My little family (plus 1 - Meme came along) made the drive to Lavender Hill Farm yesterday for its 6th annual Lavender Festival.
I was having a great morning. We aimed to arrive at the festival at about 10, an hour after the opening. I got myself ready early so I could get the baby fed, changed, dressed and packed. I got to eat breakfast and drink a full cup of coffee. I even packed a sack-full of stuff I needed to return to Wal-Mart.
In all my preparedness, I forgot to make sure the battery was in the camera. I almost cried when I realized.
Not really, though in these recent months of late nights and raging hormones, I've cried over less. We had a good time at the festival, even if I don't have photos to prove it.
Lots of vendors were plying wares and whatnots, especially lavender plants, dried bunches and bath products. Lots of jewelry makers and plant and herb growers were set up, too, and there was some food and sweets available as well - namely, pulled pork sandwiches and lavender lemonade.
The winery set up a wine tasting table at the far end of the festival, sort of behind the building in which the winery actually is and in a place that wouldn't have been visible from the vendor and lavender farm section of the festival had it not been for the swarm of folks bulging out from the corner of the building.
The actual lavender farm section was smack in the middle of the festival. I was surprised by the size of the plot. For some reason, I had imagined cascading hills crammed with flowering lavender plants, not as far as the eye could see, but at least for a longer distance than I could walk in 30 seconds. The lavender hadn't flowered, and there really wasn't much of it planted, at least from what I could see. I'd heard rumors that festival patrons could pick their own lavender, but I guess that was either never a feature of the festival, or they just don't do it anymore.
A friendly suggestion for the folks in charge at the festval: Maybe next year the winery could set up in the middle of the vendors section. That way, the throng of people rushing the wine tasting table could sip their samples while shopping around, rather than feeling like they have to sip while standing in line for another sample since there isn't anything else to do without making the five-minute walk back to where the vendors and live entertainment are. The vendors would make more money, I bet, which could attract more vendors, which could help grow the festival, which could bring more visitors...you see where I'm going with this. Nothing but sunshine and rainbows and, duh, lavender and wine.
Not that we didn't have fun at the festival, but the long, scenic drive to and through Stone Bluff was, for us, the most enjoyable leg of our trip. The countryside is green and lush, even if most of the trees look a little lopsided, thanks to that oft-scorned December ice storm. The little shops that have sprung up along 191st Street in response to the traffic generated by Lavender Hill Farm and Winery and Stone Bluff Cellars were fun to peep in on as we drove by, as were the yard sales that had set up in anticipation of the festival goers.
We went to The Brook afterward for burgers - well, Aaron and Meme had burgers. I had the buffalo chicken sandwich, which is my favorite thing on the menu there as well as one of my favorite things to eat anywhere. I get it with the mac and cheese. It's junk food the way the good Lord intended.
If you missed the lavender festival, head over to The Brook for that buffalo chicken sandwich. It'll make you feel better. It will also make you feel really, really full - bonus.
Sunday, June 8, 2008
Posted by Tasha at 2:25 PM