Daddy and Mom managed to save up enough money to build a small woodworking shop, where he hoped to build furniture to sell and be able to work at home with his growing family.
They bought all the lumber and supplies needed and then let all the Amish in the area know that they will be having a frolic on Saturday.
We got up while it was still dark and hurried with our breakfast. By the time the sun was coming up, buggies were driving in the lane. The women and children came into the house and the men, after they had unhitched their horse and tied it to a tree, went to see what they could do to help.
Before long the sounds of hammers and saws filled the air as the men tackled the job at hand, the women were visiting as they started preparing the huge noon meal, and we children couldn't decide where it was the most fun to be. In the house watching as vast amounts of food was being prepared or outside watching the shop grow under the steady pounding of hammers.
Someone had brought the church benches to set up tables and provide enough seats for everyone. Daddy came and set up a few of them for us to slide on. That gave us something fun and out of the way of those who were working.
At noon Mom sent some of the older children to tell Daddy that lunch was ready. She had us set out a row of bowls on a bench and then fill them with cold water from the garden hose. We laid a big clean towel beside each bowl and then watched as the men lined up and sloshed the water over their faces and arms, water dripped off their long beards as they reached for the towel to dry off.
After everyone was washed up a few of the women quickly hung the towels on the clothes line until everyone was seated at the tables. Big platters of fried chicken and bowls heaped with steaming mashed potatoes and gravy, there was sweet corn and applesauce, stacks of fresh homemade bread, and plates filled with sliced tomatoes from the garden. And several kinds of pie for dessert.
After the silent prayer was over everyone started filling their plates and visiting, the food soon disappeared and the men went back to work while the women cleared away the mess.
By evening the shop was done. It looked beautiful with its white sides and green hip roof. There were stairs at the back on the outside that led up to an attic/loft that could be used for storage or an extra sleeping area when we got overnight guests.
We were tired and happy as we got ready for bed. It had been a day filled to the brim with wonder and excitement and fun with friends.