Back in September, our family had one of those golden days. We took a long car ride, the baby napping while the boy happily watched cars and trucks go by, and ended up at an apple orchard, where we picked our weight in apples. It was a cute little farm, nothing too touristy, with good variety and neatly numbered rows. My husband played with the kids while I did the bulk of the picking, and then we wandered the rows, the boy ducking back and forth under the dividers and the girl riding on Daddy’s shoulders.
We had a pleasant lunch on the road, then brought our bonanza home to be peeled, sliced, and turned into all sorts of wonderful things. We listened to Billie Holiday and Ella Fitzgerald and the boy didn’t complain about it. I came up with lots of bogus, toddler-appropriate tasks that allowed him to feel important and helpful (never tell him that he didn’t need to stir that bowl of apple cores–to him, it was very important business).
We made apple pie filling and applesauce and apple butter. We discovered the girl’s enthusiasm for fresh fruit.
It was such a lovely afternoon, I was almost suspicious. How was I so lucky? Mostly, when I try to do very much in the kitchen, I’m besieged on all sides. I’m never allowed to listen to jazz–it’s always Fitz and the Tantrums or the Frozen soundtrack. We never get along so well for so long. I don’t remember any tantrums or anything. It was amazing. It was just a magical day.
We haven’t had a day like that since, but I keep thinking about it, and in my head I refer to it as The Apple Day. And I know that while it’s never going to be the status quo, every once in a while, we’re going to have more apple days.