Tuesday, September 13, 2016

The First Pumpkin Patch Visit of the Season

We had a fabulous weekend! We tried out a new (to us) orchard for our annual apple picking and spent our entire Sunday playing in their farmyard of activities. Saturday was the perfect mix of running errands, having fun, and accomplishing small things on the to do list!

The minis and I began our Mom and Minis Day with donuts from our new favorite Donut Hut. We tried this place a few weeks ago (read about that here) and were sooo impressed that we went back. The own is truly fabulous with great donuts. After donuts I talked the boys into long overdue hair cuts. Max got a mohawk and Harrison got is buzzed. Elizabeth watched. We did stop at the beauty supply store and got some (temporary) pink hair dye for her hair.


Everyone and their new hair. Elizabeth had a minor freak out before applying the hair dye. I set the dye on a towel on the floor and comforted her (she was worried the dye was going to burn her). As I hugged her, the cat played with the hair dye....and wound up with bright pink paws. Luckily, the mess stayed on the towel, I quickly did Elizabeth's hair, and it turned out just perfect!

Saturday evening we had our first batch of chili for the season (a minis request). I surprised the kids by making apple spice muffins for dessert (recipe to come soon).

After dinner, Matt showed the oldest mini how to change the oil in the minivan.

We ended our Saturday watching Who Took Johnny? on Netflix. This is a documentary about the paperboy from Iowa who got kidnapped in the early 80's. Growing up in Iowa, we heard about this case A LOT. I remember even studying it a bit in grade school during one of our stranger danger guidance classes. Turns out there was a lot we didn't know about the case and were shocked to find out. I very much recommend watching this, especially if you have kids.

Nothing like starting Sunday bright and early and out on the road. We decided to give Center Grove Orchard a try for picking apples. We've been there a few times later in the season for their pumpkin patch but this is the first time we've spent the entire day at the orchard and farmyard. After stopping for breakfast, we decided to take scenic back roads through the Iowa countryside. I love Iowa at harvest time.

We went apple picking with my parents and my sister. While we waited for them to arrive at the Orchard, we did the corn maze. We promptly got lost after Trivia Question 2 (the questions help you find your way....but there's A LOT of room in between questions!) and got out of the corn field before we really got lost!

We got A LOT of excellent apples. The only downside was that a lot of the good ones were up high. The minis got to use the pickers to help get them down. I'm happy to report that there were no injuries in using the apple pickers, however there were many close calls of getting smacked in the face by one.

The minis with Aunt Jenny (above) and with Grandma and Grandpa Harmeyer (below).

Just a friendly reminder to not wear any type of leggings or jeggings on a farm with a lot of hay around. Jeans are definitely the best route or you'll spend the day getting poked.

The giant corn box is a minis favorite.

A tea party in Wonderland.

Going to "school." I really hope that's not how Max (left hand side of the pic) goes to school....

The giant slide. It makes up for not going down the giant slides at the Iowa State Fair this year.

The only panic of the day came when bees swarmed us during lunch and Elizabeth got her very first bee sting. After some ice packs and Benadryl she was good to go!

While we were at the Orchard, we had to hit up their Country Store for the best apple cider donuts, apple cider, pastas, Honeycrisp apples, and more. Like I said, we left with A LOT of apples and apple products! When we got home, we tasted all of the varieties of apples we got from the orchard. I had planned to make homemade apple sauce with the apples, but most of them have already been eaten!

The weekend just wouldn't be complete without a tantrum to end it....all because I told her she couldn't walk out the front door by herself.

Next weekend we'll be busy with the various festivals going on around Des Moines and we'll be planning out our fall road trip colors!