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I love all of the different seasons... but fall has to be my favorite. I love breaking out the fleece coats, having fires at night, cooking in the crockpot, drinking pumpkin spice lattes, and all of those other things that just feel more appropriate in fall.

This past weekend, we were up in Michigan for a very short trip to pick up some more of our adoption t-shirts, celebrate my brother's birthday, and stop at our favorite apple orchard.

I may be biased, but I think this is the best orchard in all of southwest Michigan, not to mention the best orchard within 3 hours of Chicago. Trust me... we've been to some orchards around here- way too commercialized. 

Isn't it amazing that fruit just grows perfectly on these trees?!

Sweet and ready to eat... right from the branch.

Some nice lady offered to take a picture for us...

Don's the photographer in our family, and he's always snapping when I'm not looking. Do you see all of the rows and rows of apple trees that you can just meander through and pick what you want?! I love that. Seriously, we went to an orchard in a nearby town (that I won't mention), and we were first greeted by Reggae music blaring from a mysterious looking Tiki hut, then we were told that we had to get on a wagon and ride for about 10-15 minutes out to the orchards where we could fill our $20 bag (which we had to purchase from them) with as many apples as we wanted. Just out of principle, we had to leave without getting a single apple... we just couldn't do it- it's not the way apple picking is supposed to be! At Crane's, we got out of our car with our target bags, walked all over the orchards, and then weighed our bags when we were ready to leave... we got four full bags of apples for less than $20. Perfect. 

Making sure it looks just right...

We always cap off our apple-picking trip with some desserts from the bakery/restaurant. Apple dumpling ala mode.

Rhubarb and raspberry pie...

27lbs. of apples, a gallon of cider, and a half dozen cider doughnuts later (plus the above mentioned desserts), and we were happy and full- very full! 

I can't wait for this weekend to put some of those apples to good use... in an apple-cranberry crisp, served with vanilla ice cream and a cup of coffee (of course)!


The De Jager Family said...

Mmmmm... We are hoping to make it out to Crane's on Sunday. :) I am with you on my love for apple-picking and all the greatness of fall! Looks like you guys had a fun weekend.

Corrie and Phil said...


I miss going to Cranes!

My Mom just lugged a 10-lb bag of Honeycrisp apples down to Florida, so we're not totally missing out.

Ashley said...

1. 8 days was way too long between posts. :)
2. Crane's look amazing!
3. Have fun pushing a stroller through that orchard next year. :)

Rachel Jones said...

YUM!! wish we could go there, looks amazing! p.s. I've never seen someone look that cute while picking apples.....haha :)
Hey, lets get pumpkin spice lattes together asap. i miss you and i haven't had one yet this fall!

Heidi said...

I'm so jealous too! We went apple picking out here once and it was HORRIBLE! It was like $30 for one bag of apples and the line for donuts was an hour long. Cider was $12 a gallon!! Plus, the apples weren't even that good. I do miss West Michigan fall! My favorite time of year too!

Monica Gee said...

I've been thinking about you so much lately! We just went to Crane's and picked up a bushel of apples. I've had a little too much fun with them all. Thanks for telling us about Crane's, we think it is the best too! I hope we can hang out sometime!

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