Contentment

During one of our visits with Amish friends, I observed their children playing together. They weren’t bored and didn’t complain because there was nothing to do. They found enjoyment in simple things like reading, playing a game of ball, petting their dog, riding their bicycles, swinging, and swimming in the pond. They didn’t need a computer or some electronic game in order to have fun. They laughed and talked together and didn’t send text messages in order to communicate.
In our fast-paced electronic age many “English” people don’t take the time to enjoy the simple things life has to offer. We rush from place to place, hurry to complete our tasks, and find that our lives are full of stress and worry. We’ve become exhausted and discontent because we don’t spend enough quality time with our family and friends. Many people strive so hard to get ahead that they don’t see what’s right beside them. Material things don’t bring true happiness, nor do they bring lasting contentment. When we look around at the beauty God created, and find joy in being with those we love, our discontent fades and appreciation sets in.
What are some things you do that bring contentment? Are your children or grandchildren doing things that require electricity or batteries, or do they play simply, much like Amish children do? How can we help the youth of today find contentment in simple things?

Comments

  1. Gail Hollingsworth says:

    I get my best contentment from camping. I love being out in God’s creation. Sadly my 7 and 5 yr old grandkids are into their iPads a lot. But they do enjoy camping with their parents.
    We grew up being outside all day during the summer. Kids don’t know what they are missing.
    I’m taking care of my elderly mom now at my house so my husband and I won’t get to camp or take any trips for quite a while I’m afraid.

    • Betty Brewer says:

      I think this is why we admire the Amish people, they have contentment that we strive for. They enjoy the simple things daily. They have no tv , computers, phones, or noise to interrupt this contentment. Reading your books give me happiness and make me slow down and enjoy the simple things.

  2. Lisa Sabatini says:

    My husband and I played board games with our children as they grew up. Today, as young adults, they frequently get together with friends to play games – with cell phones turned off! My daughter got married last Saturday, and there were several board games among the gifts! We find it is a good way to connect across the generations.
    When my husband and I are on our own, we love to go hiking. Reaching the top of a mountain renews both body and spirit.

  3. Carrol Petroske says:

    I think it would benefit today’s youth to have to go outside and play and have to be creative to think of things to do. They have been acustomed to being catered too every moment and never needing an imagination, which is so sad.

  4. Margaret Fraleigh says:

    I too love the outdoors. My husband and I (bot retired) love to just get in the car and
    go for a ride and enjoy nature along the way. When at home, love to sit outside
    on the patio and read a good book. Again enjoying the squirrels antics and the beautiful
    songs of the birds in the area.

  5. Janis Bowles says:

    It sounds like when I grew up. I didn’t even use a cell phone until I was sixteen or so and I exhausted the minutes within a day. Besides that, I rode my bike daily, played with my siblings, went to the park, read and did chores. We weren’t able to watch much TV either.

  6. Margaret Fraleigh says:

    Sorry meant to say (now retired).

  7. Connie Saunders says:

    My 3 year old granddaughter and her mother now live with my husband and me and I am trying to make sure that she enjoys some of the things that I enjoyed as a child. She likes to water “her” flowers and she helps me in my garden. We drink from her small tea cups and she helps me mix the cornbread for supper. Books are very important in our household and her vocabulary and her vivid imagination are proof that reading DOES matter! Catching “lightning bugs” has become our favorite thing to do before bedtime and she is eagerly hoping that the hummingbirds visit. Last year they visited our Rose of Sharon and Butterfly bushes. Running under a spray of water thrills her and just last week, she waded in our front yard after 4 inches of rain flooded it. Now she is asking when it is going to rain so that she can jump in the puddles? Childhood is a special time and it is fleeting so I hope she can experience the fun that comes from enjoying God’s creation!

  8. I enjoy looking at wildflowers. There are so many beautiful wildflowers in the South where I live. Learning the local names and the “real” names of the flowers is so interesting. My children and I have seen Devil’s Shoestring, “Frog Bonnets “(Pitcher Plants), Wild Garlic, Button Bush, Queen Ann’s Lace, Asters, Golden Rod, Joe Pye Weed, etc. I am amazed and filled with wonder that God created such beauty that comes back year after year. I am blessed to see that display of beauty and thankful for God the Creator and Ruler of all.

  9. My children love books, Lego, swimming, playing in sand or snow depending on season, riding bike and playing soccer. I do limit how much electronic time they get either playing games or watching videos. They are very creative with building and playing so I know it’s best they have less screen time and more interactive time with each other.

  10. I think kids are being robbed of their childhoods today! You talk to them they don’t have imagination to think up things to play on their own. All I had growing up was my imagination. We played all kinds of things outside like hiding seek. Kick the can, ditch, catch lightning bugs. We even stayed out and played in rain as long as there was no lighting. We are making mistakes giving the children all these electronic things. I loved the simpler life.

  11. Tina Bauer says:

    I just love everythinyg about the Amish!

  12. don’t know nothing about my three grandkids….the guy who daughter is with won’t let us see her or kids

  13. Lindasue says:

    Love the cool of the morning before everyone is up. Very peaceful and quiet.

  14. C Penquite says:

    Thelma and Elma were delightful in their interactions. Twins are very interesting in their emotional support of each other. Read the whole book without putting it down..

  15. Barbara says:

    I love the simpler life too. I think the kids now days are small adults, and I have heard parents say to me my kids are the boss in our house.That would have never worked in my house growing up and it shouldn’t be that way we were to respect our parents and other adults. We played outdoor games and loved every minute of it .My mother would make homemade ice cream in the summer a lot when our friends came to play outside and we enjoyed it so much. I love the mountains and I feel so close to God there.

  16. Karen Tackett says:

    Hi Wanda, I love to read Christian fiction (your books and others) and enjoy the stories and the many scriptures mentioned! I enjoy crocheting and especially making baby booties and hats! Over the past few years I have gone through closets and drawers simplifying our material items and our home where we have less stress and more time to focus on the Lord and walking in His ways. I love spending time in Amish country and seeing the fruit of their labors. I have an Amish quilt and several pillows that I still use and display in our home. Our favorite scripture is Proverbs 3:5-6:Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek His will in all you do, and He will show you which path to take. Thank you for your ministry through your books!

  17. Our son and his wife have a mantra “invest in experiences, not things”. Time can be the greatest gift of all! Our grandson, loves exploring, and doing crafts …. creating things out of paper, crayons, markers, glue, glitter, stickers, and whatever else may be available. I am creating more memories by getting down on the floor and sharing time, and doing things with him, or taking him to museums, parks, etc. than any purchase I could make!

  18. Ruth Hufford says:

    I like to bring out board games like Sorry, Trivial Pursuit, as well as ones like Scrabble and word games; also Monopoly. All are so much fun, require paying attention, and have learning value!
    Another thing I like to do for my nieces, nephews, granddaughters and grandsons thinks to create themselves like looms or basic needlepoint kits for girls and definitely Legos for both genders! These activities will keep them away from TV and video games for quite awhile!

  19. Amber Anderson says:

    I love to go for walks around our neighborhood. This summer I have tried to encourage my children to not play video games or electronic devices, instead going outside and riding bikes, jumping on the trampoline and playing with chalk. My children also like to draw and color, and have become quite crafty.

  20. Darlene Truax says:

    I find much contentment as I read. I enjoy “escaping” to another time, another culture, historical era. And, of course, my favorite author with whom I love to escape is you, Wanda! Being a person of faith, I’ve enjoyed learning about the Amish! With our grand kids, it’s important to get them off electronics and enjoy play with board games, using their imagination with miniature cars, dinosaurs, army guys, etc. Or in the case of granddaughters, dolls.

  21. Linda Walters says:

    I love to read. I especially love to read faith-based Christian mysteries. I get totally lost in them, but also get uplifted.

  22. Loretta M. says:

    There is nothing better than to sit on my porch with a cup of coffee, and read. It is my quiet time wherein I can listen to the gentle wind, chimes, and see birds and a squirrel or two, and maybe say a prayer. It is too easy to get caught up in today’s busy world with electronic devices. I unplug and then walk outside, even for a few minutes, to enjoy the yard, the trees, the flowers. It is also relaxing to visit the Amish Country in Berlin, Sugarcreek, etc., in Ohio, and enjoy talking to the Amish people there.

  23. Julie Mancil says:

    I enjoy my quiet times with God every morning in my quiet room where I can look out the window and see the birds and squirrels as I read my Bible and pray. My husband and I enjoy sitting out on the porch swing in the evenings listening to the birds and frogs.
    I grew up on a farm in Oregon, so I’ve always loved the outdoors. Helping on the farm wasn’t work to me…it was fun. I helped my dad, mom, and grandma with whatever needed to be done. I fed the chickens, picked vegetables out of the garden to eat and to can. I picked fruit off the trees and vines for pies and jams. I helped milk the cows and fed the baby calves. I rode my bicycle to the field to give daddy his lunch. I drove the tractor in the field so that the men could pick up the hay or straw and put it on the wagon. I worked in the seed cleaner when I was older and went in the silo to move the pipe around so that the corn silage would be even as it was pulled up a pipe into the silo. I helped daddy change pipe through the field corn. There was much to do. In my leisure times, I rode my horse in the wide open spaces around the fields. Often times, I’d stop in at grandma and grandpa’s house to talk with grandma about her growing up days and how she and grandpa moved to Oregon from California to settle the land where they built their farm.
    My mom taught me to cook, bake, can, and make pickles, jams, and jellies. I thank God for the life I had on the farm. I learned so much and it was in the stillness of a warm summer day that I accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior.
    Yes, I think children of today are missing out on a whole lot as they lean on technology to spend their days. Technology isn’t bad in itself, because a lot of learning can take place on ipads, computers, etc., but it’s the time spent that matters. Spending all day on an ipad or computer isn’t good if there is no time for outdoor play to use their imaginations. It’s so important to communicate with family and friends with speech instead of messaging. I pray for the children of today.

  24. Mary Roelke says:

    I enjoy walking around my yard looking at the flowers. I am an avid reader which is very relaxing to me.

  25. Karen Russell says:

    I’m content when I’m reading God’s Word; attending Sunday School, Worship Service, and Ladies Bible Study; knitting for charity and my family; sitting on the deck in my porch swing listening to bird songs; listening to gospel and classical music; and spending time with my daughters and their families!

  26. The best times of a day for me are sitting here an reading an then doing a review so that I am able to share about the book an ask others to always let the authors know what their feelings are about the book and then also make a review on it.
    Books an reviews are my life an when you are 76 what a better way to spend your life.

  27. I love to sew and make quilt tops for myself and charity. I’m trying to down size my fabric stack and simplify my life. My grandchildren are far away, and are in a gated community with both parents working they don’t have much to do all day but TV and I pads. When I was there last I bought my Granddaughter a simple sewing machine and fabric. We spent the week sewing and making a blanket and memories. It’s all about WHO will take the time to teach our youth the joys in life.

  28. I find contentment in writing and enjoying God’s presence through prayer. I recently relocated to the
    area that I called home for 19 years. I am also recently divorced and money is tight. I find myself
    praying for guidance constantly.

  29. Melanie Brinkman says:

    I find contentment and happiness in sitting back and reading a good book. Although I don’t have any kids of my own yet, the ones around me like to a combination of both things like texting and things like reading. When I have kids of my own, I plan on reading to them nightly ( and of course whenever they ask ).

  30. Stephanie H. says:

    My contentment’s are yoga, reading, long walks with my family, researching family trees, and playing board games with my family.

  31. IDA ELAM says:

    We like to sit on the back porch. I swing and my husband just sits and watches. We just recently
    had a small bird build a nest in my flower basket (from my niece for Mother’s Day) and had
    7 little eggs, that looked like jelly beans. So we talked to the birds every day and watched the
    babies grow up and fly away and I really do believe the birds understood, as they would
    come over next to us and talk back. As we get older it doesn’t take near as much to entertain us.
    Hope you have a wonderful 4th of July and May God Bless America again

  32. I love to take rides on back country roads, the scenery, sky, the river, and the feeling of being much more alone helps me to release stress. When I am at home, I love to read, or listen to music and preaching services on cd. I walk outdoors, and take time to just breathe!
    I read my Bible daily to help me focus on the right things, and be grateful for what I have.

  33. Lisa B Redecop says:

    I love the outdoors as well,I love taking walks with my husband and 11 month old son,he can also not get enough of the outdoors. I have a feeling we will be spending more time outside as he grows up.

  34. Dear Wanda,
    How I appreciate and enjoy reading your comments and your books. You have such a wonderful way of sharing with us about the Amish. I greatly respect reading about the Simple Life and all that they do. I have some wonderful Mennonite friends here in central Me.whom I enjoy a lot.
    We visit once in a while I buy their delicious backing. They are always so busy helping others too.
    I love your website Wanda and appreciate everything you share. Your husband’s photography is
    the best! I love to unwind by being outside too and hearing the songs of the birds and watching the antics of the squirrel. We have one cat, ten years old. Your books relax me,Wanda,more than
    any other. Thank you so much for writing them. They are the best. God bless you, your husband and family. I love you so very much. God is so good! Love with many prayers, Andrea

  35. Suzanne says:

    I love the quiet beauty of sitting outside and listening to the sounds of nature. God has given us so many wonderful things to enjoy. The beauty of spring flowers, the wonder of lighting, the sounds of rain falling gently on the roof. the clean smell after a rainstorm. I also love to read. I can get wrapped up in the story and feel as if I am part of it. Your books are some of my favorites.

  36. To find contentment, I usually take a walk and talk to God. Being outside in nature helps me to feel closer to God. I love to read, which rejuvenates my soul. My little one isn’t old enough for electronic games, etc. (I do let her watch DVDs), and she’ll not be spending time in front of the TV or computer, etc. when she’s older. She’ll be busy outdoors with Mommy and Daddy and camping.

  37. Sondra Thatcher says:

    I love to hang my clothes on the clothesline to dry in the summer. It is refreshing to be out there to hang them up. People are to “busy” these days to enjoy the simpler way of life. My 2 granddaughters ages 5 and 6 do like their ipads but they only play on them when the weather does not permit them to be outside. They love to play outside. Blessings to you and your family.

  38. I start off my day having my devotions I also enjoy doing plastic canvas projects. I also LOVE to read. And honestly just your books! lol I read at least 1/2 hour before bed. I don’t think our daughter (married, in the Air Force) would know what to do without electronics. Same with our son who is 27. Our “grandson” who is 20 months plays with his toys, all non electric. He loves stuffed animals. And plays with them and carries on “conversations” with them lol

  39. Brenda Swift says:

    I enjoy walking, looking at the beautiful sky and clouds. I am very contented when all of our family is together. Reading is a pleasure.B

  40. Barbara J. Free says:

    I have enjoyed reading all these comments. First of all, I use my cell phone, but I am sure not going to put that above talking to my family and friends when I have a chance. The children as well as adults seem to think they have to text and answer phone no matter what; and half the time when I have my family visiting, they spend more time on their phones and internet from the phones. Now I enjoy getting out in my yard and seeing all of Gods blessings through the nature and the Birds singing and all the many blooming flowers and trees I have and there is always something to do outside in the acres of yard I have but since my husband passed I have not been able to keep up it all as he and I together did. That ok, I just let some go to nature and the birds have places to go and it is just ok. I need to count all the things I have blooming in my yard now. I love seeing the Amish pictures you take and once I was able to go on a tour with my husband daughter and her husband to the Ohio Basket town and the tour took us to an Amish home and we got to experience eating with them. that was one of the best trips I have ever gone on. Just would love to have another tour like that. Wanda I just love hearing about all your tours and Amish friends and the recipes, etc. Thanks ever so much for the blessings of getting to read your books and the pictures of the Amish homes and work in the fields, flowers, yard art, etc. I saw when we were on our trip where one family had shoes as flower pots sitting in the flower bed. I also loved the bird houses and feeders they had close to the windows so they could watch birds up close.

  41. Nyla Kay Wilkerson says:

    I love the “great outdoors”. Flowers are like artwork and listening to frogs, cicada, and crickets is music to my ears. Also the sound of water or watching water is mesmerizing. God is awesome and has certainly given us a beautiful world in nature.

  42. Roxie Brooks says:

    Your visit with your friends sound much how my childhood was like. We, my siblings and I, would be outside until the dinner bell rang and Momma would call us in to “wash up” and get ready for dinner. Daddy would ask the blessing and then ask each of us how our day went. Today’s youth can’t even begin to understand the fun of playing Cowboys and Indians or Kick the Can. So many fun games we would play. Our imaginations were in overdrive all of the time. My grandchildren love their tablets but I’m so glad that their parents have set controls and time available on them. They play outside a lot and ride their bikes because they are only allowed so much time on their electronics. Oh that today’s youth knew how fun it could be to grow up playing outside!

  43. Susan Fletcher says:

    I find contentment in sitting on the porch reading.

  44. Theresa N says:

    Spending time with my daughter and grandchildren get me there. Also reading a good book.

  45. Deanna Delia says:

    I too start my day with devotions. I love to cook and try new recipes and watch my husband enjoying each new dish. Also love to quilt, buy fabric, then put everything together, have a large stash. In the evening I read, only Amish fiction, Amish cookbooks, Amish history, anything else about the Amish that I can get my hands on. It’s a wonderful life !❤️

  46. Dianne Casey says:

    Spending time with my sister and my friends gives me contentment. Also, just spending quiet time with no TV or any electronics and just being thankful for what I have.

  47. It’s sad that today children have to have all the electronics they can. It’s not like when I was a kid. We made up things outside to have fun with. We didn’t have the ipads, computers, video games. We had our imaginations and we used them. When I get stressed out I like to go outside and just be quiet, watching the deer, rabbits, birds and squirrels. Especially after sunset or before sunrise, it’s quiet and peaceful. Everybody needs that little bit of peace each day to quiet those frazzled nerves.

  48. Myus Barbara says:

    I was introduced to your books several years ago when looking for a gift for my sister, during her hospital stay. When we arrived and I handed I to her she smiled and said “Oh! I already have it!” So I proceeded to get her something else. I was so interested that I kept the book. “The Quilters Daughter”. At the time we were both quilting; the was newer at it than she.
    It was so interesting, I couldn’t put it down. Then, couldn’t wait to purchas more books. Now have most of them. Have enjoyed and very relaxing.
    Thanks Wanda
    Barbara Myus us

  49. This is so true(and sad) the way children have to have their phones,Ipads or electronic games with them all the time.When I was growing up in the 50’s and 60’s we were never in the house accept for meals or helping our Mom with canning.We were outside playing with the neighbor kids.It didn’t matter what your size or age we all played baseball,skated on sidewalks and had a lot of fun.Everyone knew all of the neighbors and watched out for each other.I had the BEST childhood ever.If only I could go back.I don’t think you appreciate things like that till you get older and reflect back on them.

  50. Kris Ross says:

    Hi Wanda As I write this I am in Berlin, Ohio with family in Amish Country. We enjoyed the Ohio Auction last night and today for the benefit of the Crippled Children… we have all noticed how well behaved, respectful and helpful all the children are here….they work along side their parents to help at every turn. We surely enjoy all the peace and traquility of this beautiful country…the rolling farms, the beautifully manicured homes and yards….we are in such awe and total rest in this area. Our grandchildren, unfortunately are of the many, that must be entertained or using electronics….but that is the “world” they live in…..maybe someday we can bring them up here to enjoy and experience this way of life…..my sister and I love the quilt shops and also following the Row by Row experience. We came here last here also and love it!

  51. As for my grandchildren, I don’t know all they do, but they do have electronic games but they play board games, read, in sports. My oldest grandson takes piano and cello lessons. He’s in a symphony orchestra and is in his church music ministry playing the cello. When I was a kid in late 40’s, early50’s, they didn’t sell jumpropes. We’d buy a cotton clothes line and cut it into the lengths we needed. We played games with a solid rubber ball. My favorite was Rusha. The owner of the building had a home repairs co.. our chalk was scrapes of plasterboard where we pealed org paper. We got balsa wood from him where we carved out boats and sailed them in the bathtub. We played marbles. We had outdoor key roller skates where we skated up and down the street. We didn’t need the fancy toys or electronic games. We had fun!

  52. Linda Eden says:

    I just passed my old neighborhood and posted to my friends and family the joys and fun things we did the simple pleasure the pride we now hold dear we didn’t sit in the house watching tv playing video games that are so violent we ran played on the swings hung the garden hose from the clothes lines walked and enjoyed the most beautiful memories one friend comment I’m sad that our kids and grandkids will never enjoy the memories we have it amazing how much fun a ball can be the cost is very inexpensive but the memories and the fun priceless. I have a granddaughter who is 9 years old at the age of 6 her favorite things were madlibs books because the verbs adverbs and other parts of sentences were thrilling to her especially when she’d play with her great grandmother and when she asked her to give her an adjective mom hesitate the pride my granddaughter felt was priceless she also still does wants to play the spelling game give me word to spell not baby words she will sound no them out it’s fun to see a child enjoying the simple but important things we didn’t need tv or tablets just her mind a pencil and willing participants needless to say great grandmoms has passed but the priceless memories will live on in infinity my most stressful place is on top of a mountain feeling the breath of my lord close as I can be god bless

    • Brenda A. says:

      I fondly remember my childhood and making our own fun. Ah, those were the days! Sadly, the electronic age has taken over and our children and grandchildren are consumed with it. My enjoyment now comes from the beauty of God’s world. White fluffy clouds, beautiful flowers and trees, and the gift of sight to enjoy them. I am so blessed!

  53. My grandchildren are like most of them today,on phones or tv playing games. I still love them dearly tho. When they were younger we would play outside a lot and hide from one another in the woods.I miss them days.

  54. Patricia Strickland says:

    I love to sit by the pond and fish. I am retired and take care of my granddaughter while her Mom and Dad work. I take my granddaughter around the farm on the golf cart. We do a lot of gardening. She likes to pick cucumbers and tomatoes. I keep her outside a lot. Children today don’t play like we use to. They have to have an iPad to play games. So sad.

  55. Donna B says:

    I enjoy being outside and watching all of the wildlife and listening to all of the birds singing. When we were growing up, when the weather was nice we were never inside. We lived in the country and it was so peaceful and safe. We either had friends over playing or we went to their houses to play together and always used our imaginations. We could ride our bikes or walk down the road to visit each other without any fear of strangers. We knew just about everyone that lived within 3-4 miles. Folks hardly know their next door neighbors anymore because it seems everyone is so busy going here and there instead of visiting. I love reading as well. We never had a tv to entertain us but all of us liked to read and still do.

  56. Pamela Pavkov says:

    ĢMy grandchildren use their fair share of electricity but they are also outside playing basketball, soccer, and doing gymnastis. I keep telling them how mush their bodies need sunshine to develope properly and to have strong bones. They also help with the yard work and walk the dogs. Kids need to be prodded these days. My kids got ip did theirchores and wanted outside as fast as possible to go swimming. Times have changed so much.

  57. Jody Rigle says:

    I get the most contentment quilting. I also love to visit Lancaster Pennsylvania as often as possible. After a few days traveling through the farmland, a peacefulness comes over both my husband and I. I watch my children and grandchildren hustle through life and I am so glad that I am past the time in my life.

  58. Debra Terry says:

    I just love to read! I sit under the eucalyptus tree in my parents yard and enjoy the birds, my dog chasing the squirrels, and just GOD. The Quilt Series is my all time favorite and life changing series. Also, when my daughters were young, I had a rule of no cell phones at the table. Dinner was a time of family and chatting. I think time with electronics need to be limited for children. But, I came from a time when there was no such thing. Our imaginations were our guide!

  59. Jan clark says:

    I get my contentment at walking my dog Annabella and also walking on the beach
    Annabella loves to go on walks and I pray about what is on my mind and it’s a good way to get things off my mind. I also enjoy looking for Shells at the beach.

  60. Babs Squires says:

    I so agree with your comments. I grew up being outdoors, enjoying simple things like playing games, making up games, bike riding, and reading of course! We used what we had, whether it was a box game, chalk, jacks,but most important our imaginations! We played in the woods and down by the river, I can’t imagine that today,it isn’t safe! We played with toys and shared those toys during playtime. There were no bribes to get us to do household work, those were our chores. It was a great time…….

  61. All children need to experience the outdoors more, not only in the summer but all year round. It would be interesting to see what they could do for one week without phone, T.V. or computers. Some kids can really be creative.

  62. Mary Preston says:

    We never seemed to be bored as children. So much to do – always outdoors. I bought my daughter a full sized bicycle for her birthday. We have always walked a great deal, but now she rides too.

  63. Catherine Lemanski says:

    I think today’s children are bombarded with all the modern tech and have not learned to simply use their imaginations. I remember growing up an playing outside all day long and never being bored. Today, as a “grownup” I enjoy reading and doing crafts of all kinds to find my inner peace.

  64. GladysMP says:

    We have children of all ages in our neighborhood and it seems that the younger, elementary age children do ride bikes, draw chalk pictures on the sidewalk, play ball, etc.; but it seems that the older children aren’t seen…they are inside playing games on computers or all sorts of gadgets. I love watching the children who are outside playing and they seem so happy and carefree. I remember how much children used to come outdoors and wish those habits would return.

  65. Martha Peace says:

    Love reading about the Amish,would love to win

  66. We live in the country and we have 13 grandkids (11 of which) who live in big cities. They love coming to the farm! We take long walks and they find some real rock gems! There is a rural park about 3 miles from our farm and they LOVE going down there as there is lots of playground equipment from rural schools that used to be in our area to play on. There’s a walking trail with LOTS of ant hills, holes in the ground and once in awhile you hear turkeys chatting and when the kids are really quiet you can usually see a deer or antelope. In the evenings we spread blankets on the grass and spend hours gazing up to the sky to see stars, airplanes and even the space center pass by. Many times we also see “falling stars”.

  67. Mildred Butler says:

    My husband and I do a lot of camping. My contentment is the yearly camping trip with a group of friends from our church. We go for walks every morning. We share meals. My favorite is sitting around the campfire sharing God’s word. Our son and daughter-in-love are youth directors in their church. I love to see the interaction they have with the youth. The children in today’s world need guidance and a lot of discipline, which should start in the home. It should start at an early age so they will be prepared to make the right choices when they are on their own in this wicked world.

  68. I love to read amish books and anything that peaks my interest in chrisitan fiction since I have been reading…

  69. Diana Cyphers says:

    My husband and I love to drive through Amish country, living in Indiana were close to many communities. We would stop at every road side stand and. Store just to be near such peaceful people. You could feel their love for God, family and friends all around you. Three months ago I lost my sweet, loving husband , it has been so hard but my God, family and friends have held me up with prayers and their strength. I drive past those Amish farms often and am uplifted by the memories and their silent strength. When the time comes he will be waiting for me at Heavens gates with a hug saying Welcome Home.

  70. Barbara says:

    I enjoy gardening and being outdoors. Reading and doing craft’s. A few of my grandkids like being outdoors too. Also I enjoy reading your books. I lice to read to the grandkids although some like being in their tablets.

  71. Sandra M says:

    My son just spent a week at camp on a lake. It was with his FFA (Future Farmers of America) group.
    He had a blast. He was away from all his electronics and spent time playing sports, swimming and canoeing, and hanging out with friends. I think he realized how much more fulfilling life is when you are out there making memories instead of glued to technology!

  72. Karen M. says:

    I believe it is important to spend quality time with my grandchildren. Whether it is cooking with them, or spending time exploring nature. They watch TV and play games but, I try to steer them to outside activities. I tell them to look around to see the beauty the Lord has made

  73. I love my back yard with all the birds, bunnies and deer. Sitting in the back yard reading a good book is very relaxing for me. I also enjoy needle and leather working.

  74. I LOVE BEING OUTSIDE, READING AND LISTENING TO MOTHER NATURE. THE CLOUDS ARE BEAUTIFUL TO WATCH. IT IS A SHAME THAT CHILDREN TODAY SEEM TIED TO THE ELECTRONICS. THEY ARE MISSING OUT ON SO MUCH.

  75. We can model being content which will encourage others to be content. Being in nature is a way to feel content as well as praising God for our blessings. Doing kind acts forothers can also bring a feeling of contentment.

  76. Bonnie Snyder says:

    I love going out on my deck with a good book and get lost in that book. While I am reading in the background the birds are singing, squirrels are running around burying nuts for the winter, rabbits sitting near by eating clover or corn that we put out for them and the little chipmunks with their little jaws full of birdseed finding places to store their seed and it is a good place to talk to God. I find my contentment on my deck with nature.

  77. Darlene Holley says:

    I love to spend time outdoors working in my yard and I also enjoy spending time reading and crocheting. We can help the children of today by spending time outdoors with them taking walks and planting gardens and flowers.

  78. NancyB from Many LA says:

    I like to quilt and crochet, and read… I loved my childhood way before electronics. We had imagination and used it all the time. Invented games, read and was carried away on new adventures, walked and talked with my sister and cousins. Do kids today do anything like that?
    I hope that my grandkids at least learn to love to read. There’s always something new to read!

  79. Michelle says:

    I agree that most of our children today spend to much precious time on the computers, cell phones, texting and video games, also they are obsessed with social media. I love nature and I love reading. So much is lost without social interacting.

  80. Matty Rodda says:

    I love being outside on our farm or just read a book, doing quilting and spending time with family and friends.

  81. Vivian Furbay says:

    I love to read, quilt, crochet, and make my own card. These give me contentment, especially making a quilt to surprise a friends with.

  82. Susan Campbell says:

    I like to read. I also do the church nursery every week and I get such enjoyment from the children and other nursery workers each week.

  83. Anna wren says:

    I love to crochet and read in my spare time. My nieces and nephews on the other hand are more dependent on some electronics. If they aren’t playing on their bikes or playing ball or swimming in the pool then they have their cellphone glued to their hands. This is mainly the older two. My youngest niece and nephews do spend time playing in the yard or swimming in the pool. This occupies their time since they don’t have access to any electronics. It is often hard to keep my youngest nephews content at times because they are special needs. They are sweet as can be and I love them dearly.

  84. I find contentment in opening the windows or being outside. I don’t enjoy being stuck inside all the time. My children are not allowed to be in tablets or watching tv all the time. I think children in today’s society need more time to use their imagination. Rather it is outside roaming true “jungles” or inside building “castles”. I believe if alll kids did these things more often then the society would be much better than letting kids kill their brain cells watching tv or constantly playing devices.

  85. Rhonda Struthers says:

    The grandchildren are little and have thankfully, not yet discovered electronics. They enjoy simple play. My adult son does enjoy some electronic time but loves the outdoors more.
    I enjoy sitting outside reading my book on a nice day.

  86. Debbie Copeland says:

    I find contentment in baking and cooking from scratch. It does not matter to me that it may take hours to prepare a dish yet moments to consume it. The joy and delight I see in those who receive it is plenty for me!

    Children need more outside time, more time using imaginations. At our house, our grandchildren do not use electronics or watch television. Our shelves of books and bin of toys keeps them occupied (blocks, cars, army men, wooden puzzles) – no matter the ages. They are 7-1/2, 5-1/2, 3-1/2 and 2.

  87. Diane Nesbitt says:

    I so love that you remind us English to return to when times were simpler. I believe that is why I love reading about the Amish. I have visited Shipshewana, IN and Lancaster, PA area and always feel peaceful. Contentment does come from within- however feeling grateful for God’s blessings and His surrounding us with his beautiful creations also brings contentment.
    We have a rule in our house- no TV, no electronics at family meals- breakfast-lunch – dinner as well as when we go out to eat. We need to be present for one another- always.
    Thanks Wanda for reminding me of this.

  88. Cassandra D. says:

    Enjoying the great outdoors and reading a great book and relaxing in my chair.

  89. Dottie Hutchinson says:

    Wanda,
    I love your books. Reading is my way of relaxing. My grandchildren have to have their video games. I often say I had to learn to text to communicate with my children and grandchildren.

  90. I enjoy the outdoors too, especially right now when my flowers are all blooming and showing off their beautiful colours. My main contentment comes from being a child of God, and enjoying his word in the bible. Oh if we just would listen to what he has to say. I also find contentment in reading your stories about your life and the life of our Amish friends. I hope you will be able to continue your wonderful work you do. In our family the words “Praise God, from whom all Blessings flow” is contentment.

  91. Judy Dorton says:

    We are watching and feeding birds all year ’round,love to hear their little wings ,and other birds singing, humming birds are here,not as many as usual, we have flowers that comeback yearly,and have plenty of Humming bird plants,with the small red flower on them,we’ve got so many types here,especially in winter,also once had white skunks,some had black on their back,and some all black with the white streak,the white are very rare,but we loved watching them,only once did we smell a whiff of odor,worth it too,,Enjoy your books, and yes,you are right,the kids may be smarter than us at a younger age,but we had the best growing up,playing with cousins,in edge of woods,making baby doll and paper dolls clothes,drawing,,we worked in garden,and sure enjoyed our veggies all winter..we lived so simple,hand me downs(yes,I was the 4th girl but loved the ones Mama made me too..God Is Good..thanks

  92. Michelle L Brown says:

    I should be reading a good book! Instead I find myself in the loop of being busy without any results. I love to cook and should be teaching my 3 children how to do basic things.
    I have 2 teenage kids and an 11 yr old. It’s hard to break them away from their devices. But now that you have me thinking I might just start putt with a summer schedule that gives a bit of structure and keeps them busy as well as having fun with limited time on their devices!

  93. Carlyn Casey says:

    Wanda, I like to read the real books. i don’t own a Kindle or read Ebooks. I have enough modern tech things to deal with in my life without giving up that one. I do have a Bible app on my phone for quick searches, but I don’t read it instead of my regular Bible. I wish my grandchildren did do more not on the ipods and phones and Xboxes and whatever. They do though, enjoy the pond and swimming pool and taking walks through the woods and everyday things like that also. All in all, Life is good because God is good! Have a blessed day!

  94. Martha Grewell Stover says:

    As in so many of the other comments above, I find it helps me to spend as much time as possible keeping my eyes on God’s creation. Things made by our Lord have the ability to satisfy me like nothing else can do.

  95. Frances Cavallo says:

    I love simple things too…such as sitting on the beach…looking at the waves…collecting seashells…digging with my grandson…my grandson loves to play with figures…flying a kite…going for a walk…in the preserve or par…talking about what is around us…such as birds…collecting rocks to paint later…talking about plants…trees…animals…etc…swimming in the pool…building with blocks…taking popsicle sticks…making boxes…and painting them…decorating them…singing songs and nursery rhymes together…playing Duck, Duck, Goose and so on…we are always trying to create more ways to play without using anything electronic or electric…no tv…or boob tube…as I call it🤼‍♀️🎱🏸🥋🎣🏉🏀
    Thanks so much for the opportunity to win! You are a wonderful writer..and I truly enjoy every one of them…that I read…and I have read all of your books…somstiimes not when they first come out…but when I first discovered you and Jean too…about 8 years ago…I fell in love with Amish Fiction and Amish Cookbooks…especially yours!!! Thanks so much…for all that you do…and have a wonderful, Blessed Day!!! God Bless You and Your Family!!!

  96. Karen M. Hoth says:

    I grew up in the country of western New York state and I miss the slower life style. Now living in the city in Michigan, people do not stop to smell the roses as the saying goes. They work and are involved in so many things that it makes my head spin. I just returned from western New York state and it was so heavenly. The song of the birds is so comforting and watching them makes you appreciate what God has made. The quietness of sitting outdoors and looking at all the flowers and birds plus the chipmunks and squirrels is just so soothing. You thank God for this wonderful time. There are many Amish in the area and driving by their homes makes you appreciate times past — Children playing, flowers and gardens growing, beautiful quilts hanging so visitors can buy, nicely kept homes and lawns. How I miss the 1960’s when families lived near each other, cousins played with each other, adults played cards, church was a weekly happening, and there were many family dinners. Life wasn’t so hectic. It was a contentment you really didn’t realize until you moved away. You don’t need all these video games, television, computers and smart phones that we have today. One finds contentment in the little things in life – God, reading, enjoying nature, and being with family. I love your books as they put me back in my childhood.

  97. Marilyn says:

    It is refreshing to hear how the Amish children entertain themselves. Too many of our youth are easily bored. Read a book and expand your horizons. Thank you for this giveaway.

    Marilyn

  98. The Amish children and adults have the right idea. Live simple and appreciate what you have. All children should be encouraged to read. Thank you for the lovely giveaway.
    Joan

  99. Every one should stop and look at the Amish and how they live. The children are happy to play with simple things. Reading is the best thing for children to do it helps them learn about things they may have not learned in school.
    Marion.

  100. Jessica Phillips says:

    I find that I love to go and read a good book or to go for a nice walk. I love to watch the sunrise and sunset because it always shows that it doesn’t have to be big or grand that the simple is always nicer

  101. I wish I could live more like the Amish do. My daughter and granddaughter always have a computer or smart phone on and think they can do something and still text. They have a hard time disconnecting. I enjoy just reading, watching the birds flying about, listening to their songs, the sunrise or sunset, the beauty of the wildflowers. My girls can’t lift their noses off their screens long enough to see what God created all around them.

  102. Kristen says:

    I enjoy the outdoors, and I especially love sitting out on my deck. The view is of the private forest in back of my house and it is absolutely gorgeous. It relaxes me to sit out there to read, do homework (I work full-time and go to school as well), or just to stare out into the forest. I love it!

  103. tammy tomez says:

    Oh how I wish that the kids growing up today knew more about the simple things in life. The Amish children are so fortunate to have a much simpler life. It reminds me of the way we grew up playing; outside, in the dirt with our cousins and siblings. I try so hard to implement the simple ways of life as much as possible in the lives of my grandchildren and they really do love those things. They love to have picnics with Mamie and to help me cook; to do puzzles and read. They are faced with enough competitiveness and technology in their little lives so I feel it is even more important to keep as much of the old ways alive in them as possible. I always enjoy your journal entries so much!

  104. Carrie Ann Willoughby says:

    My favorite part of your website is the sound of the horses hooves clopping
    plus the giveaways and the news of what’s coming next!

  105. Shirley Cox says:

    I enjoy visiting with neighbors, sitting outside and enjoying a breeze. My grandchildren would benefit from not having their own phones. I think they would be forced to entertain themselves as I did, being outside riding bikes and enjoying the company of others.

  106. Sharon Mitchell says:

    My husband and I take a trip with at least one of our grandchildren in our RV each summer to show them the varied beauty of this country. We have no TV and electronics are limited use. (Parents need to hear from them) We play simple games and read at night in the campground or sit by a fire and talk. We try to combine natural wonders, historical places and some fun things like county fairs. These are the memories that they remember. Two years ago, my then 20 year old grandson asked if he could go with us and one of his cousins on our trip. He said he had missed going for the last 5 years and wanted to spend the month on our trip before starting his new job. It filled my heart. Even though his cousin is 7 years younger and a girl, we all had such fun.We also took them to see far away relatives, some of whom they had never met in person. One place we always visit is Lebanon County, PA. They love to visit there and we stock up on meats, canned goods and farmers market produce before going to visit the relatives, so we can cook together and have the added time and bounty.
    On the subject of places that bring me contentment, I have never found a place that brings be more peace that standing among the sequoias in Sequoia National Park. It is like standing in nature’s cathedral.

  107. Linda McFarland says:

    That’s how it was when I was growing up. We used our imaginations when we played and made up games. Children don’t know how to do that anymore. I am always amazed at how much technology knowledge my great-nephews have compared to what I know now. It’s just how they are being taught. I like things like they were in the good-ole-days but times they are a-changin’! Thanks always for your provocative posts.

  108. Sarah Arnold says:

    Hi Wanda, We were told to play outside a lot growing up. I want my kids to not long for materialistic things. I wish they lived more like Amish kids. We shoot for experiences now not things. Thank you for your wonderful writings.

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