Tuesday, November 9, 2010

my favorite pie making experience and Graves' Mountain Apple Festival

our house smells of apple pie tonight... i love smelling the blend of spices and apples... YUM!
we have 3 bags of apples in the fridge from our apple festival fun about a month ago! i love apple pie...but I think Ry likes it better… he always asks, “does a piece of apple pie count as a fruit serving…it has fruit?” :) and i won't be surprised if there's a piece missing in the morning - Ry will have some for breakfast :)

i put LOTS of apples into tonight's pie...Macintosh, Gala, Granny Smith, Golden Delicious, and Winesaps… and I peeled, cored, and cut the apples in the living room, on the floor, so I could hang out with my sweet girl this evening (daddy was cooking dinner)… as I cut my apples, she kept coming over to my bowl and picking out slices of apple… with her cute grin, she’d say, “apples….mmmmmm!” she’d take a bite, smile, run into the kitchen, tell her daddy about the apple…and run back in for more… :) that’s probably my favorite pie making experience ever… :)

we had a pretty good time at the apple festival... we traveled about 40 minutes away to Graves’ Mountain Lodge in Criglersville, VA. this is a little mountain town close to where Ry teaches and I taught… it’s also special because Ry and I got married in a little white church in Criglersville
I love Graves’ – it reminds me of the resort in the movie "Dirty Dancing"… there’s a huge lodge where people come and stay… there’s also a wonderful dining area where lots of kids and adults from Madison work… we’ve never eaten there, but we hear the food is awesome…
They make their own apple sauce, cider, jellies, and apple butter (my favorite!)…just to name a few items… and they are wonderful!
I think this is the second generation running the orchard… they have acres and acres of apple trees i've always seen on a hayride into the orchard… we used to take a field trip up to Graves’ in the spring…and we’d see the baby apples growing… :) it’s BEAUTIFUL up there, too…gosh, it will take your breath away...
and, we know the families running the lodge now… I’ve taught their kids…and it’s just special to be part of such a wonderful family business… they’re real people…and good and sweet…and I love that…
we wanted to head to the festival on a warmer day…the weekend before had been quite chilly and rainy…so we took the chance to wait until the last weekend of the festival… I thought I’d be colder up there, but we were glad to enjoy some sunshine and warmth (which is why K’s pants are rolled up)…
within about 10 minutes of being there, K was ready to go home :-\ she was tired of the stroller and didn't want to hold your hand... she wanted to run around and enjoy the freedom of “country life,” but there were just too many people to allow that… and the kiddy activities were for kids a little older than her… so, we stayed for a bit…had a little snack, socialized with some friends and past students, and walked around the craft area…

my favorite part was seeing the men making apple butter. it's a lengthy process...i think one batch takes around 12-15 hours...mostly of constant stirring over a wood fire...and the apple butter is in a big cauldron... :) it was so neat! when we were watching, they were pouring the apple butter into jars... what i would have given to walk up and ask them for my very own piping hot jar....

just before we left, Ry took K (who was on the verge of a melt down) to an area with all kinds of pumpkins and gourds while I loaded up a half-bushel box of apples! That’s where he managed to snap some pictures of her…
day dreaming of going home and getting away from the craziness here... :)
K's showing us her muscles... :) she had to move the pumpkins and gourds around the field...of course!
we also grabbed a couple of quick pictures near the hay kitty before we left… the first time, with Daddy...and then one with Mommy... :) (she was weepy and crying at this point! ticking time bomb!)
i wanted to post a video of K dancing to the bluegrass music...but it won't work (of course!)... :) oh well...next time... :)
we headed home with a nice box of apples and good memories... :) and a sleeping little girl in the back seat... :) all in all, it wasn't a bad trip...we had fun... :)

1 comments:

Marc, Sarah, and Luke said...

Oh -- what a fun day!!!! Wish we could've joined you for that one....And, I'm glad you were honest about the almost meltdown parts. We have those as well. I'm glad to hear it's all normal.