Imagine Covid doesn’t exist and you have a day off from work. You are free to spend the day doing exactly as you please. Inspired by U2’s It’s a Beautiful Day – “It’s a beautiful day, don’t let it get away” – we asked Derek Banks to describe his perfect Lancaster County day.
A native of Southern California, Derek is a military veteran, having served in the U.S. Navy for four years. He and his family moved to Lancaster County eight years ago. Derek is the force behind Banks Décor, which grew out of his love for making. “I’ve always made things for friends and family and I felt that God was tugging at me to share my creations with more people,” he explains of the woodworking skills he now uses to create such things as unique wall-hangings, boxes specifically made to hold essential oils, inspired signage, blanket ladders and what he calls yarn-hangings.
Banks Décor has become a fixture at makers markets held across Lancaster County. “I want everyone to love the spaces they are in,” he elaborates. “Home is where we share life with people close to us; it’s where we share laughter, food and relationships. Home is where we escape the stresses of the world.”
Derek also recognizes that home represents a very personal space. “The décor we choose sets the tone for how we feel in our homes and tells a little of our story,” he continues. “The right piece of décor can make a space feel peaceful, inviting and relaxing. I want to help people create these types of spaces. When someone selects something I’ve made for their home, I feel like I’ve become a small part of their life – like in a small way, I’ve helped them make their space special.”
In His Own Words: Derek’s Perfect Lancaster County Day
My perfect day would start off by waking up around 7 a.m., which would be later than I normally wake up yet early enough to fill the day with fun. I’d have time to hang out in the living room and sit and talk to my wife, Brandie, and maybe scroll through Instagram. We’d have 45 minutes to ourselves before our kids would emerge from their rooms.
Once we’re together as a family, Brandie would make us breakfast – her famous biscuits and gravy. Ask anyone who has sampled it how good it is! It definitely hits the spot as a culinary comfort blanket.
On my perfect day, the weather would be a sunny 70 degrees with a slight breeze. We’d head for Middle Creek in search of wildlife. During our hike we would catch a glimpse of a few deer emerging from the woods. Shifting our gaze skyward we would witness a bald eagle soaring majestically in the sky, fresh prey clenched in its talons.
The fresh air makes me hungry, so we would head for The Pretzel Hut on Route 501 to grab a couple of ice cream cones. I remind myself to order a small cone because the larges are huge.
Back home, we’d relax and maybe play a game like Phase 10, Uno or maybe even some Left Center Right. Or we’d do absolutely nothing. That might sound boring but the feeling of having accomplished everything that has needed to be done – chores around the house, house projects, etc. – and being permitted time to just relax is an amazing thing.
It’s dinner time, so we head to Ginza on Greenfield Road for some sushi. I would eat way too many ocean medley and eel avocado rolls and share some delicious shaggy dog rolls with my wife.
After dinner, we’d head for a place that would truly provide the end for a perfect day – Clipper Magazine Stadium, where the Barnstormers would be taking on the York Revolution. Not only would it be an exciting game, but the Barnstormers’ win would be punctuated by a grand slam in the last inning, making the score 4-7. To top it off, I would have caught two foul balls and a T-shirt.
Back home, I would climb into bed and, as always, thank God for the blessings and the gift of the beautiful day I had been given. Then I would close my eyes only to realize that it is Saturday, and it happens to be a three-day weekend!
God is good!
Follow Banks Décor on Instagram @banks.decor.