Taking Time To Smell The Apples At Parlee Farms!

MY VIEWS | | October 23, 2012 at 7:00 am

As part of the whole month of challenges on health and wellness working with Lisa Johnson (sponsored by Harvard Pilgrim), week 3 was doing something with our family. You would think that since I am a parenting blogger that would be easier but the truth is the workload of being a blogger has been so great these days that I swear I work more now than I did as an engineer (and as an engineer I worked ridiculously long hours).

I am embarrassed to admit the fact that for 2 years in a row I missed the timing for Strawberry picking, something that was somewhat of a tradition. This entire summer I traveled so my kids never went to the beach. True, I went as part of my trip to Mexico but they did not. Thankfully I have a cruise coming up so I can remedy that. The issue has been that making time for something considered optional has been difficult and honestly some days I just want to relax and be home (hubby would laugh reading that since that is so not me).

So I declared that we would go apple picking at Parlee Farms!. Hubby mentioned it to his friend and they decided to join in. They are friends we adore but honestly barely spend one-on-one time with so we were excited. Although I had heard of bad weather pending for the weekend, pleasant weather surprised us. For a change Boston did not disappoint. It is extremely difficult to be home and be caught without an iPad, iPhone or Mac in my hand and I have been told on occasion by my little people to just “look at me”. So on an Apple farm, armed with just an iPhone with no place to charge it and my extra battery pack having met its demise a month ago, I was really at the mercy of nature;… and my kids!

Unplugged I was met with more friends  unexpectedly (seriously people Apple Farms are the meeting place these days) and cinnamon scented air. Tracing it to apple cider donuts we indulged. I really don’t care for them in a store, ever, but when an apple farm is churning them right in front of your eyes, it would be a sin to pass up on them. True, I am no saint, but I ate a few and did myself a favor to not keep a tally. My girls, with their cinnamon sugared mouths, were grinning excitedly as they recognized the kids of our friends. Living in a country without family is a tough act to feeling like you belong, or have roots. Hanging out with friends on a regular basis helps fill that void. This was more than about apples, we were creating memories.

So after jumping on the hay to their heart’s content, them not me, they were ready to take the hay-laden truck over to the orchard. There is something so pervasive about the sun and trees that obliterates the overflowing inbox which normally demands your attention. I almost forgot to Instagram and I did not even check-in at Foursquare. I did not want to be mayor of any farm, I wanted to be THERE with my family.

The rows of trees were filled and eating seemed to me more important that plucking apples. The kids were intent on getting the best apples which meant dad being used as a ladder constantly and he did not mind a bit being relegated to being a prop. My arms were weary with the heavy bag of apples but my mood felt clear. The kids were not only eating up those juicy apples but also with having their both parents have full focus on the moment and them.

Of course it would be awful to leave an apple farm that also has an abundance of pumpkins to spare. Part of me was worried if we got a pumpkin whether they would fall victim to the critters outside, but last year I got some advice on preventing squirrels from eating my pumpkins so I felt armed with hope. The sea of orange pumpkins were just the right color to freshen my mood and  perfect way to welcome fall.

Weirdly the fresh air must have affected my kids because I swear I did not hear a single whine they entire time. Maybe I should just live in the orchard?

Mission Spend time with family outdoors? Successful!

Now head on over to see how Lisa did!

Disclosure: Harvard Pilgrim is sponsoring the various challenges this month and I am excited to be a part of it!

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