“May I? Pleeease Mom!”
Brown eyes danced with anticipation as my seven-year-old waited for her answer.
Daniel’s oldest brother Tobias and his wife Fannie suggested that Hosanna would visit Ohio and spend a week with them. As I thought about it, she seemed like such a little thing; still, I knew in my heart that it would be another step toward growing up.
Another phone conversation with Tobias’ confirmed the plan.
“You mean I may go to be their Maud?!” She bubbled. (Maud is a Dutch word we use for a hired girl who helps with housework)
“Yes, you may,” I smiled, hugging the bouncy little girl.
A family friend who drives for Amish folks planned to travel to Ohio and take the girls with her the following morning.
“Julia will also go with you to Ohio and stay at Aunt Mary’s house,” I explained.
Hosanna was pleased with the idea; the rest of the day was spent dreaming about the trip to Ohio and all that would happen during their stay.
Julia chipped in and helped me by mowing the yard, packing clothes, and getting things squared away to help over her absence.
At last, it was time for bed.
By 12:15, Hosanna was wide awake, ready to leave for Ohio. My efforts of soothing her back to sleep proved futile; one thing was genuine in her little mind- she would soon be leaving for Ohio!
At 2:00 a.m., both girls were dressed and ready to go. Under the canopy of twinkling stars, I walked with them down the sidewalk and out to the van. We loaded their suitcases and a purse with snacks and activities and buckled them in.
I absorbed it all: two girls, sisters by adoption, wearing purple dresses and the biggest smiles ever. My heart swelled for them. After the last hugs, kisses, and blessings, the door was shut, and the van drove out of the driveway into the night.
Under the stars that night, I took the opportunity to talk to God. Life scenes from bygone years marched before me. “These are the same stars that twinkled overhead when I was a girl, I mused, “And the same driver who, 15 years ago, repeatedly brought Daniel from Ohio to see me is now taking our daughters to Ohio… Daniel’s earthly work is now complete…” My thoughts tumbled faster than I could organize them.
After a while, I crept back into the house and into our empty bedroom. Again, my thoughts and prayers blended into one; the clock kept ticking on.
Later when I heard the rooster crowing, I knew I must have fallen asleep at one point.
That morning after breakfast, there were lots of little things I hoped to accomplish; it seemed like I could float around the house having fewer duties with only four children. On the other hand, it was like half of our family was missing. Repeatedly I cried out to God to lead me, to take me through these days according to his plan.
Later when I spoke with Hosanna on the phone, she had glowing reports of hitching Tobias’ pony in the little wagon, their horseback riding, and spending time with cousins. Though she sometimes missed her mom, I know she’s in good hands. You can only imagine how eager one mama is to make a trip to Ohio on Thursday, see her two girls again, and bring them back home!
The boys were pleased with the idea of going to Ohio with their cousins, including the newest addition to the Yoder family, named Jordan Daniel, born to Uncle Samuel and his wife. Precious.
Perhaps we’ll catch up on the Ohio trip later, but for now, I’ll be chasing after the little boys who ran out to play on our new swing set. A reader (whom we no longer have an address for) gifted us money for a swing set. The children and their friends have spent countless hours on it. Thank you many times over!
This week I’ll pass on a zucchini pie recipe my editor shared. I was impressed with this recipe, it looks like a keeper to me; we’ll be using it with our excess squash.
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