Monday, December 1, 2014
ELMER TELLS OF THANKSGIVING AND AMISH NAMES
When Anna and I were alone for our bedtime prayers, I read from the Bible, we prayed, and sang a couple of songs. Then we did something we hadn't done before. We tried to name off things we forget to thank the Lord for. Of course we thanked the Lord for our new house, the people that built it, but did we thanked the Lord for providing us with materials to built it. We thanked the Lord for the new towels and wash clothes for the bathroom. For the new sheets for our bed. For the groceries we buy and more. It turned out to be fun as we sort of tried to top each either with the small things to thank the Lord for. We always remember to thank Him for the big things, but not the little ones.
In telling about the weddings in our family, we told you of my son and myself both being Elmer. Thought you might like to hear of our unusual or funny nicknames. In the post Anna used Junior and Senior. Amish do not usually use that way. Amish use different names to identify one from another. Sometimes I am Shorty Elmer and my son is Big Elmer. This sometimes confuses people because, not knowing us, think that Big Elmer is the father and Shorty Elmer is the son.
Amish nicknames can be from stature, occupation, personalities, and more. Our son Nathan lives in an area where people have our common last name along with a couple men named Nathan. So our son is called Woody Nathan because he makes wood furniture. I am sometimes called Carp Elmer because I do carpenter work. My latest nickname is Butcher Elmer because I go to David and Jean's and help them butcher animals. Really my most common name is Shorty Elmer.
Now this leads to Anna. In an Amish group, Anna is known as Shorty Elmer's Anna. My oldest son's wife is Big Elmer's Mary. Nathan's wife is also named Mary, so she is Woody Nathan's Mary. With the two Mary's, we have to use the husband's first name so they know who we are talking to or about.
Even though John and Sarah recently married, they have a nickname, too. Because John is a rather common Amish name - he was called Shorty Elmer's John, which people still call him now and again. It seems that, locally anyway. there are no other Sarah's married to a John - so now John is Sar's John. Sarah is called Sar's John's Sarah. Sar is short for Sarah. I have a feeling that nickname may change with time. Again, maybe it won't.
When we were younger, my friend Eli, was called Biggest Eli as he is over six foot three inches tall. As time past, he became Big Eli. For some reason those names bothered him. When he became Bishop that ended all the big names. Of course, now he is Bishop Eli.
So I thought you might find some of our Amish nicknames interesting.
Trust God's Wisdom,