***We will be closed this Sunday, September 3rd, for Labor Day.***
Last week I drove to Pennsylvania to spend a few days with my aunt who comes to visit ME for two weeks every spring. I hadn’t been back in a couple of years, so when Farmer Bob made the suggestion that I take a vacation, I was excited to go!
I’m from Pennsylvania Dutch country, near Lancaster County, PA, and it sure did feel good to get back to all those familiar towns, foods, shopping, quilt shops, and the sight of Amish buggies on the road. Aunt Ina drove me past my grandmothers’ and great grandmother’s houses to see them…sure brought back lots of memories. I was so pleased to see them all occupied by families that love them. My favorite grandmother’s (Aunt Ina’s mother) house is for sale. I sure hope someone nice buys it. Here’s my great grandparents’ farm:
I got to see my great aunt’s big old Victorian house, too. I can still “walk” through that house in my memory…even smell her chicken roasting. Isn’t that funny how so much memory is tied up in aromas? Grandma Heller’s house is chicken corn soup and sour cherry pies, Grandma Hoffman’s house is breakfast eggs frying in butter, Great Aunt Vida’s house is roast chicken and lima beans. I never was in my Great Grandmother Kimmel’s house on the farm….she and Grandpa Kimmel died long before I was born. I imagine it smelled like apple pies…Grandma said there was an apple orchard behind the house where, as a child, she would hide in the trees to read her books when there was work to be done. 🙂
We spent one day in Lancaster County. Most people know that as “Amish Country.” It really is the home of a large group of Amish families and beautiful farms. Towns have funny names: Bird in Hand, Intercourse, Blue Ball. Buffets in restaurants are called “smorgasbords,” and here’s a picture of me with Aunt Ina enjoying some traditional PA Dutch food at the Bird in Hand Family Restaurant. If you click on that link, you can go to their website and see the menu for some of the dishes they have. Yummy!
My cousin, Jenny, drove over from New Jersey. Turns out she had already planned to do that, so what a great surprise for us all to be able to get together for a day of fun quilt shop shopping in Lancaster! Here we are in the first shop we went to. It turned out to be my favorite one, too. It is the Log Cabin Quilt Shop.
I was pretty overwhelmed and forgot to take pictures in the other shops, but this was definitely my favorite shop. There was so much variety that I walked through three times and saw new things each time! They made their own kits at this shop, so that’s what I got…three little quilt kits. They also had 5 yard pieces of good quilting fabric for just $20, so I got a couple of those suitable for quilt backings.
I grew up around the Amish, so I didn’t even think of getting pictures of them…besides, they really don’t like that and I wouldn’t either. I did get a great picture of a horse and buggy. Those horses are trotters and boy, do they ever move fast! Here you can see my truck on the right and the horse and buggy, and all that corn growing right up to the road. The corn was thick and tall…everywhere!
This Amishman is well-off, see how smart his horse and buggy look? Just like everyone else, some are prosperous and some are not-so-prosperous. You can tell by the quality of their buggies and their horses, their barns and farms and work horses, the way they dress, the business they own, etc. It might look like a quaint life, but I think it looks like too much work. Can you imagine having to harness a horse and hitch up a buggy every time you want to go somewhere? I prefer to jump in the truck and turn the key. 🙂
It felt so good to go back to my roots and spend some time with my aunt. I came back inspired…especially by the food I grew up with. THAT is why I baked PA Dutch Apple Crumb pies to sell at our market on Sunday. I baked five and they were gone in a snap! Now that I know they are in demand, I’ll be baking more.
We’ll be closed this Sunday, September 3rd, for Labor Day, but you can come get some pies, cakes, lamb, eggs, and other goodies during our regular market hours on Sunday, September 10th, from 1:00-5:00.