High’s At Our House for Lunch

Sunday, February 11

When we heard that Reuben, Judi, and their family were visiting from Wisconsin, we knew that we needed to have another family get-together. 🙂

Because there are always last minute things to do before lunch, we came home after Sunday school and listened to the church service by cell phone. Since the boys were still here, and Josh was coming for lunch, they sat around the table while I quietly worked next to them in the kitchen.

They each wrote a few sermon notes on back of the bulletin – for their parents who were in New Zealand.

I almost forgot to take pictures – until someone said they needed to leave. That is Judi and Reuben closest to the camera – with Cerwin, his brother Elvin, our nephew Don (standing) and his son Jeremy (in the background).

Cerwin’s sister Velda helping her great-granddaughter Audrina with her coat.

In this picture Judi is looking at pictures of her sister Juanita’s house. Mel and Velda visited Juanita on their way home from Florida a few weeks ago.

Audrina and her grandpa Rod preparing to head home. Next to them is my step-mother, Velma, talking to our brother-in-law Mel.

Mother Hershey likes to keep in touch with the High’s – as she and Mother High were good friends, and the two of them often went with us when we visited Cerwin’s sister in Minnesota.

Reuben and Judi (right) have amazing parent-hearts and have adopted three children. If you follow my blog, you may remember when they lived with us for several weeks a few years ago during their son’s adoption – and the ups and downs of that situation.

Their youngest is a beautiful, special needs little girl.

The other two were in the man cave being entertained by our grandsons.

I wanted Little Man to smile for the camera, but he kept making funny faces at me. 🙂 Josh is a good friend to them as well. Even though they don’t see him very often, they always remember him.

Meanwhile, Little Miss enjoyed watching Jesse play a game. As you can see, it didn’t take long for them to renew their friendship.


We enjoyed a bit of time with Reuben and Judi after the others went home. It was good to catch up on their lives. Visiting with them was like old times when they lived with us.

Sauder Cousin’s

Wednesday, January 31

This lunch is at Oregon Dairy on the last Wednesday of January, April, July, and October.

It was started many years ago in order to get the Sauder siblings (our parents) together when they were no longer able to drive. Even though most of our parents are celebrating in Heaven, we (mostly retired) cousins enjoy the opportunity to get together for this lunch. Uncle John, Amos, and Luke are still living, but stay close to home because of their age.

There are usually about twenty (more or less). Some are regulars, others come when they are in the area.

It was especially fun to see Gloria (light green) who lives in Ohio and catch up on her family.

This time there were prayer requests for a cousin who fell and broke her hip and a male cousin who is fighting cancer. There were praises for expected grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and family weddings.

Love catching up on Cerwin’s family.

Baby Shower for Jared and Chelsey – Part 2

Saturday Evening, January 20

Guest tables were also decorated with children’s books.

There was lots of visiting going on among the guests.

Jared’s Grandpa Harnly and Cerwin share a love of gospel and bluegrass music and enjoyed catching up.

Friends from out of state talking to my sister, Nancy. Notice her sling. She broke her arm when she fell on the ice a few weeks ago.

Chelsey (center) wanted to pose with her four pregnant friends. They are in line by due date – with the one on the right being closest to her due date.

L to R: Jenna (our granddaughter), Sophie, Chelsey, and sorry I don’t know the names of the two on the right.

Time to open gifts.

Chelsey’s nieces Miranda and Kylee enjoyed the gifts. 🙂

I am not sure how this “story time” started, but I was called to this scene of Jared reading a child’s book to four of his friends. 🙂

Guests were asked to bring a signed children’s book in place of a card.

This was a book that had a lot of “touchy feely” things, so the guys touched them with lots of ooh’s and aah’s.

It’s amazing how quickly a grown man can turn into a child. 🙂

Opening more gifts.

A gift that was handmade by her mom – my sister.

That was a fun evening.

High Family Luncheon

Sunday, January 14

The tables are set and ready for our guests – Cerwin’s siblings and their families were coming to see Bob and Doris (Cerwin’s sister) who were visiting from Minnesota.

Cerwin and I provided soup (cheeseburger and chili con carne) and sandwiches. The others brought the rest of the items.

Somebody brought these delicious cupcakes.

Cerwin, Mother Hershey (she likes to stay in touch with Bob and Doris), Jakey, Bailey, and Crystal.

I enjoyed the day so much that I didn’t take many pictures. 🙂

Bob and Doris are on the left. Next to them is Dorretta, Rod, Velda (Cerwin’s sister), Mel, Peyton, and Elvin (Cerwin’s brother). We didn’t have a large group, but all the seats were eventually filled and several others came later in the afternoon.


Before the meal, I read something that I wrote the night before, because Jeff was the only person who was able to represent our children and grandchildren.

I said, ” I miss Mother High when a lot of stuff is happening in our family because she was so interested in her children, grandchildren, great grandchildren and great-great grandchildren’s lives.” It was always fun to have interesting things to tell her – and each time we visited, she remembered who was doing what.

I said, for that reason I am going to bore you with saga of our family today:

Just in case you think life gets boring when people get old and all their children and most of their grandchildren are grown.

 Or if you wonder why so few of our family members are here: 

Jeff’s family

Chris is in Sarasota, Florida, to help clerk the Haiti Benefit Auction – which was the day before.

Jordan is at a Potter County hunting cabin with friends.

Diana messaged me that she is sick.

It did not fit into Dustan, Jenna, Nate, and Gloria’s schedule..

Diane’s family

Five live in Maine – where Hannah is recovering from hernia surgery.

Josiah is trucking – and is in Kansas City, Kansas.

Nate, Abby, and Anthony are on their way to Tennessee for a ministry reunion.

Hezekiah lives in Tennessee. 

Lydia lives with us – and recently began working in the kitchen at Lancaster General Hospital. She is at a cabin with a group of girls.

 Jere’s family

Jere is Florida – west of Tampa – with DHIA (his job)

Kristen is sick in bed with the flu

Josh is on the way – flying – to Montana to visit his friend Sam. (I learned later that his flight was canceled and he didn’t leave until the next morning.)

Jana is overseas in Jordan with Youth With A Mission. 

Roy and Deb

Have friends visiting from New York – they are in Pennsylvania to possibly purchase the house next door to Roy and Deb.


Nsimba and Elizabeth are expecting a baby in early June

Dustan and Jenna are expecting a baby in late July


Cerwin and I and Jere’s family are in the midst of taking meds to keep us from getting typhoid, hepatitis, and malaria because In just over six weeks we are heading to Cape Town, South Africa, to see Jana – and go on a wildlife safari.

 Wouldn’t Daddy and Mother High love to know all that is going on with our families…and that Japheth and Aimee and Eric and Megan are also expecting babies. That means there will be at least four new “High Family” babies this year.


Life is never boring in a large family. 🙂

Fun with Anthony

Tuesday, January 9

We had fun watching our great-grandson Anthony for a few hours. He came with a backpack full of animals.

He said the raccoon (which he is holding) is his favorite.

He loves watching story videos.

We watched a really fun one where the puppies and pigs were playing in mud and went home with the wrong family. The puppy had trouble convincing mamma pig that he was not a pig. 🙂 And a little pig went home with the puppy’s family. After “accidental” baths, the families realized their mistakes and the animals got back to their real family.

Our next project was making four coffee cup cakes in the microwave.

I had never used these, so got a large coffee cup to make sure it wouldn’t cook over.

After adding a packet of mix we added milk – I think it was three tablespoons.

Mixing the ingredients

The finished product. This one was for grandpa.

It looks like we can use a smaller cup for the next one.

Next we made my cake.

We put his cakes in two paper coffee cups with lids so they would be easy to take home.

I didn’t take any pictures of our next project – playing Jenga. I found the loose block and he pulled it out. He loved when the tower fell. 🙂 His mama came when we were playing that game.


That was a delightful afternoon.

New Year’s Day in Maine

Monday, January 1

The chilly view from our bedroom window on the first day of 2018.

It wasn’t as cold as Saturday (minus 21) but the temperature was still below zero.

The view from the dining area of their kitchen – looking toward the White Mountains of New Hampshire.

How do birds not freeze to death on frigid days like this?

Diane listening to a birthday wish from one of her siblings.

We chose to stay inside and play games on this wintry day. Mark was working, so it was just the three of us.

Mark walked into the room with his right arm behind his back, then presented Diane with these pretty flowers.

Mark brought Nsimba along for the afternoon. He can easily go by their house on the way home from work, and Elizabeth was working at the pharmacy – near Mark and Diane’s house. (They were having supper with us and didn’t have to go home in two vehicles.)

Supper was roast beef and sauerkraut.

Mashed sweet potatoes.

Brussels sprouts and blueberries. (We saw the recipe for this on Home and Family when she was at our house. It was delicious.)

Hannah stayed after supper and played Golf with us.

Golf with Skip-Bo cards.


It was a good start to a new year.

Family Babies

We prepared a slide show of our family’s baby pictures for our Christmas celebrations this year – asking everyone to identify the baby.

I can now post these – after showing these to our Maine family on December 31.

For this post, they are in order of age and family.

My step-mother, Velma











Speaking of babies – these two (Dustan and Jenna) just announced that they are going to have a baby in July!. 🙂 That will make us great-grandparents again – and you can call Jeff and Chris “grandpa and grandma”. 🙂







Nsimba (he doesn’t have a baby picture)






Elijah (he only lived for five months – from a heart deformity)













That’s our family as babies – as of today. We are at a stage in life, where things are continually changing due to having 16 grandchildren. 🙂

Saturday in Maine

Saturday, December 30

We woke up to a frigid Maine morning – minus 21 degrees at the coldest.

I went outside after it had warmed a few degrees to capture a few photos.

A picnic at their outside table did not look inviting. (We were home only a few days when Diane sent us another picture of this table – after another foot of snow.)

The porch rocking chair did not look inviting either.

Nor could we talk anyone into grilling a meal for us.

Remember their beautiful raised garden boxes from this past summer. They are now mere lumps in the yard.

The beautiful bushes are now glistening under ice and snow.

It is no wonder we spent all day inside – visiting and playing games.

Diane taught us a new game – that we enjoyed – and played several times throughout the day.