Odd Amish Butter

Polish Amish Butter

Reader Lindsay recently took a trip to a Chicago international market.  At the market she found products from a company named Calma, which sells Amish-made products including honey, noodles, eggs, and apple butter.

While there, Lindsay picked up some butter;  this being Chicago (2nd-largest “Polish” city outside Warsaw), the label on the butter is partially in Polish.  Calma was apparently founded by immigrants from Poland, and sells its goods in many local Polish stores.

If you have never seen tongue-twisting Polish before, here is a shot of the butter and the label with ingredients written in Polish.  Lindsay adds that “it was pretty good quality butter to boot!”

polish amish butter

New Logo

You might notice this blog has a new logo.  Hope you enjoy it.  It’s not quite as plain as the old one, but still not too fancy!  Curious to hear what you think.

Also, you may remember I asked for ideas for a blog tagline, way back when.  I decided on “Exploring Amish Culture and Communities”.  This was quite close to one that Paula suggested on this post from last November.

There are a few other design tweaks here and there, but you’ll see things are pretty much the same.  One thing I wanted to mention–you can now add a title to any comments you leave.

I have a few more things in the works (more to come).  Will probably also be tweaking the design a bit over the next few days.

Card Mob

Alice Aber wrote with a request.  A friend of hers, Frank Talmadge, is seriously ill.  Frank’s 50th birthday is on April 19th, and Alice would like to “mob” him with cards.  If you’d like to send Frank a card, Alice has made arrangements for all cards to be held at the local post office until the day of his birthday.  Sounds like a very nice idea.  The address is:

Frank Talmadge

518 N. Madison St.

Clinton, IL 61727

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    1. Richard

      My card has already went out this past Monday, so frank should receive it on thurs or fri, a very nice thing to do so i encourage as many folks to do this as possible. The logo looks pretty good Erik, in a workman -like yet to the point kind of way, just like the Amish themselves. The logo or fancy pictures don’t make a good site, its the writing, so id say your site would fall in the “great” category. Your a natural writer, while some of us, well i wont mention any names, lets just say he lives in Lebanon county,lol, must really work hard at it to make it at least palatable to most folks. Richard from Lebanon,Pa

    2. Thanks Richard! No, I’d say you have a knack for telling good stories 😉

      I am still struggling with getting some of the code right…so the design may still be a little rough in spots (and doing some funky things for a little while here 🙂 ) A computer whiz I’m not…

    3. Robin Wyatt

      I like the New Logo, It is short and sweet, to the point. It says what it needs to without being overwelming.I was wondering is Calma Company have a websight? Robin from San Antonio,TX

    4. Richard

      I can understand about tweaking Erik, I’ve done a little of that the last few weeks myself. Your site has a clean look, so its refreshing to be honest and i like it. I’m not sure if you watch TCM, its turner classic movies that shows classic movies from the 1920s to 1970s. I’m not usually a walking TV guide but tonight the channel is showing at 8pm the movie called “Friendly persuasion”, the movie was filmed in 1956 and stars Gary cooper among other stars. Its a story of a family of Quakers in Indiana in 1862. Their religious sect is strongly opposed to violence and war. It’s not easy for them to meet the rules of their religion in everyday life but when Southern troops pass the area they are in real trouble. Should they fight, despite their peaceful attitude. I thought since the Amish follow the same principles when it comes to war, that some folks would find it interesting on Amish America. Ill be watching this one myself tonight, along with some fresh made pop corn. So maybe other Amish America readers will be doing the same thing tonight, Enjoy. Richard from the Amish community of Lebanon Pa.

    5. Horseshoe buggy

      Richard, I noticed that. You have some great photos on your site. I can see you’ve been out and about, was just checking some out this morning. Especially liked the mobile horseshoer’s work buggy–he had quite a setup inside 🙂

    6. Calma Amish food website

      Robin, thank you too. I’m still not sure if the size is good or if I should knock it down a notch. We’ll see.

      You might notice a few other things are a little off kilter…I’ve actually updated the theme, and there are still a few minor bugs to work out–colors, sizes, fonts… 🙂

      Calma actually does have a website, Lindsay had passed it on to me: http://www.calmaoptimal.com/aboutUs.htm

    7. Ruben

      Great new log Erik, congrats!

    8. Richard

      Before i sign off for the night,the logo looks good to me at that size Erik, better than the smaller one and better to see. I wonder if you can add some color to it maybe, and i mean to the title “Amish America”?. Might help make it a little warmer, if you can understand what i mean. In the end it will be your choice because your the boss of your site, I’m always a sucker for colors like blues. Something to break-up things a little, plus its a nice country color. I got rid of those Google ads because i was not making anything with that, plus it was slowing my site up a little. I notice you got rid of yours Erik, as small as it was. And thanks for the kind words regarding my site, I’m a hard guy to please when it comes to design, so I’m always looking for a better way. Ill leave it alone for now, I’m pretty happy with the way it looks now. If it makes you happy, that’s the important thing Erik. Your site is very easy to read, which is a huge plus with most folks. Have fun tweaking, and ill pop on thurs morning to see if you have done anything else to it. Richard from Lebanon county’s Amish community.

    9. Magdalena

      I like the new logo. I try to keep my own blog very, very simple. Sometimes the more features a blog has, the harder it is to load, especially if one does not have true hi-speed.

    10. Ruben, thank you!

      Richard, well it does 🙂 And for colors, I agree–I was trying to incorporate something warm, but since I’m not an artist I settled on the warmish subtitle (reddish-brown). I’m not sure if that will stick or not. And may tweak the logo further. I agree about warm!

      Magdalena, I appreciate it. You do have quite a plain site. That is my preference too. You are right about loading speed.

      One thing that slows things down is photos in png format vs. jpg, for instance. However png offers higher quality so it’s a trade-off.

    11. Kathy Rowe

      Like your new logo, Erik. Very nice. Also, I will be glad to get a card out in the morning to Frank.
      Hope everyone is doing well this bright, sunny day. Such a nice change from the flooding we have been having lately.

    12. Naomi

      Erik, I love the new logo. It’s perfect.

      Richard, I grew up Quaker, and Friendly Persuasion was a movie my family watched often. It’s very good. Apparently Gary Cooper’s character in FP was the inspiration for casting Harrison Ford as John Book in Witness.

    13. Richard

      I just had to come back one more time before i sign off,lol. Im really signing off after this. I agree about putting too many things on your site will usually slow it down, so i had to strip mine down a little. So i had to put things in that gave me a good bang for my buck, while watching my page speed. I really hate a page loading up slow, and you might run the risk of a reader becoming disgusted a little and going elsewhere. I’ve really added all that i could on my site without it being annoying to most, so I’ve maxed mine out. Its about keeping a balance between speed and design really. Good luck trying to keep that balance Erik, and I’m sure you will in the end . Nothing wrong with keeping it clean, just don’t change the writing because that’s not broke. Good night everyone. Richard from Lebanon county’s Amish community.

    14. James Stytle


      I smiled at your phrase, “tongue-twisting Polish”. I spent a lot of time working on teaching myself Polish before I traveled to Poland in 1999. It is the hardest language I have tried to learn. I made sure I was proficient at letting people know I could not speak Polish and asking if they spoke English. I found most people at that time under age 25 could speak English well enough to help me (I was traveling alone). My 16-year old daughter has used my Polish materials and made much better progress than I did.

    15. Richard

      I didnt know that about “Friendly Persuasion” being an inspiration for the movie “Witness”.That makes me want to watch it even more now, which i will be doing at 8pm tonight. Remember folks, its on at 8pm on TCM. Thanks for that little bit of info Naomi, i was ready to sign-off for the evening. And again good night. Richard from Lebanons Amish community.

    16. Kathy, Naomi, many thanks! It is great to hear you enjoy it.

      And Richard you are right on page speed. It is good to test from time to time.

      James, hilarious on your Polish proficiency. There are a lot of people proficient in that department! After much struggle I can say I’ve probably clawed my way to half-proficiency 😉

    17. Beth

      Thanks for the tip on the movie. I like the oldies better than most of the new ones out there so it’s nice to have one recommended and even better one about Quakers:)

    18. kristin jager

      New logo, card mob request, and Polish butter

      I am out of the loop a little bit. Thought things looked a bit different over here. The new logo is very nice….but I agree, it does need color. My daughter actually thought is was a little boring…color adds a little spice to life;-)
      I enjoyed reading your blog re: the mob request and Polish butter too. I think it is a great idea sending out request to send cards to those in need. What a wonderful way to reach out to someone who is sick, suffering or just needs to have their day brightened.

    19. Alice Aber

      logo and card mob

      Greetings everyone!

      I have not been online much today as I am getting ready for a craft sale on Saturday.

      Erik, I love the logo and the tag line. Awesome job!!!

      Thank you for posting about Frank’s birthday and the “card mob” This is going to be awesome!! Frank will really be surprised on his birthday. He has no friends or family here. We both grew up together in my hometown of Port Jervis, NY. After 15 years in the Navy Frank had settled in South Carolina.

      Due to his health he was no longer able to stay alone and what few friends he had were really not helpful to him. Frank moved here and I take care of him. He is still able to do basic things but only has about 20% of his heart working so those things are quit limited. He needs a heart transplant. We don’t know if this will be his last birthday or not. That is up to God. But we sure can make this birthday special!!

      We had watched the first episode of the new show “Mobbed” and that is what gave me the idea of a “card mob”. I would really appreciate anyone who can to send a card. It can be hand made, computer printed, store bought or even just a simple hand written note. I am not asking for money or gifts. Just a card to let him know people really do care. 🙂

      I plan on taking pictures on his birthday and posting them on my blog afterwards. I think this will be his best birthday ever and he will have wonderful memories that will last an eternity.

      Thanks everyone! If you have any questions you can email me at ceramics_lady@@mchsi.com

      Much love and blessings to all!!

    20. Cindy Seigle

      I think it all looks very nice. You do such a good job. Whenever anybody asks me something about the Amish, your site is where I send them.

    21. Mona

      Hi Erik,
      Yes your site is looking very good….

    22. Alice Mary

      Good all around today!

      Lots of good stuff on your site today, Erik! Yes, I like the logo (I have a windmill like that hanging on my kitchen wall and will always think “Amish” when I look at it now). I like the simple look, too, but agree on a little color to catch the eye. I can see the sun (the glow of it, anyway) just coming up behind the windmill, with a little faded blue sky around it—but just a touch, low on the horizon..but that’s just my mind’s eye “talking”.

      I have to agree with Richard about having a great site—you do! I’m so glad I found it this past winter. The photos, comments, stories from interesting people make it my FAVORITE blog.

      And Alice, I’ll be sending out a card to Frank tomorrow. That is a wonderful idea! My co-workers did something like that for me this past year, when I had 2 surgeries, 4 months apart. I got one or two or more cards just about every day. It sure cheered me up!

      Ah–the Polish butter! While I don’t really speak Polish, the school I went to in Chicago taught Polish as one of its languages. i always thought it wasn’t fair that my Polish friends (fluent in Polish) got to take what was their “native” language while every other language was “foreign” to me (French, German,Spanish, and Latin). But growing up in a Polish-American household, in a Polish-American neighborhood, I pretty much know a lot of the pronunciations of Polish names(and those tricky consonant blends that sound like mumbling!)

      Looking forward to more Amish lore—oh! Before I forget, a friend reminded me that “The Shunning” (based on Beverly Lewis’s book) will be shown on the Hallmark Channel on Sat., 8 pm Central…in case anyone’s interested.

      Alice Mary

    23. Kevin Lindsey

      I like the logo too, and the oversll look of the site. Good job!

    24. Kevin Lindsey

      Incidentally, Friendly Persuasion is one of my favorite movies, and thanks to Alice Mary for the lead on the Hallmark show. We put it on our calendar.

    25. OldKat

      I like the new look; it has what I call a crisp, clean look about it. Though honestly, if you hadn’t pointed it out I probably wouldn’t have noticed it for several weeks, if then.

      I am pretty oblivious to things sometimes; which, believe it or not, can come in handy on occasion. About 20 years ago I use to commute into the city with a young lady from our town. She was a stunningly pretty girl with long blond hair that went nearly down to her waist. One Saturday she came by to thank my wife for being her emergency fill in when her babysitter was a no-show. We were out in the driveway talking when my wife said “Sherry, I really like your hair. When did you cut it?” She said; “Oh about 6 months ago!” Then looking right at me said; “I kept waiting for your husband to say something about it, but he never seemed to notice”. I looked at her and danged if that long, flowing hair wasn’t cut just below her shoulders! They could tell by my reaction that I really hadn’t noticed it before and they both burst out laughing. After she left we were talking about Sherry cutting her hair and my wife said something like “You know, you really should try to pay more attention to such things”. To which I gave a quick reply that, 20 years later, I am still somewhat amazed that I could come up with on such short notice. I casually said; “But why would I be looking at her, when I have you?”

      She looked at me kind of questioningly, but never said a word. Well, while I said I was oblivious; I never said I was stupid!

    26. Amish card shower

      Thanks everyone for all the helpful feedback. I’m actually planning to incorporate some more color up top but for now hope this will do.

      And thanks Alice for sharing more about Frank! This is kind of like an Amish card shower, only I don’t think Frank is Amish 🙂

    27. Alice Aber

      Amish card shower

      Erik, I had not thought about that but you are right!! Thanks for letting me do this on here. And special thank you to those who plan on sending cards. I think Frank is really going to be happy. 😀

      Blessings, Alice

    28. Richard

      Good morning. Lots of activity on this topic, maybe a little change is good all around. I saw that movie on TCM last night “Friendly Persuasion” , the orig one made in 1956 that i told everyone about on wedsday. I thought it was pretty good with its constant message throughout the film about love and turning the other cheek, I’m not sure if that concept is possible especially in today’s world . But it was refreshing and had me believing that its possible, even if it was only for 2 and a half hours. Have fun tweaking a little Erik, the logo itself looks good and explains what the site is all about. Everyone enjoy your day. Richard from Lebanon county’s Amish community.

    29. Matthew


      The logo looks great, Eric! Having owned a website development company for the past six years, all I can tell you about coding is that its ALL evil :-). I’m in the middle of reworking another developer’s php code and table based layout into a css layout right now. If I can be of any assistance to you, please let me know.

    30. Debbie Welsh

      I think the new logo is very nice and simple, as it should be considering the context of this blog. However, I like Alice Mary’s ideas for adding a little color, too.

      Alice, count me in on sending Frank a card, as well!

    31. Richard from http://Amishstorys.com

      Greetings…. Lancaster area today was on the cloudy side, with the sun trying to peek out here and there. I was in Lancaster today trying to take some pictures, so im pretty happy on how that went. Farmers both Amish and non Amish are starting to work the land, so the farmland is starting to take on many colors.Plants are now for sale, and i saw alot of Amish folks today starting to plant around their homes. I notice you stopped tweaking Erik, maybe thats a good thing because everything looks to be in order, with a nice clean look. Richard from Lebanon county’s Amish community.

    32. Debbie, Matthew, appreciate it, and Matthew sounds like you know of which you speak 🙂

      Richard still a little more tweaking to go, but I had to take a break…it probably doesn’t seem like much of a change but with the work it took it’s got me worn out! Good to hear the Lancaster farms are still in business 🙂

    33. Lindsay

      For a second I was scrolling up a page it looked like the logo windmill moved…I thought it was animated at first!

      I like the new logo. I don’t know if you want to do too much more to it…when you think of Amish, you think of plain and simple. What kind of logo would an Amishman put on their product?

      One of my workmates grew up in Lithuania, and I don’t know if this is generally speaking for all Eastern Europeans but she says that Eastern Europeans are big on natural foods/organic foods (and that a lot of American processed foods don’t taste very good).

    34. Plain logo Ordnung :)

      Lindsay, boy an animated windmill would be cool wouldn’t it!

      I’m kind of inclined towards what you are saying here. The thing about a colorful logo is that I already often use many colorful photos in my posts. So you start to think about the complement/clash issue.

      I’m still thinking about it…I still might try to incorporate something but it is a time/work issue (it’s not as straightforward as it may seem, at least not for me! 🙂 ), and I’m also still not decided. I do kind of like the plainness of it.

      On that note, there are some really beautiful scenes on some Amish-themed websites out there. But I guess for the time being we’ll be keeping a Plainer Ordnung on Amish America…The Bishop has spoken 😉

    35. Richard (www.Amishstorys.com)

      Live a little erik,lol. Have fun with it. Richard from Pa

    36. Alice Aber

      Card Mob

      I want to thank everyone who has said they will send cards. This will certainly be a most memorable birthday for Frank. And what a great boost for his self esteem as well. His health is deteriorating and we trust that God’s will is what is most important.

      Thank you all so very much. His birthday is the 19th and I will let you know how things go.

      Much love and blessings,

    37. Lindsay

      Lately while shopping for groceries I’ve come across this brand of yogurt in many of the local supermarkets (not just International markets either)


      I’ve also been seeing this brand being carried more and more at local supermarkets:


      I find it interesting how there are now more and more Amish (or products using Amish in the advertisement) there are these days. With more and more people interested in organic foods and with the perception (whether or not it’s completely accurate aside) Amish eat only organic, locally produced food, it seems to be a sort of marketing tool.

      Looks like this could be a subject for your next book 😉