Saturday, November 21, 2009

some fun

I spent last weekend in Lancaster PA. visiting with friend Grace, Nancy & New friend Ruthy. We did the PA. Guild of Craftsmen holiday craft fair on Saturday and a YWCA Women2Women all day workshop on sunny Sunday. One of the wonderful cooking workshop was taught by Betsey Gerstein Sterenfeld of "Essen" :the classroom smelled so glorious and the food did taste fantastic. Essen can be found here & here. The class made everything look easy and Betsey's energy for good food was inspiring and contagious. Who knew pickled onions could be so delicouis!
We also learned about Naturopathy, Home Scale Sustainability , Ayurveda , Shamanic Healing & Traditional Chinese Acupuncture. I am hoping we'll be able to make this a yearly get together...

Monday, November 9, 2009

FLW aka Frank Llyod Wright

I always had the idea that if I were lucky enough to live in a home designed by FLW every day would be wondrous ...
For my parents 50th anniversary we had to be creative. They did not want a big party. They are artists and we all have always loved the work of Frank Lloyd Wright. I had read an article in the New York Times that mentioned being able to stay in Polymath Park -in homes designed by Wright or his apprentices. What could be a better gift and memorable experience than this once in a life time chance to live in a FLW home and see the masterpiece : Falling Water ? We were able to book Balter House and made the long drive to PA. on Friday, very thankful the weather was on our side-chilly but no rain with a chance that things would warm up by Sunday. 
The house was set in the woods & we made it just in time to see the sunset through the trees. The house smelled like my grandmothers place in Cupsaw Lake N.J. and had lovely views , wood and stone everywhere and the cement floor in a worn version of FLW red. Dad lit a fire while Jean warmed up a chicken dinner and I made popcorn w/ garlic. I had forgotten to bring the marsh mellows to roast in the fireplace...but had remembered the sparkling wine. (Called Pearl-on the sweet side & this perfect for us as we are not big drinkers ) 
We had a leisurely breakfast the next morning and then made the drive to Falling Water through the rolling hills, past farms and fields (filled with big round bales of hay-some with corn stalks) and homes stocked with fire wood.
 Everything is very organized as enormous numbers visit this mecca of sorts. Our group of 13 was called and we wandered down to the house on the waterfall. As we were taken through everything but the kitchen it did feel as if the Kaufman family might enter at any time. There was wonderful art & flowers growing in the windows and rhododendrons everywhere. Made one think spring might be THE time to see it all in bloom. 
The guest house was equally amazing  & it did make me wish we all lived in such light filled and naturally  inspired spaces. 
The next day-our last-we woke at dawn to make the first tour of the day at Kentuck Knob. I had known nothing of Kentuck Knob so it was a revalation. Originally owned by Mr. & Mrs. Hain, Kentuck Knob has now passed into the hands of Lord & Lady  Palumbo. More on Kentuck Knob tomorrow.
If you are curious about staying in one of the Polymath Park homes (or dining there) you can go here. Information on Falling Water can be found here. Kentuck Knob information is found here. The Western PA. Conservancy's  site is here.
General tourist information on the area can be found here