Could Fall Be Far Off?

The first half of August has felt like fall with all the cool temps we’ve been having in the woods! The days are shorter and the air feels different! Fall was definitely in the air in Shullsburg, Wisconsin last weekend – at Donna Shephard’s cabin, “Mother O’Leary’s!”

As you know Donna’s Log Cabin shops are featured in the current issue of A Simple Life, and when I was there last year doing the photography, we made a date for me to join her during her 2017 Fall Open House. I had the time of my life with Donna, her sweet family and wonderful customers!  I felt like Queen for the day!!!

Donna is on the right and her trusty helper, “The other Donna” is on the left!

One of the highlights was Donna’s “Make & Take” Scarecrow Workshop!!

My blessed weekend in Wisconsin continued when Donna Shepherd treated me to a stay at the historic Gratiot House Farm B & B in Shullsburg. This 1835 stone house was built by Col. Henry Gratiot and loving restored to its original glory over the past 6 years by Inn Keepers, Chris and Heather Price.

Photos Courtesy of Heather Price


It was an incredible experience and Chris & Heather are the best hosts you could ask for. The claw foot tub was heaven with homemade lavender bath salts, and the farm is home to Shetland sheep, chickens, 3 hives of bees, Lucky the duck, and a SOULFUL dog named Daisy.


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Heather is a WONDERFUL cook, and I had the best breakfast I have EVER eaten! The only thing better was the company!

If you find yourself in the Shullsburg, WI area, Galena, IL, or Eastern Iowa – this is a MUST STAY. Or make it a destination vacation for a weekend getaway – stay with Chris & Heather, visit Donna at her Log cabin shops, and visit charming downtown Galena, IL!!!
Visit their website to read the interesting history of the house, the Gratiot family, and the Price’s painstaking renovations.

This is also a wonderful article:

It was such a great weekend, I hated to leave Wisconsin, so I didn’t get home until 4:00 in the morning on Monday!! Whew!  But when I got up, I had to go down and see Erasmus!  He is a big boy now and doesn’t really need his bottle (he gets all the nourishment he needs from his mama) but we still like giving him his bottle to keep him friendly and gentle. Well, ok, it’s mostly for OUR benefit! Ha!  But apparently he had already had his breakfast because he wasn’t very hungry- but Mama wasn’t going to let good milk go to waste!!!



4 thoughts on “Could Fall Be Far Off?

  1. Wow, Jill! What a wonderful weekend you had in Wisconsin with Donna Shepherd. It sounds like a joyous Jubilee of friends, fun, and homespun goodness. The beautiful photos of your time there say it all and the Gratiot House is a gorgeous place. I am so glad you got to attend and then share your weekend with us here. Early signs of Fall are conspicuously absent down here in Florida. How perfect to have a touch of fall while constructing a darling scarecrow too! It just screams time for apple cider, apple pickin’, punkin’ gathering, and flannel shirt wearin’ . Not to mention dunkin’ apple cider donuts in a cup of hot coffee on the porch in the morning’! Have you found a local place near you that features hot homemade apple cider donuts? When all else fails, Dunkin Donuts makes delicious ones every fall. Also, have you ever stopped at Mrs. Rowe’s Restaurant and Bakery in Staunton, Va.(ext. 222 on I-81)? They make some fabulous pumpkin pancakes and homemade biscuits and sticky buns for breakfast!


    1. I have never been to Mrs. Rowe’s Linnie, but will CERTAINLY put it on my list !!! Todd and I laughed when we moved to Galax because there are NO DONUTS! Southerners don’t eat donuts here, they eat BISCUITS! ha! One of my two favorite things in the world is DONUTS (the other being ice cream) and yes – donuts filled with ice cream! But every year at the Hillsville antique market the Mennonites have homemade donuts! I’m counting the days for THAT !


  2. Looks like you had a great time and the B & B was beautiful. As for fall, the heat and humidity in Winston-Salem has been horrendous. I rode up to Fancy Gap early this afternoon and it’s hot and humid here too. But I’ll take 82 here over 93 at home any day. A breeze has picked up and there’s thunder around. I bet you and Erasmus hear it too over in Galax. Have a nice weekend……..Teresa


  3. I think part of me just “thinks” the weather is glorious because I stay up up on the hill at our farm in the woods and it’s always cool here! ha! It’s my own little Wonderland where I can believe it’s like this everywhere!


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