Day Trippin': Apple Picking at Wilkens Fruit & Fir Farm

As soon as there was even so much as a hint of chill in the air this season, I knew it was time - time to go apple picking. *Cue happy dance.*

Call it basic (sidebar: I kind of hate that everything that is actually fun is now gleefully given this negative term), call it tradition (three years is enough to call it a tradition, I think?), or call it whatever you want (I can't stop you). There's really nothing like being able to go out into a real-life orchard, picking your own fresh apples straight from the tree, and eating them in a field of green grass, wandering around with some good company. Last year, we took a trip out to Outhouse Orchards, a place I had been to once before - but this year, I needed a change.

There are so many orchards in the New York area that it's pretty darn easy to find another; and with the guidance of a fellow apple-lovin' friend, we trekked upstate to Wilkens Fruit and Fir Farm, camera in hand to document the brilliance of a full orchard at the beginning of the season. There were apples all over the trees - some branches were so heavy with them that they grazed the ground with the weight of the fruit, ripe and ready to be plucked. So pluck them is exactly what we did. Our bags stuffed and our tummies full of goodness, we headed over to the next stop: the pumpkin patch.

If you follow me on Instagram at all, you know that I like to name my pumpkins. I believe that every thing you bring home with you that's going to occupy your life for a matter of time deserves a good name, don't you? (Or am I the only one that named my toaster?) This year, my miniature pumpkin was nice and round - with a gorgeous, symmetrical grooved pattern if I do say so myself - and a curved, but not wonky, stem. I saw him and knew we were meant to be; and I named him Gregory because he looked like a Gregory. 

And what is a trip to the orchard without apple cider donuts, I ask you? It's nothing. Not ones to miss out, we waited in line to grab a half dozen warm apple cider donuts (each, not to share, mind you), paired with fresh hot apple cider (natch), then snatched a picnic table outside to nosh. I ate two donuts sitting there, and tried my best to save the rest for the next day - but, properly failed after I got home and ate the other four. Le sigh. Apple cider donuts just aren't the same the next day, right? I was doing myself a favor. Finally, I grabbed some fresh farm corn from the market as my friend looked for some canned goodies, and we were off.

And what of the other apples? Well, y'all know me too well, I think... They're going into a pie. Recipe to come! Also, sorry, but I just *have* to throw this in here because I think it shows my true enthusiasm for fresh apples:

Have you ever been apple picking? I'd love to hear what you do with leftover apples, and if you have the willpower to control yourself around apple cider donuts (unlike me). Leave a comment or shoot me an e-mail: hippieteaparty@gmail.com. Enjoy fall, y'all! Them apples need to be picked; they won't pick themselves.

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