afternoon adventure, maple syrup, ohio

Plain Encounter

Last year, my parents bought 40 acres of forested land in Hiram, Ohio, so my dad can expand his maple sugaring operation. When I visited them last week, they were deep in the process of having the land surveyed so they can (fingers crossed) build a driveway and maybe, just maybe, a little house with… Continue reading Plain Encounter

19th century, lessons learned, ohio

Both Past and Present

What would it be like to live in two eras at once? Last week I read a beautiful and thought-provoking piece about working at a living history museum, by the blogger and historic gastronomist Sarah Lohman. "Living My Best 1848 Life," posted at Lapham's Quarterly blog, recounts Lohman's experience working as a first-person interpreter at an Ohio… Continue reading Both Past and Present

19th century, 20th century, adventure, afternoon adventure, family, ohio

Afternoon Adventure: The Tavern Club

Happy December! I've just returned from a whirlwind trip home to Cleveland for Thanksgiving, and it was wonderful to see family and take long walks and eat lots of delicious (modern) food. Around the holidays we often reflect on the past--not only our recent past and childhoods, but the "family past," stories about my grandfather's… Continue reading Afternoon Adventure: The Tavern Club

afternoon adventure, history lesson, maine, ohio, school, shakers, vacation

Afternoon Adventure: Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village

As a teenager I went to an all-girls school, one steeped in tradition and programs that recalled English prep schools. One of the big ones was chapel, where we heard guest speakers and senior speeches. Before the program began, we often sang a community song, with sheet music left on every other chair for students… Continue reading Afternoon Adventure: Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village

beverages, history lesson, newport, ohio

Brewing and distilling the old-fashioned way

Turns out cooking from historical recipes isn't the only way to play with food and history. There's a new trend brewing in the alcoholic beverage world (sorry, couldn't resist).Cleveland's Great Lakes Brewing Company, maker of some of the best craft beers around (not like I'm biased), is now working with archaeologists from the University of… Continue reading Brewing and distilling the old-fashioned way

activities, canning, family, history lesson, homesteading, maple syrup, ohio, spring, winter

Maple sugaring (II)

Last week I wrote about my family's maple sugaring tradition. Today I'll add an amendment: while we love most of the maple sugaring process (tapping trees, collecting sap, boiling it down in the evaporator), we have a hard time with one part: finishing the syrup.This is the part where the syrup has been boiled to… Continue reading Maple sugaring (II)