Amish Quilt Giveaway

 

I’m SO EXCITED to tell you about the latest  giveaway–an Amish made quilt! And this quilt is totally special because the fabric my Amish friend is going to use to make it will be supplied by you, the readers.

How do you get in on this great idea, you ask? Just send a 12 1/2 x 12 1/2 square of fabric to Stacey Barbalace 3751 Proctor Lane Baltimore, MD 21236. Each square sent will be incorporated into the quilt. Only one square per person.

We’re collecting fabric, then taking it to Pennsylvania to have the quilt made. Because of this, the exact date of the actual giveaway has not been decided. But there is one definite date you need to mark on your calendar. And that date is January 24th. Your fabric needs to be received before that date in order to be included in the quilt. Fabric received after that date will not be used and cannot be returned to the sender, so get your fabric in quick. And don’t forget to check on the quilt’s progress as well as fabric updates and other Amish tidbits by joining my Facebook group dedicated to the quilt giveaway. https://www.facebook.com/groups/824715970905343/

There’s one more very important fact to remember. Before you send your fabric be sure to take a picture of it. Hold onto the pic for now. Soon I’ll tell you what to do with it. Until then, have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Amy

quilt

Complete details can be found under the CONTEST tab here on my website.  http://amywritesromance.com/contest/the-amish-quilt-giveaway/

 

Cover Reveal–Courting Emily

I think it’s time to share my lovely, lovely cover for Courting Emily. (Mainly because the publishing house posted it on amazon <g>) Courting Emily is the story of Emily Ebersol, the bishop’s daughter. I can’t tell you a lot about this story yet, but I will say that the look on “Cover Emily’s” face is perfect. So Emily–a little bit innocent, a little bit mischievous, a whole lot of spunk. I love it! What do you think?

Courting Emily

 

Courting Emily releases January 2015 * Pre order now at Amazon and B&N

Verboten

I’m so excited to share my web space with a special guest today. Brenda Nixon is here to tell us of her experiences with the Swartzentruber Amish. Hope you enjoy! I know I did!

Amish Teens Today
by Brenda Nixon

Often admired. Misunderstood. Mysterious. I’m learning volumes deep inside the Amish from the many formers I know. Most left the Swartzentruber Order – the strictest and most punitive. Predominantly guys but a few gals have come through our home.

One thing that isn’t too different from us is that the Amish creatively push the envelope on the rules. Many see what they can get away with before the line is crossed – a rule broken – and the Bishop or Preacher comes a calling.

Sometimes the stories are funny. Sometimes they are sad.

Our “son” from the Amish – Mosie – chuckled as he told me of homes where the no electricity rule didn’t apply to the barn. Out there some Amish enjoyed lights and power tools.

Our son-in-law Harvey – also from the Swartzentruber Order – explained that buggy windshields were verboten. He grinned in glee when related the time he invented a windshield by wrapping his black buggy with clear plastic wrap.

“It was winter and I was cold going to work and back,” Harvey reasoned. “So I made a windshield. I left early in the morning while it was still dark and came home at night, so my dad couldn’t see my buggy. Then a guy saw my windshield and told Dad.”

Harvey’s dad is a bishop. He made Harvey remove the invention.

Before he left the Amish, Harvey spotted an old, broken bicycle – verboten. In the Swartzentruber Order, bicycles or any item with broken-bicyclerubber wheels are against the rules.

“I was walking home one day and found a bike in a farmer’s trash pile.” Harvey claimed the worldly prize, walked it over two miles home, and while his parents were away, hid the thing in his father’s workshop. He explained how he tinkered with it. Made repairs. Then he took his new “worldly” device over a hill and down in a deep culvert to keep in seclusion. “I told some of my friends,” he said. So they could all share in the community “sin.” Harvey added, “But, we rode at night so we wouldn’t get caught.”

Now, I think Harvey is clever to repair something he’s never owned.  Like many Amish, he demonstrates a visual learning style. He looks at, watches, and pays attention to detail to educate himself.

I’ve met Swartzentruber Amish who’ve purchased homes from English – with indoor plumbing – but kept promising the Bishop they’d remove that “worldly” convenience. And those who promise to build a room addition without electric and plumbing. Somehow that room addition is never built.

Mosie likes to tease. I can imagine he was ornery growing up.

Others have boasted of their ingenuity in getting around the rigid rules. I recently saw a picture of . . . well, I can hardly describe it. Not a car. Truck. Motorcycle. Nor a four-wheeler. It was a mismatched combination of those parts. Therefore the Amish driver wasn’t breaking a rule or committing a “sin” by driving the combined contraction. He wasn’t driving a car, truck, motorcycle or a four-wheeler. I guess his settlement hadn’t made a rule against using a collective vehicle.

The teens hide radios and cell phones in the woods, inside the barn, or up in the attic. Some girls buy underwear at Victoria’s Secret because, after all, nobody will SEE their “worldly” undergarment. The Swartzentruber Ordnung – rule book – prohibits English underwear; rather, they are to make their own.

Not unlike teens of any culture, most Amish youth push the envelope. I know some who keep a “worldly” automobile tucked away in the woods. They ride their buggies into the protection of the trees where they tie up the horse, change into English clothes, hop in the car, and cruise around town. Without a driver’s license! In the wee early-morning hours, they sneak the vehicle back to the designated hide out, change into their strict, plain Amish clothing, climb into the buggy, and trot home before morning. Hoping to avoid detection.

Our second “son” from the Amish – Monroe – hid his cell phone in his loose Amish pants pocket. When he was at home, he would watch movies on his DVD player. Where’d he get that? He bought a DVD player at Walmart, and then hooked it up to a battery. Monroe and his sister, Sarah, would tiptoe up the steps of their home at night carrying the DVD player to their bedroom. There, they’d watch movies into the night. I can visualize a soft blue glow emanating from the upstairs of a darkened Amish home.

Monroe told me of his friends who’d take pictures with their cell phones – during prayer in church!

We read books and see TV programs about the Amish. But I’m learning of a very human dimension. Most have a God-given inquisitiveness. Apprentices in life. Unfortunately, it’s that freelancing curiosity and resourcefulness that can get their teens in trouble. And it’s often those with imagination, goals, and aspirations that don’t fit the conformity – the solidarity – of the Amish who leave for the “outside” life.

If you’d like to learn more about Swartzentruber Amish and Brenda’s “kids” from that culture, check out her blog:

Beyond Buggies and Bonnets

 www.BrendaNixonOnAmish.blogspot.com

Follow Brenda on Twitter

Thank you for sharing your stories, Brenda! You’re welcome to comeback anytime.

Amish–What Intrigues You?

amish_boysWe here all love the Amish. At least I assume you do or else you wouldn’t be reading this. But each of us has something special they love most of all about these conservative and inspirational people.

I can remember the first time I heard about the Amish. I was young–still young enough to be living at home–though I can’t remember my exact age. I thought the person who was telling me about the Amish was not telling me the truth. How could these people live without electricity? Wear old-fashioned clothes and drive horse and buggies? In the 20th century even. How was this even possible? But I started reading up on the Amish and found out what I could, which wasn’t a lot. (Keep in mind here this is before the internet and the world was a much larger place.) But I found out one very important thing–the Amish were real.

I still have that same awe about them now–one that makes me nearly tongue-tied whenever I have the opportunity to talk with them. (I know, right? Me speechless!) But to me they are that special, frozen in time. And yet not. They see the world around them , but they (for the most part) choose not to live in that manner. Instead they carve out their life in an old fashion way that is both commendable and charming.

So I’ve asked myself why I find the Amish so intriguing and each day my answer is different. But the gist of it is always the same. Community. I love the fact that they live together, depend on themselves, each other and God for almost all that they need. How much better a place the entire world would be if we paid more attention to community instead of just ourselves.

What is it about the Amish that intrigues you?