Our first stop, by popular vote, was the store E&S Sales. I had heard about it from more than one person, (in fact, there's a neat blog post with some good pictures here) and wanted to see the legendary Amish dry goods store for myself. Oh my goodness! Within two minutes of walking through the door, I decided that purchases at E&S were not going to come out of my trip money, but rather my normal grocery budget! So many spices! And sausage making ingredients! And bulk instant pudding mixes in flavors you could never find at the grocery store, like maple walnut. Mmmmm.
Not only did they have just absolutely hundreds of dry good items, they also had candy (no pic to show, both my daughters bought some and took to their homes), and nice coloring books (I got a few for the grandkids) with simple pictures--rather than TV or movie character themed--and they had candy molds for only $1.49! Being as I've been eyeing online a turtle mold for about five times that (plus shipping on top of that!) for several years, when I saw the turtle mold at E&S for only $1.49, I grabbed it of course!
Plus a tractor mold
and a maple leaf mold; next Spring I can make maple candies.
The next morning, we hit the flea market (which is on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from the first week of May through the beginning of October) bright and early. Actually, it wasn't all that sunny of a day, it was overcast with thunderstorms predicted, which seemed to keep the crowd at bay. It was busy, but not so crowded that you couldn't get a good look at everything on display at the various booths. We spent probably a good six hours walking through the flea market, and easily could have made it an all day affair if we hadn't made the decision that we were looking mostly for handmade items rather than mass produced for resale stuff. Although I did pick up a couple nice Rada knives for the same price as online, and saved myself the shipping. I also bought a few other Rada items that I will give as Christmas gifts to family members. (My first Rada items were given to me as gifts by DH's grandmother over 20 years ago and are still going strong after regular use through all those years.)
In addition to the Rada products, I came home with a few other household related odds and ends, plus a few 'fun' things. Like two Amish dolls that will be for the grandkids to play with when they are at my house. Dolls that were handmade by an 81 year old woman.
Also some Amish-made woodworking, like a maple leaf that was actually made of walnut. I chose one that I think is really neat; it's cut from a board where one side of it has the characteristic dark wood of walnut, the other is from the younger sapwood and is much lighter.
I also bought a beautifully simple nativity scene. I've been wanting a nativity scene for many years now, but didn't want one that was overly ornate or super expensive (kids, you know, have a way of shortening the life of things, and losing pieces. . . ). So when I saw this lovely one in a woodworking display, I knew it was just what I had been waiting for. Simple, natural, and not horribly expensive.
Plus, get this!--it's cut from one piece of wood and stores away like a puzzle. How cool is that!
Overall, it was a nice ladies day out kind of excursion. Mom enjoyed it, DD1 and DD2 enjoyed it, I enjoyed it, and we all came home with some gift items to give, plus a trinket or two for ourselves. Oh, and fabric for making stuff. :0)