For several months, my family has gotten our milk via a buying cooperative that purchases and has delivered dairy from an Amish farm in Pennsylvania. Annually, Farmer Dan and his wife Rachel have a picnic for the cooperative. We were very pleased to be able to attend this year and get a chance to see their beautiful farm as well as meet some of the other folks in the cooperative.
After a wonderful picnic of everything from Farmer Dan's own hamburgers and ice-cream to Rachel's delicious beet salad to yummy extras brought by all the guests, we were off to see the animals.
The 16yo "hired boy" (who will be married and running his own farm before too long) hitched up the horses. How enormous!
They walked majestically in front of our little Honda Civic, absolutely dwarfing it. Each one was almost twice its height and just about as long.
We hopped on the long cart in back...
...and rode out to see the cows in the pasture.
There were many other animals around the farm, including several dogs, a pig...
...barn swallows (including baby ones)...
...and a family of very young kittens.
I especially liked chatting with their adorable miniature horse:
A few things really surprised me. I was not expecting to see two trailer vehicles on the property. Surely this was not where the hired boy lived, I thought. But on closer inspection, I discovered that they were housing for chickens!
Check out this chicken sliding out of the trailer!
The chickens existed uneasily with a family of ducks, quite shy of my camera:
Another surprise were these great scooters. Although I did not take this picture, we saw boys and girls zipping around on them just like this--as well as a father and child riding a scooter downtown. Apparently they are widely used in the Amish community (although bicycles are not)--as are in-line skates!
My very favorite moment was looking across the side yard at the laundry on the line and seeing two young children walking underneath--a girl in the same blue dress and black apron as her mother and a boy carrying a bouquet of fresh flowers.