Great Grandmother Good published her collection of poems sometime long before my time, and I’ve grown up with her beautifully flowing word pictures transporting me to another era.

As a child, my impression of my Aunt Janet was that she was able concoct a poem for every occasion. She published a children’s poem book, and we were amazed.

My mother is my favorite poetry enthusiast. She’s always digging something out of her stash to read to it anyone who will appreciate it.

Yes, poetry has been a constant in my life since I was born.

But the plot twist for both my mother and I, was the discovery (not too many years ago) that she’d married a poet.

I still laugh remembering Mother slumped over her coffee one morning. Me: how was your night? Mother: not very restful, apparently I’m married to Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. He kept waking me up to hear the next verse of the poem he was writing.

My dads poetry gene got discovered not too long ago and it’s been keeping us in stitches ever since.

Mostly he writes about current events in a humorous way.

He manages to keep his poetry in his head, spends miles on the road reciting them for busloads to enjoy for what they’re worth.

So in honor of National Poetry Month, here are the links to my dads poems on Facebook:

But my recent favorite was when he stood up at our Wedding Celebration and pulled this one out of his hat ( Here) I was so shocked, I could’ve cried. What a treasure.

So anyhow, I don’t know how you’re celebrating, but it’s finally warmed up enough that I think we’ll take our favorite poet out for ice cream.

And wait with bated breath to see what the next event will be that merits a poem.

KHR

Bonus Pic:

National Pet Day and my current favorite pic of this energetic package opener:

And lastly a legit Henry Wadsworth Longfellow masterpiece with 3 names changed. 💙💙💙

The Children’s Hour” (1863)

Between the dark and the daylight,
__When the night is beginning to lower,
Comes a pause in the day’s occupations,
__That is known as the Children’s Hour.

I hear in the chamber above me
__The patter of little feet,
The sound of a door that is opened,
__And voices soft and sweet.

From my study I see in the lamplight,
__Descending the broad hall stair,
Alexander , and laughing Uriah,
__And Isaiah with golden hair.

A whisper, and then a silence:
__Yet I know by their merry eyes
They are plotting and planning together
__To take me by surprise.

A sudden rush from the stairway,
__A sudden raid from the hall!
By three doors left unguarded
__They enter my castle wall!

They climb up into my turret
__O’er the arms and back of my chair;
If I try to escape, they surround me;
__They seem to be everywhere.

They almost devour me with kisses,
__Their arms about me entwine,
Till I think of the Bishop of Bingen
__In his Mouse-Tower on the Rhine!

Do you think, O blue-eyed banditti,
__Because you have scaled the wall,
Such an old mustache as I am
__Is not a match for you all!

I have you fast in my fortress,
__And will not let you depart,
But put you down into the dungeon
__In the round-tower of my heart.

And there will I keep you forever,
__Yes, forever and a day,
Till the walls shall crumble to ruin,
__And moulder in dust away!

Well Celebrated

“An old school friend texted me today and wished us a lifelong happiness” Ben announced

“I thought maybe we’d spend part of a month with your wedding, but I was wrong, it’s over a month and still going strong” Jul added

“Cause it’s the wedding that never endsssss” Em’s music joined the comments

And it’s true- we are so blessed and affirmed and just amazed on every corner.

The mailbox houses cards and gifts (I’m so thankful that our chewing maniac of a lab has somehow missed chewing on those deliveries 😅)

I’m also shocked at how many people congratulate and bless us when we meet up. In fact we went to a viewing and the family of the bereaved were so busy extending love and congratulations to us that by the time we made it thru the line, we weren’t sure if the proper thing to say was “I’m sorry for your loss” or “congratulations.” For sure living 97 years with vigor and passing away suddenly is a victory-but congrats doesn’t seem quite appropriate 🙈

Anyhow- when I think about the kindnesses shown to us/me recently, I’m a little overwhelmed and so so grateful. Community is such a blessing.

We hosted a little larger “wedding celebration” the end of March to include a few more of the people who impacted our life. And *sigh* still had people on the invite list when the building was full 🥺

My parents were married at this exact spot in ‘83

Em called this “Wedding 2.0” It was such a fun relaxed evening and although I hated the extra work for our families, the evening was super special

We forgot to get a pic of both Ben and I, but here I am preparing to rush thru the food line 😂

The ladies from church hosted a shower/pantry supply party for us and I’m optimistic that Ben and I will be able to survive in our little house in the Glen. So many generous gifts

And then my sweet friend Rachel hosted a housewarming with more friends and the most beautiful delicious food. Y’all ❤️ my cup runneth over. 😭

So thank you again to all of you who’ve loved us in some form or another over this exciting step.

We are most grateful and blessed,

Kendra for the Rohrers

Bonus Pics:

I’ve been forgetting to update the Showalter news on here 🤩

Our farm has the happiest bunch of spring peepers you’ve ever heard. I’m beyond excited to have actually caught one. What I didn’t realize until living here is that they obviously are temperature sensitive. If it’s too warm or too cold, they are silent, but at the right “spring like” temps, they make our hollow ring

I’m almost done with all the wedding references (I think) but I’m thrilled that some of the pussy willow shoots from our wedding bouquets actually took root! The idea of a visual reminder of the promises we made, has me all 🥰🤩 Now if we can just keep the deer/lab/lawnmower for inhaling them 😬 🤔

And lastly photo proof: I’m happy to report that we have enough boxes unpacked (and thanks to the generous showers, plenty of supplies) We are able to host! Drop by if you get the chance 🙂

Rohrer Ranch Report: Settling In

To our friends scattered to and fro,

Hello from the Rohrer Ranch! Life is settling into a routine. I think.

We enjoyed our honeymoon in Cancun immensely . Our resort was beautiful, the food exotic, the weather warm…

We experienced a 5 course “Romantic Dinner on the beach” and it did not disappoint. Probably the most exotic meal of my life. Delicious.

And after several days for extensive Rest and Relaxation, we traded this view:

For this:

We arrived home to a balmy 18° snow covered Valley 🥶 And it didn’t take long for us to realize that vacation was over.

We welcomed 40,000 chicks shortly after arriving home and successfully survived the flu. 😅 Ah, Life.

My sisters pranked our house while we were in Mexico. Julia purchased an extended family’s worth of plastic babies for a baby shower years ago and we discovered they were hidden all over the house.

They left a note with the rules stating that we had “until next Saturday at 8 pm to find all 58 babies. If you succeed, we’ll take you out for supper, if you fail, you’re buying”

Challenge accepted.

We found them everywhere. Inside the opposite door of Bens toy Fendt that lives on the top shelf of his desk. In the CD player that rarely gets used, inside our wedding shoes. 😅

We hunted and hunted and realized that they were playing to win.

But I’m happy to report that the Rohrers completed the challenge with hours to spare. My sisters are sure that we cheated 🤷🏻‍♀️ but Fair is Fair 😂❤️

Anyhow unless we cash our free meal in this morn, I need to have breakfast ready for my farmer. I’d better be focused on something other than blogging. 😂

May you see an extra measure of God’s goodness in your life today.

Blessings,

Kendra

‘Til Death Do Us Part

“I, Kendra Dawn Horst take you Benjamin Earl Rohrer to be my lawful wedded husband…” I savored the words slowly as I said them aloud.

We chose to write our own wedding vows because we wanted to be specific with what we committed to.

So there we stood in front of church doing an awkward shuffle of vow books and hand held mikes committing our hearts to cling to each other and follow the Lord no matter what.

Our wedding day was beautiful. Ryder Photography did an excellent job at capturing it for us

I’m sure every couple feels the same way- but God’s Hand was visible over and over.

March 5 was windy but almost 70°. One week later it was 18° and snowing 🥶 thank you Jesus ❤️

Side note- the gold ribbon came from Aunt Thelma’s sewing supplies ❤️

Family is such a blessing ❤️

So many emotions all day… one minute would be laughter, and the next tears.

Heavenly Father, at this altar
On this special wedding day
May we ever, love each other
As you lead us on our way

Mr and Mrs Benjamin Rohrer

And then came the good part 😂 the fooooood

My cousins did an incredible job with the charcuterie boards on the tables ❤️ Em smoked cream cheese (which I found after searching no less than 5 grocery stores 😅) The pickled okra from Florida was probably the most unique thing on the menu- if you get a chance try it sometime 👌🏼

Charcuterie board thief 😂

Ben’s Dad grilled the meat and it was amazing. Aaaaand I could taste it!! Thanks to those of you who prayed that my taste would return (thanks covid 🙄)

It takes a village, they say… and this day wouldn’t have been possible without our families and my aunts SLAVING away❤️ we appreciate it so ❤️❤️❤️

What a magical day.

The significance of the fact that our pastor unknowingly used the same part of Romans to commission our home that we chose on our newspaper/program was not lost on me.

Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in love.Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer Romans 12:9-12

Thanking God for this incredible gift ❤️

KH no more, I’m Kendra Rohrer

News Flash! 👰🏻🤵🏻⛪️❤️

SINGERS GLEN- A local couple has been keeping a secret. The signs have been fairly obvious that things are getting pretty serious with the Glen Oaks Farmer and his neighbor. But no formal announcements were made.

“Honestly, we thought about eloping, said Ben Rohrer “But we really wanted a special service with our family.” So the couple came up with the idea to skip all of the preamble and just head for a local church.

“I love a secret” admitted Kendra Horst “I’m terrible at keeping them typically, but everyone has done amazingly well.”

The couple grew up in the same community and probably got to be friends when Mr Rohrer helped excavate for a new building on the Horst home farm in ‘07, but it’s hard to remember that for sure.

“Father quoted Ben for years. Apparently the first time Ben came back the lane, he climbed off the tractor said ‘Man! This is wayyyy back in the sticks’.” Kendra says with a laugh.

Later found them working together in the custom harvest world. But then something changed several years ago.

“It was God, without Him and His incredible leading, we wouldn’t be here today.” Ben often says.

“Thank you, Jesus.” adds his fiance
Rohrer showed up at a family dinner with dozen red roses the end of December and got down on one knee and asked a very important question.
And talkative Kendra was speechless for only a brief moment.

“Today is honestly a dream. We’re excited to host a celebration reception with our extended family and friends later on, but today it’s just us and a few others. Our families are so supportive and we are so blessed.”

Thank you Jesus!

More pics and info later- but for now my husband and I are off on a little get away 🏝

Blessings,

The New Mr and Mrs Rohrer

When the Virus points me to Scripture

Well, it finally happened. I know I’m rather late to the party, but I’ve finally joined the ranks: Quarantined at home with “the Virus.”

What makes this especially unique and obviously the hand of the Lord- my parents left for Florida several days prior to my succumbing to the noteworthy illness.

Although I’d tell you how terrifically sick I’ve been- it honestly hasn’t been too bad. The biggest twist in plot is the before mentioned fact that my angel nurse is happily thrift shopping away in the sunny south. (There’s a reason I haven’t moved away from home . I’ve been spoiled by her for more years than typical. Haha)

Anyhow so I’m rattling thru our quiet house with an occasional visit from the Ben Friend who is doing his best to brave the bugs and keep me hydrated and fed- bring on the Gatorade and the canned veggie soup from Food Lion. (My sisters are all doing great at checking in on me- I’m just so happy that no one else is exposed.)

Jul sent a meal too. The doorbell rang and as I opened the door, a silent figure was beating a hasty retreat to his vehicle and a neat package was sitting on the doorstep. And suddenly I had a new appreciation for how Elijah felt when the ravens delivered his meals.

And so today, I’m searching for ways that this Virus has brought scripture alive to me. Here are just a few ways:

1 Kings 17:2 Then the word of the Lord came to Elijah: 3 “Leave here, turn eastward and hide in the Kerith Ravine, east of the Jordan. 4 You will drink from the brook, and I have directed the ravens to supply you with food there.”
5 So he did what the Lord had told him. He went to the Kerith Ravine, east of the Jordan, and stayed there. 6 The ravens brought him bread and meat in the morning and bread and meat in the evening, and he drank from the brook.

I know- everyone talks about the loss of taste and smell- but I’m struggling over here:

Ps 34:8 Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good! Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him!

Ps 119:103 How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!

Ps 115:6 They have ears, but do not hear; noses, but do not smell.

And about this quarantine business:

Ecclesiastes 4:9 Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor.

John 14:16 I will ask the Father, and he will give you another helper who will be with you forever.

Isaiah 41:10 Don’t be afraid, because I’m with you; don’t be anxious, because I am your God. I keep on strengthening you; I’m truly helping you. I’m surely upholding you with my victorious right hand.

But thru it all- what an incredible Great Physician we have:

Ps 103:1-5 Bless the LORD, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name. Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits: Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases; Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with lovingkindness and tender mercies; Who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle’s.

Praise Him,

Kendra

Bonus Pics:

We had the most gorgeous snow mid Feb. The temp dropped and everything froze to the trees and the world was an enchanted kingdom. I’m a summer fan 100% but it seems like Gods Master Artist qualities are almost more visible in the winter.

Let it Go

Things have been pretty quiet on here.

January sailed past in a whirlwind of snowstorms and 1099s. I told my family that I thought I looked visibly younger after the last of the books headed to the tax man. Quickbooks makes tax season easier but somehow I always feel super stressed until my dads books (and mine too although they aren’t nearly as complex) are filed.

The twins continue to keep us in stitches. I’ve upgraded to “Aunt Kennnnnnnnn” and I’m pretty sure I’d give them up to half the kingdom if they’d ask for it. It is incredible how their vocabulary is increasing.

Alexander’s phone calls/videos are absolutely precious. He’s really nailing a variety of animal noises. He calls me “DaDa” tho and will not be receiving half of the kingdom on that premises jk😂 Can’t wait to see him again!

First beach siting- thankfully it warmed up after this

Most of the way through January, Em and I saw a slight break in schedule so we dove for it and ended up on Siesta Keys Beach in Florida. It was delicious and very needed.

We stayed in a friends home near Pinecraft and got to experience the joys of Birky Sq, Pinecraft Park, etc. I don’t know where I’ve been- but I honestly had never hung out in Sarasota. I definitely need to remedy this.

Will not admit how many Whoopie Pies we purchased… “It’s for a good cause” 😝😂

Em grilled a mid afternoon snack for us the one day- incredible.

Possibly the most unique experience of the entire trip happened out on the beach:

A bearded man with a bike, bike trailer and a yellow handled shovel was out on the beach working for hours to build “Let it Go” chairs. Judging from the carefully hand written signs he had around, he was obviously pretty committed to the assignment.

But he was happily rushing around encouraging everyone to try out his chairs. “One guy sat here for 2 hours” he said.

I was amazed. “I love you” was written all over place in the sand and one sign read “I love you if no one else does SMILE”

Usually I think of the beach as a happy place. Especially the Florida beach mid winter. But the truth is- we all hurt. We all feel alone. We all need to be reminded that someone cares.

Whether this finds you on the coast carrying something you need to let go, or trying to dig your way thru tax and snow season; I’d like to join my enthusiastic friend on this one.

In a peace and love sort of way, he reminded me of Jesus: Calling all of us to rest, to lay our burdens down, and to trust in His provision for our future. And even though we have no record of Jesus writing “I love you” in the sand- His Heart spoke loud and clear.

In the season of Love, I hope God opens my eyes/gives me the courage to shout out declarations of love to the down and out.

I love you. God loves you. Let it go.

Kendra