Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Gone Pickin'

Last year we started two traditions in Thathouse - apple picking and pumpkin patching. This year, because we were only in town for a single weekend in October, we decided to combine the two.

Last year I mentioned to H how much I was dying to head east, to Julian to check out some of the apple orchards. H was born and raised in San Diego and so generously offered to show me the ropes. And so the four of us headed east and she shared with us the tips and tricks, as well as directing us along the scenic route to see all the best sights. This year H and her husband just closed on their new home the week before our outing. We couldn't be happier for them, but figured they'd be a little on the busy side that weekend. So instead we ventured out on our own - adopting H's traditions into our own.

Our first stop was for pumpkins! We stopped at Julian Mining Company and picked up a couple good ones for carving. We also introduced Thatdog to a couple goats.

Next we headed to Calico Ranch - where we had gone last year with H.

We headed out to orchard to pick our apples, but were informed that there were no more apples on the trees. WHAT? The orchard had only opened the weekend before, but apparently this wasn't a great year for apples AND the orchard was the only one open this year. We didn't let that deter our good time. We wandered around the orchard anyway.

Thatdog loved his first trip to the orchard. I was surprised he actually wasn't interested in the ground apples at all. Or maybe not so surprised that my dog has discerning taste. He was more than happy to share in the bites of apples we gave him in the car.

Because the orchard was bare, the proprietors had brought over apples from their other orchards and we filled a bag with the goodies. Technically we picked them ourselves. Right out of the bins! Or as the running joke goes in Thatfamily - they were handpicked...handpicked elsewhere.

Next we headed into Julian itself. I'd heard Oktoberfest was going on that weekend and Thatboy was all amped up to try it.

It was the saddest Oktoberfest I've ever been to. The only beer they had was Bud Light. Now I'm not knocking Bud Light, but to ONLY have that at an Oktoberfest? See what I mean by sad?

So instead we wandered around town.

We ran into this beautiful horse and figured Thatdog would like to say "hello."

We live next to a horse ranch, so Thatdog is pretty familiar with horses. He saw them every day when we went on our runs. Sometimes we even ran beside them on the trail where they walked. Mostly he treats them like giant dogs, trying to get them to play with him. Wagging his tail, play bowing. Something about this horse though rubbed him the wrong way. Seconds after this picture was taken, Thatdog started growling and barking at this gentle horse.

On our way out of Julian, we stopped at Dudley's - one of the traditions we stole from H and her family. Dudley's has THE best bread and last year H got us addicted to their cheddar jalapeno bread. This year we picked up a loaf of that and the asiago olive bread. We've been torn between devouring them with every meal and saving them for as long as possible.

We had one more stop on our way home - Mountain Valley Ranch, another pumpkin patch. This one had all the bells and whistles.



Hills to climb

Corncob guns to shoot

We picked up a couple more decorative/cooking pumpkins here and headed home - arms full of our harvest bounty.


  1. so so fun!

    i miss you guys...we'll you more than TB since I see him quite regularly these days! no offense to TB of course :)

  2. ugh. that was supposed to be a "well" not a "we'll"...

  3. Such a fun fall outing! I just finished up making a ton of caramel apples (blog post a comin'), which was my nod to the season. :)

  4. Bud Lite at an Oktoberfest- TOO funny! The is so sad. Looks like another great ThatGirl adventure! Your dog is so cute- I bet he had a great day as well. Can't wait to see what you made with all those apples.

  5. Sounds like a fun excursion.

    Wilson sends his regards to Thatdog.

    OY. Oy. Oy on the Oktoberfest beer! What are they thinking?


  6. I haven't been to Julian since I was a kid. It's such a beautiful place!

  7. Oooh fun! That dog is adorable. The bare apple trees make me feel a little sad.