Sunday, September 26, 2010

Pink Elephant

So as is typical, I was messing with my eight year old son before bed. Teasing him, bantering with him, pinching his little tooshy as he climbed onto the upper bunk and making him laughed hysterically. And then, as he nestled into his blanket, I saw it. My son was sleeping with a pink elephant that sings lullaby music when you pull its tail.

Faking shock, I picked it up and shook it at his face.
"What is this?!?! I can't even believe you are sleeping with this girly pink elephant Conner! What would your dad say?"

Small pause.

"Throw it at your mom?"

Yes come to think of it, he probably would...

At Johnston Farms...

So after we picked apples they has some things for us to do. There was a petting zoo with this cute little donkey who would happily eat our of your hand.
And a little stand with hot apple cider (perfect for the brisk and windy morning!) Katie actually got fresh apples slices and caramel with walnuts. Yummy! We also got a free candle from swan creek candle company for being one of the first 300 families there. It smelled like spiced apple cider! They also had a stand that showed how you could purchase their stuff to make you own candles quick at home. A nice lady making handmade soaps also helped the kids put together little bags of bath or foot soak which was fun.

And we met Phyllis. She is a lovely Amish woman we chatted with and watched who weaves rugs on a loom. she said she needed something to do to keep her busy when all her kids went to school, so she picked this up as a hobby and now goes around selling her product and demonstrating the technique. Its quite amazing actually. And time consuming. Its amazing what kind of time frees up when you have no TV. We had a wonderful chat with her.

And she was fine with having her picture taken. So we got a group shot.

Lastly, we bought a 1/2 peck of Gala apples in the apple store. Note to self: They also sell honey, popcorn and pumpkins.

Apples for everyone

So yesterday I met up with a former student of mine, Katy Minton. We went downtown to Stella's and had a lovely talk and walked around looking in all the cute little shops along Lousiana Avenue. It was very lovely and long overdue. But where this leads me is that in one of the shops there was a poster telling about an event going on on September 25 (the next day) called "Apples for Everyone". There is an orchard in Swanton called Johnston Fruit Farm that was trying to pick a semi truck load full of apples to give to the food bank. They needed volunteers to come and help (including families). And I decided it was a good idea.

So this morning with Maryn's friends Katie McVicker in tow, we headed up to the farm. And we had a wonderful time!

Here's the truck getting full (Already!) at 10:30 in the morning. They were asking each family to only pick one bushel to leave some for people later in the day since it was supposed to go until 5!

The kids and our 2 bushels. Interesting side note: Conner actually puked in the the orchard from being car sick. it was awesome. I mention it only for posterity.

Flashback... Climb every mountain

Now it is true that this happened nearly 2 months ago, but I meant to put the pictures up then and life just kind of happened. So here it is now. Can I hear a better late then never?

So one of the "fun" (and I use that term relatively) things we did was drive the Aspen loop and then hike to Stewart Falls. I remembered the hike being much easier then it was. It kicked my butt and my kids butts. It was worth it once we got there...then the hike out sucked more. I kept telling the kids to think about how proud they should be of themselves for accomplishing something like this and they just kept saying they hated me (Or something like that. Maybe it was Garrett they hated because he kept pushing them and wouldn't let them rest.)

Bryant was a trooper and stuck with Ashlyn. He even carried her on his shoulders part of the way with a camel pack already on. I was the lallygagger on the way back, and my good son stuck with me and helped me even as often as I needed to stop. Garrett took Maryn and Conner back down and that was where the hating Garrett part comes in. While we were up there, Erica freaked out more then once, Ashlyn discovered stinging nettle while trying to find a potty place (Good idea Bry..."Just take them over there in those bushes") and Bryant slipped and fell and bruised his hand.

But here are the accomplishments:

I took the rock climb up to the upper falls. Super pretty. This cool mist felt great on the hot day.

Paul, Me, Maryn, Erica, Conner and Ashlyn. One mountain conquered!

And here is the mountain of fries they conquered after we got down. We went and got really good burgers and fries after the hike. We were filthy. The cute kid on the end is my cousin Sam.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Cheese Touch

Interesting Conversation

"Hey Maryn. It was so cute this morning. Ashlyn said she thought Conner had given her his cold because he didn't want it anymore."

Maryn (smiles and snickers):
"Like thats how it works. Its not like its cheese touch or anything."

Ummm...say what?