Penny the Traveling Clothespin Doll shares her adventures at home and abroad.

Becky’s story




Hi, my name is Becky,  I live in western New York, U.S.A.  I am one of seven children, and adding spouses and the grandchildren, we make quite a crowd! Here is my family:






Our family homestead is a full and busy place.  We raise pastured beef and poultry, and eggs to sell.  We have a family milk cow, a team of halflinger draft horses, donkeys, pet chickens, ducks, alpacas, pigs, and other critters.


 We grow crops of potatoes and strawberries, as well as rhubarb, blueberries, raspberries, and fruit trees.  We have a large kitchen garden to supply produce for freezing and canning.  We have sold plants from our greenhouse in the spring, baled hay in the summer, and pressed cider in the fall.




I enjoy the gardening, both of vegetables and flowers; baking bread, and other homemaking activities.



I have a big, sunny craft room upstairs where I love to sew and create all sorts of things.  Quiltmaking is a favorite hobby, as well as stamping, spinning, miniatures, and all things handmade.

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My parents have taught us to honor the Lord, to study the Bible, and follow its teachings.  Our family is close-knit, and our door is always open in hospitality to others.  Our special family verse is Proverbs 3:5,6:

  “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding,  in all your ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct your paths”.


My chosen verse is Psalm 16:11,

“Thou wilt show me the path of life, in Thy presence is fullness of joy,

at thy right hand there are pleasures forever more.”

I want to honor the Lord with all my heart.  I want always to be aware of His presence near me, for true Life is only found in unity with Him.  God loves us each incredibly and made us for friendship with Him.  That is where we find joy.



Life is not easy, it is filled with many trials and sorrows, God has entrusted me with poor health.  I struggle daily with chronic fatigue, but it has stretched and deepened me greatly.  I am richer for it.




When the idea came to start this website to share Penny’s adventures, and to send Penny dolls to collect stories from many more countries around the world, and to share her bead story, I was amazed that little me could do something so global!   But why should I be surprised?  It was a year ago that I began praying around the world using as a guide the book I bought called Operation World, by Jason Mandryk, “A Prayer Guide to Every Nation”. God enjoys it when we pray, and it opens big doors.




Penny has taught me that the rest of the world is not so distant as we might think.  In other climates and cultures there are people just like you and me.  They live ordinary days sometimes with a smile, sometimes in tears, all have need of a friend.  All have a story to tell.  Each has a heart that can be touched by kindness.


I want to learn their stories.  I want to get a feel for where and how they live.

That is why I begin this site.

We have a big God, who has created a beautiful world.


O Lord, my God! When I in awesome wonder

Consider all the worlds Thy hands have made,

I see the stars, I hear the rolling thunder,

Thy pow’r throughout the universe displayed,

Then sings my soul, my Savior God to Thee;

How great Thou art,

How great Thou art!

When through the woods and forest glades I wander

And hear the birds sing sweetly in the trees;

When I look down from lofty mountain grandeur

And hear the brook, and feel the gentle breeze;

Then sings my soul, my Savior God to Thee;

How great Thou art,

How great Thou art!

And when I think that God, His Son not sparing,

Sent Him to die, I scarce can take it in;

That on the cross, my burden gladly bearing,

He bled and died to take away my sin;

Then sings my soul, my Savior God to Thee;

How great Thou art,

How great Thou art!

When Christ shall come with shout of acclaimation

And take me home, what joy shall fill my heart!

Then I shall bow in humble adoration

And there proclaim, my God, how great Thou art!

Then sings my soul, my Savior God to thee;

How great Thou art,

How great Thou art!


A beautiful sunset framed by the big black walnut tree in our front yard



Contact Form


It is great to have a face added to my cookie received and my emails. Your site is very well done. I hope you don’t mind but I have linked it to my facebook page, telling all my friends that they need to check you out. I believe that this is more than just a “blog” so to speak, I believe that this will become a site that will fund many things. ~ Keith

Susan Josephson Leslie

Hi Becky! I don’t know if you remember me but I am Darlene Alwardt Burroughs’ cousin. I remember you when you were a little girl and you have not changed a bit!! What a wonderful website, Darlene texted me today and told me to check it out. I loved seeing your family photo, your mom and dad look great! Please tell them I said hello! I will be checking in on Penny’s travels, I am looking forward to it! God Bless!


Yes, I remember you, Susan! Hearing from you brings back memories of Bob’s Lake; swimming, boating, fishing with the Alwardts, the sunny days, the campfires, and the Northern Lights – and hanging out with you and Darlene. Thank you for your greetings, Mom and Dad say hello back to you. Blessings to you! ~ Becky

Hi Becky–Yesterday when Darlene Burroughs gave the mission update in Sunday School, she told us about Penny’s travels, the wordless book beads on her cousins’ dresses and gave us the website to go to. I loved seeing your family photo. What a beautiful BIG family you are blessed to be part of. I read all Penny’s adventures so far. Your dolls are so cute, and this is a clever idea, and YES, if God wants you to be a web “Big shot” even, that is just what you will be! I’d like to write more now, but Al is wanting a little help getting notes ready for a meeting he needs to be at very soon. God bless. Judy Sawyer

Bonjour Becky! What a beautiful site…great photos of everyone..I love what you did to sewing/ craft room…hugs to all xoxo

Mom Kranz (Cindy Kranz)

Dearest Becky, you touch my heart with the things that are true in Christ! You have a way with words that remind me of Amy Carmichael-always drawing into the deeper realities of God our Father and of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is evident that you do honor the Lord and are so faithful to Him. It is no wonder He has made you a blessing to many-even to around the world. You are a great blessing to me personally, a gift from the Lord! I love you, dear one~Mom Kranz

Oh, thank you so much, Mom Kranz, you are such a gentle encouragement to me. May God bless you richly, and each member of your family. In our weakness, may He show Himself strong and bring glory to Himself beyond all we ask or think! Its all Him.

It was great having a meal with you and your family a couple of weeks ago and catching up after so many years. Thank you for sharing Penny’s story with me and it was an honor meeting her. I know God will continue to use you to reach others no one else could reach because you are honoring Him. I look forward to hearing more adventures of Penny and yourself. God bless!!

Jane Howard Davis

Thank you for blogging about your life. I have enjoyed reading your entries. Jane from Pocatello, Idaho

Hi there, Becky! I’ve just discovered your wonderful and inspiring blog. I’m a missionary serving in Kwazulu Natal, South Africa. I love making crochet and knit dolls, some of which we use to get the Hodpel across to local kids. It was just such a blessing to come across a God-honouring blog by another doll maker. Thank you for all you share and I will be remembering you and yours in prayer.

Hi Anita, How special to hear from you!! I love to hear that you are able to use dolls for God’s glory too! How kind of you to pray for me, I really value that. May God bless your work and bring much fruit from it.

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