Most families this week with children are busily working on getting everyone ready to start the new school year right after Labor Day or perhaps trying to grab one last family vacation before that old yellow school bus pulls up in front of the house.
Jeanette and I took a trip back in time to my 55th year class reunion in Smithville, Ohio last weekend. We had a great time getting re-acquainted with my old class mates – many of whom I went to school with for all twelve years at Smithville. In elementary school, each grade had just one teacher and just one room where all of the subjects were taught. It wasn’t until High School that we moved around to different classrooms and had different teachers depending upon the subjects taught. As I look back, my class mates were truly more like brother and sisters.
On Saturday, we visited the East Union Bulk Food store near Orville, Ohio. This store is near to the part of Ohio where I grew up in and the Amish lifestyle is very similar to the lifestyle which was practiced by the students who went to the Smithville Schools and to the Mennonites who live in the Smithville, Ohio area. Our mission was to buy a ring of Trail Bologna and some cheese with horseradish in it. Man, do I like sandwiches made from Trail Bologna!
Behind the store was beautiful Amish garden with flowers, ripe tomatoes, corn, and potatoes for winter storage – the very basic kinds of foods that my Mother raised in her garden. The Amish are masters at raising gardens that not only look beautiful to the eye but produce the healthy kinds of vegetables that sustain their hard working lifestyles.
Back home on the old Bupp Family Farm, the house where I grew up in looks much like it looked fifty years ago. I can still see my mother tending to her geraniums on the front porch. Her garden is gone now as it is too easy just to go to the store and buy a can of tomatoes. But I am glad that the family living there today has flowers on the front porch. Flowers make all of the difference in the world!