On Saturday, we had a Family Fun Day! We went to a pumpkin farm, where I took the pics of Emmie that you will see below. But, being the goofy (and stubborn!) girl that she is, Em would have NOTHING to do with ANYTHING even remotely associated with....the PUMPKINS! LOL Fortunately, the pumpkin farm had a really neat play area with a "Corn Pool," which Emmie loved, as well as a few different slides, a tricycle track, and several other little fun areas (the names and themes of which all seem to have already slipped my mind). There was also a blacksmith and a rope-maker there, each demonstrating his trade, and a HUGE barn shop where you could find about any fall-themed decorating items your heart could ever desire. We spent about an hour and a half there at the pumpkin farm, and Em played the ENTIRE time, but that didn't stop her from crying her little eyes out when we said it was time to go. I predict that Em and I will be making another trip one day this month, and maybe Grandma and Aunt Joy will meet us there, since it's only about an hour from them, too!
After leaving the pumpkin patch, we made our way to the Villages of Van Buren Scenic Drive. This is a yearly event that involves several small villages in southeast Iowa having open-air markets with food vendors, flea markets, yard sales, quaint little shop sales and/or demonstrators, bargains, and did I mention the food vendors? ;) Sadly, this year, we only made one food purchase--and that was before we even made it to the first village! We stopped at a little family farm/dairy, and sampled several of their hand-made cheeses. While none of us in our family are serious cheese-lovers, we all enjoyed this little excursion. Why? Free Samples! Emeline was in HEAVEN! Free samples of not only cheese, but also yummy ice-cold apple cider! Oh wow. If they would have been selling the cider, we would have left there with a gallon or two of that, too. As it was, we left with 3 blocks of cheese (and 1 of them was gone before we even got home that afternoon!)
The cheese ended up being the only food purchase of our entire day, until we were headed home that afternoon. I still can't believe that we did not buy any food from any food vendors in any of the villages. Sigh. I would have *LIKED* to, BUT...a certain 4-almost-5 year old made standing in a line of 25+ people just not worth the food we would have enjoyed. So instead of eating yummy "fair fare," we stopped at Casey's on the way home, and shared 2 slices of pizza and a pop. I guess that's what you get when you wait to eat lunch until after 2:30 on the day of a big event in very small towns. Oh well.
Finally, after we were all tired of scenic-driving it, we agreed it was time to head for home. We met a friend and former co-worker of Bill's at his family's farm, and picked up some more chickens for our flock. The guys visited and Em decided it was a good time for a nap. I got out a pen and jotted a few reminder notes to myself in my notebook I carry in my purse for moments such as those.
It wasn't a typical Saturday, but it was a day we all enjoyed. It was fun to get out as a family and enjoy the beautiful fall weather and the beautiful colors of the autumn foliage. Days like that are too few and far between, so I am very thankful for it.