World Tour – The Pennsylvania Dutch

I can’t show you any pictures of this one.  It’s not allowed.

We branched out of our tour of Germany and studied about how some Germans emigrated to Pennsylvania in search of religious freedom,, and how the culture modified and changed into what we know as the Amish culture today.

I grew up near Big Valley, Pennyslvania, which supposedly has the purest white top community (most conservative sect) in the world.  So while we were in the area visiting relatives, we hit a bunch of Amish businesses that are open to the general public.

We stopped at a roadside stand near Whitehall and checked out the rabbits, breads, and fabulous half moon pies for sale.

Then we went by Peight’s, a general store that sells suspenders, homemade noodles, and candy by weight.  It’s a wonderful place.

Next up was Peachey’s.  Peachey’s is a bit of everything:  restaurant, ice cream stand, craft store, grocery store, and bakery.  It burned in a fire a year ago but is being rebuilt and is only partially open now, but it’s a local legend – fabulous food and really neat crafts.

At a local farmer’s market a friendly Amish woman explained how she naturally sweetens her baked goods and gave me tips for my own extra-moist whoopie pies.

The kids had a grand time identifying the Amish farms as we traveled the Valley, picking out the ones without electricity or the famous clotheslines-on-a-pulley.  We loved looking at the different kinds of conveyances and  they thought it was great to be able to tell if a man was married just by looking at his face (Amish men grow beards when they marry, but remain clean shaven before that).

I’ve always enjoyed my interactions with the Amish, and it was wonderful to share that with the whole family on this trip home.  With this trip, we’re ending our current study of all things German …

Now, on to Japan!

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