Friday, July 20, 2007

The Shoe House, the Amish Farm and my Grandma

I spent some time with my Grandma last week in PA. I used to spend part of the summer with her and I think she still expects me to do that now :-) She will be 90 in the fall and I love her a lot so we took a few days off from our very busy summer schedule and went to visit her. It wasn't meant to be a sight-seeing trip but I took her places that I thought she might enjoy (something fun for my daughters as well).

We visited the Shoe House in Hellam which was built in the 40's by Colonel Mahlon M. Haines to advertise his shoe business. He never lived in it but used it for honeymoon couples. If you are ever in Lancaster county, take a drive over and check it out because it really is a cute attraction and not that far away (about 20 minutes west on Route 30). It's amazing how many rooms they were able to fit into this little house. There is the honeymoon suite which consists of a living room, bedroom and bathroom, a kitchen with a dining nook and pantry. and a maid's room with a bathroom and a second bedroom.

There was also a very cute little dog shoe house that was built at the same time as the house.

After we did the tour and bought our souvenirs, I asked my grandma what she wanted to do next, what would she like to see that she has never seen before? Can you believe that she's lived near Lancaster all her life and has never seen an Amish house? So, we drove to Lancaster and had lunch at Panera Bread and had the broccoli cheddar soup (I love their soup). My grandma has never been and she really enjoyed it. It's great to be able share my favorite places with her.

The Amish Farm and House was right next to Panera Bread so we didn't have too far to go. It's weird that it's located right next to a Target and a strip mall. It's a nice attraction if you want to get a feel for Amish culture and understand why they do what they do. Here are some of the picture I took of the house and farm and the one room school house.

After we finished touring the farm, we went to Kitchen Kettle in Intercourse. I love going there and tasting all the jams and the dips but I usually just buy the blackberry jam. I bought some funky earrings and we walked around until we got hungry and then we drove over to Shady Maple which is one of those buffets that are popular in Lancaster county. It was huge, I couldn't believe how big it is and how cheap! It only cost $13 each. The food was OK. I was able to get broasted chicken which I haven't had in years.

After dinner we went to the gift shop and I was shocked by how huge it was. It was like a small department store. They had everything you could possibly want: quilts, furniture, paintings, candles, toys, pocket books, jewelry, flowers, etc. It was tchotchke heaven. When a gift shop is that big, I get overwhelmed and I have no desire to buy anything.

By this time you might imagine that my grandma was pretty tired. We had been on the go all day. So I took her home and traveled back to NJ. It wasn't the best planing in the world because I traveled west to take her home and then had to travel east back to Lancaster to go home. Kind of stupid! But I didn't mind because I know how blessed I am to be able to drive my grandma home at all :-)


  1. Pamela said...
    90 years old~! she still out touristsed me!

    I wish I had known about the Amish house and the shoe when we were back there a few years ago
    Amazing Gracie said...
    What a wonderful day! She has more stamina than I do, for certain.
    I added this site to my blog...
    michele said...
    Thanks for the link! She certainly does. She gets around better than my mom :-)

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