Yesterday dawned crisp and bright, making it easy to wake in good spirits. After eating breakfast, I packed the four older kids in the car and headed off to Lands' End for dance class. Devon and Renie had class first, so we settled them in and then the older girls went to the gym to participate in a free Fun and Fitness class for elementary age children. When the littler ones were done, we switched places and the big girls went to dance while the little ones played in the gym. They were also doing a Family Wellness Fair in the building so we were able to walk around to the different booths while we drank lemonade and ate popcorn. The kids loved dance classes and enjoyed our morning at the Comer Center. We arrived home to a clean house and sat down to lunch. Our plan for the afternoon was to go apple picking and do a corn maze, or go corn amazing, as Devon called it. I had decided on a place to go, reading carefully over their website to be sure it offered everything we wanted and sounded like a fun place. However, upon discussing with my husband where it was located, we decided we would rather go in a different direction. (The first was located near Madison and we figured it would be more exciting to see something new.) I remembered a couple people mentioning a fruit farm in the direction we wanted to go, so I got online and quickly printed directions to it. We loaded up the kids and headed off into the bright fall day. About 30 minutes into the drive it occurred to me that I was not entirely positive the farm offered the option to pick the apples ourselves. We were content with our drive along the Wisconsin River, however, so I didn't worry about it much. We arrived at the fruit farm about 15 minutes later and discovered that they did NOT indeed allow customers to pick the apples. We were disappointed, but not deterred, because, as it turned out, they DID offer grape-picking. So in an instant our plans changed and we were walking out to the vineyard with our boxes and knives in hand. We picked 8 lbs of beautiful dark purple grapes, their heady tangy-sweet fragrance heavy in the air.
We paid .88/lb for them and purchased yummy candy apples for the kids. We packed back into the car with our box of grapes and went merrily on our way. We made our next stop at Peck's Farm Market West in Spring Green. The kids played happily on the inflatable bouncy slide thingy
and fed the pygmy goats. Jesse LOVED the goats and was very amused by them. He would run along the fence giggling at them, pointing and saying, "Boat! Boat!" over and over again.
There was a trike race track that ALL the kids tried their hands at,
and a fun hay maze that even Jesse got a kick out of running through.
(Only in the Midwest!)
Once we convinced the kids that there was even more fun to be had at the next place, we went to Peck's Farm Market East to see what amusement we could find there. As we had thought we would, we found that they had a large, no, MEGA corn maze. It was the first time we had done a corn maze, despite good intentions every year.
It was such a lovely afternoon to be walking in a corn field. It took us quite some time to complete the maze, I'm sure due in part to the fact that Jesse and Renie took turns refusing to walk or running in the opposite direction that we wanted them to. Luckily, none of our children are still wandering in the corn field and we found all of the markers so I'd say it was a success. After touring the animal park and playing on the playground, we took some photos among the pumpkins and headed home.
Our filthy children all got baths while I made homemade rolls for meal in a bun. We ate warm ham and cheese filled rolls, watched a home video and crashed exhausted into bed. Kennedy told us it was the best day ever and you know, it was pretty great. It was a laid back, roll with the punches, make the most of each moment kind of day. We weren't trying to keep a schedule or agenda, just have fun. And we did.