Monday, December 14, 2009

My Art Retreat

A few years ago my husband went on a business trip and jokingly I said "I wish I could get away for a while". He was very supportive and said "well you can... where would you like to go?" I live in VA and do photography so I immediately thought of Virginia Beach and the Norfolk botanical gardens. That's about a two hour drive. So I then thought I'd stay overnight... or maybe a few nights. Well if I'm going to stay a few nights why not travel a little further?!

I had an idea. I looked up the driving mileage to my dream destination. It would take me only 5 hours. Wow when Joe and I were dating long distance it was a 3 hour drive so what's 2 more hours? I talked it over with Joe and he loved the idea. Great! Let me start making reservations. My dream destination was Lancaster, PA.

I have mentioned before that I have always been fascinated with the Amish lifestyle. Now I was going to explore "their country" as an adult. I had been there quite a few times with my parents when I was a child so it was like going back to a familiar place.

The first two years I went I stayed at this lovely B&B called Lovelace Manor. I fell in love with one of the rooms online and just had to stay there. The room was modest and beautiful in my eyes. The breakfasts were outstanding and it was very reasonably priced. Last year when I went to make my reservations they were already booked! So needless to say I did the "touristy" thing and stayed at The Kitchen Kettle Village. I would consider it a cross between a B&B and a regular hotel. They had a map of the village online and I wanted to stay in the most remote area... away from the touristy stuff. There was a little house down the road called "The Cottage" that belonged to them but it was in the perfect location for me.

So by day I would wander the back roads of Lancaster; stop at roadside stands where little Amish children were selling woopie pies; buy fabric from Amish owned quilt shops; stop by a few antique shops. I also spent a day in Hershey Gardens taking photos of flowers and butterflies. But then at night I would rearrange the furniture in my room so that I could paint and watch tv at the same time. I had two double beds in my room so on one bed I had all of my art supplies spread out including fabric and my sewing machine.
Plus the bathroom/sink/vanity area was so large that I could spread my stuff out in there as well. These plastic drawers contain some of my buttons. And the metal drawers on the right had all of my jewelry making supplies in it.

This was my view every morning when I walked out my door. It was an Amish farmhouse and every single morning I could hear the clip-clops of the Amish horse and buggies going by.

I have now started calling my "mommy getaway" to Pennsylvania my "art retreat".

(At the Refton "Mud Sale", or to us an Amish auction).

1 comment:

DeAnn said...

It is wonderful that you have the opportunity to go away on your retreats and be inspired by your surroundings. What a treat.