I've taken to ditching our routine Friday afternoons and doing something fun with the kids. Skipping the table work and getting out in the world. It wasn't intentional, it's just how it's worked out. One week we went to our local children's science museum. One week we went mushroom hunting. One week we went to the dress rehearsal of our ballet company's production of Peter Pan, and so on. This week, inspired by this post on Raising Life Long Learners we went to the Apple Orchard. I'd seen the post and then Sister-Bug mentioned that she wanted to go pick apples.
It was an easy YES moment. Let's go! It will be fun. I hadn't taken them to pick apples before. I don't know how that fell through the cracks. I called our friends at River Bend Farm and asked if we could come out and pick some apples. I explained that mostly my three-year old wanted to do the picking.
We were enthusiastically invited out to the row of Liberty Apples – plenty of low hanging fruit that was so easy for both kids to reach.
I picked one apple to eat while I watched the kids have a ball. Their baskets filled up quickly, which was extremely satisfying for them. More satisfying that blueberries or mushrooms which are also really fun, but the apples are big and so it is easy to see that you are filling that basket.
We left behind lots of apples with bites out of them, as they grabbed apples and took bites as they wanted to. We came home with about 15 pounds of apples and some wonderful outside time. I think it was just what Sister-Bug had imagined.
The delicious apples were perfect for an ice cream treat Sister-Bug and I had been designing.
Recipe: Caramel-Apple Sundae
Slice the apples and warm them in a pan with butter and cinnamon. Peel or don't peel – your choice. If you cook the apples just before serving, it will make a melty sundae. Our recommendation is to let them cool to room temperature before making your sundaes.
We made our own caramel sauce using this recipe. It was fun and easy – easy enough that I had Sister-Bug help me and we had a lot of fun. You could also buy caramel sauce.
To serve the sundae, scoop vanilla ice cream (an caramel swirl flavor would be good too), cover it in apples and caramel syrup. Sprinkle granola over the top for crunch.
This was so good (and we had extra of all the ingredients) that we had this dessert two nights in a row. It was wonderfully autumnal. The apple orchard trip was already a success. The perfection of this sundae was really the cherry on top.