A few weeks ago, I got to spend time with one of my Amish friends. She has a small Quilt Shop she runs from her home, and she let me take my phone out and snap some pictures. The kaleidoscope of color and fabrics had me memorized. The day before my visit, she had spent the day with her sisters and daughters quilting. The excitement I saw in her face as she described the fun they had was priceless.
Many of us take life too seriously and we tend to forget to step back and enjoy the simple things in life. Things like how special it is when we get to spend the day in the company of friends or deciding what to make to share for lunch. Even the mindless task of quilting tiny stitches for hours on end can be made special if we share it in company with those we love.
For my friend, she got to spend the whole day forgetting about dirty floors and laundry from her nine children to concentrate on connecting with her sister who she doesn’t get to see often.
She shared with me how much fun they had catching up, and with a giggle she said they probably talked more than they should’ve. But they got the entire top quilted in one day. So it was a good day!
During our visit she let me take some notes and ask her some questions, some she answered and some she didn’t. What you don’t see in this picture is her two young sons peeking their heads out their bedroom door, snickering at their Momma’s English friend. And what you can’t smell and hear are her daughters in the kitchen kneading bread and baking cookies. From the quilt frame that sat in the corner to the smells lingering in the air, it was like I had walked into one of my favorite Amish novels. Who knows… it could be a story waiting to happen.
My friend snickers every time I ask her a question and can’t imagine why anyone would want to read about the Amish. In her words she said. “I’m just a simple woman who lives a simple life …nothing interesting about me.”
What she doesn’t understand and what I can’t explain to her is the life she lives is very appealing. How they stay separated from the outside world as good as they do and spend more time focused on God, Family and Community is intriguing.
I don’t know about you, but for me, I’d much prefer sitting around a quilt frame for a day then spend mindless hours thumbing through social media.
Who knows maybe one day she’ll invite me to pull up a chair beside her and I’ll get to hear all the things they talked about, but shouldn’t have.
Tracy Fredrychowski is a country girl, author, homesteader and everything simple living. She has a passion for writing about the simpler side of life, much like the life she lived growing up in rural Pennsylvania.
Her life has always been intertwined with the Amish, and it’s only fitting that she has a genuine passion for their simplicity, sense of community and God-centered lives.
Growing up in Northwest Pennsylvania she spent her childhood immersed deep in Amish Country. The clip-clop of horse and buggy woke her each morning as Amish men drove past her childhood home on their way to work. As a young woman, she was traumatized by an Amish murder that involved a family member and changed her life forever.
Even though she currently lives in South Carolina her travels take her through Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, and Wisconsin’s Amish Country every year. During those stops, she researches the communities she visits and prides herself on writing Amish fiction that truly represents the Amish culture. She considers herself very fortunate to have made friends in those communities and values the information they share and wants nothing more than to represent their lifestyle as accurately as possible.