Monthly Archives: August 2018

Part 3 of 12 Amazing Things To Do in Shipshewana

Part 3 of a 4 part series by Laurie Sherck

I can’t talk about Amazing Things to Do in Shipshewana without telling you about the amazing shopping in Shipshewana!  With the ability to be able to buy things online and have them shipped directly to your doorstep, there needs to be a good reason for a lot of people to want to get out of the house to shop!   For me, that reason is Shipshewana.   There is nothing like sampling, smelling, touching and seeing first-hand the top-notch quality items that can be found here.   The video that this blog series is based upon does a great job of giving you a sneak peek at just a few of the amazing shopping spots, and I’ve chosen three scenes from the video to focus this blog on.

What?!   You missed seeing the video?  That’s okay, just click here.

Yoder’s Meat & Cheese Company

Yoder's Meat & Cheese Co

What I love about visiting Yoder’s Meat & Cheese Company is knowing that I’m getting the best of the best.  The Yoders raise their own beef cattle on their family farm and dry-age both grain-fed and grass-fed beef.  All of their meats are naturally-fed with no added growth hormones or steroids. The Yoders operate their own smokehouse using real hickory and cherry wood chips, and they dry and smoke 17 varieties of jerky.   I’ve yet to serve up meat from Yoders that my family doesn’t absolutely rave over.  Their jerky is a standard request from my family as Christmas gifts each year.   That’s not all!  They carry over 80 varieties of cheese, as well as a wide array of jams, jellies, noodles, canned fruits and vegetables, seasoning sauces, bulk snack foods and candies. It’s easy for me to see why so many people travel miles and miles just to purchase their meat at Yoder’s Meat and Cheese.

Shipshewana Furniture

Shipshewana Furniture Co.

Since I’m talking about quality, I need to mention the furniture built locally.   In the Shipshewana video you may notice the carriage passing in front of Shipshewana Furniture Company.  That little clip represents an entire community of woodworkers.  People travel hundreds of miles to purchase quality hand-crafted furniture made by local Amish woodworkers.  I find it inspiring to walk through all of the furniture showrooms in Shipshewana, and rub my hand over the most amazing heirloom quality furniture.    Whether your choose from floor models or have something custom made, or just love admiring good workmanship, it is worth your time visiting these local furniture showrooms:  Shipshewana Furniture Company, Weaver Furniture Sales, Brandenberry Furniture, Wana Furniture, and Dutchman Log Furniture.

Custom kitchens and baths are a thriving industry here as well.   I drool at the beautiful kitchen & bathroom cabinets at Riegsecker Cabinet and D.L. Miller Woodworking.   I stand amazed at the jaw-dropping pieces created by Cherry Pickers – a business that designs and builds beautiful custom-made furniture and cabinets by using reclaimed and repurposed barnwood and items.   There’s lots to love when visiting the local furniture stores.

Lotions and Potions

Lotions & Potions

Another favorite shopping spot for me is Lotions and Potions located on the 2nd floor of Yoder’s Red Barn Shoppes.    It’s refreshing to step into the store and just breathe in the wonderful fragrances and admire the lovely displays.    Judy and her staff enjoy helping people custom design all types of body products using their favorite scent.   Yes… I said custom design.   Choose your favorite scent from hundreds of different choices and they will help create lotion, bath products, hair shampoo and perfume right there on the spot.   I’ve also treated my grandchildren to visits at Lotions and Potions.  The ladies at Lotions and Potions have such a gift for making them feel very special.   Their make-n-take station where children can create their own customized lotion or bath/shower gel is always a big hit.  If I could include a scratch n’ sniff button with this blog, I would.  However, since I can’t, I’ll just encourage you to stop in at Lotions and Potions and sniff for yourself!

Thinking about visiting these places for yourself?  Visit for more information.  Missed  Part 1 or Part 2 ?   Catch up on those posts and get more super ideas for things to do in Shipshewana by visiting     Be on the look-out for Part 4 of this series in the near future.



My Amish Friends

By Marcia Eichhorn

Many of my guests at Bright Morning Star Bed and Breakfast are interested in the Amish lifestyle and I do my best to share with them, and now with you, what I’ve learned from living 11 years in Shipshewana Amish Country.   I find the Amish lifestyle very interesting and inspiring.  I think you will too.

The Amish Lifestyle

Most people who know anything about Amish, probably already know that Amish do not have electricity in their homes.  They use propane, natural gas, or batteries for lights, stoves and refrigerators.  Generators run electrical equipment such as milking machines, woodworking tools, washing machines and water pressure tanks.  They heat their homes with wood, coal, or gas.

Country life from my front porch


When a young person turns 16 years old, they have many choices to make.  They might have a cell phone, get a vehicle, wear English clothes, or use a camera, which are allowed when in “rumspringa”.   When they join church (between age 16-38), they give up these things.   But during “rumspringa” they spend weekends with friends and join one of the many young peoples’ groups.   On Sunday evening they might have sings, play games, and enjoy a meal with friends.Amish Couple in open carriage

How Amish Make a Living

In this area one of the biggest employers are the numerous RV Factories.  Another form of income are chicken houses, which hold between 20-30 thousand layers or fryers.   A 600 ft. chicken house is built on the family’s land, where they feed and care for them.   In 6 weeks they are collected and taken to market.   Amish also earn their living through dairy farming, woodworking shops, and garden produce.  Others earn their living through retail shops.

The Amish Farmer

The average farmer has up to 9 draft horses.   All field work is done with horses.  Depending upon the size of the family, they could easily own 3 harness horses and a couple of ponies.  A typical buggy horse is a Standardbred.   They can cost from $500.00 to $4,000.00.  The average new buggy costs between $3,400.00 to $7,000.00.   A buggy horse usually gets shod every 6 weeks.   Typical cost is $50.00 per horse.

Amish farmer plowing

Sew What?!

Amish women sew all the trousers, shirts, and suits for the men and boys, as well as dresses, coats, coverings, capes, and aprons for the girls and themselves.  One of my guests wanted to know what it would be like to “dress” Amish, so we had our own Amish Dress-Up party and took some photos for them to remember their stay with me one winter day.

A guest wearing Amish clothing

Communication Shanty

Amish do not have phones in their home.   A few families share a “phone shanty”.   You leave a message for the party you wish to speak to, and they will call you back.

Amish Phone Shanty

The Amish have kept a simple yet “full life” of God, Family and Community.  Not a bad idea!!   I am blessed to call my Amish neighbors- friends.

Marcia Eichhorn is the owner of Bright Morning Star Bed and Breakfast which is nestled in Northern Indiana Amish country among beautiful Amish farms.  Her guests often ask questions about the Amish & Amish recipes and she is happy to share what she has learned throughout the years from her Amish friends and neighbors.