So, I drug my family on an hour and a half trip to Pasco, WA to pick apples. I’m sure we could have picked apples somewhere closer (ok, so maybe not), but at $.25/pound who could pass up such a deal to feed their family? Two years ago, my mother-in-law and sister-in-law and I went to this same orchard and picked 360 pounds…some of which made it back to Nebraska with them.
Some of these will probably make it back there this year, too. 100 pounds of them went to a friend, so there, I’m automatically down to “only” 197 pounds to tackle. Take away the 65 pounds for my mom and I have 132. Subtract about 30 pounds that I made into applesauce today and there’s only 102 pounds (roughly) to do something with!
So, why pick apples? Isn’t there something so nostalgic about fall like hay rack rides, pumpkins and picking apples? My family doesn’t necessarily celebrate Halloween, so this allows us a fun fall activity without dressing up (as things I’m not too fond of).
Plus, I am buying local (brownie points from the local economy for me!)…and cheap (hubby can buy more ammo for hunting? hmmmm…), helping out a local farmer who is in turn helping out me. He doesn’t have to pay for the laborers to pick the apples and wash and “shine” them and then market them to stores, saving me a TON of money. Oh sure, I have to use gasoline (gasp!) to go get them (but wouldn’t I be going somewhere, anyway?), and time and energy to process them (pennies), and it’s a great little outing for the family.
The biggest thing for me is that I know where I got my food, what’s in it and how it was made. I know there is no refined sugar in my applesauce, there is extra fiber (I left some peels on) and there isn’t any HFCS or food coloring (which is laced with cancer-causing parabens, btw).
There is an added satisfaction of “I did it myself” as well as seeing our pantry with just a little more food in it than before. And since my garden was a complete flop (ok, almost a complete flop) this year, it is that much more comforting to see jars of food on the shelves.
Now, if I just knew a thing or two about plumbing…