Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Amish Education, Amish Culture

Holmes County, Ohio has 96 one and two-room Amish parochial schoolhouses taught by one of their own who has an eighth grade education.  Within the Amish culture it is thought that an elementary education, providing the basic three "R's", reading, writing, and arithmetic are sufficient for life's needs.  Amish boys and girls go through the 8th grade or until they are 14 years of age, at which time the boy will be taken into an apprenticeship by his father, a friend, or relative.  He will learn a trade that will provide him life skills for his future.  A girl will further develop the homemaking skills that she has observed since childhood; skills such as gardening, canning, sewing, cooking, baking, and cleaning.  It is interesting that my brother-in-law, in speaking of his 19 year old daughter, who was dating at the time, said that he and his wife thought their daughter was not quite ready for marriage, explaining that his wife had not yet taught her how to can jams and jellies.

All societies transition with time, and the Amish are no exception.  In past years, young ladies, at meager wages, aided other Amish families, typically serving as maids, "maud", at the time of childbirth.  An Amish family would place their daughter in a home to to give much needed help and economic aid.  Today, with the ability to earn more money, many Old Order and New Order Amish girls work in such trades as waitressing, clerical jobs, and laborers in factories or wood-working shops.  I've heard conversation among our relatives that not all are learning the life skills of their mothers and grandmothers.  Higher paying jobs are especially luring, as all Amish young people are required to give all monies earned to their parents until they are 21 years of age.  It, therefore, is a sacrifice for parents to have their daughters help their church members rather than to take employment in the workplace.

The Amish in their strategy of separation from the world firmly stand against formal education, which would expose them to independent thought, and eventually empower them to live outside their traditional community.  Amish do not oppose education for the "English".  They appreciate and pay for good professional services; however, higher education would not be an option for them, as it would erode the very fiber of their community. 

To learn more about the culture, consider a stay at the Millersburg, Ohio Barn Inn Bed and Breakfast.  My husband, Paul was once an Amish church member.  You'll have to come and hear his story why he is no longer a member!

Submitted by Loretta Coblentz
March 31, 2011

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Best Mother's Day Gifts, Berlin Ohio Amish Country

One of the finest Berlin, Ohio gift shops is Wendell August Forge, makers of exquisite, individually hand-crafted gifts. It is the oldest and largest forge, producing hand-wrought ornamental metalware fashioned from aluminum, bronze, copper, pewter, and sterling silver.  Exceptional in design and creativity, their giftwares are works of art that will be treasured for a lifetime.  I recommend that you include a stop at this lovely forge showroom the next time you come to Berlin, Ohio.

The Millersburg, Ohio, Barn Inn Bed and Breakfast is pleased to announce that during the entire month of May, 2011,  we will be celebrating Mother's Day with special packages.

Pictured is the Wendell August Forge key chain that we at the Barn Inn Bed and Breakfast have designated as our Mother's Day gift.  Simply reserve a night's stay in the month of May, 2011, and upon check in your lady of honor will receive her gift.  For this free offer simply mention "Wendell August Forge" at the time of booking and stay in the month of May, 2011.  This offer is limited to one keychain per reservation.

The award-winning Barn Inn Bed and Breakfast, located centrally between Berlin and Millersburg, Ohio is a landmark inn, providing fine hospitality and exceptional customer service.  A full country breakfast is served daily and concludes with an informative area informational orientation.  Make the Barn Inn your next destination choice.

Submitted by Loretta Coblentz
March 28, 2011

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Best Mothers Day Gift, Amish Country Ohio Lodging, Bed and Breakfast

Mother May I?  Treat You Special?  The Millersburg, Ohio, Barn Inn Bed and Breakfast is offering a "Mother May I?" Reflexology and Hor d'hourves package as a way for you to say, "I Love You" and to rejuvinate that special lady in your life!

Reserve a room at The Barn Inn Bed and Breakfast for this package.  Let her know that she's the best!  Treat your mother, wife, or sister to a 1/2 hour foot reflexology treatment by a licensed reflexologist.  Compare it to a body massage, but conveniently experienced while relaxing in a 0-gravity chair that feels like floating on a cloud!  So nice, it will relax your entire body!  Follow this with hor d'ourves for two, served to your room!  This add-on room package, one reflexology, hor d'ourves for two is only $35 plus the price of your room and is offered Friday, May 6, Saturday, May 7, and Sunday, May 8, 2011.  Reflexology openings are limited so call now to reserve.

We are celebrating Mother's Day the entire month of May!  For making a reservation in the month of May you will receive a gift for your special lady if, at the time of reservation, you mention Wendell August Forge.  With this mention, you will receive a free hand-crafted key fob created by the fine artisans at Wendell August.  It will be presented to you at check in, but please remember that this offer must be requested at time of reservation! 

Reflexology treatments are available the entire month of May and throughout the year and can be scheduled upon request.

Submitted by Loretta Coblentz
March 24, 2011

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Amish Leading Solar Energy Consumers, Ohio Amish Country, Berlin Ohio

Drive around Holmes County, Ohio and you will see photovoltaic panels attached to houses, barns, and sheds, or simply set near the ground where sunlight can be captured.  It is estimated that 80% of the Amish community in Holmes County harnesses solar power which they allow for utilitarian purposes only.  Stricter orders such as the Swartzentruber and Tope sects have not veered from their traditional use of windmills and diesel engines.  However, the Old Order and New Order Amish are on the cutting edge of implementing solar energy.  The Amish allow technological changes only so much that these changes do not violate their conscience nor erode the cohesiveness of the society.  It is ironic that this "folk" society, distinctive for maintaining nonconformity to the world, finds itself leading solar energy consumers, on the cutting edge of Ohio's "green" technology.

The Amish use solar power to recharge buggy batteries, power answering machines (in telephone booths); and, at a cost of about $500, a man can provide power for his wife's sewing machine and light so that she can sew at night.  Solar power is much more convenient and effecient than the use of a generator diesel engine.

There are a number of Amish solar retailers and installers in the area.  One such shop is locatd at 5044 County Rd. 120, just 1 mile south of Berlin, Ohio.  Mr. Miller's answering machine phone number is 330-893-3261.

In Ohio's Amish Country, near Berlin, visit the Barn Inn Bed and Breakfast, where owners Paul and Loretta Coblentz can direct you to sources for your solar needs.  Remember, the Amish typically do not have websites and operate from their rural locations.

Submitted by Loretta Coblentz
March 23, 2011

Monday, March 21, 2011

Amish Church Cookies, Amish Culture

Did you know that for many years, in all Amish churches, it had been a tradition to pass crackers and cookies midway during the church service?  The mother of the house where church was being held, in an effort to abate restlessness in young children, passed a plate of snacks.  In some churches the snacks were passed only on the women's side of the church because the women cared for the younger children.  In other Amish churches, cookies and crackers were passed across the isle to the men's side for children up to about 5 years of age.  My husband, Paul, here at the Millersburg, Ohio Barn Inn Bed and Breakfast, recalls from his childhood, that when children got older, at about 5 or 6 years of age, they considered it too juvenile to take a cookie; and to yield to the temptation may have resulted in snickers by their peers.  According to my father-in-law, Emanuel Coblentz, in Hartville, Ohio, the West Old Order church continued this practice until about 1955.  Today Old and New Order Amish Churches in Holmes County, Ohio provide, for children, upon entrance, small baggies with pretzels and cracker snacks.

My mother in law tells me that our very strict Amish relatives in Berne, Indiana, to this day continue to pass crackers and cookies in their church services.  My mother, from Geauga County, Ohio, said that their "gmay" (church) cookies usually had one raisin pressed into the middle.  This Amish "gmay" cookie recipe, originally my great aunt's, for generations, was served at many Amish services in Fredericksburg, Ohio.

Amish Church Cookies
1 cup white sugar
2 cups brown sugar
1 1/2 cups shortening
4 eggs
1 1/4 cups cream or evaporated milk
1 tsp. vanilla
2 tsp. baking powder
Pinch salt
Approx. 5 cups flour (don't make dough too stiff)
Raisins for garnish

Cream together sugars, shortening, and eggs; add vanilla.  Add baking powder and salt to flour.  Add cream or milk alternately with the flour to the butter mixture and blend for a soft dough.  Chill the dough for a few hours.  When rolling out, put plenty of flour on the counter, roll out dough and sprinkle white sugar over the top and roll the sugar in very lightly.  If desired, press a raisin in the center and bake about 10 minutes at 350 degrees.  This makes about 5 1/2 dozen 4" cookies.  These are some of my favorite cookies.

I thank my cousin, Katie, for this recipe.  Katie is the "Marble Lady" who sells the book, Born Amish, a delightful recollection of Amish life as seen through the eyes of an Amish child.   She also sells traditional amish children's toys and brain teasers.

Submitted by Loretta Coblentz
March 21, 2011

Shreve Spring Migration Sensation, Ohio Birds

Migratory Birds are returning!  Pack your bags, binoculars, and cameras; grab your kids, family, and friends for another exciting Amish Country birdwatching experience!  Capture the 11th Shreve Spring Migration Sensation, Saturday, March 26, 2011, 7:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

The peak spring bird migration extravaganza includes self-guided tours with experts located at help stations in the nearby Killbuck Marsh, Shreve Lake, Brown's Bog, and Funk Bottoms wildlife preserves.  These wetlands comprise Ohio's largest inland natural wetland, covering 5,671 acres.

A $10 admission ($15.00 per family) includes any or all events and six workshops.  Registration will open at 7 a.m. at the Shreve Elementary School, 598 North Market St. (St Rt 226) Shreve, Ohio  44676.  Free maps directing to Help Stations will be provided.  The Birder's Market Place opens at 8 a.m.  Help stations will open from 8:00 to noon.

The Family Activity Center in the lower level of Shreve Elementary School will feature special programs at specific times:  10 a.m. Endangered Animals, by the Akron Zoo; 11:30 - 1 p.m.  Mary Warren, Naturalist, Flying Wild to Celebrate Birds; 1:30 p.m. Backyard Animals, by the Akron Zoo.

An extensive listing of workshop speakers, times, and specialty topics are available at ShreveOhio or the Wilderness Center.  The Wilderness Center is great for children of all ages.  Bring your boots if you wish to get in on the dip-netting.

The Shreve Spring Migration Sensation is sponsored by the ODNR Division of Wildlife, Greater Mohican Audobon Society, Friends of Killbuck Marsh, The Wilderness Center, Triway Local Schools, Shreve Library, and Shreve Business & Community Association.

Plan your next stay at the Millersburg, Ohio, award-winning Barn Inn Bed and Breakfast.

Kidron Sports Center carries binoculars and spotting scopes.  They presently have in stock, the Leupold brand spotting scope and tripod at both the Charm, Ohio and Kidron, Ohio locations.

Submitted by Loretta Coblentz
March 21, 2011

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Buttermilk Cookies Recipe, Amish Recipes

Food, hospitality, and culture are all part of the guest experience at the Millersburg, Ohio, Barn Inn Bed and Breakfast.  Guests are treated to homemade cookies awaiting under the dome in our dining room.  Here is our Amish family buttermilk cookie recipe, a classic, uncomplicated, old-fashioned cookie, guaranteed to satisfy all who indulge. 

When in Amish Country, consider purchasing bulk baking supplies at the Ashery Country Store, a favored bulk food store located about two miles north of Mount Hope on State Route 241.  They carry a vast selection of bulk staples, dried fruits and nuts, meats, cheeses, and many mixes and ingredients for most of your baking needs.

Buttermilk Cookies
2 eggs                                                               
2 c. brown sugar
1 c. butter
1 c. buttermilk
3 3/4 c. flour
1 tsp. vanilla
2 tsp. soda
2 tsp. baking powder

2 1/2 tbsp. butter
5 tbsp. brown sugar
12 tbsp. milk
powdered sugar

In a mixing bowl blend eggs, brown sugar, and butter until creamy; add vanilla.  In a separate bowl combine flour, soda, and baking powder.  Alternately add flour and buttermilk to the creamed mixture.  Bake at 350 degrees for about 12 minutes or until done.  For the icing, combine butter, brown sugar and milk. Add enough powdered sugar to reach desired consistency.

Submitted by Loretta Coblentz
March 20, 2011

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Amish Country Map, Amish Country Ohio Map

Nearly every day, here at the Millersburg, Ohio Barn Inn Bed and Breakfast we recommend to our guests, local attractions and unique Amish home industries to visit.  Available in almost every brochure rack and local buinesses is the Holmes County Map & Visitors' Guide, a free publication of the holmes County Chamber of Commerce & Tourism Bureau.  This comprehensive map and guide, complete with GPS coordinates and business descriptions, offers valuable information about goods, services, and attractions in the area and will prove most valuable in helping you find local points of interest. 

This region is the largest community of Amish anywhere in the world.  They are doubling in size every twenty to
twenty-two years, with only about 10% farming anymore.  Vocations today include many facets of the woodworking industry, manufacturing, carriage making, food production, and tourism, and more.  Come visit Amish Country where you will experience a "Patchwork" of interesting people and businesses.

A map we highly recommend is the very detailed and comprehensive Amish Highways and Byways Map featuring well-defined towns and state roads, county roads, and township roads in the region we call Ohio's Amish Country.  We favor this map because it has an index of all of the road names and numbers.  This Highways and Byways map not only includes all of Holmes County, but also portions of adjoining counties; Wayne, Stark, Tuscarawas, Coshocton, Knox, and Ashland Counties, where other communities of Amish reside. Additional features of the Amish Highways and Byways Map include tourism information and an extensive lodging directory listing.  At a cost of $3.95, this map is "Worth it's weight in gold"!  Consider how our roads wind around hills and corners, bringing you to places you've never seen before or leading you to lanes that you don't know if it's a road or not!

So, I say, "Go ahead, explore and get lost in Amish Country!"  With this map you'll find your way back to wherever you want to be!  This map may be purchased at local businesses such as The Barn Inn or you may purchase on line.

Submitted by Loretta Coblentz
The Barn Inn
March15, 2011

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Ohio Light Opera, College of Wooster, Romantic Get A Way

Anticipate a romantic evening get-a-way at the Ohio Light Opera where you will feel the drama and passion of international lyric theater classics.  Ohio Light Opera is rolling into it's 2011 summer productions with Lerner and Lowe's "Camelot" as well as the debut of three shows:  Cole Porter's "Jubilee," victor Herbert's "The Fortune Teller," and Leo Fall's "Madame Pompadour."  Other productions include popular favorites "The Pirates of Penzance" and "The Merry Widow".  There will be a triple bill featuring "Trial by Jury," "Cox and Box," and "Evening Wind" - three shows for the price of one.

The Ohio Light Opera located at the College of Wooster in Wooster, Ohio, is only a 30 minute drive north of the Millersburg, Ohio Barn Inn Bed and Breakfast. Let us help you coordinate a memorable night in a romantic room at the Barn Inn for the date of your drama, comedy, or musical of choice. Consider adding a Spoiled Rotten package or a couple's massage for your special date.

Individual tickets, available for purchase now, are $46 for all evening (7:30 p.m.) and matinee (2 p.m.) performances.  VISA, MasterCard, and Discover are accepted.  The box office is locted in Westminster Church House (353 E. Pine St.) during the off season, and is open Monday - Friday from 10 a. m to 4:3 p.m.  Additional information about Ohio Light Opera is available by phone 330-263-2345 or call The Barn Inn at 330-674-7600. The festival season runs from June 18-August 13, 2011.

Submitted by Loretta Coblentz
The Barn Inn

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Keim Lumber, lumber auction, Charm Ohio

As per an earlier post, Keim Lumber in Charm Ohio is holding it's "Once every four years" inventory reduction sale beginning at 8 a.m on March 19, 2011 - lumber, windows and doors, tools, roofing, siding, kitchen and bath, and miscellaneous.  Merchandise to be sold is overstock, damaged, or discontinued.  No, they are NOT going out of business, but rather "Cleaning House".  Eight auction rings will be taking place outdoors and the store itself will be closed during the auction.  The auction listing may be found at Kaufman Realty & Auctions.  This promises to be a fun-filled and exciting day for home improvement enthusiasts battling it out for a bargain!

The Barn Inn Bed and Breakfast in Millersburg, Ohio will provide an "Early Bird" breakfast for those leaving early for the auction. 

Submitted by Loretta Coblentz
The Barn Inn

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Zip Line in Ohio, Family Fun in Ohio, Tree Frog Zip Line

Located only 20 miles west of the Millersburg, Ohio, Barn Inn Bed and Breakfast is the newest adventure attraction in the Mohican area, Tree Frog Canopy Tours, offering 4,025 feet of zip line fun, seven zip lines, and two sky bridges.  The attraction will reopen for weekends on April 15, 2011 and after May 1, 2011, will be open 7 days a week.  They will be closed on Easter.  Tree Frog Canopy is considered one of the Top 10 U.S. canopy tours.  It became a reality after an exhaustive search of the Loudonville-Mohican area revealed this hidden basin which meets all the criteria for a "World class" zip line experience.  A high-speed trek through the tree tops not only provides family fun but also education, as participants learn about the incredible biodiversity of the area's plants and animals, which is part of the experience. Tours consist of up to 8 guests and 2 professional guides.  Prior to departure, participants are given a safety briefing and are outfitted with safety gear that includes a body harness, pulleys, helmet, and gloves.  Tours include training and transport, typically lasting 2 1/2 to 3 hours.  Visitors zip through trees, traveling at 30 miles per hour while suspended hanging 125 feet off the ground.

With spring and summer approaching, consider Tree Frog zip line for a memorable and thrilling experience both for adults and children over 10 years of age.  Visitors must be in normal health and weigh between 90 and 250 pounds to ride the zip line. Tours continue, rain or shine; however, operations are suspended in high wind or lightening conditions.  Reservations are a must.  Tree Frog Canopy Tours has a wonderful FAQ page and informative website.  They are open Mondays through Fridays when the price is $75 per person; Weekends and holidays, $85 per person. Group rates are available.  Wednesday is "Family Day."  Admission for kids aged 10-17 is $50 each. 

Submitted by Loretta Coblentz
March 3, 2011