Sunday, November 8, 2009

Apple Orcharding: Mission Accomplished

One of my favorite activities in the fall is going to an apple orchard. I love picking out apples, munching on apple cider donuts, and just taking in Autumn. I really love going to Jonamac Orchard in Malta, IL. It's a bit of a drive for us, but they have a pumpkin patch, apple orchard, petting zoo (for the kiddos), hay ride, corn maze, and a few other acctivities to keep you occupied. You can really make an afternoon of it out there.

Sadly, we didn't make it out there early enough in the season. We went out the third weekend in October, and we found that a number of pumpkins had been picked and the apples had been picked off the trees. We asked in the bakery/apple store, and we were informed that a sudden frost and days of extended cold had ended the season a little early, and the staff at the orchard had to save all the apples before they didn't have any to sell. We didn't get to pick our apples, but we did walk away with 2 pecks from their store. Meanwhile, I've been a baking fool in my kitchen.

So, we didn't spend as much time at the orchard as we usually do, but it was still a fun afternoon. We went on a really nice weekend--we thought it would be the last nice weekend until spring and we were lucky to get out there when we did. Had we waited another week or two, there might not have been anything left for us in the store or in the field.

See? Hardly any pumpkins were left!

Once we went far enough back into the field, we found a good one.

I am the pumpkin picker outer, and Graham is the pumpkin hauler. It's a nice arrangement.

Since the apples were already picked, we found other ways to amuse ourselves.

There's a wind farm next to the orchard. We drove down someone's driveway to get pictures of the windmills.

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