Take a Peek at My Week In Ohio Sept 23 - 29

Last Thursday I hopped on a plane and headed to Ohio to spend a few days promoting my new book 101 Chicken Keeping Hacks coming out next month. And what a fun trip it was! 

I flew into Cleveland and then drove south down to the Kidron area, made a quick stop in Millersburg, headed even further south to Marysville, and then turned around and headed north to Polk before returning to the airport to fly home. 

I had never been to that part of Ohio before, so I really enjoyed all the rolling hills, fields of corn, cows, rustic farmsteads, laundry hanging on the clothes line and the numerous Amish in their buggies.  So cool!

It was such a busy trip; the five days just flew by. I definitely want to go back because I didn't have time to visit Duluth Trading Company (there are stores outside of both Cleveland and Columbus, I believe, that I really wanted to check out) nor the Smuckers campus which is right in Orrville where I was staying.

I also wouldn't mind revisiting all the places I got to on this trip, truth be told... if you were following along on Instagram, you likely saw some of these photos - but for those who didn't, here's a recap of my trip.


My first stop was Lehman's in Dalton. The Fall Festival was scheduled for Saturday and that was when most of the action was going to be happening - think live music, cloggers, buggy rides, homemade applesauce, cotton candy, soda samples, the works - but I arrived on Friday to meet with some of the employees and chat with them, tour the store and learn some of the store history from founder Jay Lehman's daughter, Glenda.

I set up my book signing table for the following day, we had lunch in the in-store cafe (try the bratwurst with sauerkraut and onions if you get the chance), and then I was treated to a bit of a tour of the surrounding area, including a visit to the original Lehman's Hardware store which opened in Mt. Hope in 1955.

I also *might* have done a bit of shopping for myself. If you have never been to the store - or even visited their website - you are in for a treat the first time you do. I picked up some things for my kitchen, and a few Christmas gifts for my husband and my Mom.

Saturday was a busy day. I met so many nice people who stopped by my table to have their books signed, say hello, or just chat about chickens. I think I might have enabled a few who were on the fence about getting started... and had the pleasure of meeting a sweet woman and her adorable mother (and her chicken purse!) who had traveled quite a distance to come to the store.  

It was a great day, but one of the highlights was definitely meeting a little corgi named Molly. (It's weird, but I end up running into corgis nearly every time I travel. Which is pretty cool!)

Farmhouse Frocks

Once the festivities were over at Lehman's, it was time to hop in the car and head over to Farmhouse Frocks in Millersburg. I have followed them on Instagram for awhile now, and have seen their booth at the Country Living Fairs, so couldn't wait to visit the shop in person! 

I was not disappointed. The shop is uber adorable. They sell such frilly, feminine farmgirl fashions and I was super excited to browse all the cute stuff ... and left with a Rita romper and a Jenna tunic... which I promise I will model soon!

Soda Pharm

Sundays mostly everything in Amish country is closed, so I had made plans to do a book signing at my friend Dawn Combs soft opening of her new retail shop Soda Pharm in downtown Marysville.  

She's been selling herbal concoctions under the Mockingbird Meadows brand online and at various fairs and farmers markets around the country for years and finally has realized her dream of a brick and mortar store! 

There was a nice crowd who enjoyed sampling some of her products (the ginger pear soda is the BOMB!), enjoying the chicken cookies made specially for the day... and a live chicken even showed up! My books have their own bookshelf for the moment, but I'm told other authors' books will join them as the signing events start to be scheduled.

Meyer Hatchery

As if I hadn't already had enough fun, Monday was HATCH DAY! And that meant it was time to head to Meyer Hatchery in Polk! They hatch chicks every Monday morning and get them sexed, sorted and boxed up to be mailed to customers.  I couldn't wait! Any day that involves baby chicks is going to be a good day in my book!

I have been working with Meyer Hatchery for years. In fact, they were one of my very first sponsors on this blog, way back in 2011 I believe. Over the years, I've gotten chicks from them, and emailed and spoken on the phone with many of the employees, but never met them in person So it was a real treat to meet not only those employees I've been working with, but also the owner Karen Meyer and her husband.

I knew that they had a great online store where they sold all kinds of farmhouse and coop decor, chicken products and accessories, etc. but what I didn't realize was that there was a full scale retail store attached to the hatchery! 

It was pretty surreal to see my poultry feed supplement products on the shelf. They're available from Amazon, but this is the first time I've actually seen them on a retail store shelf! But there's all kinds of other cool stuff too, so if you live anywhere near Polk Ohio, it's worth a trip to not only pick up some chicks but also browse the store.

The day started with a tour of the hatchery, including the huge industrial incubators. We watched chicks hatch, and then watched as the sorted chicks were boxed up to fill the hundreds of orders they had for the week.

I was in heaven being in a room full of plastic bins of peeping balls of fluff! I think I might have touched nearly every one of the baby chicks there! (So if you got an order from Meyer Hatchery this week, there's a good chance I might have snuggled your chick for just a second :0)

Any chicks that hatch and aren't spoken for to fill an online order are made available for purchase in the retail store which is pretty cool... and lots of people drifted in throughout the day to pick up their orders or choose a few chicks from the stock tanks set up in the store.

Despite rain in the afternoon, it was a busy day, with lines of people stopping by to say hello. In fact, we had to cut the hatchery tour short first thing in the morning because the line was already out the door! Like other events, I met so many super nice people. And would like to thank each and every one who came out to any of the weekend's events.

And as always, I of course had to bring home a few "souvenirs" with me from the shop. I mean, really? How could I not leave with some cute chicken stuff!

So, if you live in the neighborhood, be sure to go check out Meyer Hatchery in person, and if not, head over to their online store!

There is so much more to do and see in Ohio, so I hope to go back sometime. I had such a great time. Thanks to Lehmans, Meyer Hatchery and Soda Pharm for hosting the book signings and thank you all, as well as Farmhouse Frocks, for your sweet gifts.

Here's a parting gift for all you readers. A short video clip of an Amish buggy that went by as I was eating breakfast at Quince Bakery & Cafe across the street from Lehmans. And by the way, their Q-Nut egg sandwich was DE-licious... as is their homemade maple cream stick!

I hope you enjoyed this peek at my week in Ohio Amish country! If you enjoyed these photos, be sure to follow me on Instagram so you don't miss a single photo all week!

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