The time has finally come for me to end my extended blog silence - various construction projects around the house (along with Hackknife Jr.'s first Communion and the long-term guests in town to attend the blessed event) have conspired to keep me away from my laptop over the past 3 weeks, but it's time to begin writing again with a short story about blueberry picking. One of the mothers from preschool clued me in to a nearby farm that opens its blueberry orchard to the public for a month or two each spring when the bushes are producing fruit. Church Lake Farms is little more than a 5-minute drive from the Canteen and a world away from the manicured environs that we normally inhabit, which made me think that the progeny might enjoy a taste of country life (if even for an hour or less).
Although you can arrive as early as 8 am, we got there closer to noon on a Saturday. I was initially afraid that the midday tropical sun might sap the kids' energy level (they're not exactly known for their outdoor hardiness); however, I needn't have worried as a bit of cloud cover and the thrill of the hunt kept them pretty motivated. At first, we had some trouble finding bushes that hadn't already been picked over, but after poking around a little harder, our bucket started filling up.
All told, our family harvesters collected over 4 pounds of ripe blueberries, a relative bargain at $4 per pound! A lot of the berries ended up on cereal or straight up down our gullets as a tasty snack, although the majority (6 cups' worth) were used in the blueberry cobbler I threw together for some new houseguests (see photo below).
The blueberry season around here is now mostly over, but if you need any next year, you'll now know who to contact...