There are hardly any more signs of the snow we had covering the ground recently. The almost 50-degree, rainy weather has resulted in the snow disappearing.

There are hardly any more signs of the snow we had covering the ground recently. The almost 50-degree, rainy weather has resulted in the snow disappearing.

Early Sunday morning, we had some thunder and lightning along with some heavy winds and rain, which is unusual for January. All the snow melting, combined with the rain, made the ground quite muddy. The children have some muddy boots that need to be cleaned. Temperatures are a little above freezing, so the ground has hardened up again. Although I am ready for spring, it would be nice to have some snow to clean the mud off these boots. It is good God alone controls the weather.

Yesterday, we had Sunday brunch at Jacob and Emmaís house. She fixed a big meal of biscuits, sausage gravy, potatoes, eggs, cheese, hot peppers, homemade wheat bread, butter, V-8 juice, coffee, orange juice, milk and homemade grape juice. The V-8 juice is the juice Elizabeth and I helped Emma make last fall a few weeks after she had baby Marilyn.

We went a little overboard putting in jalapenos, so it is a very hot V-8.

Baby Marilyn is still really growing at 4 1 /2 months. She is such a smiling baby and loves to chatter. Emma and Jacobís son Steven, 2, seems to have accepted her.

Our son, Kevin, 4, thought he had to always take Steven to the potty yesterday. He gets a little bossy with him, but it doesnít seem to bother Steven.

After playing some board games, Emma and I mixed up some homemade ice cream. Joe, Jacob and all the boys took turns cranking the ice cream freezer. I took along a cake in honor of daughter Susanís 14th birthday. Emma also served homemade apple and pecan pies she had made the day before.

After the snack, we headed for home. The girls made a light supper for everyone, and we retired for bed earlier. The children were tired after a long day of playing with their cousins.

Our prayers are with the Joe Bontrager family as Joe, 58, has been in the hospital since Jan. 14. He is recovering from a stroke. They are in the same church district we are. It sounds like he will have a long road to recovery.

I need to go help daughter Elizabeth, 15, finish the daily morning work. She has been doing a great job in learning to sew new clothes. One day last week, she sewed her brother Joseph two new denim pants for school. He was pretty proud to wear them to school. He is a neat little boy and doesnít like patches on his pants.

This week, Elizabeth plans to sew Joseph a few more pants and also start on Benjaminís. Meanwhile, I need to get busy cutting out the pants so she can get started sewing on them. I bought a big bulk of denim material when it was on sale, so it is nice to have it on hand. Elizabeth is doing a great job in sewing and is catching on fast. I am glad I have two sewing machines.

Happy 80th birthday to Uncle Albert Coblentz in Lafayette, Ind. This would be my Dadís oldest brother. We regret we couldnít attend his birthday celebration on Saturday.

Here is the recipe we used to make the homemade ice cream yesterday.

Homemade Ice Cream

10 cups milk

7 eggs

3 1/2 cups sugar

4 teaspoons vanilla

1 teaspoon salt

Beat eggs, and then add remaining ingredients and mix. Pour into freezer and freeze. Enjoy.

(Note: This recipe provides insight into Amish culture, but USDA and other health officials strongly advise against the consumption of raw eggs. Use recipe at your own risk ó the newspaper nor The Amish Cook or her family assume liability for any illness.)