Well, after my mom passed away, I went to visit my friend, Lydia, in Smicksburg, PA. She had just lost her sister-in-law to a heart attack. As we walked around her two greenhouses, sharing our grief, I wondered what it would be like if Lydia and I lived across the street from each other and could talk everyday. I've learned so much from her about the Amish way of life, I then thought....I have a story to tell. The major life-lessons my Amish friends in NY and PA taught me.
In the book is a man named Eli Hershberger. He's my late friend, Harry Hershberger. He became a paraplegic after his buggy was hit while he was on his way to help put out an Englisher's fire. The Amish built a variety shop onto his house so he could have a source of income. I'll never forget asking Harry how much a cord of wood was, as we usually put up 30 cord in Upstate NY. Harry looked at me baffled...he didn't know. The Amish community had always provided all the wood he needed, since his wife couldn't go out and split logs and tend to him.
My book , Knit Together: An Amish Knitting Novel, published by Trestle Press, just came out as an ebook and will be a paperback before Christmas 2011. What a dream to not only have a novel, but to have one about the lessons I learned from my Amish friends. I'm just as excited to partner with Christian Aid Ministries, an Amish/Mennonite charity in Berlin, OH. In the front of the book is a knitting pattern for mittens. The Amish/English knitting circle in the town not only hold the town's harmony together, but knit for charity together, and they're making mittens for orphans in Eastern Europe. Operation Knit Together is announced in the front of the book, asking reader to knit the mittens and send them to CAM. They will distribute them to orphans in Eastern Europe.
If you'd like to read my book and knit along in a virtual worldwide knitting circle, you can get the book at the link below.