One of my favorite fall traditions is apple picking. One year while Brad and I were still in college we decided to go apple picking. We asked our good friends, the Lows, if they wanted to join us. By my mom's recommendation we went to Country Line Orchard in Hobart, IN. And we loved it! The place was so nice with lots of apple trees and even a nice pumpkin patch. And their apple donuts are to die for! That year we picked way too many apples and we each got our own pumpkin. After picking apples we headed to Brad's mom's house to bake some apple pie and carve our pumpkins. And *wah-lah* a tradition was born.
This year marked the fifth annual apple picking trip for the Kolars and Lows. We love going with the Lows and it's so fun to see how our families are growing. What started as four adults is now four adults, three children, and a bun in the oven. Of course, our activities have changed a bit. We spend a lot less time picking apples and a lot more time going through the children's zoo or riding the tractor (did I mention the three kids are all boys--they love that tractor ride!). But we always have so much fun. And this year we decided to forgo the pumpkin carving because it was just too much for the kids who were starting to get cranky and overtired. But we still baked some apple crisp and enjoyed it together (my favorite part of the whole day!).
We've had all kinds of weather on our trips: from almost freezing temperatures where we were dying for hot chocolate to literally hot weather where we needed to get inside for some air conditioning. We've also learned a thing or two along the way: each family does not actually need 4 bags of apples to take home, honeycrisps are everyone's favorite (everyone! They're always gone off the trees), and Amanda is the only one that prefers green apples to red (although we did find out this year that Issac prefers green, too--go Isaac!). We always enjoy our time together, and honestly, it's not about the apples. It's about a fun family tradition that we have with another family. A family that we really connect with. A family that encourages Brad and I in so many ways. A family that we aspire to be like: people who put Christ first in everything that they do, who truly live out his love to the people around them. We are always so encouraged when we spend time with them. I want my children to grow up around their children because I know that those boys will grow up to be caring, loving, Goldy men. And I want my children to be surrounded by people like them. That's why I love our tradition of apple picking every fall. And I'm so excited to continue it even as our children get older and start complaining about having to go apple picking. ;)