Aunt Eunice here. It’s been awhile since we last spoke. What a busy, busy summer we have had at Quiet Valley. So many guests coming to the historic farm looking forward to a safe, interesting and fun visit. It was lovely to see you enjoying the activities and learning about the past. We had a basket workshop in June, a bake oven workshop in July and August. We had many special demonstrations as Highlights throughout the summer such as pottery, wheat weaving, paper crafts, spinning, weaving, a rush seat weaving, traditional dyeing, cheese making, rye straw crafting, quilting. the honey bee people and more. Our smaller summer events, Summer Garden Party, Music in the Valley, the Bigfoot Birthday Bash for 103.1 Country radio, the Heritage Craft Day and Pocono State Craft Festival had nice weather so they drew plenty of visitors. You could visit the one room school and see farm related activities such as bread, sauerkraut and rope making. As usual the farm animals were one of the big attractions with wagon rides and the draft horses at the top of the list. Our gals Jenny and Judy are Suffolk Punch draft horses. According to Wikipedia – The Suffolk Horse, also historically known as the Suffolk Punch or Suffolk Sorrel, is an English breed of draught horse. The first part of the name is from the county of Suffolk in East Anglia, and the word “Punch” is an old English word for a short stout person. It is a heavy draught horse which is always chestnut in color. Suffolk Punches are known as good doers, and tend to have energetic gaits. The breed was developed in the early 16th century, and remains similar in phenotype to its founding stock. The Suffolk Punch was developed for farm work, and gained popularity during the early 20th century.
I guess I could be described as a punch according to the description above, short and stout, also like a teapot.
The twin lambs born in May are also good at entertaining guests as they are still small enough to slip through the pasture fence. This gives them a chance to explore the farm and graze on the grass they say is greener on the other side of the fence. At some point they will be big enough to be stuck on the outside of the fence. Going out of the pasture is always easier than going in. They will stand at the gate and call for their mothers, “Baaaaa, Baaaa!”. They are fun to watch though as they scamper around the place. Their father is our newest ram, Ralph. His is a pure bred Romney and we will soon have some female sheep (called ewes) of the same breed. This will greatly improve the quality of our wool. The Pennsylvania German family who settled here would have been interested in the sheep for the wool they could provided rather than as food though the Romney is a good breed for both fleece and meat. The Romney fleece is very desirable as it is lustrous, hangs in separate locks, is high yielding and easily spun and has a uniform crimp. A fleece from a mature ewe will weigh from eight to twelve pounds.
It was such a fun filled summer that it is hard to say farewell. Though our full time summer tour season is officially over on Labor Day we do have two more days of tours , one on Saturday September 11 and one on September 18 from 10am to 4pm both days. We call them fall tours , but technically it is still summertime until the autumnal equinox arrives on Wednesday, September 22. This date marks the beginning of fall in the Northern Hemisphere and spring in the Southern Hemisphere. The autumnal equinox is the halfway point between our longest and shortest day of the year. It’s the exact moment when the sun appears straight over Earth’s equator and we receive approximately equal amounts of daylight and darkness. That is the day for a last farewell to the summer of 2021. I hope it was a great summer for you.
If you missed coming to Quiet Valley this summer don’t fret. There is the tour on September 11 and 18 and then our 47th annual Harvest Festival on October 9 & 10. Lots for all ages to do and see and taste and enjoy and learn, you get the idea. We hope to see you soon and thank all those who came out this summer for your support of our historic farm museum. It’s a wonderful place that keeps the history of small farms and rural family life alive.
That’s all for now. Take care. Aunt Eunice