Happy Thanksgiving!

I have always regretted giving up on music lessons at the tender age of seven, and as a young mother, I determined that my children would learn to play the piano or die trying. For one daughter, practicing was especially torturous. I cajoled, I bribed, I demanded, but nothing convinced her that practicing the piano was for her own good. On one particularly difficult day, while she pounded out her...
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We Pray for Children

May 7 is the National Day of Prayer. The president is required by law to sign a proclamation each year encouraging all Americans to pray on this day. Prayer has meant so much to me throughout my life. I never get voice mail or a busy signal when I want to talk to my Heavenly Father. He is always there for me. He is my rock and my salvation. I can't remember where I found this poem, but it holds...
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Easter in an Egg Carton

In recent years, to help my grandchildren learn the Easter story, I made them "Easter in an Egg Carton." The carton contains 12 plastic Easter eggs with a part of the Easter story and a token to go with each. I wanted to share it with you. Feel free to copy! First I collected empty egg cartons. You can buy unused egg cartons at a farm or country store. I bought some plastic Easter eggs in a...
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A Little Cutie Shower

I'm not a very visually creative person, but with the help of Pinterest and the Internet in general, I can sometimes pull off something amazing. :) Three weeks ago, my daughters and I threw a baby shower for my niece. I really wanted to make it special, so I went to Pinterest and got all sorts of ideas. Thanks to my daughter Kate, who knows how to make a balloon arch, and my friend Brian, who...
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Anna Helmuth’s Best Household Tips

A message from Anna Helmuth, Amish fraa, mater, and mammi and irrepressible matchmaker in The Matchmakers of Huckleberry Hill books. Vie gehts, everybody? As a mater of 13 children, I’ve learned a lot about cooking and cleaning over the years. Here are some tips I’ve picked up. To keep squirrels from eating your plants, sprinkle your plants with cayenne pepper. Not that I’ve ever seen a...
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Kindness, Part 2

Recently I posted a story from my dad about German prisoners of war coming to his father's farm to work. Now I want to share a story written by my mom. I hope we all remember kindness instead of anger, judgment, or blame: One year, when I was a teenager, my dad had a good crop of alfalfa.  Because of the extra money he made from selling it, he was able to buy a new tractor for the farm. Up to...
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A Little Kindness Goes All the Way Across the Ocean

There is so much unkindness in the world. People act like bullies online, with no consideration that there might be a human being on the other end. We've lost the ability to discuss our disagreements in a civil and kind manner, and it makes me so sad. But good people all over the world can change that if we just take the time to understand each other and choose kindness instead of judgment and...
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A Father’s Wisdom

| By Richard Gappmayer, Jennifer's father| My father was wise. He told me that complaining serves no useful purpose. And nobody wants to hear my complaints. If I was in a situation that I did not like, I should either get out of it or change it, but in no way should I complain about it. We experience these situations almost daily. It is either something that I created or a situation that I have...
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A Daughter’s Truth by Laura Bradford

| By Laura Bradford | Greetings! Jennifer was kind enough to invite me here today to tell you a wee bit about my newly released women’s fiction novel, A Daughter’s Truth. For me, A Daughter’s Truth is about those moments in life that come out of nowhere and shake us to the core, leaving us to wonder who we are and how we will keep going. Sometimes, as is the case for Emma Lapp, that big...
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