As the humidity of summer is finally starting to break, I start to get excited for fall and the traditions that we have created as a family. The kids are back to school and getting into a routine, the long sunny days are getting a bit shorter, and the air is starting to get the slightest bit cooler. As we bid adieu to long summer days, we enter the crisp fall days with the golden trees and leaves, and some fun fall activities.
There are two things that I love to do with my kids without fail every year. We go apple picking and to the pumpkin patch. I love to go with them so that I can show them how apples grow and where they come from. The best part? We get to sample apples straight off of the tree. Have you ever tasted an apple straight from the tree? After eating freshly picked juicy apples, it is so difficult to go back to the supermarket and buy the apples that are on display.
We go to Harvest Moon Orchard located in North Salem, NY. We love to go there because the trees are low enough that we can all pick the apples off of the tree without an apple picking stick. Also, if you go early enough in the apple-picking season, you may be able to get some ripe and juicy peaches! They also have Bosc pears (the pears with the brown skin). This orchard has a hayride that brings you all around the orchard. The kids love to sit in the back of the pick up truck and bounce around a little while the driver shows us around the orchard.
Once you are finished with the hayride, then you can go into the pumpkin patch and pick a pumpkin. I usually just have the kids walk around to see the different shapes and sizes of the pumpkins and take pictures of them while sitting on the pumpkins. To be honest, I do not purchase the pumpkins here; I buy them when I am back home – They are considerably cheaper in price, in my opinion. Lastly, if you go on the weekends, which is when we go, there is a harvest festival with many food vendors and a live band that plays. We love to end off our day of picking with a nice and hearty lunch. Sometimes its pizza, burgers, hot dogs, French fries, oh, and of COURSE apple cider donuts. No apple-picking trip is complete without the apple cider donuts!
The wonderful part about this is how we create memories surrounding such a simple activity. I do this every year because I want my children to remember when we would go apple picking every year. This is something that will warm my heart for years to come – creating these simple memories. I have memories of random things that I did with my parents that they are surprised I remember, or that they barely remember. Something as simple as taking a walk down the street and a simple conversation between myself and my father about the phrase “supposed to” and “posed to,” or when my mom used to be off on Thursdays and I was off from school too, we used to go for lunch dates to Friendly’s or to Bloomingdales. I want my kids to have that nostalgia from when they were younger.