4 a.m. Our alarm rings, and it’s time to get up. I was so used to getting up an hour earlier with daylight saving time that I always wake up at 3 a.m. now. Sometimes it’s hard to fall back to sleep for an hour until the alarm rings.

I make son Joseph and my husband Joe sausage, egg and cheese sandwiches for breakfast. Son Benjamin doesn’t want any and takes a protein shake instead.

4:30 a.m. Benjamin leaves for work. Joseph is feeding the horses. I pack Joseph and Joe’s lunches and fill their water jugs.

4:45 a.m. Joe leaves for work.

5 a.m. Joseph leaves for work. Daughter Lovina is getting ready for work.

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5:30 a.m. Lovina leaves for work. I wash the breakfast dishes and a few from last night’s supper.

6:30 a.m. Dishes are washed and put away. I take a break and sit in my recliner and read. Everything is quiet and it’s good to have “me” time. Son Kevin is still in bed. He sleeps later since he doesn’t leave. Usually around daylight, he lets our new dog out to run around. We have an eight-month-old blue heeler/Australian shepherd named Hatchi that a co-worker gave to Joe. He’s a good dog. It helps fill the spot of our dog Buddy who disappeared one night. We had Buddy (a border collie/English shepherd) for 12 years, if I’m thinking correctly. Kevin misses Buddy, but is gradually making friends with Hatchi. Hatchi is a lot more energetic than Buddy was.

8:30 a.m. I make scrambled eggs and sausage patties for Kevin, daughter Loretta, and my breakfast. Loretta came over this morning in her mobility scooter. It is nice for her to be this close to home if she needs help.

I am doing mending and other odd jobs today. It seems like some jobs were pushed aside over preparing for the wedding of Loretta and Dustin. It feels nice to have time to catch up now.

1 p.m. Son Benjamin is home from work to shower and get ready for an appointment. Our friend Jodi is taking us to town, so she comes in to visit while Benjamin showers. It’s a hard day for Jodi and Susan as the accident was 11 months ago.

2 p.m. We leave for town, run some errands, and go to Benjamin’s appointment. He hurt his leg a while ago and the orthopedic doctor wanted to see how it is doing. He thinks Benjamin should have surgery or try a brace, so Benjamin chose the knee brace.

5:30 p.m. We are back home. Benjamin didn’t want me to have to make supper when we got home, so he bought something for everyone at Dairy Queen. That was a nice treat for me, and I appreciated the kind gesture.

Tomorrow morning, I’ll leave with daughter Lovina and son Kevin to go to their dentist appointments. In the afternoon I’ll go with daughter Verena to her appointment an hour away at an eye specialist. I really hope they can help her. She’s had a lot of eye appointments recently.

The annual appointments for the ones with muscular dystrophy are Friday in Ann Arbor. Another long, tiring day.

9 p.m. Everyone is getting ready for bed so I think I will join them soon.

I’ll share the recipe for monster cookies. Daughter Lovina made more than 100 one afternoon last week. They were gone way too fast; needless to say, they were way too good.

Monster Cookies

1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened

1 cup granulated sugar

1 cup packed brown sugar

3 large eggs

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon corn syrup

2 teaspoons baking soda

1 1/2 cups creamy peanut butter

4 1/2 cups quick-cooking oats

2 cups chocolate chips

2 cups plain M&M’s

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugars. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing between each addition, the vanilla, corn syrup, baking soda, and peanut butter. Mix until smooth. Add the oats and mix well, scraping the sides of the bowl. Add the chocolate chips and mix until they are evenly distributed throughout the batter. Then add the M&M’s and mix well.

On ungreased baking sheets, drop the batter by the tablespoon spacing 2 inches apart. Bake until the edges are golden brown, about 10 to 12 minutes. Let cool on baking sheets for about 3 minutes before transferring to cooling racks. Cool the cookies on a wire rack or a plate and then put into sealed containers. Makes six dozen cookies.

Lovina Eicher is an Old Order Amish writer, cook, wife, and mother of eight. Readers can write to her at PO Box 1689, South Holland, IL 60473 (please include a self-addressed, stamped envelope for a reply); or email LovinasAmishKitchen@MennoMedia.org and your message will be passed on to her.