He's been plotting and scheming - and I was none the wiser.
A week ago, he'd given me a card, announcing a mystery trip once we were here in Indiana - no kids, (no puppy!), two days together.
We drove up Hwy 31, and I had no clue. Whatsoever. Which is not a mean feat, for this reforming control-freak wife.
As we drove farther north, we passed a sign for an Amish farm. When I mentioned I'd always wanted to visit one, I was met with stony silence. Once we turned on Hwy 6, and I exclaimed, "Hey, this is where that farm is! Can we stop by on our way to - well, wherever we're going?" He couldn't keep silent any more.
SO - this is what Yurii had planned . . . . . . . . .
First stop - Amish Acres in Nappanee, Indiana. While not an actual working farm (much to Yurii's dismay!), it was an accurately preserved Old Order Amish farm from the early 1900s. We learned Amish history, enjoyed an amazing Thresher's dinner in the barn, and got to see the musical "Plain and Fancy" in the round barn.
And the best part about the evening? We ended up sitting behind 6 Amish women, who laughed uproariously at lines that the rest of the audience found only moderately amusing.
Day Two: Masterworks Music Festival in Winona Lake, Indiana
Yurii & I had read about the Masterworks Festival - the summer festival for the Christian Performing Artists' Fellowship - in World Magazine many, many years ago. Not too surprisingly, it piqued our interest and we vowed to visit someday. Although we came in the middle of the week, and were only able to see an orchestra rehearsal, it was inspiring nonetheless. Providentially, we were even able to meet and speak with Patrick Kavanaugh, the founder and director.
As an added bonus, we were able to visit the Billy Sunday museum. Ever heard of him? Billy Sunday was a famous baseball-player-turned-evangelist who lived and preached in the earliest twentieth century, mainly supporting the prohibitionist movement. Most sobering fact of the day- although Sunday is estimated to have preached to one hundred million people, his three sons were noted alcoholics and womanizers. What profits a man to gain the whole world and lose his sons? (ok, translation mine)
We came away rested, refreshed, encouraged, and inspired.
And I felt dearly loved and appreciated.
What more could a girl want for her birthaversary present?
I love you, honey. Thanks for 18 never-dull years - may the Lord allow us many, many more to serve together for His glory.