Today I took another impromptu trip up to Apple Hill with all the kids. We spent all the day yesterday inside doing school work and chores, so I decided today would be a day out. I love homeschooling and being able to make spontaneous decisions like that. =)
Our first stop was Rainbow Orchards to get a baker's dozen of their delicious infamous apple cider donuts and a gallon of chilled, fresh-pressed, unpasteurized apple cider. They were quite a bit busier this time than last and the donuts not quite as fresh, but we enjoyed them nonetheless and contended for the last one, washing them down with the refreshing cider.
Of course the kids had to see the farm animals, so next we visited the farm (I always forget the new name of it, but it used to be Plubell's.) The kids enjoyed taking their time feeding the animals, one alfalfa pellet at a time, and poking at the bunnies in their cage. Rachel could stay and talk to the animals all day.
Lastly, we drove down Carson Road farther than we had ever been and came across this quaint gem called Pine-o-Mine. The place was nearly empty, but what really drew us to it was the u-pick apple orchard and row of vacant tire swings. Perfect! Each of the kids grabbed an empty "peck" (bag) to fill with apples from the orchard. We were instructed to twist, not pull, and had luck finding the greenest, roundest, most beautiful Granny Smiths to be baked into a pie tomorrow. I think we ended up with nearly 35 pounds in all. Priceless was the look on Jacob's face when he smiled up at me from under a tree and thanked me for "stoppin' by" such a fun place. The simple pleasures of childhood.
I love Apple Hill and feel fortunate to be a twenty minutes away from its beauty. The orchards in the fall, tree farms in the winter, and berries in the summer give us bounty to enjoy year-round. Thank you Apple Hill; you were good to us once again.