Guests Delight in Goodies, Giveaways and Giddy Ups

For those of you who have ever phoned the Inn, you may be familiar with our greeting, “It’s a great day at Olde Square Inn!” Well, Sunday was a great day at Olde Square Inn. Many thanks to everyone who came out to take a peek into our guest rooms, enjoy a carriage ride, and spend time with us for our first-year anniversary celebration. The joint was packed!

I appreciated meeting so many area business owners and people from town who stopped in to introduce themselves, including our mayor Tim Bradley! TJ and Judy from Home Run Candies at the Corn Crib brought treats to share, as did Randy from Mount Joy Roofing (cheese and crackers, not tar and shingles, haha), while Jill with Floral Designs of Mount Joy sent over a beautiful flower arrangement. I’m sure I’m leaving out lots of gift givers, because I have a sense of having accepted many, many bottles of wine and other fine items.

Folks from my old ‘hood – the Wagner family and Keeley with Susquehanna Style Magazine – came over, and even my neighbors the Williams from my old, old neighborhood dropped in. Former fiances (okay, there’s only one), current grandkids and kids, former coworkers, former guests Bill and Jean Riggins, friends and friends’ families – they were all here! I didn’t know who to talk with next!

And again, you know I always say a girl can’t do it by herself.  Thank you to Jo and Ed, Tom and Kathy, Joan, Sherry, Aimee, Eileen, Tom, Wendy, Karen, and Kerry Meyers from the the Chamber of Commerce for all your support and hard work. I could cry a little thinking of all you’ve done for me. Sniff.

But instead, let’s announce the results of our drawing! Congratulations to our winners; we’ll let you know by email how you can obtain your gifts.

  • $20 Gift Certificate to Mayita’s Boutique: Dan Straszynski
  • $20 Gift Certificate to Lilys and Lace: Barb O’Neal
  • $20 Gift Certificate to Mosby’s Pub: Jeff Brinser
  • Massage with Joyce Bertschinger at Linda O’Connell
  • Phyllis Gamber Pottery: Joyce May
  • Grand Prize – One Night Stay for Two at Olde Square Inn: Gloria Heisey

Thank you again to everyone for helping to make our first year in Mount Joy a fantastic one. I’m looking forward to many more happy times in this great little town!

You’re Invited To Celebrate Our One-Year Anniversary

Invitation to one year celebration open house

I can hardly believe it’s been almost a year that I’ve been blessed to be owner and Innkeeper of this beautiful bed and breakfast. I have met some of the most charming and kindest people who have offered their help, good wishes, and support, both in person and on-line. Their reviews have granted us a five-star rating with TripAdvisor and have given us record-breaking summer months.

Open House EventsI would love to have you come out Sunday, November 8 to stop in to say hello. Drop in between 1 and 4pm to take a tour of our nearly 100-year-old home which has been operating as an Inn for 25 years. Have a look around, enjoy some of the treats we serve at breakfast, and sign up for prize drawings. You might even opt for a carriage ride.

I’m looking forward to seeing you next Sunday at our Open House Celebration. (Dreams do come true!)

I Dodged the Zimmerman Plumbing Bullet – or – It’s Time To Take Out Personal Ad

We had our first little cold spell last week, and it kind of made me mad. I was still thinking about how I could fit in one more Mommy-Slushie-Float-On-A-Raft-In-The-Pool afternoon, when suddenly I woke up and had to wear a jacket and shoes that were not sandals. I cried a little bit, then decided I’d better crank up the heat and make sure everything was cozy for the guests coming in that evening.

As a good Innkeeper would do, I turned up the thermostat and then went from room to room adjusting the radiator knobs from Closed to Open to check that they were all working. It was very comforting physically and, oddly enough, Charlestonemotionally, to feel the warm, lovely heat emanating from the nearly 100-year-old radiators: first Antebellum, then Elizabeth Ann, then Foxfire, then… nothing in Charleston. How many times can the story of one room not cooperating play out? I mean really.

But luckily for me I remembered a little bit about hot water heat from my last home, and knew that you had to “bleed” a radiator by turning something with a magical key to make all the air come out so its filled fully with the heated water. I messed around with the thing and it turned and hissed and hissed some more, but never got hot. In my cleverness, I amped up the electric bathroom heat, got out several down comforters, and decided that I could tout the Charleston as our most snuggly room at the Inn. The guests were very happy, as was I.

I knew I still had to find out what was wrong, but before I had to stoop to phoning  my Secret Boyfriend Tom at Zimmerman Plumbing, I thought I’d ask my other Tom, who is the Inn’s all-around Maintenance Handyman Supreme. “Look,” I said to Supreme Tom, “I’ve been twisting this lever all over the place and all the thing does is hiss. I can’t get any heat out of it!!!!”

Supreme Tom looked. “Yeah, That’s to bleed it. Did you turn it on? The Open/Closed knob’s at the other end of the radiator.”

“Oh. Nuts.” I Opened it. It worked.

“Well,” Supreme Tom replied not even trying to cover his amusement, “at least you didn’t call Zimmerman’s!! Hahahah – that guy would think you’re on him like white on rice hahahaha!!” My relief was so great I was not even offended.

However, there’s some new house maintenance thing to learn every day, and I’m entertaining the thought that if I married a contractor or started dating someone with repair skills I could save myself some money and aggravation. I know, unlikely to saving money or aggravation, but all the same I poured myself a pina colada and penned this personal ad. And though I’m nobody’s poet, I thought it wasn’t half bad:

If you like fixing the plumbing and cleaning out all the drains

And the feel of the laundry and clearing snow from the lanes,

If you’ll thaw freezing pipes at midnight or on a cold winter’s day,

I will meet you on Tuesday. Bring your tools. Don’t complain.

I know! Sounds like dream job for some very, very lucky guy. Especially when you factor in that the winner would have access to more frittatas he could ever imagine. Who could ask for more?





10 Fun Things to Do Around Mount Joy in October

fall leavesSummer’s over, school’s under way, and now you’re looking for something to do to get out of the house and enjoy the beautiful fall weather. Pick an activity or two, then after your adventure, cozy up in your room at the Inn and wake up to a delicious, home-made, three-course breakfast in the morning! Take a look at these great offerings.

  1. October 2, 9, 16, 23Bube’s Brewery Ghost Tour: Are you a believer in dimensions that exist beyond our finite senses? Confirmed by SyFy’s Ghosthunters, the Brewery is filled with paranormal activity. Come and see for yourself!
  2. October 2, 9, 16, 23, 30 – Free Music Fridays at The Vineyards at Grandview. Step into the Vineyard and join your friends for Free Music Fridays in October.  They’re extending music on the deck as long as the weather holds and will move into the winery in case of rain or cold. Check it out AND try some great wines while you’re there.
  3. October 3Bridge Bust in Columbia: Over 300 vendors will offer their wares in the categories of antiques, art, crafts, food and unique items in this popular event. And – get this – it’s all on a bridge!
  4. October 8-24Best Kept Secrets Tour: An unusual shopping/food and fun adventure featuring 37 off-the-beaten path businesses, hand-picked for their uniqueness. The stores are all around the county, but several are right here in Mount Joy for a great starting point for your shopping.
  5. October 10 & 11Harvest Days at Landis Valley Village & Farm Museum: Come for demonstrations, exhibits, live music and activities, as well as horse-drawn wagon rides and a children’s discovery tent. Watch apples become apple butter and taste a cider float with fresh-churned ice cream, or see wool go from sheep to shawl.
  6. October 10-11, 17-18, 24-25Halloween Daze and Spooky Knights at the PA Ren Faire: Three weekends of mystery and mayhem kick off the weekend as spooky creatures of every variety haunt the Shire. Many events, contests, and tastings!
  7. October 22Crafter Hours Haunted Paint Night:  Painting party guests will gather at Olde Square Inn for an after-party with Howard and Annie Longenecker, the original owners of the home, which was built in 1917. Stay at the Inn October 22 and receive a $20 voucher off Crafter Hours event for that evening.
  8. October 24  Full Moon Tour at the Wolf Sanctuary:  Rather than a guided tour, you get to experience the sanctuary at your own pace. Walk from pack to pack, talking to tour guides stationed at each wolf pack.  If you get tired, you can sit next to the bonfire (weather permitting) and just relax. Bring a blanket, a flashlight, a chair, maybe some hot dogs and marshmallows.
  9. Through October 31Taste of Amish Country Dinner Tours:  Enjoy an evening in the Amish countryside. Leaving from The Amish Farm and House, their minibus will take you on a guided tour through the backroads of Lancaster County. Along your trip, your guide will stop at some Amish businesses and then for dinner. Included in your ticket price is a meal at a locally-owned restaurant with an exclusively Amish staff.
  10. Through October 31Lancaster City Ghost Tours: Reserve a spot to join a candlelight walking tour through the city nightly at 8pm and explore the long-forgotten mysteries of one of America’s oldest cities, with haunting tales of otherworldly vigils, fatal curses, and star-crossed lovers.

smiling pumpkinsYou know you need a night out. Give us a call at 717.653.4525 to book a room, or you can reserve directly through our website.

We’re looking forward to seeing you soon. No tricks – it’s all a treat!

Sixty Shades of Yay

Okay, so you’re probably like, “What the heck? You turned sixty and forgot how to use a laptop to post a blog? You turned sixty and everything now takes ten times as long to finish? What? You turned sixty and you’re still partying?!” Kind of the last one! I’ve had the best problem an Innkeeper could encounter: we’ve had people here everyday and I’ve been very happily overwhelmed with taking care of my guests and the Inn. Guests are booking months in advance, and it is a situation I’ll take any day of the week. Thank you so much for staying with us and for your great reviews.

On top of that, I was totally overwhelmed with all the cards, gifts, and surprises from family, friends, and guests. Sometimes I’m just undone by how generous people are. I’m going to give you a quick-pic snippet of how much fun a sixtieth birthday can be, then I’ve got to tell you about the best present ever.

Here’s the kicker. You know how I blame my looking like a Monkee on my children’s insensitivity at ages six and eight to get me on the Oprah show for a birthday makeover surprise, then further neglecting to contact other celebrities for other types of surprise makeovers. Here’s what happened after Aimee read that sad blog.

Instilled with guilt and love, she contacted everyone I mentioned to include Oprah, Alton Brown, Christopher Lowell, Al Roker, Jane Pauley, Jon, Gordon, and even my twin Michael Nesmith. Of all those famous folks, ONE got back to her. Take a a look.


birthday Christopher Lowell

know!! How about it?! “Nancy pal!”  But – you’re thinking she might have just made it up on her computer and brought it over under pretense, right? Me, too, but she was a step ahead of us. Aimee took a screen shot of the emails back and forth between them. Apparently Christopher Lowell was headed for a flight to a show when his sister at the studio received Aimee’s request. His sister forwarded it to Christopher, who took time at the airport to create something on the fly on his laptop for Aimee to give to me! Nancy pal! How do you not love that?! I had to cry a little, and I think Aimee has fully redeemed herself, don’t you?

And did you notice he’s holding a picture of the Inn?! Next time you’re out here you can see the framed and hanging original. Even though we’re booking out in advance, there is plenty of room for you to come and visit and maybe even stay in Christopher’s favorite room. Looking forward to seeing you soon, and we can catch up on everything that’s been going on.

And next time it won’t be soon long between blogs! Yay!

I Get By With A Little Help From My Ed-& My Baked French Toast Recipe

Just finished a great visit with my sister Jo, brother-in-law Ed, and niece Jenna. Love having them here, not just because they do all my work and I just sit around and eat ice cream, but because I like to be with them. Maybe it’s like this in your family, too: when we get together we eat and talk and laugh  and talk and eat and laugh and talk and laugh and drink. We have a lot of fun, and even though I want to nap for four days afterward, I always feel renewed after spending time with my sister.

Ed’s a good guy, too, and acts like he’s coming out here to vacation; however, he’s one of those added-value brothers-in-law who can’t just sit but rather has to be doing something. He stashes work clothes in the car “in case” I need help moving in (yes), a ceiling ripped out, insulated and reinstalled (yes), a wall put up (yes), desk built (yes), walls painted (yes), all the flower beds cleaned out (yes), doorbell installed (yes), cable buried (yes), pool shark fixed (yes), someone to buy dinner (YES), or whatever (yes, yes). And he’s pretty good at chatting up the guests.

I can’t really let Ed know he does good work or there will be no living with him even for the short time they’re visiting. I just tell him he has to earn his keep because after all, I’m only charging him half price for the room haha and his breakfast is free harhar.

While they were here, one of the breakfast menu items Jo and I made was baked French Toast. Baked French toast casseroleWe both like to mess around in the kitchen and it’s extra fun to cook with someone.  My sister is always ready to step in and help me any way she can, even long distance. When Jo read my blog about my approaching 60 looking like a Monkee, she called me and admitted that just that morning she discovered she resembled Rod Blagojevich. (Look that one up and you’ll understand how I got the better end of the deal being Mike Nesmith’s twin.)

Anyway, this is a fabulous recipe that you can put together the night before while you’re talking with your sister until all hours and can pop into the oven the next morning. It bakes up all almost like a bread pudding and is buttery and sweet and delicious and will make you want to lick the plate. I found it on The Pioneer Woman website and made a few minor adjustments. Don’t be afraid to do that!


  • 1 loaf of crusty Italian, French, or sourdough bread
  • 8 eggs
  • 2 c. whole milk
  • 1/2 c. heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • 2 T vanilla extract

Butter a 9 x 13″ baking dish. Cut the bread into cubes or tear into chunks, then spread it all out in the pan. I like to cut off the ends and eat them with a little olive oil and cracked pepper accompanied with a glass of wine, so they never actually make it into the dish. No worries. It’s a big loaf of bread. Also, I prefer the Italian bread over French because it’s denser and works well with the amount of liquid in the recipe. I think an egg bread or challah would also be delicious.

In a large bowl whisk all the other ingredients together and pour evenly over the bread. Cover it tightly and stick it in the fridge overnight, or at least several hours. Make the topping.


  • 1/2 c. flour
  • 1/2 c. packed brown sugar
  • 1 t. cinnamon
  • 1 t. salt
  • pinch of nutmeg, optional
  • 1 stick of cold butter, cut into pieces

Mix the first five ingredients together in a bowl. Add the butter and cut into the dry mixture until it resembles coarse crumbs. Store it in the fridge in a baggie or covered bowl.

When you’re ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 F. Trot over to the fridge and get the casserole and topping and sprinkle the crumb mixture over the top. If you want to use fruit, put that on before you put on the topping. Bake uncovered about 40-45 minutes for the bread pudding consistency, 60 minutes if you like it a little firmer. I go 40 minutes because I hold this in the oven at 200 F (covered) throughout breakfast and it stays nice and moist.

To plate, I cut it into eight pieces (which are large portions), top each with a little maple syrup and serve it up with scrambled eggs and sausage.

I know school’s just around the corner – Jo goes back to teaching August 10 (gack!) and just like everyone else, you get extra busy and some of those little niceties that you once had time for fall by the wayside. This French Toast dish would make a great surprise for the kids some morning, and you don’t have to knock yourself out at the crack of dawn to prepare it.

Even with fall lurking in the wings, there’s still a lot of summer and beautiful weather to revel in. Come out and enjoy a final fling – sit on the balcony, sun yourself at the pool, visit the shops, and in the morning I’ll be happy to make baked French Toast for you!


Hey, Hey, I’m The Monkees

peter-tork-396484_1280Getting ready for my day, thinking about what I needed to do for the morning, what I had to get from the store, whether there was extra tp in the guest rooms,  that I was going to be 60 soon, that I didn’t have school in-service days ever again haha, and then I looked up and saw Michael Nesmith!

Remember him? I liked him. He was the guy in the Monkees who always wore the hat. So anyway, I looked up and saw Michael Nesmith but without the hat and realized it wasn’t Mike after all but me in the mirror, and wondered how, approaching 60, I had come to look like a Monkee.

One of the possibilities could be my great dislike for getting my hair cut. Nothing against any stylist anywhere, but I have so many things to do that don’t ever involve making small talk with someone holding me hostage under a nylon cape. If I could send my head out while I labored at other Important Tasks I might be okay with the whole process. Since it doesn’t work that way I usually put off going to a salon until I hit the point where I might be mistaken for a 70s pop band member.

But really (and I didn’t have to think about this a long time), I lay all the blame for my current Monkee state on my own children and here’s why.  Back in the day when Oprah used to be on network tv, she would do makeovers on well-deserving women whose names and plights were submitted to the producers of the show. The women would start off looking like aging rock stars. Then, through the magic of a team of pros and wardrobe people, they would emerge at the end of the 60 minutes looking like Jessica Rabbit.

My sister Jo and I would always talk about how our kids should write in to get us makeovers, and what great birthday surprises that would be. So, you know, every birthday I’d be thinking I might get a “surprise” Oprah ticket, but no. When I mentioned this to my daughter the other day she had the nerve to say, “Mom. We were six and eight.” Yeah? And? They had good teachers who schooled them in reading and writing. Age is not an excuse.

As the years moved along and I saw their communication skills grow, I came to expect other celebrities to show up on my door step for other types of makeovers. Where was Christopher Lowell on my birthday when my home needed to be redecorated? Why wasn’t Alton Brown in my kitchen showing me how to make birthday mac and cheese? I don’t know.

You would think my children would do something amazing. Never mind the fact that they have achieved many great things. They are college educated, and collectively have owned businesses,  lived in several different states and out of the country, currently manage my website, produce gallery-worthy artwork and amazing grandchildren, personally fight diseases, and are really, really nice people whose company I truly enjoy. Ya think they could pick up a pencil? Or type a text message? Or read my mind?! Apparently not.

However, I am a daydream believer and am giddy with anticipation thinking about how they will redeem themselves. Who will show up on my doorstep on August 10? Oprah? Christopher Lowell? Al Roker? Jane Pauley? Jon Gordon? The real Mike Nesmith with a hat?! I don’t know!

In the meantime I’m taking the last train to Clarksville haha to get my own makeover so I can be ready for the surprise and the big 6-0 and will take in the wisdom of one of my guests. When I asked how everything was going, he answered, “It’s fantastic! I know it’s gotta be a good day when I’m still looking at this side of the grass.”

about-main-imgTrue that. Enjoy your family today and  wherever this side of the grass happens to take you. And should Michael Nesmith show up on my front porch in a couple of weeks, I’ll post a selfie of us. I’ll be the one without the hat.


Let’s Not Overlook the Obvious – or – No Need to Jump to Contusions

OMG, as they say. Busy Thursday at the Inn, with five check-ins soon to arrive. Finished up breakfast, turned and freshened the rooms, ran to the store, then made my rounds to make sure everything was where it needed to be and perfect for the guests. Room 1, check. Room 2, check. Room 3, great. Room 4…wait.

The bathroom sink was clogged with not a drop of water going down the drain. Old houses have plumbing issuesElizabeth Ann sink and I thought I’d just plunge it as I do other clogs that happen along the way. I plunged it and nothing happened. Regular drain cleaner and nothing happened. I ran more water  in the already murky sink to assist gravity in opening the drain (as if) but nothing happened, and I was getting nervous because it was now  check-in time and people could walk in any second! What would I tell the guest? “I have good news and bad news. No charge for your room tonight, but you’ll have to look at this nasty mess I created every time you use the bathroom. Oh, and go brush your teeth in the bathtub.” Probably not.

Very anxious now because, of course, people could walk in any second. What to do? I had to run across the street to Aimee’s to retrieve my heavy duty drain opener stuff, becoming angry because she was on vacation and unable to share in my misery. You know when you get upset and you say things because you have to blame someone and not yourself? The whole time I’m stomping over, I’m grumbling, “I am never lending her my drain cleaner again! What if someone comes while I’m across the street?! If she would have returned this cleaner right away, I wouldn’t be in this situation!!!!!” and other such nonsense. It was all very dramatic.

Returned to the ailing sink, poured the never-fail cleaner in, and nothing happened. The sink was now full of dirty water and chemicals. Breathing shallow but trying to calm down, I figured I’d look under the sink to see if I could solve the problem. Not sure what I thought I’d find. It’s a pedestal sink. I could see everything under it from any point in the room, but I was brainstorming. Skooched under, saw nothing, stood up, and cracked my head on the edge of the porcelain bowl. Now mad at everybody and everything.

Whenever “new challenges”  occur around here or whenever I crack my head on the sink, I get mad but then I think, “Calm down. You’ve wanted to run an inn for thirty years. You’re here. What better place to have a clogged sink or contusion.” True that. I calmed down, called Zimmerman Plumbing in Lititz and they sent someone out within twenty minutes. It was an emergency you know. They are awesome; I’d used them at my previous home, too. I showed Tom to the bathroom and he returned in less time than it took to sneeze.

Zimmerman PlumbingMe: You’re finished already?!!

Tom: Yep.

Me: Thank You, Baby Jesus!! You did it before the guests arrived! What happened?!!

Tom: You had the drain closed.

Me: Oh. No wonder the plunger and drain cleaner didn’t work.

Tom: Yep. Anything else?  I could fix that leaky faucet while I’m here.

I didn’t know whether to laugh or feel stupid, but how do you not laugh at that because it is so idiotic. It’s like something that would have happened on that old sitcom “Three’s Company” involving Suzanne Somers as Chrissy.

I thought I would always use Zimmerman Plumbing for all my plumbing needs, but now I’m not sure and here’s why: the last time I called them was when a guest reported that the commode was clogged. Tom from the plumbing joint showed up and was finished in less than ten minutes. When I asked what he did, he said he flushed the toilet…See what I mean? He’s going to think I’m after him in a romantic fashion or that I’m one of those old ladies who calls repairmen so she has someone to talk to. I can just envision the next appointment.

Me: Tom! Quick! I can’t find the shower! It’s gone – just disappeared, and people could walk in any second!

Tom: (Sigh.) Be right there. This should only take a few minutes. (Tom arrives, goes upstairs, returns.)

Me: Finished already?!  What was the problem?

Tom: No problem. The shower was behind the shower curtain the whole time.

Me: Hahahahaha! Thanks Zimmerman Plumbing! You saved me again!

They are very patient people.









I Now Pronounce You…

I had the great honor this July 8 to witness my very first elopement as Innkeeper at Olde Square Inn. Although we’ve had honeymooners and bridal parties getting ready for the wedding day, this was our first actual ceremony and, as you might guess, was very beautiful and touching.2015-07-08 18.57.39Sheila was stunning in an off-white, lace overlay dress, and carried a beautiful bouquet of roses and wild flowers. Groom Chris cleaned up purty good himself, and joked in his southern drawl, “Well, she finally got me after ten years!” From the look on his face, I would say he was very happy about being got.

Reverend Kelly Jo Singleton who is a lovely, soft-spoken minister, led the ceremony. Incidentally, she also officiated my son and daughter-in-law’s wedding, and I would recommend her to anybody. We toasted their great occasion with a glass of wine, and after pictures (Chris: Ah think the photographer took about 15,000), the couple was off to a fabulous steak dinner at the Catacombs at nearby Bube’s Brewery, to return home to a romantic evening in the Carriage House.2015-07-08 18.59.45

If you’re about to say, “I do,” and are looking for a warm and welcoming place to exchange your vows whether alone or in front of guests, visit our Weddings & Events page, then give me a call.  I’ll help you plan your special day. We can assist with recommending a minister, photographer, or videographer and can take care of your cake, flowers, seating and other important items to make your day extra special.

In the meantime, congratulations to Olde Square Inn’s very first Mr. and Mrs! Wishing you many, many happy years ahead.



Biscuits & Gravy Recipe: So Good Guests Lick the Crumbs Off the Floor

Okay, so that’s really not what my guest is doing on the floor. There’s another story around this Biscuits and Gravy Breakfast picture, but I’ll get to that in a moment. Ladies enjoy a laugh around and under dining room table.First, let’s talk about this knockout recipe that I love to serve because it’s easy to prepare and is always a crowd pleaser. I like to plate it with scrambled eggs and Not Your Mom’s Sweet Potatoes, and when we clear plates, that’s all we clear are empty plates – not a scrap left.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 1 lb. of bulk breakfast sausage such Bob Evans or Jimmy Dean (I think the off-brands are sometimes too fatty when they cook down, and you don’t get enough meat.)
  • T or two of bacon drippings, optional
  • 1/3 c. flour
  • 3 c. milk + option extra for thinning
  • t. or two of paprika
  • Pepper to taste.

Here’s what you’ll do:

  1. Brown the sausage in a large skillet, and please brown it, not just gray it. You’ll know what I mean as you cook it. Do not drain. I add the bacon drippings at this point if I happen to have any. It gives it another layer of flavor but is still delicious without.
  2. Sprinkle the flour over the browned sausage and stir to coat.
  3. Add the three cups of milk, cold is fine. Add paprika and stir. My Hungarian mother advises the use of paprika in most savory dishes, so for me reaching for the paprika is an ingrained habit. Besides the subtle flavor, I like the color it gives the gravy.
  4. Cook on low until thickened, about ten minutes or so, stirring occasionally.
  5. Serve hot over freshly baked biscuits, then stand back. Save a little out for yourself because there won’t be any left over, guaranteed.

This sits on my stovetop warming during breakfast at the Inn, so it cooks down a little bit and continues to thicken. If that happens and you want to thin it out a tad, just add some more milk, no worries. You would have to work hard – like leave the kitchen and go get a pedicure –  to mess up this recipe. It always turns out amazingly well.

Now,  a circuitous route back to that photo. I have so much fun with my guests; some people you feel that you’ve known forever even though they’ve only been around a day or two. Some of them return and it feels like family is coming home. Susan and Roger have already revisited and want to come over and help me next year. The Birkenstocks are returning this summer for their third stay in eight months. The Oostings, who are now middle-of-the-night smoke alarm experts, will be out to visit again in a few weeks. I love seeing these people and many, many others who stay with us.

Anyway these ladies, Darlene and Karen who were at and under the table on Biscuit and Gravy Day, fall into the I’ve Known You Forever category. The whole household laughed and talked and ate and talked and ate and laughed, and then Karen spilled her coffee. Being a good brand-new friend, she decided she would clean up the spillage, and I caught her in the act. You have to know that I don’t take or post anyone’s picture without permission, so you can see what a good sport she was. I don’t remember if if her swabbing the floor was before or after Darlene cleaned out the pool. I really must revisit the whole summer work camp idea. Still waiting for someone to dig that fire pit so we can gather ’round it and sing Kumbaya. Hmmm.

Work camp aside, I would love to have you out for a visit and meet you for the first time, or get together with you for a revisit. Choose a room and don’t worry. You won’t have to dig a fire pit or even make your bed. Come relax on the balcony, have breakfast on the beautiful side porch, then sit around the pool and soak up the sun. Summer will be over before you know it, and I’d be happy to help you get the most out of it. Looking forward to seeing you soon.