Sunday, October 14, 2012

Plumper Pumpkin Patch, Oct 10, 2012

Becca had her preschool field trip to the pumpkin patch on Wednesday. It was at Plumper Pumpkin Patch, which is the same farm we've been going to since William was in preschool at Young Learner's. I have pictures of him helping push the manual pumpkin seed planter and checking out the milking area from when the farm used to have dairy cows.
Becca and I got to the farm a little after 9:00 am. The weather was uncharacteristically perfect. I think I've been to that farm on at least 4 other field trips and I don't believe we've had good weather on any of them. This Tuesday morning the sun was shining, the weather was cool but not super cold, and everyone was ready for fun. There were a lot of people there. We found a teacher from Becca's class and learned that today's field trip was the free-range kind. We could wander wherever we liked, do a hay maze, slide on the various slides, ride the hay ride, and pick a pumpkin. Becca was strangely unenthusiastic about all of it except the part where she got to pick a pumpkin.
We met a few of her friends, but she refused to go into the hay maze with them, or smile for a picture. All she wanted was her pumpkin. I decided that maybe we should just take off and go to a card-making party I had accidentally signed up for at the same time, but before we left, I asked if she wanted to do the hay ride. This was the first thing other than the pumpkin she got excited about. She definitely wanted a hay ride.
The hay ride consisted of a tractor attached to a covered trailer with hay seats around the outside and a row along the middle. There were two tractors running. One was attached to a trailer all made of wood with a peaked wooden roof. The other had a trailer that looked like a covered wagon with similar seating arrangement but much more decoration. It had bright yellow and orange ribbons and bouquets of dried flowers. Both were doing a circuit of the farm so that each one stopped and loaded,or unloaded about every 5 minutes. The line to get one was very long. We got in with Jenny Gennings and Angelise and started our wait. Becca was a trooper! We must have stood there for at least 30 minutes but she didn't complain at all. We watched each wagon unload and load and the line shrink a little bit until finally we got our turn.
The less-decorated wagon took us on our loop. We went around the barn and stopped by the Christmas trees. The driver told us about the three kinds--Douglas firs with their needles growing all around the branches, Grand firs with needles on opposite sides of the branch, and Noble firs with needles pointing up. He told us about the train hundreds of feet below the farm in an underground tunnel and how the farm got electricity before anyone else in the area because the train had it in the tunnel and gave it to the farm for the right to go under their land. I've heard it enough times, I could almost give the speech. Then we went up to the pumpkin shooters. They showed us the trebuchets and the air cannons and the slingshots for people to shoot little pumpkins at UofO and OSU signs. Then we went down the hill, past the field where we could get our free pumpkin (not really free because we paid $6 each to come), and back to the drop-off. We hopped off the wagon and headed to pick out our pumpkins. There were a lot of nice looking pumpkins of varying sizes. None were huge, of course, because this was the lot of complimentary pumpkins, but there were some that Becca couldn't pick up easily. We found a few that I liked a lot, two bigger ones, and I thought we were done. But Becca changed her mind. She decided she wanted something different. Instead of the plump, round, medium-sized, regular-looking pumpkin, she wanted something unique. She chose a small, oddly shaped little one with a lot of character. I thought it was pretty cool. She drew a face on with her markers. We'll go over it with sharpies and I think it will be perfect!

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