Usually James likes to lay low when he has the weekend off. But this Saturday I used a little bribery. If he'd go on a fall adventure with me I'd support endless amounts of football on Sunday. We had a deal. And we were off. Early Saturday morning we hopped in the car and drove to western North Carolina - to a little apple orchard called Apple Hill Orchards. Walls of trees that were just on the crest of changing a deep shade of yellow and orange surrounded us the entire drive. (Have I mentioned the insane amount of tree's here? Ok, just checking) I am absolutely shocked at the slow transition to fall here. Apparently Utah's fall is super short. I had no idea. And I must admit - this long fall has me head over heels in love with this season.
It was a perfectly crisp fall morning and I was admittedly overly excited for my first adventure in an apple orchard. We met up with another family in the ward for a quick second (we were a little late) and then headed off into the trees to do some picking. We made the rookie parent mistake of not taking a stroller or baby pack. What were we thinking? Needless to say - we were kind of a fumbling mess with all of our stuff. I was also paranoid about Annie getting too cold. She started out with a jacket, beanie and booties on. But the jacket and booties kept falling off. So I tried socks. And then those kept falling off. Thank heavens it started to warm up and I learned to relax by the afternoon. We definitely looked like first time parents snapping pictures with all of gear and a baby warm enough to survive winter in Alaska.
I was surprised at the wide variety of apples at this orchard. Apparently it did have quite the assortment. They had Red Delicious, Fuji, Winesap, Rome and Granny Smith - just to name a few. We meandered through the tree's without any real plan but just kind of picking here and there. Everyone was oohing and awing over Annie. As a mom you kind of get used to all the comments. But James was in heaven. He was walking around telling her, "Annie everyone just thinks you are so puuurty. You are just the cutest little thing." I was in heaven listening to him jabber on to her - while carrying about 5 pounds of apples and dragging along my massive diaper bag to boot.
On a side note, James finally joined instagram...after I secretly signed him up while he was taking a Sunday snooze. So really - he had no choice. He kept telling me it was the "girly social media" but then I'd find him looking at my feed. So I finally just did it. I posted this photo to welcome him - because I knew he'd want to kill me. Sure enough, his first comment was "This picture was never supposed to surface. I just canceled your credit card." I was laughing so hard I was embarrassing myself. This guy still keeps me laughing.
We picked a big bushel full of apples. Annie was in heaven trying to eat grass while we were picking away. She even wanted to try this baby apple. With those two chompers she now has it is almost possible.
James got us one, literally ONE, apple cider donut to finish off the day. I am here to tell you - one just did not cut it. It disappeared before I could even snap a picture of its divinity. If the line wasn't an hour long I would have eaten an entire box of that goodness. The cider, apple butter and apple donuts were worth every bit of my giddy excitement. Since this particular orchard has such a wide variety of apples - it will be open until the week before Christmas. Despite the fact that it is an hour and a half away, I might have to truck back up. The leaves hadn't quite turned all the way - and it was one of my all time favorite family outings. Needless to say, I am already itching for more.
After our day I texted my parents and told them they may have a problem on their hands. I am full heartedly falling in love with this east coast fall. As much as I love the red dirt of So. Utah and the beach of So. California - this autumn season has quickly stollen a corner of my heart. I have never enjoyed fall like I am this year. We now have a big basket full of apples that are calling my name at every turn. I can hardly wait to get them in the crock pot with some cinnamon for homemade applesauce.
After apple picking we packed up the car for another hour drive to Asheville, NC. More of our fall adventure to come...