Waypoint House

Address: 211 S Church St. Berryville, Va    Reservation Line: 540-955-8218

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Spring Rejuvenations

Spring finally seems to be arriving and we’ve been working on some spring rejuvenations. The days are warmer and we get an extra bit of time each evening before the sun goes down to complete our outside chores (of which there are many this time of year). As you may know, we have a tendency to be involved in some sort of home improvement project on a nearly ongoing basis. Whether it’s outside or inside, we’re almost constantly working on something. We can’t help it. We’re compulsive. We just want to continually make things better. Early on, Jonathan and I had this instilled in us. For me, perhaps, my 4-H days are partially to blame. Any former 4-H kids out there remember the 4-H motto? *Raises hand with enthusiasm as only a nerd at heart would do.* “To make the best better.” Yep, that’s us.

Recently, it’s been outdoor updates keeping us busy. It is spring, after all. The lawn has needed some thatching and reseeding, and we’ve annexed a bit more garden space for our herbs and vegetables this year. I really enjoy being able to bring fresh things from our yard right to the breakfast table and I keep looking for new ways to be able to do that. I just have to figure out where to put those blueberry bushes I want…

Spring Rejuvenations: Our garden annex for 2017

Spring Rejuvenations: Our garden annex for 2017

The most exciting news, however, is that we have two very big projects planned for this summer. Big in scope and big presence. These changes will be zingers.

We’re going to need a little time off to accomplish it all though. We are planning to keep the work mostly to weekdays in the month of June, so if you are considering a weekend visit this summer, we still have you covered. Plan ahead though, folks. With three rooms, we tend to fill fast.

There will be lots of photos and updates through the blog, Facebook and Instagram. If you don’t follow us on either social media platform, now would be a good time to start. Links to our social media pages are in the sidebar of this page. Go have a gander.

“But what are these projects?” you are saying to yourself right now. “Aren’t you at least going to give us a hint?” Okay – one hint:

Getting ready for some changes at Waypoint House Bed and Breakfast

Getting ready for some changes at Waypoint House Bed and Breakfast

 


Home Improvements

Back just before Thanksgiving, I left a teaser on our Instagram account about starting some improvement projects. When you own a home, I think you naturally have a running list of things you want to do – small repairs and updates as well as big projects to complete. That list never seems to get shorter when you own a 130+ year old home that also operates as a Bed and Breakfast!

And so, I wanted to finally share with you the projects we completed just before the Thanksgiving holiday.  These two items had been on our list for a while, and we were glad to be able to check them off as complete! The Shore Room bathroom and the Hearth and Home Room bathroom received facelifts. Both rooms had older linoleum flooring that needed updating and the fixtures in the Shore Room were also a little behind the times.

Day one of the project consisted of removing everything from the rooms and disposing of the old fixtures that wouldn’t be used again. We ripped out the flooring and removed the old light fixtures and exhaust fans.

Day two saw paint touch ups completed, and the new tile floors went down. New lighting fixtures went up, and the new exhaust fans were installed.

On day three we grouted the new floors and reset most of the toe kick at the baseboards.

Everything came back together on day four. The plumber installed the new toilets and the new vanity in the Shore Room. New vanity mirrors were hung, and any remaining caulking and trim work got our attention.

The fifth day was time for us to finish up any final details and clean up. It was a quick turn around to get everything done, but we managed it! I think both rooms look great with their new face lifts.

One of our traditions during any home improvement project is a dinner I call “Renovation Chili”. The chili can be quickly set up in the morning in a crock pot, and by the time you are finished with a long day of work, you have a nice hot meal waiting for you that required very little work. I vary the measurements a little each time depending upon the taste I want, but this is the basic recipe for our Renovation Chili:

Waypoint House Renovation Chili

1 lb Ground Beef

1 Large Onion, diced

1 Green Bell Pepper, diced

1 Jalapeno, seeded and chopped

2 Cloves Garlic, minced

2 cans Diced Tomatoes (14.5 oz)

1 can Kidney Beans, drained

2 Tbl Tomato Paste

2 tsp prepared yellow mustard

1 Tbl Worcestershire Sauce

1.5 Tbl Chili Powder

1 Tbl Cumin

½ Tbl Dried Oregano

1 Bay Leaf

1/2Tbl Apple Cider Vinegar

In a large skillet, brown the ground beef, drain off fat, reserving a few tablespoons for the next step, then transfer meat to crock pot. In the same skillet, sauté the onion, bell pepper, and garlic in a bit of the reserved beef fat until onions are translucent. Transfer to the crockpot. Add the remaining ingredients to the crock pot and stir well. Cook 6-8 hours on low. Remove bay leaf, ladle into bowls and enjoy!

Attached our some pictures of our work in progress, and then the finished product. What do you think of the improvement? Do you like the updates? Let us know!


Thanksgiving

I hope you all had a terrific Thanksgiving Weekend! Thanksgiving is one of the few days we close each year, as we take the day to be thankful for our family. It’s a day for us to appreciate everything the past year has brought us.

A Thanksgiving tradition that has emerged since opening Waypoint House is our participation in the annual Holiday Parking Meter Decorating that takes place each year in Berryville. For the month of December, the meters take a break, and businesses, groups, and families can sponsor a meter and decorate it in a holiday theme. Our very first year, Jonathan and I deliberated over what our entry should be. We brainstormed and we drew sketches. Finally, inspiration struck, and we built the leg lamp from the movie “A Christmas Story,” complete with it’s shipping crate stamped with “fragile” on the side. Ever since, it has been a holiday fixture in Berryville, and we proudly set it up each year on Thanksgiving Weekend. It’s the symbolic start of the Holiday Season for us!

One thing we are certainly thankful for each year, are the guests who visit us, and the opportunity to get to know some really wonderful individuals. Each year, our list of return visitors grows, and as excited as we are to meet new guests, we also cherish those guests (who become more like friends) who choose us each year as a special place to visit. Whether relaxing or celebrating, or traveling for business or to visit friends and family, it is our privilege to host each and every one of you, and we are grateful for your patronage!

What are some of your Holiday traditions? What things or events do you look forward to each year? Let us know, and we’ll share more of ours as well!


New Year, New Recipes

I love trying new recipes all year long, but especially at the start of a new year I get itchy to try new recipes and freshen up the menu.

Jonathan, of course gets to be the official tester before I serve any dish to guests.  Often I’ll do “breakfast for dinner” so we can try it together since, ironically, we very rarely eat breakfast together!  He’ll make a critique or two, or suggest a way to garnish, etc.  After trying my latest breakfast creation he just said, “Can we have that for dinner again tomorrow?”  So, I guess that means I did good!

As with most things in this day and age, I got my initial inspiration from Pinterest, then found a similar recipe in a cookbook not too long afterward so, I took that as a sign that I was on to something.  Then, a title for the dish came into my head, and after a few “Rachael” modifications, viola.

Greens, Eggs and Ham.  It’s my homage to Dr. Seuss.  Sauteed leeks, kale and baby spinach with feta cheese on top of Canadian bacon and my homemade English muffin bread served with fried eggs.  So, would you eat greens, eggs and ham?

Greens, Eggs and Ham - one of our new recipes for 2016

Greens, Eggs and Ham


Appalachian Trail Community

I’m excited to tell everyone about a really great thing that happened to our lovely little town of Berryville and beautiful Clarke County this summer. At the end of July we celebrated becoming the Appalachian Trail Conservancy’s official 39th Trail Community.

Because Clarke County has a generous portion of the Appalachian Trail running along its Eastern border, and the county and the town have a long history of promoting land conservation, we’ve been given the honor of becoming a trail community. It’s a terrific opportunity to partner with the ATC in promoting, preserving, and protecting the wonderful national treasure that is the Appalachian Trail.

We were privileged to attend our dedication ceremony which took place in Rose Hill Park on July 20, 2015.

Sharing the natural beauty of Clarke County and Berryville with our guests is one of my favorite things. I love being able to tell people where to go for a great hike, a quiet picnic, or a scenic bike ride. If you are looking to have a little time to convene with nature, there’s no better place to visit than Clarke County, in my opinion!  So, if you’ve never had the opportunity to hike on the AT, we hope you’ll consider coming to spend the day on the trail.  And after a full day of adventures, you can spend your evening at Waypoint House resting your bones in one of our comfy beds.

We look forward to seeing you all here at the B+B and hopefully on the trail as well!

Official Designation Ceremony - Berryville/Clarke County Becomes and Official Trail Town!

Official Designation Ceremony – Berryville/Clarke County Becomes and Official Trail Town!

Cake to Celebrate the 39th Official Appalachian Trail Community!

Cake to Celebrate the 39th Official Appalachian Trail Community!

Jonathan and I after the Designation Ceremony

Jonathan and I after the Designation Ceremony