Saturday, October 11, 2008

Apples, Pumpkins and Dinosaurs?!

***Edited to add: These are the BEST apples that I have ever eaten....super crisp, super sweet. Maybe it is because we picked them ourselves, and the stuff in the grocery store is not as fresh..I don't know..but they sure are good.*** Apples, Apples, Apples, all sorts of apples... acres upon acres of Apples! After our peach picking trip earlier in the Summer, Carson, Wayne and I knew that we would head back up for APPLES.....This time we headed to Stribling Orchards...HUGE orchard, with hundreds upon hundreds of apple trees, of almost any variety known. We picked Rome, York, McIntosh, Golden Delicious, Fuji and Gala Apples. The weather was perfect, slight wind, with a mild temp of about 65 degrees. As I said absolutely perfect weather.
Carson thinks he is an old pro at fruit picking now.... he would wrangle the picking stick up in the trees, and snap off an apple or two.

The trees were just loaded with fruit...so much so that anytime you put your stick up, you would come back with several apples.
Of course, Dad had to hold Carson up to reach some...it is just more fun that way.... Almost......Reach a little bit higher.....Got IT! Almost knocked daddy's glasses off... but it was worth it!The Mighty Gatherer, returns with his abundant harvest....We picked about 25 pounds of apples, and then went to the Bake and Cider House ..BIG mistake...if you are hungry. They had fresh baked apple pies, apple butter, apple danish, apple cider, apple jelly and cinnamon apple raisin bread...It smelled heavenly in there! We bought a little of everything except apple pie... I figured I have enough apples to make 20 pies...at least.
After the apples, we headed down the road to the pumpkin patch and corn maze at Hollin Farms. Just so you know...there really, really is a BIG difference in Texas flatland produced pumpkins, and Virginia, mountain grown pumpkins....the difference...Gravity! You can't really tell from the picture how steep of a slope it is... but trust me..it was enough to keep things rolling. Carson would find the perfect pumpkin, and as soon as he broke it off the vine, and try to pick it up, gravity would take over and the pumpkin would roll down the hill. This happened a couple of times, before we realized that we needed to be down slope of the pumpkins and use the gravity to our advantage.
I will say this...I don't know whether this particular patch didn't plant the giant pumpkins....but the ones in Texas..are definitely bigger!
Carson finally found the perfect one, and it didn't get away from him....While we were pumpkin hunting... we came across the carcass of a deer, Carson was entranced....he thought we had found dinosaur bones....We explored it a bit, without touching...it was past the odor phase, so it wasn't too bad. Little Boys...gotta love them!

He informed me that this was a sharp tooth (tyrannosaurus) dinosaur, because it had sharp teeth....

We headed over to the corn maze...again...it is on the side of a mountain...so while it was easy going in... it wasn't too long before you were climbing back up trying to find your way out. Nothing was marked...so it really was a guessing game, which way to go. The only hint was...uphill meant out.

Then there is the Great Pumpkin Cart that almost killed a village.... well...ok... a small child and a woman. Wayne had rolled a cart up the side of the hill (small mountain...if you are from the flat lands of Texas) and he had loaded all the pumpkins he had picked into the cart. He set the cart down for a second...and the cart took off down the hill (you say hill, I say mini-mountain). It was going very fast and headed right for the fruit stand at the bottom of the hill and a small child. This brave woman, jumped in front of the cart and stopped it from hitting the stand and the child.... SCARED all of us to death... the poor little boy was clinging to his mother for the rest of the day... he was terrified, THANK GOD, no one was hurt, it really happened so fast, and that woman was lucky, she didn't get hurt...definitely had us some angels on patrol.

The foliage in the valley is still a couple of weeks away from peak color, but you can see evidence of some changing occurring on these slopes.


These little piggies were foraging in the old corn fields, they were for sale ...if you like your bacon fresh!Ham anyone???

6 comments:

Melissa said...

Ha! Cute post! I wish we had apple orchards around here like that--I'm so jealous! :)

Kassie said...

It sounds like you guys had a great time. That is great I am really looking forward to taking Bella to the pumpkin patch this year. I hope that you have lots of fun bakeing.

Petrel said...

Great trip, super repository for warm remberances later in life. Carson will fondly recall his childhood trips with you just as you recall the strawberry picking and the pea picking when you were a kid...

Love,

Dad and Mom

Nicole said...

I LOVE all these pictures Kari... and it looks like you are having a great time in your new city. I am so glad you guys get to get out and do things as a family like this.. and the dinosaur thing is just hilarious. I will try this next time with Kadence when we find a dead deer which is weekly. lol I also love the inpiration article. Thanks so much for sharing it.

anita said...

A couple of things . . .
I found a pile of bones on the side of a mountain road in Radford (VA) this summer. I thought they were human, so I took the family back the next day. By then, they reaked and it was obvious they were deer bones that a hunt club had dumped. Joke was on me! :)

And you know, Kari, EVERYTHING is bigger in Texas! :)

Anita

Kariberry said...

What nice pictures! Me & the boys are going to the Pumpkin Farm Friday 4-7 {heck it will be dark out} School thing. :)