Friday, October 31, 2008

Everyone Hail to the Pumpkin Song

Ah yes, the annual trip to Bishop's Pumpkin Farm was once again upon us, and so we made the trek to Wheatland for farmy fun.  As always there was plenty to do and plenty of fall treats to be eaten - my favorite being the pumpkin pie with a crushed walnut topping.  We saw all the animals in the petting zoo and petted the goats (which Jonathan loved), then the kids played in the wooden train and on the slides.  

Help!  That pumpkin ate my son!

We were the last hayride of the evening, and went further out into the patch then we have ever been before - there was speculation that the driver was tired of truckloads of tourists and was taking us out to abandon us somewhere in the wilds of the farm.  After picking out the perfect pumpkins (with minimal whining and only a few reminders that if you can't carry your pumpkin, then it is too big) our trusty driver returned for us (perhaps he had thought better of his maniacal plan) and we took the hayride back in the setting sun - it was really peaceful and pretty.  Another successful trip to Bishop's. 


Thursday, October 30, 2008

Hello Muddah, Hello Faddah

Let me preface this post by saying that I have never been a camper.  In fact, the last time that I went camping prior to this was honestly 10 years ago.  Jon and I have never been camping together at all.  Bad memories of cold scout trips without the proper camping gear had pretty much staved off his desire for camping for the first half of our marriage, and having a wife who doesn't pee in the wilderness kept it at bay for most of the second half.  But recently we have begun to come around to the idea of giving it another go as adults who are in control of their own experience, and as gifts we have recieved a wonderful two-room tent, very warm sleeping bags, and a lantern. All a very good start to camping.

So a few weeks ago we went down to Santa Cruz to go camping for what ended up being about a day and a half (not quite worth all the work in my opinion.)  So that this won't be a novel, I will just give you the highlights of the trip.  We weren't able to have a campfire the entire time we camped due to high winds.  Wait a minute, what?  No fire?  On a camping trip?  On the coldest weekend this season?  Yeah, that's right.  Luckily for us, my dad, in his infinite wisdom, sent us with a small propane heater to keep his grandchildren warm (his daughter could freeze to death, but not those kids!)  So with that in our tent and our lantern, we were pretty happy.  We set up camp in the mostly-dark Friday night, having gotten to the campgrounds later than anticipated, so after eating we pretty much went straight to bed.

"Want me to smack you with this spatula?"

Saturday morning was cold cold cold, so we all ate breakfast and got ready to get out of there and find some warmth.  We headed to the beach, all bundled up in jeans and sweatshirts, expecting a typical Northern California beach day with wind and clouds.  Lo and behold, apparently October is prime beach time here, and the sky was perfectly clear and the sun was warm.  It was gorgeous.  Everyone rolled up their pantlegs and took off their sweatshirts and we had a really great day at the ocean.  We then walked the boardwalk since neither Jon nor I had ever been, and got some good clam strips and chowder down on the pier.  We stayed another night and then packed up early Sunday morning as Jon and I had a wedding to attend that afternoon.  All in all, it was a good foray back into camping, not without its bumps but still fun.  Turns out my kids LOVE camping - copious amounts of hot chocolate, permission to be filthy, and freedom to run - go figure!