So, a while back I kept hearing about all these families going apple picking. Apple picking with the kids, romantic apple picking getaway weekends, etc… This sounded like a lovely, mature vacation. See, for James and I, when we get vacations, we almost always go to see his family because they don’t live right around the corner. Or we camp. Not so much because we’re “woodsy” but more so because it’s next to free. When we have a “getaway”, our family makes stops at places like South of the Border and parking lot carnivals. Do you get what I’m trying to say? We don’t do “grownup” vacations. So. When I heard about this apple picking trend, I was on board. Just what our family needs. We made a reservation at a hotel of questionable rating and started planning our getaway.
Well, by the time our special weekend had almost arrived, things were looking up. I’d baked goodies and put together snacks and even had the car detailed for our trip. (I CAN’T stand sitting in a dirty car for more than 30 minutes). We were standing in the front yard the night before our departure, looking at something I can’t even remember now, and out of nowhere, Brooks projectile vomited. Twice. I was completely shocked. Both times. Did I mention I was holding him when this happened?!? Right before it happened, he said, “Mama, sarfamulgooobug”. Which apparently meant, “Watch out woman, that dinner you fed me? Here it comes.” I immediately looked at James and asked if this meant we’d have to cancel our hotel reservation and our lovely Fall vacation. We decided to play it by ear, and by the next morning when Brooks woke with a bang and asked for waffles and cake, I thought we were good. We hopped in the car and headed North.
About an hour from the hotel, I got slapped with the sick stick. I whiteknuckled it to the hotel where I promptly christened the bathroom much like our son had christened our lawn and my shirt the night before. I spent that entire nasty night being sick and becoming completely dehydrated. Meanwhile, Brooks wanted to jump on the bed, lay across me during the night and at one point, dug his chin into my neck and said, “Hey Mama!”. This was after he jammed his fingers up my nose. We’d brought a pack and play, but the hotel bed was much more appealing.
The next morning we went to an urgent care place where I told the nurse I was surely dying and that my last request was to pick an apple from a tree. She gave me a butt shot of phenergan, sweet relief and an IV of fluid. Feeling much better after this and on some kind of medicine induced euphoria, I suggested we go to the apple orchard. We got there and all I can say about that place is that it was perfectly idyllic. If you ever need to feel wholesome and Fall like, go to Skytop Orchard. We took two of their baskets and traipsed our way down this massive hill to get to the Cameo variety, which had a reputation for being the most crisp. We pushed B’s stroller up to a tree and let him rip an apple off and go to town. We began to pick and just when I started to pat myself on the back for pulling it all off, the rain came. “Keep picking!!”, I yelled. B began to whimper, James and I yanking apples off of trees right and left like a couple of seasoned migrant workers. Thankfully the shower was a quick one and we were able to finish picking sans precipitation. With two big baskets filled to the brim, we decided to make our way back to the car. Now, in our excitement to get to the Cameos, we’d failed to realize how steep the hill we were going down was. James took the baskets, I took the stroller and we started up. See, usually, I would have said something bratty like, “watch me do walking lunges the whole way up this mountain!” but my legs were absolute jello from dehydration. Poor James had to carry the apples a ways, walk back, push the stroller, carry the apples, push the stroller, on and on up the hill while I teetered behind, thinking dramatic thoughts about whether this was a metaphor to how he has to carry all the weight in the family.
Sadly, the camera was not cooperating, claiming “Battery Exhaustion” when I tried to turn it on and capture this lovely place. But, it was wonderful. There were hay rides, goats and sheep and snacks. Oh, the snacks. We got apple cider donuts, hot and an apple cider slushy. It’s BANANAS how good they were. I wish I could be sitting here sipping a slushy while I type this. Instead, I’ve had to settle for a bowl of apple crisp, made with the apples we picked. Don’t be hatin’.