Easter Echoes

The Lord is risen! The Lord is risen indeed! I wonder how many times I’ve heard that. Yet how reassuring- We serve a risen Lord!

What are your Easter Memories? I was out for breakfast with my cousins Saturday morning and this question came up.. Someone mentioned that Easter is her favorite religious holiday.. In some ways I agree, I love the newness of life that Easter represents, and spring time is so welcome.. One of my favorite Easter memories is from last year- getting up at 5;30 to head out on the dock with Steve, Valerie and their 4 children and serenading all of Santa Rosita with Easter songs as the sun rose.. I can imagine somewhere a little Latino lady pausing in the midst of her early morning tortilla making to listen to the faint strands of music and shake her head and think “gringos!” 😉 (my understanding of that word would be “white people” )


Another favorite Easter memory/ tradition that I love is the youth singing in the balcony at church for the 15 mins before church starts.. “Lift your glad voices in triumph on high, the Savior hath risen and men shall NOT die..”   Easter, Crocuses,Springtime, Daffodils, Warmer weather, green grass.. Yes, Katie-this is a splendid time of year!

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I serve a risen Savior He’s in the world today- I Know that He is living whatever man may say..



I taught Sunday School today and was amazed at the emotions in John 20. Enjoy this for what it’s worth

The first day of the week cometh Mary Magdelene early, when it was yet dark, unto the sepulchre and seeth the stone taken away from the seplechre

In the quiet darkness of the morning, three ladies make their way to Jesus’s tomb. Emotionally exhausted from the lack of sleep and in deep sorrow, their early morning mission was to finish the embalming process for the man they loved. The huge stone that sealed the entrance of his grave weighed heavy on their minds. You can imagine Mary peering intently into the hazy morning light, blinking the sleepiness of her eyes away, startled at the discovery- the tomb was open!

Then she runneth and cometh to Simon Peter and to the other disciple that Jesus loved and saith to them, “They have taken away the Lord out of the sepulchre and we know not where they have laid him.”

Heart pounding, Mary took off like the wind, and ran to where the disciples were gathered. Were they awake? She arrives out of breathe with this shocking announcement “They’ve taken the Lord’s body out of the grave and we don’t know where they’ve laid Him!”

Peter therefore went forth and that other disciple and came to the sepulchre

Peter springs into action. John joins the investigation as well

So they ran both together and the other disciple did outrun Peter, and came first to the sepulchre.

The urgency/irony of the situation prompted a footrace. John was younger than Peter and had the advantage. He arrives first on scene.

And he stooping down and looking in saw the linen clothes lying, yet went he not in.

Keeping a safe distance, John peered into the tomb. Mary was right. The body was missing!

Then cometh Simeon Peter following him and went into the sepulchre and seeth the linen clothes lie.

Huffing and puffing up the trail-Peter doesn’t waste any time observing- he enters the tomb and looks around and sees the grave clothes lying there.

And the napkin that was about his head, not lying with the linen clothes, but wrapped together in a place by itself.

Everything was folded neatly eliminating the possibility of a grave robber. Who would have taken the time to remove the clothes off of a body and wrap them up?

Then went also the other disciples, which came first to the sepulchre, and he saw and believed

Timidly John entered and after accessing the situation, he believed

For as yet they knew not the scriptures that He must rise again from the dead

Hadn’t Jesus prophecied this?  “Just as Jonah was in the belly of a huge fish for 3 days and nights, so must I-the Son of Man will be in the heart of the earth for 3 days and nights.” And “The truth is, a kernel of wheat must be planted in the soil. Unless it dies it will be alone-a single seed. But its death will produce many new kernels-a plentiful harvest of new lives.” Even though He had taught them all of this, it was difficult-virtually impossible to comprehend this event.

Then the disciples went away unto their own home

Operation Investigation complete- There was nothing more to do. The body was gone. Peter and John left the scene and returned home…

But Mary stood without the sepulchre weeping. And as she wept, she stooped down and looked into the sepulcher.

Mary  was left alone in her sorrow. Tears fell at this point. Mary gazed inside numbly refusing to believe.

And seeth 2 angels, in white sitting-the one at the head and the other at the feet where the body of Jesus had lain.

The early morning sun penetrated the darkness of the tomb. She saw something no one had noticed before- an angel at the foot and the head where the body had been. It reminded her of the cherubims over the Ark of the Covenant. But just like when Isreal fell away and the flame of God departed, the only thing left was empty linens. This brought more tears.

And they say unto her “Woman? Why weepest thou?” And she saith unto them “Because they have taken away my Lord and I know not where they have laid Him.”

The angels asked “Why are you weeping?” Had Mary not been there when the angel met the ladies and declared “He is not here but is risen”? Looking back Mary was amazed at how easily she carried on a conversation with these heavenly messengers. Maybe she had a different perspective on spiritual beings. After all, her initial meeting with Jesus had been when He cast 7 spirits from her. She’d been dedicated ever since. In desperation she replied “They’ve taken away my Lord’s body, but to where?!”

And as she had thus said, she turned herself back and saw Jesus standing and knew not that it was Jesus.

Reality, grief, and raw emotion caused her to turn-alone in her sorrow. She became aware of someone else on the scene.

Jesus saith unto her “Woman, why weepest thou? Whom seek thou?” She supposing him to be a gardener saith unto him, “Sir, if thou have born him hence, tell me where thou has laid him, and I will take him away.

Can you imagine the love and compassion that Jesus felt as He watched her struggle over His death? “Ma’am, Why are you crying? Whom are you looking for?” Mary-her eyes red and brimming with tears, thinks this must be a gardener and begs, “Please sir, if you know where the body of Jesus is, will you please tell me? I’d like to return it to it’s grave.” Logic seems to be waning. Mary is offering to move the body of a grown man-Not to mention the added weight of the spices they’d hurriedly added the evening they’d removed him from the cross.

Jesus saith unto her “Mary” She turneth herself and saith unto her “Rabboni” which is to say Master

One word “Mary” and her heart stood still. She knew that voice. Instant recognition-the chills run up her spine. Crushing sorrow turns to joy. “My Master” she breathed.

Jesus saith unto her “Touch me not for I am not yet ascended to my Father, but go to my brethren and say unto them, I ascend unto My Father and your Father, My God and your God.

“Don’t cling to me. Things are different now. But go tell my brethren that I am ascending to My Father and your Father, to My God and your God.”

Mary Magdalene came and told the disciples that she had seen the Lord and He had spoken these things unto her.

So Mary went. Her message was different. She told everything that had happened-but most importantly- She had SEEN the Lord! And that makes all the difference.

A Thief in the Henhouse

Yes you read correctly-there’s a thief in the henhouse! (And no I’m not referring to the boyfriend 🙂 ) Our journey as poultry farmers has been a quite the process.. Several years ago Julia got the big idea to have “Farm Fresh Eggs”. So she campaigned relentlessly until permission was granted from the Father of this household.. So 12 Rhode Island Reds came to home to roost.. It was so exciting to gather eggs and a running tally was kept so that at the end of the year we knew down to the last egg how many dozen we received. Unbelievable.. I have not been in favor of the project since the beginning.. I will admit that I have thoroughly enjoyed many a meal thanks to the fruit of the labors-but save yourself a heart attack (from when an angry bird attack) and purchase eggs at Wal-Mart! But anyway all that aside. The birds lost their charm and soon it was down to whoever fed calves HAD to check the chickens.. Through a variety of events, we eventually were down to 3 birds who were past their prime and no longer contributed anything to the household. A  vote was taken among the calf feeders and the measure passed with flying colors-it was time for the chickens to be released to the great out-of-doors to fend for themselves. This was last fall. The one poor bird didn’t make a day, because a big huge black dog who knows perfectly what happens if he touches Father’s rooster, didn’t realize that this was the same kind of species, and the Labrador Retriever in him came to the forefront and he retrieved a hen before anyone could say “Barbequed Chicken!” After that incident the 2 remaining disappeared and we forgot all about them.. Fast forward to the first of March- one day who should be proudly strutting back and forth like she owned the calf barn, but Evangeline.. One chicken had survived! She made herself completely at home, eating out of the calves water buckets, helping herself to the grain smorgasbord and loving life.. She really is beautiful. And I THINK I may have recognized a faint trace of fondness within this ol’ calloused heart. She soon made a nest in the corner of the hay and other than one extremely nosey neighbor who peers out of her apartment and looks directly down into Evangeline’s home, She seems to have no complaints about her new neighborhood

DSCF3248  And the most amazing thing is -everyday there’s a fresh egg to head to the house for the farmer’s breakfast! Until one day, the consistant egg delivery ceased.. It was strange. One day the egg hunt would be successful, the next day to no avail.. Hmm..  Enter the King of the farm and his assistant.. Now ol’ Detroit is nobody’s dummy and when he got his case jumped for that last chicken deal, he bid his chicken catchin’ days “Good-bye”.. But Rolo is still a little green behind the ears, and every day she thought it quite the sport to sneak up behind Evangeline and see how close she could get before someone yelled or the bird took off.. “Big Chicken”.. It so happened that the  Sherlock Holmes that discovered the source of the disappearing eggs was Rolo’s very own lead cheerleader-Miss Deborah.. Deb was feeding calves and she watched as her velvet eared pup snuck out of Evangeline’s house. One thing that must be said to the credit of the dogs around here- when they commit a crime- you can hear their guilty conscience hurting.. So with a stern “Rolo!” Deborah watched in amazement as Rolo carefully laid the egg, that she had been gingerly carrying in her mouth, down on the concrete and slunk away.. Being the good parent that she is, Deborah went ahead with the necessary parenting measures and soon Rolo was all smiles again..


Other random things from Paradise Mtn include:

DSCF3113 I was priviledged to go with Emily to a friend’s house to work on recording a song she had adapted.. You can find it on You Tube.. Since You’re There Emily Horst

DSCF3152 DSCF3182 DSCF3330 DSCF3312  DSCF3253 This last pic is of my dear Mother spinning doughnuts with Em’s new four-wheeler.. I think maybe I’m starting to understand why my sisters drive like they do 😉

DSCF3275  This pic made Mother quote a poem that her parents said often during the winter time..  We weren’t able to come up with the source, but guess that this was memory work from school years ago.

The north wind will blow and we will have snow,

And what will the poor robin do?

He’ll sit in the barn,  and try to keep warm

And tuck his head under his wing.. Poor thing..




Like a Lamb

To our Friends scattered here and there,
So here I am on this beautiful first day of spring.. My thoughts are running in all different directions.. Today one of the girls that Em and I took out West is saying “I do”.. So here comes another interesting experience.. It is an honor to be invited to an Old Order wedding..( I’m still trying to convince Emily of this :)..) She is pretty sure she’s not feeling great this morn..:/ Something about a bug.. Like ” bah-hum-bug”..LOL.. poor kid..

My mind is still very much processing what happened in our congregation last week.. A little eleven month old girl died from a bath tub accident.. Really really sad.. I found a poem that Amos’s family sent us after his passing and I think it is incredibly profound..     * the next pictures are from my Guatemala experience..

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The Lamb carried on Before   -author unknown

An Eastern Shepherd led his sheep toward the river’s bank,

But when they saw the stream was broad, their hearts with fear did sink.

And though the shepherd went across in view of all the sheep,

They did not dare to follow him, and ford the waters deep..

And so he took a little lamb, right from it’s mother’s side,

He clasped it in his shelt’ring arms, and with it crossed the tide.

The mother, missing what she loved, was eager now to gain

The distant shore, that she might find her precious lamb again.

She quickly made her way across, and soon the stream she passed,

And other sheep soon followed her, til all had crossed at last.

She found the lamb which she had lost, within the shepherd’s care,

And he had used her little one, in leading many there.

Oh mother, had your little lamb been carried on before?

The shepherd wants to have you, too, upon the farther shore.

And so he clasped your treasured on upon his sheltering breast,

That you might come and seek it there, and find Him in your rest..


Isaiah 40:11 He shall feed his flock like a shepherd he shall gather the lambs with his arms, and carry them with his bosom, and shall gently lead those that are with young..



Bonus pics;

DSCF5883 We made a quick trip to Maryland and Father took the traditional trip down memory’s lane and took us the scenic route.. So I guess the boyfriend has been properly initiated to sailing over the amazing hilly roads found only near the Mason/Dixon in a minivan.. We stopped by Dam 5 which was built in the 1830s and viewed part of the C&O canal.. Very educational.. Thanks to Em and Deb for keeping the home fires burning..

DSCF5888 Meet my cousin Marj and her children.. I was completely tickled at her 4 yr old and his cousin standing on top of the deep freezer, singing at the top of their lungs and “drumming” with campfire forks.. I love children with personality! 🙂

DSCF8120 DSCF8135 DSCF8131 DSCN9509  To the person that told me that the March weather should “Be like a lamb”.. The only thing I’m seeing that reminds me of a lamb is the fact the countryside is white as lamb’s wool part of the time.. More snow March 17.. Unbelievable!

Of Snow and Such

To our friends scattered here and there,
Hello from Paradise Lane.. We have had an incredible week.. Tuesday night the forecasted snow actually came!!


It was amazing!! All three of my sisters were out at various parts of the Valley and next thing we knew the roads were slick and my one sister had to be rescued from where she’d got stuck right in the middle of the road.. 🙂  So the storm moved in and left us with at least 16 inches..


Is there anything more beautiful than a deere in the snow? 🙂 We all enjoyed the snow a little more once the milktruck had been pulled successfully in the lane and back out the lane again


Julia is convinced that Detroit comes alive once whenever it’s cold.. Whatever the reason he and Rolo couldn’t believe how much fun a snow is


They also did their best to help Jul and I build Goliath the snowman.. We could have used a little more help lifting the beast, and a little less whenever we were in the rolling mode and the dogs were running in front, getting in the way.. 🙂


And then the sun came out and our beautiful countryside is rapidly returning to the mundane winter colors.. :/ But judging from what I discovered  coming in the lane it won’t be long until Spingtime has the Valley alive with new life..


The other big event from our week was- John Deere Day.. I was able to serve food this year.. I love that job.. I’m sure everyone that works beside me thinks ” How on earth did I manage to get stationed beside a wanna be salesperson..” lol So I marketed chocolate milk all day, and I’m sure hoping for an increase in milk prices here shortly!


Emily helped G&W take blood pressure all day.. 108 blood pressures for the day.. Someone asked her if she got bored taking all those blood pressures, or if she just enjoyed the opportunity to harass people.. Hmm..


John Deere Day is always a family friendly event.. This year the 4H was set up helping children plant clovers.. They also had a tub full of shelled corn with hidden treasures in it, I wonder how many bushels of corn headed out the door in children’s shoes..


They also  had a piñata booth set up..


All the fresh popcorn you could want


And cotton candy galore.. One little girl came through and was trying to break her previous record of 13.5 cotton candies.. Ugh.. Somewhere I’m pretty sure I hear a dentist smiling


This little black sheep brought down the house..


One lady that came through said she’d missed John Deere Day last year and she was sad all year.. 🙂 I love the day.. When the farming community comes together before the busyness of springtime.. I know it sounds trite, but it’s kinda like a big family reunion, where you see people you very likely won’t see again til next March, JD Day ’14.. I have to wonder it this is something only we John Deere people understand or if the Agco farmers have a family feel to it as well 😉


So however many 100s of gals of chocolate milk later, I had an amazing day.. Ok, enough of my ramblings..  May God richly bless your week, Kendra  P.S Thanks to Deb and Wyatt for so kindly photographing the day for me 🙂

Bonus pic:


We had company this weekend and I was completely amused to go into the livingroom and discover everyone frantically trying to make up for the hour of sleep that got swiped by good ol’ Day Light Savings Time.. To the Meck’s- please come again soon!

Canner week..



There’s a building in our area that sits quietly nestled behind a hill out of site and out of mind for most of the year.. But for atleast one week out of the year it comes alive with activity.. The first people arrive at 5 each morning and the last leave around 11.. Meat Canner Week.. It is an amazing community experience..  Are you familiar with it? Come on in and look around.. I’d love to give you a tour..


Directly inside you’ll see the “Welfare Table”.. Standard procedure is a carry in.. Some days there’s more to eat around here than others.. They say Wednesday the table nearly groaned under all the food.. Because there is no designated break time- feel free to come out and help yourself whenever..


Grab one of those beautiful white aprons and we’ll head into the cutting room.. This is a requirement.. The inspector shows up occasionally and we try to be law abiding.. 🙂


I end up spending most of my time in here.. The idea is to cut 48,000 lbs of  turkey into bite size pieces.. This is not the most thrilling job, but what I love about this week is the opportunity to spend time with people from our area that I wouldn’t typically.. For instance- I discovered that the stranger across the table from me was my mom’s cousin.. Got in a big discussion with the Horning deacons wife on the 5 love languages.. And traded trapping tales with a neighbor all in about an hrs time.. You’d be amazed at what all world problems get solved over canner week 🙂


Next the meat is carried back to the canner.. This is an actually trailer that is owned by MCC.. It goes 33 places during the season and is manned by a crew of 4 men..  IT’S LOUD BACK HERE-SORRY FOR SHOUTING, BUT.. THE TURKEY PIECES ARE COOKED RAPIDLY FOR A FEW MINUTES AND THEN THE ASSEMBLY LINE BEGINS..CANS ARE FILLED, WEIGHED, THE LIDS ARE STOMPED ON AND THEN THEY ARE CAUGHT AND PLACE IN A METAL BASKET ..




We’ll leave the noise of the canner area.. Next stop is where the cans get washed and labeled.. We used to use hot water, but rules have changed to where they can’t be immersed.. So now we wipe them with microfiber towels.. This takes another small army, and more time for random discussions.. The cans are boxed and stacked in the corner ready to head out to feed the hungry..


Also volunteers spend time stamping our areas stamp on the MCC logo and  flipping labels.. This is something I never was able to conquer.. But those who are more skilled than I, have this technique where they flip the labels and end up with them spaced evenly for gluing.. Emily was going to impress me with her new trick and so I watched totally impressed while she raced the one canner boy.. Unfortunately for Horst the canner boy smoked her.. But I was still charmed that she competed.. Like I mentioned.. This is not my forte


And now we are back around to the break room..  More time for story telling.. Every year there’s some sort of a mind boggler type question.. This year it’s ” 6 men, 6 sacks, each sack contains 6 cats, who each have 6 kittens.. How many legs are there?” So everyone is brushing off math skills..   And that completes our tour..  As I mentioned-I love this week- a community working together because we have been blessed with the resources to be able to make a little difference..


26,795 cans of turkey heading out into the world.. ” In as much as you have done it unto the least of these my brethren, you have done it unto me..” Matt 25:40

Blessings on your week, Kendra



Bonus pics from my Pa travels this weekend:

DSCF5783 We visited Johnstown, and froze as we went up the World’s Steepest Vehicular Inclined Plane.. Fascinating.. Built in 1890.. 71% grade..  Two 38 ton cars pulled up the mountain by cables..

DSCF5804  Johnstown in snow..

DSCF5820  A new friend I made at a taxidermist shop in Martinsburg, Pa.. I guess you’d have to remodel your house if you went to Africa and came home with a treasure like this one..