In our old log home we live much as people used to 100 years ago, with no electricity or telephone. We continue to practice the old-time arts of wood-working, basket-weaving and preserving wild or home-grown fruits and vegetables. Visitors share fresh, made-from-scratch rolls baked in our wood stove, sample country jams and sip tea or fresh well water. We are located in a lovely valley 4 miles Northwest of Dorchester, IA.
For Michael and Jill Stephenson, the kitchen table is the heart of the home. It is where guests gather for good conversation and a cup of tea, where Jill cans her famous pie cherry jam, where wild game is butchered and home cooked meals are served.
The Stephensons moved to Iowa in 1991. Their small two-story house is inconspicuous and located deep in the countryside of Allamakee County. The core part of the log home is estimated to have been built in the 1850s. It has no electricity, no running water and no indoor plumbing. The Stephensons live in a simpler way, but, as they will tell you, their
lifestyle is less about making a statement and more about living within their means. Visiting their home, Waterloo Workshop, is a chance to see what people lived like a century ago as well as an opportunity to be reminded of the joys of gardening, cooking and quiet country spaces.
Both Jill and Michael are skilled crafts people. Jill weaves beautiful and functional baskets and makes a variety of delicious jams. Michael uses hand tools to create chests, picture frames and carved signs. You can shop for their wares at the Decorah Farmer's Market in the summer months or stop by their home to browse in their cozy showroom.
The Northeast Iowa Studio Tour www.iowaarttour.com in October and the Bluff Country Studio Art Tour www.bluffcountrystudioarttour.com in April are great times to visit Waterloo Workshop. Michael and Jill also host an open house the second Sunday of each month or you can send a letter inquiring about a visit to:
369 Waterloo Creek Drive
Dorchester, Iowa 52140