Quilts have for many years been the most sentimental of practical household items. The pieces are sewn by hand or machine with care, after perhaps years of collecting scraps and choosing patterns. Quilting is time-consuming, and surely a labor of love and skill. When the blanket is finished, it wraps up your loved one at night, keeping them warm and safe.
Barn quilts often hold the same kind of sentiment. On our barn quilt trail drive, we found that so many of these beautiful pieces of art were made in honor of another person. A brother, a grandma, a friend. They also show the love that these people hold for their home, property, and the countryside. They choose the colors with care to fit in to the natural surroundings, and they seek to enhance the landscape. (Don’t miss Drive by History)
That brings me to last Sunday. We’ve told you about disastrous drives, and short drives, and insane drives. But I’m not sure we’ve written about wonderful idyllic drives yet.
Last Sunday was surely one of those.
It started out with a stop at Walmart (yes, even Walmart can be fun if you know what you’re looking for and have a Sunday Drive spirit about you), then a 2+ hour drive to the beginning of the trail. This Sunday we were prepared. Not only did we have several changes of clothing for each Nielsen, but we had mountains of kolaches in our cooler, toys for the young’ns, and maps for our drive.
Aaron had slaved away a couple weeks ago to make a barn quilt trail drive itinerary for us. He printed out the addresses and the mapquest route and little snippets of what the farm owners said about their barn quilt creations. We had been so excited, but from unforeseen circumstances, we weren’t able to go on a drive at all that weekend. It made for quite an easy get up and go after church that morning, because we were all prepared!
The weather that day was iffy- a couple torrential downpours tried to make us turn back, but we knew that if the rain ever let up there would be fantastic deep greenery that is perfect for photographs and little or no sunburn for we fair skinned ones. As it turned out, the rain sputtered all day, but a golf umbrella made picture taking possible.
The first barn quilt on our list was at Vintage Hill Farms. This nursery is the very definition of charm and summer happiness.
Their barn quilt welcomes you to the property and the long horn cattle blink in your direction with warmth.
The green houses were full of gorgeous flowers and plans and parrots.
We picked up a little succulent as a souvenir for ourselves. We couldn’t stay long, though, because we had many more farms to see!
With the sun going down and the sons needing to go down, we started to head home after finding only 9 of the Quilts we had set out to find… we came back with a Sunday drive that we will not soon forget.
On the way back towards the highway we fell prey to the lure of a particularly pleasing dirt road which led us to US-40 and cut almost 15 miles off of our trip home and gave us one last scenic look at the rolling hills of Howard country.
It’s no wonder that every time we get into the car, Clarence is begging for us to go down a “bumpy road” because every time we do, it’s a treat.
This was only part of one of the three quilt trails in Missouri and I think we are just now seeing the beginning of this movement. You can learn more about barn quilts here and even download a map of the quilt trails in your home state. This is just the sort of movement we like to support and hope to hang our very own barn quilt some day. (We’ll need a barn first I suppose.)
But until next time, thanks for driving with us and be sure to like, comment, and subscribe to our newsletter so that you never miss one of those interesting, forgotten, or hidden places that are sure to turn up when we go Driving on Sunday.