County Seat Newspaper
of Clare County

Amish Cook-Bubble Up Pizza


Seventeen children came beaming in the doorway. There was a slight shuffling as they placed their coats on the couch and lined up in three rows to sing. Our country school next door was having a special day, and we got to be a part of it. The three little boys and I stood at the doorway and listened as the lower grades sang a favorite of mine.

Their innocent voices blend in unison, singing those precious words, “Nobody loves me like you love me, Jesus...”

 As their song faded, grades five through eight took over with their turn. This specific song had intrigued me years ago before we were married, now in the last year when I heard it again, I sparked. How profound. Singing in harmony, their voices beautifully blended with equally beautiful words.

I closed my eyes and let it soak in deeply. “...I’m too near home with my Lord, too near home with heaven’s reward, to turn back now!”

 All too soon the song was past. Filing through the kitchen they filled their plates with snacks and candy I had set out for them. I couldn’t help but notice how contentedly they stood in line, waiting on their turn. “Must be some teachers are doing their part in training them,” I mused.

 Everyone found spots to sit down while we snacked and chatted. Julia and I laughed as we rehashed the evening before when she was trying to figure out what the special event at school would be. Though the teachers had not given them details, they had told them to wear everyday clothes. Julia had her curious mind spinning wide open, determined to figure out the mystery, at the same time not wanting to know it, so as not to ruin the fun of a surprise.

  Behind the children’s backs I had prepared cookie batter and various things for the children to do after the teachers had offered for them all to come help us for an hour. A clue paper of where they would go next, was written and hidden where one of the children would find it while sweeping.

 Now watching Julia in the kitchen with her friends, I savored the moment. Hosanna was chatting with the younger children, and Austin was in the living room with the boys.

 As soon as we were done with snack the teachers asked what project I have lined up for them. Again my heart was warmed; yes, we missed Daniel on a day as such, yet it was touching to see all these little (and some bigger) hands, here to help and show they cared.

I gave the teachers an outline of some cleaning, followed by kitchen work including making energy balls and baking cookies. “And here in this wicker basket are baker’s aprons and hats for the girls to wear, which have been gifted to us by column readers.” This brought smiles to their faces.

Without much ado the two teachers, both young girls in their twenties, had everything planned and in place.

I stepped out on the porch to give the three oldest boys instructions on moving the electro-netting to provide fresh pasture for the sheep. They went at it with gusto, it was obvious they knew what they were doing. When I stepped back in the kitchen windows were shining and a fresh clean smell mingled with the aroma of fresh cookies. A couple of the girls had replaced their traditional head covering with baker’s caps, matching their aprons, sweetly shaping energy balls.

“Gloria, your sheep are out by the flower bed!” Someone exclaimed.

I debated. I was knee deep into various projects...this time of they year they won’t really ruin anything, and surely they won’t go anywhere until the new fence is up.

Moments later, a little girl told me that all eight of them were heading out the driveway and walking toward the schoolhouse. I sprinted into action. Running to the barn, I grabbed a bucket of feed. I handed it to Julia who offered to go after them. With the help of her friend Bethany, they soon had them herded back home and into the new pasture. Almost as quickly as they had come, they were gone again, to bless others. The aroma of fresh cleanliness and gratitude could be felt as I walked through the house absorbing these golden moments.

A lift such as this seems to provide a boost for more than just a day, giving me extra time to work in the kitchen, which I have come to enjoy once more. Join our family for this one-of-a-kind pizza. Daniel loved when I’d make it in the first years we were married. It provides you with that pizza flavor without the work that generally goes into a pizza.


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