Highlander Farmhouse Bed and Breakfast » Highlander Farmhouse Blog
Highlander Farm House Bed and Breakfast in Meadowview, Virginia near Emory and Henry College, Abingdon, Marion and Bristol. A great place to stay out in the country off interstate 81. New world conveniences in an old world farmhouse.
It was such a wet spring, the dryness of the last few weeks has surprised us. It’s hot (for here) as well and has actually hit 90 (although it was still in the low 60s that night). Rain is expected tonight but it often splits at the mountains and goes north and south of us.
in truth, we love it up here. We love the weather and we love the friendly people and the laid back atmosphere. That’s why it pains me to report that we looking to sell the bed and breakfast and, as such, we have been taking fewer reservations. Of course, we plan to honor all of the outstanding bookings through the end of 2017, (August and October, in particular, are so very busy here). We will take reservations from people via phone, when we are able, and if those calls are made at a reasonable time of day (PLEASE, no more calls from the road at midnight looking for a room for that night. There are several hotels at exits 19 and 7 who can more easily accommodate those kinds of requests.).
We have loved most of our guests and feel privileged to have met each of them. We just feel like it’s time to move on to the next challenge, whatever that might be.
It seems like since we have been open, we don’t post much in the old bloggeroony. I guess some of that is because we are busy doing the real job…. cleaning, cooking, entertaining, keeping up the house, etc. I think another reason is that we would hate to turn people off when they read the blog. I know I had a whine session in one posting a while ago and it seems like bookings dropped off afterwards, so there may be something to it.
I guess there’s a fine line between entertainment and offense.
That being said (and speaking of offense), it’s been awhile since we discussed our resident ghosts. We had some ghost chasers at the house a while back and they say they had some conversations with the lady ghost (the man ghost reportedly hides in the attic when there are strangers in the house). They said they went into the room the lady ghost frequents and they could see a dent in the bed on the recorded video (but not with the naked eye). They say they asked her to wiggle the doorknob (which is something guests sometimes report happening), and she did. They asked her what her name is and she said “Elendor” like the name on the bedroom door. At the time, I figured she was just messing with them because the name Elendor is from MY family, not the family that built and lived in this house for 100 years. And this spirit had been prone to playing tricks in the past like hiding items, banging on walls, and for a little while, dropping things.
However, I went back to Ancestry and resumed research on the family and, guess what I found? A census record where Cora’s mother was called Eleanor. I thought her middle name was Ellen like Cora’s but in 1850 she is listed as Eleanor (or Elleanor). It makes sense they would call her by her middle name since she and her mother shared the name, Mary. I don’t know why she would be here since she died in 1909 and, the family says this house was built in 1915. But the county says the house is from 1880 so some piece of it may be that old.
Well, back to the offense part. Not long after the ghosthunter visit, we were sitting on the front porch enjoying the view, like we often do at this time of year, when I looked over and noticed the rocking chairs on the other side of the porch rocking along with no one in them. The ghost hunters mentioned that the household spirits like to rock. Like an idiot, I went over to the rockers and waved my hands in front of the rockers. I don’t know why, really. “Was the air colder there? Was there a feeling of ectoplasm?” I don’t know but let me tell you this: The rockers stopped moving and I haven’t seen them move by themselves since then. I guess if someone was sitting there, I poked them in the face or maybe slapped them.
It has been quiet, spiritwise, since then. Maybe the ghosts were just happy to be identified and then they went away. Or maybe, more likely, she didn’t care for being slapped. Items don’t disappear like they used to and then suddenly show back up. Items don’t fall off the shelf with no human interaction. No one has reported the door knobs jiggling. What is it that people say about not knowing how much you will miss something until it’s gone? Dang.
Here at the Highlander Farmhouse Bed and Breakfast, we try to keep all of the rooms, even the 2 pet friendly ones, free of allergens. That’s one reason we have individual mini-splits (wall mounted Air conditioner/heaters that have a personal remote control) in each room and we ask that guests do not open the windows, which lets in pollen from outside that can attach itself to drapes and upholstery. Our pillows and duvet inserts are all hypoallergenic as well and we use ECO-friendly, hypoallergenic laundry detergent in our washes. We don’t add fabric softener to our high thread count sheets because of the damage that is done by softeners.
While on the subject of laundry, I have been asked in the past why I like the front load washers and how I keep them running when other people have had so much trouble with them. The trick, I think, is to keep them clean and dry and to do some easy maintenance on them regularly. See the following if you are interested in some tips:
Front of washer
First thing that you should be doing is leaving the door OPEN when not in use. This is the easiest way to keep from getting those stale smells from mold and mildew.
Use an absorbent rag to dry out ring
You should also be cleaning and drying the rubber gasket after each use. Go all the way around the gasket.
Drain holes catch whatever is too big to drain.
Also before or after use, make sure the drain holes are clean. (I cannot begin to tell you all of the things I have had to dig out of these while using laundromats when we travel in our camper! UGH!!) Just use a paper towel or your fingers to pull whatever is in there, out.
Speaking of the drain, on a regular basis, you should be cleaning out the drain filter. It would be advisable to do this if your machine starts having trouble draining all the water, at least.
Here are the steps to this:
Where the filter hides on this machine
First find out where your filter is at. On this machine, it’s behind this little door. If you didn’t know what it was, you might not know you can get in there and do this stuff, but it’s easy.
This one opens with that little latchy thing on top:
Next, find something to accumulate the water that will inevitably come rushing out all over your floor. I used a Cookie sheet so that I can get it under the machine somewhat. It might be easier to control the water if you can take off the cover and/or you might want to put a towel under the cookie sheet or instead of it.
Cookie sheet with door off
Now you have to get the filter basket out. This one looks a bit like some refrigerator water filters and it’s a black dial that you turn. Lefty-loosy, righty-tighty.
Once you get the knob turned until it comes out, pull out the filter and check it for debris. I have found cellophane wrappers in this thing that was keeping the water from draining. Cellophane, plastic and rubber are big water blockers but enough hair in here will screw up your wash too.
After you clean out the filter basket, just reverse what you have done. Put the filter back in and tighten it. Tighten it GOOD or you could have leaks when you use the washer. Put the cover back on and close it. Get that water out of the cookie sheet and pick up your towels. That’s it!!
You should also be running your cleaning cycle on a regular basis. If you don’t have a cleaning cycle, then you can do the same thing with cleaner and your hot cycle. If you don’t want to use Bleach (which most manufacturers recommend for cleaning cycles), you can use a combination of vinegar and baking soda. Just mix up about 1/4 cup of baking soda with 1/4 cup of water and put this in where the detergent goes. Then pour a couple cups of white vinegar into the tub. Now run your cleaning cycle or hot cycle. If you already have some mildew built up in there, this should help (I also use vinegar and baking soda for clearing drains!). After the cleaning cycle, remember to dry out the door Gasket and LEAVE THE DOOR OPEN!
It’s so beautiful here right now! I just can’t get over it. Highs in the 70s and lows in the 50s. The chickens are laying eggs like crazy, the bunny is back munching on the grass out back. The trees are budding out and my bushes are starting to leaf out.
The new season at the Barter Theatre is going strong. Mamma Mia just finished up and a Midsummer Night’s Dream is beginning in a day or so. There is also a play about robots at the little Barter theatre. Later this year, they are doing Footloose!! and I am hoping to get tickets to that myself. I bet it will be fantastic!!!
Read Full Article
Scroll to Top
Separate tags by commas
To access this feature, please upgrade your account.