Tuesday, September 2, 2008
End of summer, start of fall
I decided to do something special with the kids for the last official day of summer vacation, so we headed to Indian Ladder Farms for a little early-in-the-season apple picking. It was a gorgeous day for it -- warm, sunny, dry, bright blue skies. And when you hit the orchards this early in the picking season, you get McIntosh, my favorite of the apple crops. Although the apples are not quite as abundant or as big this year because of a cold snap in the spring and a hailstorm that damaged the fruit, we still had plenty to choose from as we made our way through rows of trees, filling our half-bushel bag until it burst. Seriously. Fortunately the handle broke when I got home, so only a few rolled out onto the garage floor.
Chiara loved her first real turn in the apple fields, chomping away on a juicy red Mac as she looked for fruit hanging within her reach. What a way to end the summer. We headed over to the main farm before leaving and took some time to feed the goats and donkey and chickens. Chiara thought the one rooster looked "like Little Bear's hen." She wouldn't get anywhere near close enough to the goats to feed them, although she did like the bid red tractor in the giant sandbox.
Now we've got a ton of crispy apples plus a bag of fresh cider donuts sitting on the counter just waiting for us to dig in. Fall has arrived, even if the calendar hasn't caught up yet. I love this time of year, and I love this part of the country. Just check out that view in the photo below. That's the Helderberg Escarpment in the distance. Just beautiful.