Sunrise in Monument Valley

Sunrise in Monument Valley

Monday, July 25, 2016

Heading to Middletown and Hershey, PA

Wednesday was our day to drive to the campground in Middletown. Since it was only about 45 miles away it didn't make any sense to turn in the rental car in New Holland and pick up another one in Harrisburg, so I was going to follow in the car behind David in the mortorhome. Our check out time in Intercourse is noon so we decided not to leave the campground until about that time. It looked like a good opportunity for us to go out to breakfast. David found a great restaurant in Lancaster called Gracies on West Main. Luckily we got there before the crowd because it fill up really fast, They had wonderful, food and plenty of it. Too much for us to eat it all. On the table was a menu of desserts that was a bit unusual.

It's too bad we were leaving town as we would have loved to had another meal here.

On to Middletown. We got all checked in and set up. Since my meeting started the next morning at 8, I wanted to drive over to Hershey and pick up my registration packet and find my way around to the classrooms. It was a bit odd in the way things were laid out, but I did find my way. I kept noticing the designs in the carpets. What a great pattern for a quilt.

This area seemed to have no shortage of good places to eat. The distance from where we were staying and the meeting in Hershey was only 7 miles apart, so we looked for places near by for dinner. We found steak and seafood places, Italian, several grills with brew pubs and several others we would have liked to try and some we would have liked to returned to. Needless to say, I am in my fat pants again. But we're on vacation and we intend to enjoy it.

My meetings started early each morning for 4 days. I signed up with some wonderful longarm instructors and they were fantastic.The classes just seemed to get better as the week went along.  But 8 am to 6 pm made for a long day. They did give us a 2 hr lunch break between classes which was plenty of time to take in the quilt show and shop in the vendors mall. One of my instructors had her own little show at the show with 16 of her quilts on display. Many of them I recognized from winning first and second place at various quilt shows around the country and in Chattanooga. She actually won first and second place for 2 other quilts in this show. She is the main reason I came to this show, to be able to take classes from her. She is a quilting wizard. Her little samplers that she used for demos looked like show winners.

The vendor area was very nice as well. The vendors there offered different types of things than at the Chattanooga show. I even found an LED light for my Featherweight machine. I bought a couple of patterns from local quilters and that was it.

The week was very tiring and I was glad it was over. My head is spinning with new ideas for custom quilts. All of these instructors were great.

We did take Sunday (my birthday) after class to eat lunch at Red Robin, visit Hershey's Chocolate World and have dinner on our way back to the campground.

We are headed home now and back to the real world of low carb eating and our regular routine. The kitties will be very happy to get home so they can go out on their back porch to watch the birdies and lay in the sunshine. I've got a bunch of quilts to get quilted too.

A great vacation though.

Monday and Tuesday in the Lancaster Area

Monday and Tuesday was my day to visit the local quilt shops.The first one on my list was Burkholders Fabrics in Denver, Pa. They are the farthest away from where we are staying, but I have visited them before and they have a great selection of good quality fabrics. So we programmed the GPS and off we went. I had received an email saying they were having a wagon sale of fabrics at great prices and they did not lie. Outside in the parking lot was a wagon of about 400 new bolts of fabric. The catch was, you had to buy the entire bolt (15 yds). They had Hoffman batiks at $5.00, yd sand several other name brands (Westminster, Free Spirit, etc  at $2 to $3 per yd. But 15 yds of one fabric was a lot of fabric. It was fun to look though. I did end up getting a pattern on sale and some FQs. I almost never buy FQs, but they had some bundles of 20 FQs for $32. I found a nice red, white and blue for a QOV. Kim doesn't carry that brand and it would make a quick QOV. Also a nice bundle of whites for an applique background. Back outside near the "wagon o fabrics" was a field of deer and their babies. So sweet.

Next stop was another trip to Shady Maple (since we were on the way home) for food for dinner.
Great shop and good prices. We just can't get over this store. We love it so much. Of course we needed more Whoopie pies, but the produce there is incredible.

They must have 30+ varieties of apples alone.

I counted about 15 counters of bake goods (excluding breads). Sweets overload!!!!!

Next visit was to Zooks in Intercourse. The owners owned Zooks and Sauders which was way out in the country located in a basement with bulk foods. Recently they merged both stores into the one in Intercourse. Previously they both had tons of fabric with both carrying more collections and novelty fabrics. I was a bit disappointed in the merged store. The fabric did not seem to be as good a quality and I really saw very few collections. I also missed having the lovely Mennonite ladies cutting the fabric for me.

Across the street was The Old Country Store which has always been a little more expensive, but an excellent shop. Great variety of fabrics all in order by color or collections. They have a nice selection of patterns, notions, books and also a gift shop with local items and quilts.

After fabric browsing, I had to go to the home made soft pretzel store next to Zooks. You have to have their fresh pretzels, they are fantastic.I almost forgot to take the picture before I ate the whole thing.

  In the afternoon when it was a little cooler we sat outside with the kitties in their play pen.

While we were sitting there we heard someone with a lawn mower that seemed to be getting closer. We were across the street from Sam's Farm, an Amish run farm that covered many acres which is all plowed and worked with teams of horses and mules. Well, Sam has a LOT of kids. We kept seeing them of all ages galloping up the hill on horseback or driving a wagon up the hill. These were kids 9 to 10 yrs old and by themselves. As the lawn mower sound got closer we looked up and there was one of Sam's boys with a horse and cart pulling a gas operated lawn mower behind him mowing the grass next to the road. Why push a lawn mower up the hill when you can have your horse do it?

We wished we could stay here a few more days, but my quilt meeting starts on Wednesday.
More later

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Sunday and a Trip to Valley Forge

On Sunday in the Intercourse area there is absolutely nothing open on Sunday, so this was a perfect time for us to visit Valley Forge. It is only about 45 miles from where we are staying. As a National Historic Park I have always wanted to visit there and it just never fit into our schedule. I had no idea just how large of an area it was.

It is 5.4 sq miles in size and has a Visitors Center, walking trails, reconstructed cabins depicting the 6 month encampment of the Continental Army. There was a statue of General Wayne, and a Memorial Arch and beautiful Chapel. There were lots of people walking the trails, as well as cars driving around the park. We were one of the ones driving around the park, not walking. It was about 90 degrees and a little to warm for any serious hiking.

Reconstructed cabins. Each state in the Continental Army had their cabins together.

A statue of George Washington in the Visitor's Center.

Statue of General Wayne.


After our visit was stopped by Friendly's for a nice lunch and then back to Intercourse. David spent the afternoon watching the NASCAR race while I drove over to the 2 outlet mall in Lancaster and bought 2 new pair of Sketchers since I was going to be standing on my feet all next week at my meeting.

Monday, July 18, 2016

A Wonderful Visit with Friends

Saturday was a great day. Madonna and Jim came up from North Bethesda, MD and we spent some time chatting in the MH and then they took us to lunch. The are just so nice. Love these 2 people. We had a great visit. It's such a shame we don't live closer so we can visit more often. Madonna showed me a gorgeous afghan she is knitting for a gift for someone. Just incredible knitting, like a fisherman knit style. I'm not sure I'd have the patience to knit anything so large and involved as that. What a terrific gift this will be. It is really beautiful. Madonna is so talented.

I told Madonna and Jim about Shady Maple and they took a ride over and picked up some Whoopie Pies, Chicken pot pies, corn and apples.I asked her to send me a picture of them as I forgot to take one when they were here, (we were so busy talking) so here is their picture in front of Shady Maple.

Saturday afternoon David had some things he needed from a hardware store, so we had to make another trip to East Earle to Goods store which has a bit of everything, hardware, curtains, small appliances, dress fabrics, clothes, you name it. By then it was almost time for supper and we weren't that hungry for a big meal, so we made a trip to Lapps Valley Farm for some fresh homemade ice cream right from the farm.

A double scoop of butter pecan in a waffle cone for me and the same for David in a cup. YUM!!!!!!!
They were extremely busy even this late on a Saturday.

We came back to the MH and put Bentley out in his stroller so that he could enjoy the nice weather and fresh air. Well, I really shouldn't say FRESH air, just outside air as outside smells strongly of manure due to Sam's Farm across the street. Anyway he did enjoy sitting outside, listening to the birds flying overhead until---------------------2 big fat peahens walked across the lawn. They were just walking along eating out of the grass, having a great time. Bentley was thoroughly entertained.

Sunday we are planning to head over to Valley Forge.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Loving this Area

We arrived in Intercourse, Pa about 3 pm which is the check in time for the campground here. We had Enterprise come over to pick us up for our rental car and then made a hasty trip to Shady Maple for some shopping.
We love Shady Maple. It's like an Amish version of Whole Foods, only cheaper and better. The fruits and vegetables alone unbelievable much less the bakery, deli and whoopie pies.
This is only ONE of the whoopie pie counters. There were so many flavor choices, chocolate, chocolate chip, pumpkin, mint/chocolate, and the list goes on. Of course we had to buy a couple (or more) to freeze along with some chicken pot pies.

We only had a small early breakfast this morning, so by 5 pm we were starving. So on the way back to the campground we had not 1, but 2 whoopie pies. Shame on us, but they were out of this world.
 The next morning (Saturday,) the cows mooing from Sam's farm across the road woke us at 4:30 am. I guess they were getting their milking done and heading out to pasture. The kitties thought it was great because they could get their breakfast early.
 Since it was so cool outside this early, we put the kitties out in their playpen and sat outside and had our coffee while the sun came up. Very nice. Bentley was really enjoying himself.

We had  a nice bacon and tomato quiche from Shady Maple for breakfast. Excellent. We need to make a quick run to Walmart for a couple of hardware items. For lunch, Madonna and Jim are coming up to visit. We haven't seen each other for a couple of years, so this should be a great visit.

Friday, July 15, 2016

On the Road to Pennsylvannia

We left on Wednesday afternoon for good old Intercourse, PA. We love this area. The people, food and area are just so nice and relaxing. I have a longarm quilt meeting next week about 45 minutes away, so we are leaving a few days early to enjoy a little rest and relaxation before my 8am to 6pm days at the meeting.

I had to go to the quilt shop on Wednesday at 2, so we drugged Finnegan (who gets car sick and nervous). We loaded everything up in the MH before going to the shop. Afterwards, all I had to do was drive to the storage facility, leave my car and off we would go. This worked pretty well. The kitties didn't suspect a thing and there was no chasing them around the house and pulling out furniture to get them. Easy as pie.

Finnegan, who is very lovey when he is drugged wanted constant attention, so he road the entire way in my lap. He's so sweet and just seems to becoming more and more attached to us and our laps. What a baby.

We stopped about 7 pm in Baileyton, TN for the night and it was a very nice, clean RV park. We would stay there again if needed. We left Thursday headed for Edinburg, VA and Creekside RV Park. I thought this RV park looked familiar on the website and when we arrived it was one that we stayed in in about 2007 or 2008. It is very small, along a small creek. The last time we were here it was raining, mosquito ridden and miserable. Not so this time. Still, it is small with only about 30 sites. We took the wrong way to the CG which took us thru the small downtown with very narrow streets and across a very narrow bridge with a weight limit. UGHHH. But we made it.After we got there the guy in the office told us we shouldn't have followed our GPS. Duh!!! No joke.

A nice salad for lunch and wonderful bar b que ribs for dinner that David had made ahead and froze for the trip. YUMMM! They were great. At least this time we didn't forget the food we had in the freezer.

This morning the kitties are all having  a nice morning while we get ready to head out for Intercourse, PA.
Bentley is all snuggled in his bunk and bed.

                                                           Finnegan too.

And Nickie is in our bed waiting for attention.

And we're getting ready to head out to Lancaster area.

More later