It has definitely become our tradition. With Rebecca’s birthday on the 29th, we have spent the last couple of years heading out to The Farm here in Snohomish County. They offer a pumpkin patch, hay ride, and a walk through a 12 acre corn maze that is made to resemble Washington State.
The only difference of this years venture is that this is Megan’s first trip to the pumpkin patch.The first place we went to investigate was the animal area. The typical scent of mud, rain, manure, and animal hung in the air. Despite these, we had taken some pictures with Megan. One of those pictures was of Megan holding a Kitten. She has an affinity to kittens, and her favorite saying is Kitty Cat. Her sitter has three cats in their home that she would play with. They also had a sign up for those interested in wanting to adopt a kitten. After a brief discussion with my wife, we decided to sign up for a kitten. We are hoping for this new addition to our family – especially since we are making a move from our two-bedroom apartment and into a three-bedroom home. After walking through and looking at new-born piglet’s, Highlander Cows, Chicken’s, Rabbits, Donkey, and other farm animals, we headed out to the large picnic area and get something to eat. Megan had her first hot dog (plain), and after David finally arrived, we went to go on the hay ride. This hay ride goes around a 12 acre corn maze that is fashioned in the image of The State of Washington. While we were waiting in line, there was an older gentleman sitting there with a Chihuahua. Megan wanted to see the dog, and so I took her down from off my shoulders and showed her how to hold out her hand so that the dog could sniff her. As the dog sniffed, he licked her small fingers. Her comment was priceless – “Oooh”. She giggled and then carefully petted the coarse hair of the Chihuahua. After thanking the gentleman, we got back in line just as they allowed people onto the trailers.
The seats were made of hay bales with potato sacks over them. We climbed up in the first trailer, and sat in the far back.It is always amazing to see her take in the world around her. The sights, the sounds, and the sense. Sitting in front of us were another couple who had an infant child. Megan pointed and made her cute oooh’s and ahh’s. This whole experience being new for her, and for us watching her, and enjoying every moment with her is a definite blessing. We never thought that such a wonderful little girl would change our lives in the way that she has.
The bumpy ride took about 5 or 10 minutes. Yet, before we took off around the “coast” of the Washington Corn Maze, we had to site a comical safety rhyme that involved the use of our hands to animate:
1) Right hand stretched out, palm up.
2) Left hand making a fist.3) Pounding the left hand into the right hand one says – “This is a Hammer”
4) With the left pointing finger, placed in the center of the right palm vertically, one says – “This is a nail”
5) making a driving motion with one’s hands, one would then say – “When the tractor is in motion”
6) Shaking your bottom say – “your tail stays on the bale.”As the tractor fired up, and the first jolt of movement, the farm equipment snaked its way around the corn maze. Our destination point, the border of Idaho and Washington where you have four points of entry into the maze. With the map that you get at the at the table (prior to getting onto the hay ride), there is a scavenger hunt on the back side of the map, and the map itself has all the roads and state routes one could take. The four first destinations are Newport, Spokane, Clarkston, and Yakima(?). We decided to go down Newport, and then head toward Grays Harbor (where you are supposed to exit from, once you do the scavenger hunt).
Hefting Megan up onto my shoulders, we headed off along the muddy trail of Highway 2. David wanted to see all the Volcanoes of Washington state. We were not able to find all the Volcanoes in the Corn Maze, however, we made several trips between Centralia and the San Juan’s. Rebecca wanted to exit out of the Peace Arch that is the gateway between Washington State and the Canadian border. Just as we exited from this part of the corn maze, and since the day had gone from being nice and sunny to a heavy overcast, rain started sprinkling. We made it back over to the picnic area where we decided to rest up for a bit. Our next venture (which I was hoping Beck would go for just because this was all about Megan doing things for the first time outside of our normal family routine) would have headed over to where they allowed some fishing to occur. If you caught a trout, it was $5.00 per fish. Since Rebecca does not like the smell of fish when it is cooking, we finally opted out of this particular adventure. Maybe, when Megan is older, her and daddy could go on a fishing trip.
Not realizing what time it was, we both were concerned that Megan would want to nurse, and then fall asleep. We were up at about 7 this morning, with a short nap before we had left. And, because we did not do the fishing activity, our last participation of being at The Farm, were to go through the pumpkin patch and pick out a pumpkin or two. The realization sunk in when Megan finished nursing and had fallen asleep. Laughing and a little disappointed, we still went out with a wheelbarrow so that David could pick out a pumpkin. As we walked out in the misty late afternoon, David found a good size pumpkin. Our next thing involved trying to wake Megan up so that she could choose her own pumpkin.
We also wanted to get a picture of her around some good size Gourds. Not waking up, we found a couple that we could prop up.
The rain increasing slightly, and trying to keep Megan situated comfortably, she finally woke up. We looked around one area, before I took her and went into another area of the patch. We found much smaller one’s that Megan could easily pick from. Still, with the help of David, Momma, David’s father, and myself, we found a couple of pumpkins that she could choose from. Offering her a choice, she picked one and we made our way to pay for those pumpkins. With her awake, she also got to ride in the wheelbarrow with the pumpkins. The whole day being a wonderful and fun-filled family outing. As the rain started to increase with intensity, we made our way to pay for the Gourds, then off to our vehicles. David going with his father, and Megan, Rebecca and myself heading home. The tradition of coming here to The Farm and spending time as a family is one blessing that I am grateful to experience. The only time I believe we did not make it out here was last year because Rebecca was in her last few weeks of her pregnancy with Megan. Despite this, our family outing proved a much needed relief from the normalcy of stress and home life we sometimes get caught up in.
While our moving date looms on the horizon and will suddenly be upon us quickly, this day will be one of the best days I have had. Not that all the days I have had in my life in recent years are not best days, but each one that comes and goes, it gets better and more meaningful.
Yet, the best part of this day – being able to carve out the pumpkin that Megan had chosen, as she watched me do this tedious task.