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Oct 14, 2011

Plain old patch

During the years we lived in the Great Northwest, our annual trips to the pumpkin patch were so much fun.  Sure, the pumpkin patch was always muddy, but we could pick gorgeous gourds right off the vine.  Each year we chose from a selection of awesome pumpkin patches around town and were always guaranteed a good time.  The fun fall pictures from our field trips to the patch bring back great memories.

Sauvie Island (2004):



Lakeview Farms (2005):


Roloff Farms (2007):


   (Gavin was born 6 weeks after this outing.)

As much as I adore Colorado Springs, I have to say that the local pumpkin patch is pretty pathetic!  No lush fields of home-grown pumpkins here!  I laugh every time I see pumpkins randomly scattered on the barren ground, strewn about as if to suggest that they actually grew there.  No, the "pumpkin patch" here is just a seasonal attraction comprised mostly of dirt and hay.  And yesterday, when we visited courtesy of a Groupon deal, we didn't even leave with pumpkins because they weren't included in the discounted admission price.

We had planned to visit the pumpkin patch last Friday when Garry's parents were in town, but cold and windy weather kept us home.  The school offered another four-day weekend this week, and because some friends were going, I decided to take the kids to the patch on my own.  The good and bad news is that the outing was exactly what I expected: total chaos. I was seriously stressed out as I tried to keep track of my children, even though one was strapped to my body.  The big kids didn't want to do what the little kids wanted to do, and none of them wanted to cooperate with me.  So I raced around and tried to manage them as best I could.

I was sweating buckets and at my wits' end after two hours!  But of course the kids were oblivious to my stress and had a marvelous time.  Lexi was absolutely thrilled with the hay ride, the farm animals, and playing in the dried corn.  Gavin loved the gunny sack slides best, but pinged from one activity to another like a pinball.  I have very little idea what Zach and Tyler did most of the time.  We were only together on the hay ride and at the snack table.  I hardly got any pictures, but I think for all of us, the memories will live on anyway.

Daredevil.

(The only group shot of the day.)

Very excited about the hay ride.

Checking out the sheep.

Proof that Kate and I were there.

Creative sliding.

Today we all went to Albertson's to buy pumpkins.  They were in cardboard boxes right in front of the store.  Our trip was a shortened version of the pumpkin patch: four children screaming and running in four directions.  While I was helping Lexi choose a pumpkin, the shopping cart (with Kate in a car seat, perched on top) rolled down the sidewalk ramp and into the parking lot.  Two cars slammed on their brakes in an effort to avoid Kate and the cart.  Thankfully Kate was spared, but the circus side show continued as Gavin climbed into the pumpkin bin and rolled a giant pumpkin onto the sidewalk.  And then we had to pay, which produced another giant spectacle that had the cashier rolling her eyes and calling for back-up.

I have planned a Halloween-themed dinner for tomorrow night.  Hopefully that will be a calmer affair.

...

Related joys:

*We did not run out of gas on the way home from the pumpkin patch.
*The rolling pumpkin at Albertson's did not break.
*Our grocery store spectacle merited help to the van.
*Nap time.
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