How can one put so many feelings into words? My heart filled with joy as I watched my “baby “brother, now 22, join hands with the beautiful bride by his side. After a nine-month period of dating, that is, spending time together on Sunday afternoons with hands-off courtship, they stood in front of the bishops to exchange vows. These vows of loving, cherishing and caring for one another will remain the same until death parts them.
Jeriah’s new wife, Esther, has become a dear friend to me, so with joy we welcome her as part of our family. Her expertise in cooking will undoubtedly keep Jeriah well-fed and nourished. And Jeriah has always been a favorite uncle for his nieces and nephews as he captures their attention, dramatically telling all sorts of stories. Not only is he the best storyteller I know, he is an avid writer, bringing to life any simple incident. Perhaps you’ll get a taste of his writing sometime if I need someone to fill in!
Julia and Austin felt quite honored to be “sundae servers” along with other nieces and nephews ranging from ages 2 to 5. To me it was the cutest part of the day: the six little ones each carried a sundae to the bridal party of six in the “Eck” (a Pennsylvania Dutch word for “wedding corner,” a special spot with is decorated and specially set for the bride and groom). They all wore lavender or tan which blended well with their color theme.
The 36 servers wore purple and beige, while the 14 noon cooks wore a deep lavender.
In my opinion, it was an attractive wedding in so many ways. On each long table, which accommodated 30 people, they had a strip of burlap down the center and used purple and cream-colored mats and white plates. On the tables were candleholders which resembled little lanterns and vases with carnation arrangements. Interestingly, the vases were actually glass juice bottles that had the labels removed and were painted purple and lavender with strips of burlap and lavender ribbon glued onto them. Their names and the date of their wedding topped it off and served as beautiful keepsakes for the servers to take along home.
One of the highlights of my day was simply sitting beside my husband, enjoying the delicious wedding meal of mashed potatoes, stuffing, gravy, barbecued chicken, corn, corn chips salad, bread with butter and homemade jam and grape Jell-O desserts, pie and special ice cream sundaes. Matter of fact, at our table where the immediate family ate lunch, we were served something extra special. Even though this is something that is not usually done, Jeriah and Esther decided that they would like to treat all of us to ice cream sundaes similar to what they have in the “Eck.”
Even better than all this amazing food was just relaxing after all our hard work and watching others enjoy the day, the food and the pleasant fellowship.
I’ve never figured out quite why a day as such passes so swiftly. After singing half a dozen songs that Jeriah and Esther had picked out for everyone to sing in the afternoon, we watched as the new couple, along with their four witnesses, unwrapped their wedding presents.
This part is always a highlight for the little children. Julia has just been waiting for this occasion. With interest, little ones sit in the front row watching as the gifts are unwrapped; then they rescue the pretty bows and ribbons from the piles of gift-wrap that gets tossed under the table.
By the time the gifts were unwrapped, the evening cooks (most of which were aunts and uncles to Esther) had supper ready.
For supper, instead of sitting at tables and passing the food, we had four food lines where we all filed through to fill our plates.
Of course, after a day with 300 guests in one building, there’s untold organizing, clean up and tasks that need to be done. Thankfully many hands make light work . By 7 p.m., the benches and chairs were all stacked and the reception tables were cleared and loaded up. The following day, some of us went back to Mom and Dad’s, where the wedding had been, to help get things back in place. The men did final cleanup and moved the shop equipment back into the proper spots. And the ladies sorted the dishes that were to be returned to our community folks, did more cleanup and put leftovers in containers for Jeriah and Esther to take home.
By lunchtime, almost everything was cleaned and organized. Then we enjoyed the meal of wedding leftovers. The chicken and pie are on top of Daniel’s list, while the salad is probably my favorite. Julia and Austin said that the ice cream sundaes were tops. They’re easy to put together, and your imagination is the limit to what kind of sundae you can put together. Of course, Daniel and I like eating ours with peanut butter.
AMISH WEDDING SUNDAES
1/3 cup crushed Oreos in the bottom of a cup
3/4 cup ice cream
2 to 4 tablespoons chocolate syrup
Whipped topping (optional)
Peanut butter (optional)
Set aside a tablespoon or two of the Oreo crumbs and put the rest in the bottom of a clear dessert cup. Put ice cream on top of the crumbs and then sprinkle the reserved Oreo crumbs on top of the ice cream. Drizzle chocolate syrup on top of it and optional whipped topping and a dab of peanut butter.
Readers can write or visit Gloria at 10437 E. 300th Ave., Flat Rock, IL 62427.