Saturday, May 31, 2014


It's that time of year when rhubarb is beginning to appear on the Amish dessert menus. Rhubarb pie, rhubarb pudding, rhubarb cookies, rhubarb cobbler, and oh horrors! even a rhubarb drink they will serve cheerfully with Sunday afternoon popcorn.

I never liked rhubarb, and LV absolutely loathes it. While we were Amish we made a point of politely declining dinner invitations during rhubarb season to make sure we wouldn't be stuck trying to choke down the one food we disliked the most.

Personally I don't think rhubarb was ever meant to be eaten. Since we have left the Amish we have happily been rhubarb free, and are no longer bombarded with rhubarb "treats" made by hopeful cooks sure if we would try their rhubarb creation we would learn to like it. It's nice not having it shoved at us every where we turn. Makes springtime a little more enjoyable.

Thursday, May 29, 2014


The Amish enjoy quotes and will often jot any down that they like.

I don't remember many of them, but a few that I heard often while growing up have stuck with me.
Use it up,
Wear it out,
Make it do,
Or do without.
It is not happy people who are thankful. ...... It is thankful people who are happy.
Habits are first cobwebs, then cables.
It is better to give others a piece of your heart than a piece of your mind.
He who is not content with little, will never be content with much. 
Speak kind words and you will hear kind echoes

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Wednesday Hodgepodge

1. What news story are you following right now?

Yesterday people were out searching for a small airplane that had crashed. Someone had seen it go down and called 911. The weather was terrible with torrential downpours, but that didn't keep the community from coming out and helping with the search.

They found what the person had seen, simply a bunch of birthday balloons that had been swept away in the wind.

I'm glad it wasn't a plane crash, I'm also glad I wasn't the person that called 911 to report it.

2. What's the last thing you wanted but didn't get?

A rack of ribs. I find most grocery runs I have to leave things there that I want, but don't really need.

3. May 28th is National Hamburger Day...when did you last have a hamburger? Other than your own kitchen or BBQ grill, where is your favorite place to go for a hamburger? And for all you non-meat eaters out there...when you're invited to a cookout what is the one side dish you hope is on the menu?

We have burgers several times a week. Last time I had one was on Monday. If I go out to eat I never order a hamburger. Beef is my least favorite meat, so if I have the option to have fish or some kind of seafood I'll take it, with chicken and pork being my number two and three choices.

4. How have your priorities changed over time?

I don't think they have changed. My children are still my top priority, the house doesn't have to be perfect, I will pass up on "opportunities" if they would hurt the most important part of my life, quality time with my family.

5. What's a favorite memory with your grandparents?

Oh my, there are so many of them. One of the things I treasure the most though was the year before my Grandpa passed away I would go to their house every evening with some kind of little treat I had cooked or baked. Grandpa was bedridden and hardly had an appetite, but he looked forward to seeing what I would bring, the next hour or two he would spend telling me memories of his childhood, teenaged years, and early married life.

6. On a scale of 1-10 (with 10 being fantastic!), how good are you at multitasking? Share an example.

When it comes to working in the kitchen, a ten. I don't have a problem cooking a big meal and having to multi task to make it all come together at the right time.

Out of the kitchen, maybe an 8 or 9. I usually have multiple things going at one time, even when I'm sewing it is common to have Buddy perched on a chair next to me with a book that I read to him.

7. How would you summarize your highs and lows for the month of May?

May was a very pleasant month filled with ordinary days. I can't think of any highs or lows.

8.  Insert your own random thought here. 

There are half a dozen tomato plants sitting on the porch waiting to be planted. With all the rain we have been having it looks like it will still be a couple of days before they get transplanted. I'm hoping they do well, we live in a hollow where wildlife roams freely. Deer and raccoons I'm fearing will be our biggest troublemakers.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Pow-wow Doctors

Pow-wowing is a practice that seems to be disappearing from the Amish, though some of the more conservative churches still believe and practice it.

My parents did not believe that it was something to get involved in, but that didn't keep others from trying to get them to visit their well loved pow-wow doctors whom they thought could cure everything from shyness, all physical ailments, to infertility.

I never could understand how chanting several specific Bible verses three times, then spinning around and quoting them backwards six times was supposed to heal anything. There was a whole list of creepy remedies, but of course only someone with the "gift" of pow-wowing could do them.

I only ever watched something being performed once, it involved a piece of red cloth, and an egg which was wrapped into the cloth that had been rubbed all over my little brother. It was then placed in some hot ashes and when it exploded the doctor claimed he was healed.

My parents were not at all happy with the "doctor", especially since they had not given permission for that ritual to be performed.

Saturday, May 24, 2014


An average Amish church has one bishop, two ministers, and a deacon.

When a new church starts, or a district becomes large enough that it is time to have it divided it means it is also time to ordain new ministers.

Ordinations occur on the day of communion, which makes a long day even longer. Communion is usually over around 4 PM and then it's time for the ordination proceedings to begin. Visiting bishops, ministers, deacons, and of course any of the home districts ministry go to a room away from where services had been held and one by one the members will take turns going to the door of that room and whispering the name of the man they think would make a good minister.

After the votes have been counted the ministry will file back into the room carrying a stack of songbooks each held shut with a rubber band and place them on a little table at the front of the room. They will then call the names of all the men that had received three or more votes. They come forward and take a book and sit on a bench that has been cleared for them.

The bishop will open the books one by one looking for a little piece of paper they had tucked into one of the song books. When the paper is found it indicates that God has chosen that man to be a minister.  Lots of crying follows, as the bishop places his hands on the new ministers head and ordains him to now be a messenger of God.

In order to ordain a new bishop all ministers in that district have to have been a minister for two years. Until that happens a bishop from another district will care for that church too. Bishops are chosen much the same way, but instead of voting for any man only ministers are eligible to become a bishop.

Being ordained is often not the choice of the person being ordained, and it is a lifetime commitment. Now on top of all their usual responsibilities they also need to lead a church, unpaid.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Nursery Rhymes

The Amish have some of their own nursery rhymes and lullabies.

A favorite of mine when I was a little girl was one about rabbits in the yard. Sung in Pennsylvania Dutch and rhyming perfectly.

The first verse had black rabbits that wanted to bite the baby, the next verse white rabbits wanted to scratch the baby, long eared rabbits with little feet think the baby smells sweet, short eared rabbits with big feet chase the baby around the garden, little rabbits with cute noses think the baby smells like cheese, some more rabbits think the baby is lost, while others think it's cross.

By the end of the song I would envision a yard filled with every rabbit imaginable and be glad I was safely snuggled in Mom's lap.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Wednesday Hodgepodge

1. Under what circumstances do you do your best thinking?

My best thinking occurs when everything is nice and quiet, somehow waking up at 2 AM seems to be the time when I can think the clearest of all.

2. Are you a risk taker? What's one big risk you've taken?

I am not a big risk taker as far as doing something just for the sake of doing it, especially if there is no chance of something being gained by taking the risk.

The latest risk we took was probably when we chose to move. It was a risk that was worth taking and we're glad we did.

3. Some of the most common phobias according to the National Institute for Mental Health are-fear of spiders (arachnaphobia), snakes (ophidiophobia), heights (acrophobia), fear of spaces from which escape is difficult (agoraphobia), fear of thunder and lightening (astrophobia), fear of dogs (cynophobia), injections (trypanophobia), social situations, flying (pteromerhanophobia) and fear of germs and dirt (mysophobia). True phobias affect only about 10% of adults, but of those listed which would you rate as your greatest fear?

Of those listed I can't decide between ophidiophobia and acrophobia as my greatest fear. I loathe, abhor, despise, and fear snakes. Even seeing a picture of a snake makes me shiver, shudder, and squeeze my eyes shut. Heights also paralyze me, I get dizzy and lock up unable to move which makes it even worse.

4. Are you settled or do you feel the need to move somewhere new?

I'm feeling very settled in the area we live in. I'm hoping to live here for the rest of my life.

5. What is something you find annoying when dining in a restaurant?

If I'm at a nice restaurant I find it annoying when a person at the next table has an obnoxiously loud cell phone conversation. I also find it very annoying when the waitress doesn't keep my water filled.

6. Daffodil yellow, sunset orange, spring green, or sky blue...your favorite color this time of year?

The spring green leaves of the maple tree right outside the window and the beautiful blue skies are my favorite colors of spring.

7. If you were going to take a holiday all by yourself, where would you go?

I can't think of any place I would want to be all by myself. A holiday without LV wouldn't be much of a holiday to me.

8.  Insert your own random thought here. 

The bear population seems to keep growing and we see them much more often than we used to. LV almost hit one on his way to work a few days ago, and on Sunday some fresh tracks were discovered. To me they're a little too close for comfort!

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Mystery Supper

The Amish youth will occasionally host a mystery supper for the entire community, or a family may decide to host one for the youth. Either way it is an evening of fun and laughter.

Upon arriving everyone will get a menu.

Everything is called by a vague hint of what it may be.


Swampy Nuggets are actually meatballs in a barbeque sauce.
Abundant cackleberries are stuffed eggs.
Snow mountain is mashed potatoes while volcanoes lava would be the gravy.

Sometimes utensils will be part of the menu. A fork could be called a Farmer's Right Hand.
Some mystery suppers include less friendly utensils, such as wooden spoons, ladles, meat forks, slotted spoons, or anything else that will provide amusement to basically everyone except the person struggling to eat with it.

Other times utensils and plates could be given a number and what you would be using to eat was simply the luck of the draw. You would keep your fingers crossed that the number you draw will not be matched with the giant mixing bowl for your plate and meat tongs as your only utensil.

Monday, May 19, 2014


The Amish language does not include a word for love.

As a child I was never told I was loved, and neither did my parents ever give me a hug. It wasn't that they didn't love me, it was simply that the Amish do not publicly display love in any form.

I never doubted that I was loved, I could tell that they found joy being with their children. We did everything together, working, playing, reading, laughing, talking. To my mother especially we were everything to her and her life revolved around her family.

If I had a choice, never hearing the words "I love you" and never receiving a hug, but still have the relationship and the joy of spending time together like my mother and I did, or hearing I love you a lot, but going our separate ways. I would choose the first. Living a life of love, does not make a child feel unloved even if they never hear the actual words.

I can't imagine not telling my children I love them, and to me those little arms being thrown around me in a bear hug will be memories I will treasure long after they are grown. I still enjoy spending time with my children in much the same way as my mother spent time with me.

Had we remained Amish I know things would be different, there would be no hugs, no words saying "I love you," but the love I have for my children would be the same and I know they would know I love them.

Saturday, May 17, 2014


Knitting is not that common among the Amish. Most choose to crochet or do embroidery instead.

My mother taught herself how to knit after finding some patterns to make bedroom slippers for her children.

Every fall once all the canning had been wrapped up for the season she would spend her evenings making each of us a new pair of slippers to wear around the house that winter. It was fun being able to choose the yarn from her stash of pretty colors and then watch the slippers being made.

She taught me the basics of knitting, but since I don't enjoy handwork I have totally neglected it, a half finished scarf is still tucked in my craft room waiting to be completed. It was started close to twenty years ago and I'm guessing it will be one of the items that will still be unfinished twenty years from now.

Friday, May 16, 2014


As children we loved jokes, anything for a laugh. At school on rainy day recesses it wasn't unusual to go through all the jokes we knew, some had their same old tired ones they said every time, but fresh jokes were always appreciated. We were constantly on the lookout for new ones, and we remembered them all to be used at the next opportunity.

Teenaged boys would often stand around before and after church laughing and telling each other the latest jokes they heard.

For some reason by the time girls graduated from school their days of telling jokes were basically over. Maybe they were a little more grown up?

Some married men still seemed to live to tell jokes. LV had an uncle like that, and one of my favorite uncles though he didn't simply sit around telling jokes, he sure knew how to keep his audiences laughing. I think he remembered ever humorous thing that ever happened in his life and he enjoyed regaling his listeners with his side splitting stories.

Having left the Amish, the memory of all the jokes started slipping away, but one day they came back with a flash.

LV was asked to deliver some hay and was told that a few people would be riding along to help with the unloading. Those few people happened to be three Amish boys. They had no clue he used to be Amish and he didn't bother telling them. The next few hours he was reminded how life used to be as they were telling him every joke they could think of.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Wednesday Hodgepodge

1. It's still May, right? When were you last in the middle of something that might be described as mayhem?

Only a few more rooms and I will officially be done with spring house cleaning. Yesterday we tackled the living room. It felt like a bit of a mayhem when everything was pulled apart.

A description I heard from a certain boy who apparently is tired of the whole housecleaning scene. "Housecleaning is the dumbest thing, you pull everything apart, make a huge mess, then put everything away and say it looks so much better now."

2. When did you last feel dismayed?

Nothing really serious, but I was a little dismayed when I went to pay some bills and discovered I was out of stamps.

3. What's a food combination you like, but other people may find strange?

Homemade bread slathered with butter and drowned in a heap of fresh peaches.

4. "It is never too late to be what you might have been." Do you think that's true? Why or why not?

I think it's both true and untrue. I think it's great to follow your dreams and live up to your potential even if you get a late start, but I do think there is a point in time when it is too late. This is why I like looking ahead and asking myself, "What will I consider to have been important once I'm eighty and looking back over my life?"

5. US News and World Report listed the best historic destinations in the US as follows-Washington D.C, Philadelphia PA, Williamsburg VA, Charleston SC, Boston MA, Richmond VA, Savannah, GA, Santa Fe NM, Yellowstone, San Antonio TX, San Francisco CA, New Orleans LA, and Charlottesville VA.

Of those listed how many have you seen in person? Which two sites on the list would you most like to see in person?

Been to:

Washington D.C.
Philadelphia PA
Charleston SC
Richmond VA
Charlottesville VA
Santa Fe NM

The two places I would like to see are:

Savannah GA

6. May is National Physical Fitness and Sports Month. If you had to participate in a single fitness activity for the next half hour, which activity would you choose?

Probably go for a walk.

7. What did you like best about the city, town, or neighborhood where you grew up?

The people, the fresh mountain air, actually it's hard  thinking of something I didn't like about the area I grew up.

8.  Insert your own random thought here. 

It's that time of year when hiking on nearby trails is a fun way to spend a few hours every once in a while.
LV has been dreaming of hiking the entire Appalachian Trail since before we were married. I don't think he ever will, but we are both enjoying following the details one of LV's friends is sharing about hiking the trail. He and his wife started in Georgia a little over a month ago, and are hoping to hike the entire distance of over 2,000 mile.

Hop over to their blog, Appalachian Journey,  to see their latest adventures.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Hickory Nut Tea

Hickory nuts, though a pain and a half to try getting out of their shell, are some of my favorite nuts.

Apparently they were the favorite nuts for one of my aunts as well. She chose to serve hickory nut tea as a special treat for the bridal party at her wedding.

We used to have several hickory nut trees on our property while I was growing up. We would gather just enough of the nuts to make a batch of tea, and leave the rest for the squirrels to tuck away for winter.

Thanksgiving was made complete by enjoying a cup of steaming hickory nut tea at bedtime, a delectable treat, that never lasted long enough.

Hickory Nut Tea

1/2 cup finely chopped hickory nuts (toasted)
1 cup water

Simmer until water has been reduced to about 1/2 cup and it has a nice golden brown color.


2-3 cups milk
Brown sugar to desired sweetness

Heat until hot, but not simmering.


Personally I think it's better than hot chocolate, but maybe that's only because it takes more effort and it was a once a year treat.

Monday, May 12, 2014


Grace was preached in the Amish churches, albeit different from what we now view grace to be.

So just what did we believe while we were Amish?

We believed Jesus was the Son of God and that He came to die in order to open the gates of heaven for all those who live a righteous life. We believed He was our perfect example on how to live life. Sunday after Sunday the preachers preached about grace, we will need it on judgement day they explained again and again. I can still hear them, "When we stand before God on judgement day and we step on the scales to see if we have lived a good enough life, if we did our best but still come up a little short that is when grace kicks in and Jesus will step up, put His foot on the scale, and we will be worthy of heaven."

Grace doesn't look like a last resort to us any longer. It's everything. Jesus paid it all, without Him we are nothing. At judgement day I want to be standing before God clothed in His righteousness.

Saturday, May 10, 2014


I'm happy to be able to announce the winner for the flexi-clip, and just in time for Mother's Day!

Without further ado the winner is ...........

Comment # 13

Jessica said ............

My hair is brown, although it's starting to grey a bit ;)

Congratulations! Please send me an email with your address and I will forward it to my friend, she will be sending the flexi-clip to you. 

I hope you like it as much as I do!


Happy Mother's Day to all the mothers!

Friday, May 9, 2014

Fast Days

For the Amish certain holidays are observed by fasting. In the community I grew up in January 6th was the first day of fasting in the new year. We'd sleep in, and after getting up everything was somber, no singing, laughing, or anything fun. We were expected to sit and silently read prayers in our little black prayer book, or the rules of a Godly life.

At noon Mom and I would make breakfast, while Daddy read a few chapters from the Bible to everyone. Afternoons were much more fun, we could read for pleasure, play games, and anything else we would do on an in between Sunday.

Good Friday was the next fast day, followed by Ascension Day, and Whit Monday.

Twice a year the Sunday before communion was designated as a day of fasting in preparation to be considered worthy of partaking. A sort of cleansing any sin from your life.

Occasionally when the church hopes to intercede for someone that is struggling with something in their life they will ask for a day of fasting in hopes God will have mercy and change that person's heart and life.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Emery Cloth

Every Saturday I enjoyed helping Mom with the Saturday cleaning. Dusting the furniture was fun, washing the windows, and rubbing the drying cloth over them hard enough to make a squealing sound never lasted long enough, shaking the rugs was something I dreamed of doing until I was actually old enough to do it and found out it wasn't nearly as fun as it appeared to be.

The one part of cleaning that I detested from as far back as I can remember was taking the dreaded piece of emery cloth and cleaning the top of our wood cook stove.

It made my fingernails feel weird, the sound made me shiver, and it was hard work pressing that cloth as hard as you could against the stove top will rubbing it carefully in one direction.

As much as I enjoyed being Mom's right hand helper, I had a way of disappearing when the emery cloth came out. If nothing else, a bathroom excuse always worked.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Wednesday Hodgepodge

1. Share something you appreciate (or something you appreciated as you were growing up) about your mother.

I appreciate that she never raised her voice at us. She included us in everything she did, and always made us feel as if we were the biggest blessings in her life. Her joyfulness was contagious, her zest for life and learning put us on a lifelong journey of always being eager and willing to learn new things, and look for ways to improve what we already know. She was a regular song bird, singing, singing, singing. Day in and out. She woke us in the morning by singing, and unless she was talking to us she spent her day singing as she worked.

2.  A quote most commonly ascribed to Plato reads "Necessity is the mother of invention." When did this last play out in your own experience?

Hmmmm ........ does changing a recipe to fit with the ingredients I had on hand count?

3. Share one of the earliest memories you have from childhood.

When we were still preschool children my brother John and I used to like perching on our extra high chairs beside the sewing machine while Mom sewed. She would let us take turns spinning the wheel to start the treadle going, and hold little pieces of cardboard against the wheel as she sewed. It made a delightful noise.

I'm amazed at the patience she had to allow us to do that. We thought we were helping by spinning the wheel for her every time she started a new seam, but in reality we were slowing her down.

4. When did you last 'hit the mother lode'? What was it?

Getting married to LV.......... I know this is a mother's day themed hodgepodge, but I truly feel I hit the mother lode when it comes to my husband. He's my knight in shining armor, my prince charming, everything I ever dreamed of and more!

5. What is/was your favorite dish mom made? Do you make that dish for your family/friends now that you're all grown up?

Fried chicken. Yes, I still make it.

6. Mother May I? was at one time a popular children's game. It required no equipment or parts to play. What was your favorite childhood game where you could just turn up and play-no gear needed?

Mother May I? is still a popular game for Amish school children as a rainy recess activity. My favorite childhood game that didn't require any equipment or parts, was probably hide and seek.

7. Which TV mom (past or present) is your favorite, and why?

Ma Ingalls on the Little House on the Prairie. I liked the way she seemed to be kind, generous, and loved her family.

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

Signs of spring are everywhere. The grass is green, spring flowers blooming, birds are singing, spring peepers are raising their annual joyful noise, and the frogs are beginning to sing up a storm at night. Last night they got so excited and loud it woke me up.

One of my favorite spring sounds is listening to the robins sing. They've been busy building their nests. This little robin egg somehow fell out of its nest. So pretty! Too bad it won't be hatching.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014


Dandelions, though often an unwelcome part of spring, were often put to good use by Amish families. The tender little leaves made an interesting salad, and the blossoms when battered and deep fried made tasty little treats for a springtime dinner.

In some communities dandelions were welcomed and put to use by making dandelion wine.

Wine of any type was forbidden in the community we lived in, but when looking at some Amish community recipe books I found the more conservative communities always have a section of homemade wine recipes.

Including this one:

Dandelion Wine

8 cups dandelion blossoms
1 gallon boiling water
1 Tbsp yeast
5 lb sugar
3 oranges, sliced
3 lemons, sliced

In a large bowl, preferably glass, or a crock, pour boiling water over dandelion blossoms. Let set for three days, stirring every day. Strain at the end of the third day. To the stained liquid add oranges, lemons, yeast, and sugar. Let set three more days, stirring every day. Strain, place in crock and let set at room temperature for four weeks. Bottle and cap.

I have never tried it, don't really have an interest to, but if anyone else does will you let me know how it is?

Monday, May 5, 2014


Saturdays were always a day of doing more than just the usual daily housekeeping. Everything had to be cleaned before Sunday. Windows washed, floors mopped, furniture dusted, stove polished, bathrooms deep cleaned, and about once a month the floors were waxed. Everything always needed to be nice and clean in order to enjoy a relaxing restful Sunday.

When it was our turn to have church at our house it meant that absolutely every single thing in the house needed to be cleaned. Often women and girls came for a day or so to help out. Dishes were polished so that they shone like brand new, every drawer was emptied the contents cleaned and then organized, a room or two might be painted, wax was stripped from the floors and several new coats applied, all the tops of cans on the can shelves in the basement were wiped off, the woodshed needed to have any little wood scraps swept up and all the wood neatly stacked. If it was during the summer the garden needed extra attention, not even the tiniest weed dared to be growing.

A lot of hard work crammed into two weeks of time.

When we moved to Somerset County where they use meeting houses instead of having church in homes, we missed the getting ready for church, extreme clean feeling, and chose to do the same deep cleaning every spring and fall.

I still like doing the same type of housecleaning, but it takes me a little longer than two weeks to get it done!

Saturday, May 3, 2014


One of the first blogs I ever read was singing the praises of the Lilla Rose flexi-clips. I admired them a lot, but it wasn't until only a week ago that I finally got one for myself.

I think I'm in love! So much prettier than what I had been using and very comfortable too.

My friend is now generously offering to give a flexi-clip to one of my readers. All you have to do to for a chance to win one is leave a comment telling me, oh lets see, since this has to do with hair, leave me a comment telling me what color hair you have. Mine is a plain dark brown.

For a second entry visit this website and come back, leave another comment telling me which design flexi-clip you think is the prettiest.

Placing a link to this giveaway on your Facebook or blog, and then coming back and leaving another comment telling me you did will earn you a third entry.

Winner will be chosen on Saturday May 10th using

Friday, May 2, 2014


Baptism is very important to the Amish.

To them it is a brand new beginning, what ever happened in the past has now been forgiven and you have been given a fresh clean start. For a little while you are totally clean and sinless. You now belong to the church, the family of God.


Anyone that leaves the Amish and allows themselves to become baptized again has no hope, and will also never be accepted back into the Amish church. We knew there would be no turning back even if we ever wanted to, (we never have) on the day we confirmed our faith in Jesus by being baptized again, nearly two years after we had left. It was one of the happiest days of our life!

Thursday, May 1, 2014


Receiving an allowance and having spending money is a foreign idea to most Amish children.

Neither LV or I received an allowance, and it's one of the things we carried over from being Amish, for the same reasons we didn't, our children also don't have money to spend.

Reasoning behind this is, a child should not have to worry about supplying their own needs. If they start saving and spending money for wants that will carry over into adulthood and cause them a lot of unnecessary financial burdens.

There is a big difference between wants and needs. Learning to be happy with what you have will be beneficial for the rest of their life. Buying things simply because you want them can be a hard habit to break.

It wasn't that we didn't have any money as a child, and our children also get to keep any money they earn, but they don't get to spend any of it until they have needs. The day they buy their own car or house, I know they will be glad for everything they saved, and hopefully they will still be happy to live their life knowing it isn't material things that bring happiness and satisfaction to their lives.