Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Cooking Club: Picking Pumpkins & Fall Flavors with Friends

Fall is a favorite time of year in our family because it signals the start of "the holidays" and a chance to enjoy traditions. One of our "traditions" is going to a Pumpkin Patch each year to pick out pumpkins. This year we decided to make the trip to the Pumpkin Patch a whole-day excursion and part of our monthly Cooking Club. We had some friends join us, The Freelands, along with Stacie and Nathanael. We jumped in our cars and drove 40 minutes to Reedley to Hillcrest Pumpkin Patch.

This Pumpkin Patch was well-worth the drive. Not only did they have an abundance of pumpkins to choose from, they also had a corn maze, a train, a fish pond, tree swing and more. Meilani poses here with her friend Tiana, who also went to Haiti with us this summer. This was also the first time I got to hold Nathanael! (Note the proud Auntie smile.)
First stop: the train ride. The cool part was this little "boxcar" for the kids to ride in. Aeniah, Ashton and Cale are all smiles that they get to ride like cattle in a boxcar.
The parents actually got to enjoy some adult conversation while our kids (minus the babies) were all caged up. The sun was shining - a perfect day for making memories.

Giada, who is now 8 months and her buddy, Nathanael, who is 9 months, enjoyed their first train ride too. They played in the bottom of our train car and practiced standing up. These two will be walking soon - look out!
The three mamas pose here - Brandy, Stacie and me - with that handsome fellow, Nathanael. I feel blessed to have Brandy and Stacie in my life at this stage as we walk the mama journey together and share a heart for missions and love for orphans.
One of Meilani's highlights was this giant tree swing. "Higher, higher" she would squeal to Daddy who was pushing her. She has that drive for a thrilling ride.
In this family picture, you can probably tell Giada's favorite part of the day was playing with the pumpkins. She tried to pat them, suck on them and carry them herself. Such joy in a little face!
After we picked out our pumpkins, we rode back to the Freelands house where we started a Fall-flavored dinner. The Cooking Club menu this time included: Cheese and Whole Wheat Crackers, Chicken with Cinnamon Apples, Pumpkin Party Soup and Apple cupcakes for dessert. Yummilicious! If you're interested in the recipes from our Fall Flavors Cooking Club, check them out here

We had a few less cooks than we usually do for Cooking Club but Ericlee and Nathan willingly lended a hand with chopping the myriad vegetables for our meal. Giada was "hands-off" while mama led the cooking party.

1 comment:

VM Family said...

Wow! Is this the perfect fall place or what?!

Love the pictures of Meilani on the swing and Giada on your hip at the stove! :)