My Summer Break in 2014

The summer of 2014 was a fun and interesting summer. Before I had ended my school year of seventh grade, I was involved in selling organic baked goods at the Sykesville Main Street Farmer’s Market. To start off the market there were only three vendors, me, or Big Brother Bakery and two others. To start, let me tell you what I sold. I sold organic soy-free baked goods, cookies being the most well-known. While I sold baked goods, my mother sold fine art and photography. She was also the Maryland Photographer of the year in 2012, and her trophy stands on our fireplace, the biggest of all her six trophies, since that was the only one of its kind. I am very proud of her and I am her assistant when she has photo sessions on our farm. I am her test subject when she plans out her photo-shoots in most testing cases.  She also has plenty of ribbons as well from the print competitions. The Farmer’s market started out slow, but by the seventh or eighth week, the market actually looked busy, even though most people came through the opposite side I was on and didn’t tend to care about the fact that there were vendors on the other side, such as myself. There were goods of all types being sold there, including produce, soaps, baked goods, artwork, and meats. The market was doing fairly well until late August and September, when business almost halted. We had decided to stop selling goods there in September because we found the market as a waste since no customers were really at the market. The market was actually closed weeks before it was scheduled to end.

We also had got thirteen chickens in March and they started laying delicious eggs in August. We had six Barred Plymouth Rocks, three Buff Orpingtons, two Speckled Sussex, one New Hampshire, and one Ameraucana. All but the Ameraucana lay brown eggs. Our Ameraucana lays green eggs, which taste the same as brown eggs. I treat my chickens as pets, and give them produce scraps as treats, which they love. They also love eating worms and grubs. Certain ones like to jump up and try to grab the treats I am bringing for them, and when they do get their treats, they start eating them. If the treat is in bite sized chunks, like grapes, tomatoes, or bananas, then they will chase each other for food. I’ve come to enjoy the chickens at home as my pets. If I crouch down to see them, the chickens often jump on my back, so I try to keep my back straight when I do so. Also, one of our Barred Plymouth Rocks likes making her own nester from bags of bedding in the coop. It is, in my opinion, that chickens have more personality as pullets, which are kind of like teenage chickens and hens then when they are chicks, mainly because the chicks poop a lot and are all timid when picked up, but the pullets don’t usually mind being picked up and some like being picked up. Fortunately for egg-laying purposes, all our chickens are hens, so none of them go, cock-a-doodle-doo or any noises similar to that. The chicken coop is a big brick structure that is painted white with red roofing. We haven’t measured the coop, but I think its fifteen feet by thirty feet.

In terms of vacations, there were mini-vacations, each lasting around three days. My family and I went up to the Pocono Mountains in Pennsylvania to visit the Great Wolf and Camelbeach waterparks, although we got sick while on vacation. The Great Wolf Lodge was very filthy and the buffet had dirty dishes which were our serving plates, a severe problem since the place was very clean the year before. Camelbeach’s wave pool compared to Great Wolf’s was violent. I was knocked over by the waves and stepped on by someone, not to mention someone lost their glasses and another person went beyond the safety line that was in place and the wave pool was shut down. There was one place that satisfied my stomach, which was Bailey’s Steakhouse. Their food hadn’t been changed much and was still as good as when I was there in 2013. Overall though, the trip was terrible.

We also took a trip to Williamsburg in Virginia to visit the old colonial town, not the Great Wolf Lodge that was there. We were very satisfied by the trip, at least I was. We had gone there for my stepfather’s birthday. Since my younger brother has soy allergies, we brought our organic lasagna, which was not a cost-effective meal, forty-five dollars per lasagna. I personally liked the fresh-baked lasagna that we first made the best, rather than the lasagna we took on our trip. They were made at the same time, so I don’t know how they were different, but they were. My younger brother also participated in the regiment. He really enjoyed it. I thought the regiment was historically inaccurate because many colonists were more guerilla-style fighters, rather than the march-in-line British. Before we left, we went to Jamestown and toured the Island, and I also bought another map like I did in Williamsburg, even though the maps were all reproductions. When leaving Jamestown Island, we had to stop in Virginia Beach since traffic was bad. We spent the night and ate at the Big Italy, which by my organic and clean health standards, was satisfactory and did not upset my stomach.

We then left the next morning and had gone through Norfolk, trying to avoid the three large tunnels. What we didn’t know, however, was that Norfolk was like a tunnel city. There were lots of tunnels, and we had to drive through the whole city just to find a drawbridge. We then went on Interstate 95, but went off to state route 1 since there was a lot of accidents on the road. The trip took seven hours in total to reach home in Maryland, which is usually how long the drive to Myrtle Beach in South Carolina is. The traffic was simply terrible.  Before September, we also celebrated my younger brother’s birthday, which was obviously fun for him. So overall the summer break had twists and turns, and therefore there were ups and downs, but I overall had a good summer break.