Aunt Eunice here. This past weekend summer officially began. Long days will slowly fade into shorter ones and by fall darkness will begin to come far too early for me. The yearly cycle of days and sunlight have always guided the farmer in his round of chores and tasks. Make hay while the sun shines is an example. This Sunday the staff was not only giving historic tours, but also out bringing in the hay. What a wonderful smell is freshly dried hay, I suppose unless you get hay fever! As a child I would gather with the other neighborhood kids and help the farmer during hay season with the baling. We rode in the wagon and when a bale came flying up you quickly stacked it before the next one came. Don’t turn your back on the baler though or you were just asking to get wolloped by a heavy 40 pounder. We also helped throw bales on the conveyor belt that took the bales up into the barn’s hay mow to be neatly stacked, all ready to feed to the horses. By the time you were done the fun had started to wear a little thin as you were hot, sweaty and itchy. It was a smart time to head for the creek and cool off. It was a bit different in the early years of the 1800s when the farmer cut the hay by hand, let it dry and then pitchforked the loose hay onto horse drawn wagons to be taken to the barn. Intensive manual labor. No wonder the farm family was always a large one and neighbors helped each other out.
This coming week on Tuesday June 25th we have a special highlight on cork husk crafts. Jeanna Trezza will demonstrate how to make various items out of the corn husks saved from field corn. This is an old craft and many things were made such as dolls, flowers and the settlers even made door mats for wiping their feet off. On Thursday June 27th the highlight is cheese making. Brenda Massie and Carol Carpenetti will demonstrate how to make a soft herb cheese. I hear samples will be shared. Both of these highlights are part of a program that brings special demonstrations to the farm for visitors to enjoy and as a way to teach about specific heritage crafts, trade or farm skills. There is no additional charge to see these highlights. Under the Calendar of Events you can see the current list of highlight offerings.
I hope everyone has a wonderful summer and enjoys the long days while they last. We would love you to make Quiet Valley part of your summer days.
That’s all for now. Take care and hope to see you soon. Aunt Eunice