Apple Picking; Our Labor Day Tradition

It seems like every year during Labor Day weekend we end up going to pick apples.

It's usually the only time we all go together as a family.  I just love going.

The smell of the apples, wandering the orchards and talking about all the things we see; the rotten apples that have fallen on the ground, the sizes, colors, and shapes of all the different apples.  We talk about how to pick them the "right" way by twisting the stem instead of pulling (that way only the apple in your hand comes off and a bunch of others wont fall to the ground).

I'll take the boys several times throughout the fall because to me there just isn't anything else that says "fall" nearly as much as going to the orchard.

Between the apples, candy apples, cider, mums, hayrides, and pumpkins too (in another month or so) it's just the best.  Especially when it's just cool enough for sweaters and jeans. 
 On the way to the orchard I asked them to tell me everything they remember about apples, orchards and the growing trees. 

  • They knew apples grew on trees, that the apples started out as flowers. 
  •  They knew the red apples had green spots from whenever a leaf covered the skin blocking out the sun.  
  • They knew the trees need soil, rain and sun to grow.  
  • We talked about how they make cider by pressing the apples.   
  • Mostly they talked about the stuff we can make with apples... pie, applesauce, strudel, crisp but they really only like to eat apples.  They seem to especially like to eat them while we're picking the apples. 

Picking up high 

Picking down low

We played the A,B,C game on the way home and for today they had to think of words that had to do with apples and our trip to the orchard.

For example: A is for Apples, Apple cider, Applesauce.. B is for Boxes,  C is for Cider, D is for Dirt..

We call out a letter and each take turns trying to come up with something that starts with that letter.

Some of the letters were really tough and they got pretty giggly on occasion (like when Evan shouted Kangaroo for k and I replied.. "hmm.. I don't think I saw that Kangaroo!").   It's just a fun word game like Scategories (that we used to love to play in junior high) and yes, some learning takes place but the boys just see it as a game.

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