Life in the Emmental Valley

Being in The Emmental Valley, sitting inside an open window breathing in the fresh mountain air and hearing the birds singing in the pines while Miriam, Hadassah, and Baby Michael David are sleeping is like waking up from a beautiful dream to find out it’s real. I feel truly blessed to be here at ┬áthe “Little House on the Farm.”

I hear doves cooing in the barn loft, and a chain saw off in the distance. I see several jet streams across the blue sky, and I see the snowman melting that Hadassah and I built in the pasture below the barn. It feels like an early spring day.

Experiencing Hadassah’s world is like being inside the world of Heidi. She and I plan to be in the barn when they milk the cows tonight. She has already shown me around the farm several times. I’ve been introduced to the cows, the chickens and rooster, two little goats, guinea hens, cats, and dogs. It’s as if Marco and Miriam have stepped back in time to raise their two beautiful children.


The living arrangement here is like a match made in heaven. I cannot tell who is happier about it — the landlord family or the tenants. The family who has lived here all their lives are happy to have the Kochs here and from what I can tell, Miriam and Marco are equally happy to be here.

The hospitality I am receiving could not be better. Miriam and Marco have made me feel right at home — like a grandmother here for a visit.

We are all missing David. Today when Hadassah and I were building a snowman, she said she wishes David was here, because he would really enjoy building a snowman with her. I was wishing he was here the other day when Hadassah was showing me around the farm and she wanted to stay out longer than I did. I’ve always been bothered by animal smells, and David doesn’t mind them. He is usually wondering how it is that I grew up on a farm and yet I’m so finicky about such things.

Missing David is the only drawback to being here in Switzerland. I am making incredible discoveries in Anabaptist history. I will share them in future posts.

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20 thoughts on “Life in the Emmental Valley”

  1. Melody Siminski

    What a beautiful place. Initially I said to myself how brave of Saloma being willing to travel so far on her own. And then I remembered the young Amish woman that left and moved out on her own. Your adventurous spirit has carried you far dear one. Enjoy God’s beautiful creation.

    1. Melody, thank you so much for your kind words. As I get older, I have a harder time getting up the gumption to venture out on my own like this. But I’m so glad I did.

      God’s creation is indeed beautiful… nowhere is this more evident than in Switzerland. Thank you so much for your good wishes.

  2. Sounds so wonderful. Loved Switzerland, but did not have the opportunity to check out my ancestry area. Will be interested in your reports

  3. I have a Swiss friend who also lives in the ‘Heidi’ area. He loves mountains but he also loves to travel, and visits Alaska several times a year. His name is Christophe Rochet and he posts a lot of photos on Facebook. Darn! I just remembered you don’t do Facebook; I would love for you to see his photos. :)

  4. Eileen Stutzman

    This is very interesting to me since my husband & I have already been to Switzerland. Will look forward to hearing more about your trip. Thanks for sharing!

  5. Dear Saloma thank you for taking the time to give us a glimpse of the beautiful world you have found yourself in. Your words have made me feel as though I am there with you. What a blessing for you to experience such a place. I’m sure you are missing David as I would my Paul, that must be difficult. We always want to share our experiences with those we love. Thank you for the pictures, they are beautiful, though I’m sure they don’t come close in comparison to seeing all that beauty in person. Thank you for bringing us along.

    1. Pamela, it is a joy to share my experiences. You’re right, it is a wonderful blessing to be here and experience all this. I like that you felt you were here with me… you are in spirit.

      In a few days you will see some photos that really capture the feel and beauty of this place. Marco is a phenomenal photographer, and he has some photos that take my breath away. He and Miriam are launching their own blog, which I will link to.

      But you are right about one thing… there is nothing like seeing these beautiful sights in person.

      You are welcome, Pamela. And thank you for reading and commenting on this blog, as always.

  6. Saloma! I am so happy and excited for you! So much to discover and experience. Praying for you, too. History can be heavy with emotion. Enjoy your grandchildren and their parents and all of your surroundings. Looking forward to your next writing. I MUST keep up with you in a more timely fashion! Keeping the frigid winter weather away for a while byet…enjoy the early spring while you can!

  7. Dear Saloma, how I loved reading “Heidi” as a child! I couldn’t put it down. My mother finally went out and bought me another book. She said “There, because I’m tired of seeing you read ‘Heidi’ all the time!” Thanks for the memories. I enjoy reading the new memories you’re making with your Swiss “family”. Blessings to you and David.

    Lori Milner

    1. Thank you, Lori, for your comments. I also re-read “Heidi” many times over as a child. I think I’ve mentioned before that it was the first book I owned.

      Blessings to you as well, Lori.

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