Saturday, October 3, 2009

Racine in the Rain


It's great to be back on the road--though it was a wet, chilly, and often crowded road today! I flew into Chicago to visit Racine, WI and spent almost as much time in Chicago as I did in Racine! Is every highway in American under construction?

I had a great time with Kathi Wilson--we had an instant rapport and were laughing and making fun of each other about an hour after meeting. I guess that's a good thing. We visited some really well-preserved barns; some of the owners had documentation unlike any that I had seen before. This photo is of the "barn raising" at Rose Hill Farm.
Look at those guys just standing up on the upper beams!
The owner also had great pics of the ladies-- all dressed in white--watching from the porch of the farmhouse.

This veterinarian's medicine cabinet, found in one of the barns, is a slice of history--a couple of the products dated back to the 1930s! This barn was nicely preserved, with each of the original pegs visible. It also had a basketball court in the upper level for the grandkids!

At the last barn we visited, the owner had researched her family's property so thoroughly that she had found a chart detailing how much hay, buckwheat, corn, and butter the farm had produced in 1860. Over 300 pounds of butter--let's hope that they sold some and didn't use it all to make Danish Kringles.

The foot-long oval of danish--a local delicacy, I'm told--was so yummy. I think I gained half a pound just from the smell. I found it amusing that the bakery had used the nutrition information sticker to close the bag. Let's see--12 servings, 235 calories each . . . I ate a chunk and gave the rest to Nita--the owner of the guest house where I am staying.

As I left Racine, Kathi gave me a copy of a documentary film that was made about their quilt trail. The filmmaker followed Kathi throughout the project and interviewed all of the barn owners and other participants. The highlights are purported to be Kathi's feeding an apple to Amigo the donkey and her singing in a silo, which she claims has great acoustics. Another barn experience for me to try. I look forward to watching the DVD.

Tomorrow I am touring the barn quilts of Kankakee County, IL, so I drove on down this evening to be ready for an early start. Of course, it took me two and a half hours to reach Riverview Guest House, but when I did, I received a friendly welcome from Nita and a gift basket from the Visitor's Bureau. I feel so pampered and appreciated.

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