After being away for a couple of weeks I walked through the orchard Tuesday morning. The lovely fragrance of ripe apples greeted me. The apples hang heavily from the trees with colors ranging from the yellow/green Gingergolds to the bright red Empires and every shading in between. This morning the heat wave has broken and it feels like apple picking weather. Tomorrow the orchards will be open for pick-your-own and the fall season is officially underway.

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In the late 1960s crisp cool nights and sunny September days meant it was time to take the children apple picking. The seven of us would pile into the station wagon and head to New Hampshire where we would wander through a forest of large apple trees picking fruit from as high as we could reach. The younger children would be lifted up by Daddy so they could pick. A gallon of cider accompanied us home along with two huge bags of apples.

It didn’t seem hard to get rid of so many apples. Apple pies, apple crisp, apple sauce and apple butter kept the kitchen busy for days. The children’s lunch bags were livened with apples as well as applesauce cookies and bars. We had no idea in those days that we would ever own an orchard. Today our trees are mostly dwarf or semi-dwarf so children can easily pick their apples without an assist from Daddy. I love to see families enjoying a day in the orchard, it makes me a bit nostalgic.

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