Category Archives: Pebble Creek Series

Songs in Fiction

Amish fiction, inspiration, Pebble Creek Series Comments: 12

Where the Roses Never Fade, Mid-week Inspiration

I like to include songs in my stories. On page one of A Wedding for Julia you’ll read that Ada picked the song “Where the Roses Never Fade” for her husband’s funeral. Throughout the story, the roses growing outside her kitchen window are a constant reminder of his love and God’s faithfulness.

I WANTED to include the lyrics, but turns out it’s a tricky thing to do that in a novel. It can be done, but the paperwork is rather massive. So we decided to refer to the song rather than quote it.

Many of you have written me and said you remember this song. I thought that today I’d share it with everyone. So following is a video by a blue grass band.

And you can find the lyrics here. I have a small Amish hymnal, and this song was included in it. Do you have a favorite hymn/praise song?




Cashton Wisconsin

Amish fiction, Contest, Pebble Creek Series

All Things Amish – Cashton Wisconsin

I have a confession to make. I’ve been holding out on you! While I was DSCN8813searching through my storage room (aka, bedroom closet), I found an entire tub full of items from Cashton, Wisconsin. Cashton is the setting for my Pebble Creek series. When I visited there 2 summers ago, I bought lots of goodies to give away to you.

And I saved some of those for the release of  A Wedding for Julia. Hmmm. So why are these things still in my Continue reading

Amish Weddings

Amish fiction, Pebble Creek Series Comments: 18

All Things Amish, and Amish Weddings

I had so much fun researching for my current release, A Wedding for Julia. If you’ve read the story, you know the opening scene is actually a funeral. I haven’t attended an Amish funeral, so that took a lot of research on my part. I also haven’t attended an Amish wedding! So how does a writer describe scenes they haven’t experienced?

girls visiting before an Amish wedding, Cashton, Wisconsin

girls visiting before an Amish wedding, Cashton, Wisconsin

One thing I do is read a lot. When I’ve visited Amish communities in Indiana, Ohio, Wisconsin, Texas, and Pennsylvania … I try to purchase books about Amish traditions and customs. Many of these books are written by Amish and Continue reading

Ada’s Psalms

Amish fiction, Contest, Pebble Creek Series Comments: 57

All Things Amish – Ada’s Favorite Psalms


The idea for A Wedding for Julia began in a Bible study. I knew that I was going to write about an Amish woman opening a cafe, but that was it! At the time I was participating in a Bible study entitled, The Bible in 90 Days. After reading the story of Isaac and Rebekah (Genesis 24:67) I had the image I needed of Julia and of Isaac!

But Ada, Julia’s mother, took me totally by surprised. I was still participating in  The Bible in 90 Daywhich requires you read 14 pages a day. Reading the Psalms straight through, in a few days, was eye-opening, and it helped me to visualize Ada, a sweet woman who is rooted Continue reading

Book Dedications

Amish fiction, Contest, Pebble Creek Series

Donna, Friends, and Book Dedications

Whenever I have a book release, I like to do a spotlight on the person I Image02182013141309dedicated it to. A Wedding for Julia was dedicated to my friend, Donna Seals. I first met Donna 12 years ago. She was a new reading teacher in my department, and we quickly learned to divide up our work and help each other out. Within a few months, she was my son’s “aunt,” and we’ve been close as can be ever since.

Donna has a real passion for teaching. Currently she teaches at a Continue reading

Sunbonnet Cake

Amish fiction, Amish recipes, Pebble Creek Series Comments: 21

All Things Amish — Sunbonnet Cake

I am thrilled that my new release, A Wedding for Julia has recipes included after the story. What fun! So I thought I would try and cook a few, and post the recipe here. This week, I went so far as to make a video, but I have to warn you — I am NOT Julia Childs or Sherry Gore. Both are great women and talented cooks! In my case, well my cooking talents are limited.

My video talents are apparently limited too. So laugh with me through Continue reading

Character Interview

Amish fiction, Pebble Creek Series Comments: 11

Lydia, newslCharacter Interview – Ella Fisher

This week I thought I’d share an interview with Ella Fisher, Lydia’s mom. A Home for Lydia is the 2nd book in the Pebble Creek series, and it opens with Lydia surveying the damage caused by a recent flood.

Ella, tell me about your family. We have a fairly small family by Amish standards – only 6 children.  Lydia is the oldest at 22. Then there’s Clara, Stephen, Martha, Amanda and Sally Ann. They’re good children, and Menno and I feel blessed to have them.

Your husband, Menno, has suffered with illness the last few years. Ya, but God is good. Menno’s mind is still sharp, and he’s a strong leader for our family even though he might be physically weak. I’ll admit some days are hard. It’s always difficult to see a loved one suffer, but Menno is my rock. He’s all I ever wanted in a husband, and I love him dearly.

Let’s talk about Lydia. How do you feel about her working at the cabins? Oh, it’s been a good job, and we’re glad she has it. I worry a little, now that she’s there alone. Ervin died so sudden-like. No one was expecting it, least of all his wife, Elizabeth. God saw that Ervin’s life was complete, and God will provide a way for the cabins to stay open if it’s in accordance with his will.

Do you enjoy living in Pebble Creek? I do. We all do. Wisconsin is beautiful, filled with good farming land and plenty of jobs if you’re willing to work hard. The men in our families love to fish in the creek and hunt in the fall. The thing I like most about Pebble Creek is the way we all pull together, we help one another, and we worship the Lord together. It’s a good place to live, and a fine place to raise a family.

I know you have cooking and cleaning to do, so I’m going to let you go. Thanks for taking the time to talk with us. We try to always be friendly to any Englischers who happen by. If you have time, you go down the road to Irene’s. She sews bonnets and dolls and such. I know she’d be happy to have you visit.

Ella is a minor character in the story, A Home for Lydia, but she’s very important to Lydia. I hope you’ve enjoyed this brief glimpse into life in Pebble Creek.






Amish fiction, Pebble Creek Series, Shipshewana Series Comments: 13

wisconsin schoolAll Things Amish – Similarities

Last week we talked about the differences in Amish communities. Today let’s discuss similarities. Disclaimer: I haven’t been to all the Amish communities, but I do know 2 fairly well. Indiana is where my Shipshewana series is set, and Wisconsin is where my Pebble Creek Series is set.


  1. The schoolhouses looked very similar to me. They’re small and on the Continue reading

On Location

Amish fiction, Pebble Creek Series Comments: 21

All Things Amish – On Location

I thought we’d go “on location” this week. My Pebble Creek series is set in/near Cashton, Wisconsin. There is no Pebble Creek, that I know of, but there are a lot of creeks, rivers, and hills. It’s a beautiful area.

The Amish in Wisconsin lived differently than the Amish I’d met in Indiana, Ohio, or Pennsylvania. They were still very friendly, willing to talk to me, and Continue reading