Lovina recalls fond childhood memories
Lovina reflects on family memories, funny things grandkids say and more, plus offers a recipe for Chicken Alfredo Bake.
We have had mild winter weather so far this month. This morning it is raining, and the mercury in the thermometer is down to 30 degrees. It’s cold enough to turn to ice. Hopefully everyone will have safe travels if it does freeze.
My husband Joe and sons Benjamin and Joseph have left for work. I want to get this column written before I leave this forenoon, so I decided to do it right away. The coffee is brewing and should be ready soon. It sounds windy outside. Some schools are closing today due to the roads becoming dangerous later.
Recently, granddaughter Abigail, 6, was asking her mother (daughter Elizabeth) if she knew any of the parents of the children in her class. Elizabeth told her she knew Mariana’s Daddy Ritchie because he was her bus driver when she went to school. Abigail said, “What? He lived that long?”
We had a good laugh about that. Richie drove the bus for all our eight children during their school years. Now his daughter Mariana is one of Abigail’s good friends in school.
Friday, we had a delicious supper at Elizabeth and Tim’s house. Andrea enjoyed the attention when we sang "Happy Birthday" to her. On the menu were cheesy ranch potatoes, meatballs, lettuce salad, homemade bread, butter, jam, pickles, hot peppers, chips, cherry pie, cupcakes, and ice cream. After supper, we played games. It was an enjoyable evening with family. We have so many blessings! Do I thank God enough?
Sunday, we attended church. It was hosted by a family who lives one and a half miles from here. It was a nice day but chilly in the morning. Benjamin, Joseph, and Grace (Joseph’s special friend) decided to walk to church. It was 50 degrees by midafternoon. It gave us all spring fever. We spent the rest of the day at home. Daughter Verena told us to come to her house for supper, but it was just good to stay home and relax in our recliners.
Monday morning, I was in slow mode and was taking my time gathering the laundry to wash. A minivan drove in around 10:30, and it was Uncle Joe and Aunt Betty from Geneva, Indiana. I decided to visit and wait to do laundry until after they left. I set out some snacks and coffee, and we had a good visit with them. Daughter Loretta and 7-month-old Denzel were here for the day too. Uncle Joe will be 81 on Feb. 25, so we wish him a happy birthday. My dad is an older brother to Joe and would have been 92 on Feb. 17. Dad passed away 23 years ago at age 69. He was a good father, and I will always treasure the memories I have of him.
Albert Jr., the oldest of my dad’s siblings, had his 93rd birthday in January. My dad had 12 siblings, and he was the second oldest. There were ten boys and three girls. Uncle Bill (William) is 84; Uncle Menno, 83; Uncle Bobby (Robert), 82; Uncle Melvin, 77; and the youngest of the siblings is Amos, 75. Six of the siblings have passed away. My uncles are all full of fun, and the Coblentz reunions are never dull. May they all have great health in the future ahead.
My favorite memory is when the Coblentzes decided to have a full-out water battle. It wouldn’t stop until every member that didn’t find safety somewhere was wet. One time at our house, my dad climbed up the windmill steps and jumped on the roof of the buggy shed with a five-gallon bucket of water for protection. Anyone daring to come up after him would get the bucket of water on them. What kept everyone away even more was the idea that he dipped the water from the livestock water tank. We had a lot of fun back then when the Coblentz family gathered. Precious memories — how they linger! God’s blessings to all!
Chicken Alfredo Bake
1 pound spaghetti
2 cups cooked chicken, cubed
1 16-ounce jar alfredo sauce
1 10.5-ounce can cream of mushroom soup
1 4-ounce can mushroom pieces
1 pound Velveeta, cubed
Cook and drain the spaghetti, then add the rest of the ingredients and combine well. Bake in a greased casserole dish at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until thoroughly heated.
Lovina Eicher is an Old Order Amish writer, cook, wife, and mother of eight. Readers can write to her at PO Box 1689, South Holland, IL 60473 (please include a self-addressed stamped envelope for a reply); or email LovinasAmishKitchen@MennoMedia.org and your message will be passed on to her.