Sunday, October 14, 2012

Picking Apples

Today's gift is picking apples.

This weekend we had perfect fall weather.  And the fall happens to be my favorite time of year.  Apples...apple pie...anything pumpkin...sweater weather....pumpkin patch....leaves changing colors...making s'mores....even a little football....I just love this time of year.

Every year we go apple picking and to pick our pumpkins.  We have a favorite place we visit every year and it happens to be a favorite for probably the rest of the state!  It is always crazy crowded!  The views are amazing and they have the best apple donuts, which are always a special treat at the end of the day.

Apple picking to us in the past has been, "picking" from the already picked apples in the big barrels as the terrain to go and "pick" the actual apples isn't the best conditions for my daughter with special needs.   And going to pick your pumpkin always involves the famous hayride...which could be a good or bad thing for us....but we always do it.

This year I searched to see if there was another place similar to the one we usually go to and I found one about 15 miles further down the road....and they happen to be owned by the same people....so I was praying the apple donuts would be at this location too!

The drive to the apple orchard is half the fun.  Driving up and down the hills on the back country roads looking at the trees which are starting to turn different shades of orange, yellow and red, with the perfect blue sky...just starts the day of perfectly!   When pulled up to the orchid, I knew this was going to be the perfect place for our family in many ways.

First and foremost, there were maybe 40 cars there....tops....compared to at least 200 at our old location.  This is so good on many fronts for my daughter!  Second, every place we walked was flat!  This means  we did not have to worry about her tripping or falling and we could let her roam!!!!  Third, it was spread out...apple picking was on one side of the road and then you cross the street...no hayrides...with your red wagon to the other side to pick your pumpkin!  And last but not least....they had APPLE DONUTS!!!!

We decided to go apple picking first, so we grabbed our bags and headed down to pick away!  When we started down the row where we would begin picking our apples, my kids started looking and grabbing immediately....all of them!  We had to remind them to have us look at the apples first, as any apple picked has to be bought....this is what they tell you and we want to follow all rules....although by looking at the ground, not many people follow the rules!

My children loved the whole aspect of picking apples today.  Finding them, making sure they were ok and pulling them off the tree!  Seeing my daughter with special needs, be able to not only walk among the apple trees with us, but go up and look so intently at them was amazing.  We would inspect them together and then my husband would hold the branch still for her, while she....picked the apple off the tree!  I was snapping pictures the whole time as this was the FIRST time she has ever picked apples!!!! She loved it!  In fact she enjoyed it so much, we actually had a couple of apples we left on the ground too!  Oops!  Seeing her be able to be a part of the apple picking just like her brother and sister was truly a gift today!

After we picked apples, we headed across with street with our red wagon to find our pumpkin.  There was no long hayride and the kids didn't seem to care.  It was a nice walk to the pumpkin patch with nothing but mountains all around us.  My daughter and husband walked down one row looking for the perfect pumpkin while me and my other two little ones started down another row.  The pumpkins were not only huge, but also a different shape.  Instead of being round, they were taller.  And guess who found the perfect pumpkin for our family.....my daughter and husband!

As we drove home with our 11 pounds of apples, apple cider, half dozen of apple donuts and our 28 pound pumpkin.....it will be the memories of this perfect day I will always remember!  And to top it off, I think our family has found a new place which is just perfect for us!

Here are some quotes for today...

Never lose an opportunity of seeing anything beautiful, for beauty is God's handwriting- Ralph Waldo Emerson

What really matters in life, is rarely on my daily "to do" list- S. Graves

Things have a way of working out- Author Unknown





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