Autumnal Adventures, Part 1: Picking Apples and Petting Animals

It says a lot about autumn’s charisma that I still love it even though it means the end of summer. I adore the open windows, bare feet, long evenings, singing crickets, and picnic-table dinners of summer. But then there are fresh apples, brilliant leaves, woodsmoke, and cozy sweaters, so it all works out.

In the case of the Sunday we went to Westfield Heritage Village and Myers Apple Farm, it was actually not sweater weather, it was gorgeous summery weather. PLUS the autumn colours. Awesome.

It was one of a series of Harvest Sundays at the Village, with animators in period costumes, speaking in first-person (with only a few li’l anachronisms) about their lives as settlers.


What a beautiful day for some high-quality heritage.


A wee corn-husk doll from the small building known to have housed an Aboriginal family.


Sometimes I think about having no such thing as plumbing. I am very grateful for plumbing.


Remember how this post is partly about petting animals? Some of the animals were actually just skins with heads.


Fun fact: this church had to be cut into pieces to be transported to the Village from Mountsberg. It’s been nicely reassembled.


Ticket from the Jerseyville train station! Which was operational until the ’60s. (It also served as Avonlea train station in Kevin Sullivan’s productions of “Anne of Green Gables” and “Road to Avonlea”.)IMG_7142

Ahh. So picturesque that I had to take pictures.


The druggist was the most interesting stop on the tour. He demonstrated how he made capsules and moulded pills; he showed how the turnkey works for pulling out teeth; and he explained all about the morphine, cocaine, and heroin that were used for pain management. In the good old days.


In the caboose! No seat belts.

It’s a really nice time. They are open this Thanksgiving weekend too, if you live in the GHA or Wellington County.

And bonus – just down the road, you can pick apples!


What a beautiful day for apple-picking. (And it really was – practically everyone went apple-picking that day. Or at least two other parties I know of.) And delicious apples they are, too. Empires and Spartans.


There are also goats, chickens, sheep, kittens, etc., that are pretty friendly.


AND, the best part of this whole day, which AB repeated to everyone who came close enough to hear: “THE BIG HORSE PEED!”


I think she thought she might get lucky enough to see a mini horse pee too. No such luck though.



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The Fall Fair: it’s WAY better with a kid

On Thanksgiving weekend, we took E to his first Fall Fair. I remember how much I loved the fair as a kid – but I’d forgotten. It wasn’t until I brought my toddler that I re-realized how FANTABULOUS it really is. In fact, it spoiled this kid for normal life. The morning after, he first words out of his mouth were, “I wanna go to the fair. I wanna ride on the berries.” (He not only rode on the giant spinning berries, he also rode on the bumblebees, and the carousel, and even the Ferris wheel.) The next morning, it was “I wanna ride the Ferris wheel and play in the corn.” He still asks to go to the fair about once a day.

Things we learned at the fair:

  • Tractors are even better inside than outside
  • Reptiles are SO COOL (especially tortoises… so prehistoric)
  • Alpacas are outrageously cute
  • Farm animals are generally much bigger than they look in books
  • Fries taste better at the fair
  • Our son is not at all afraid of heights (he grinned like crazy all the way up the Ferris wheel)
  • Feed corn is better to play in than gravel: prettier colour and NO dust
  • Rides at the fair are expensive
  • Despite this, people can be generous (one mom on her way out just handed us her extras – like $15 worth)
  • All the flashing lights and colours and noises that just make us jaded adults think of commercialism are beautiful to a two-year-old boy
  • E can also fly – he just flaps his arms and takes off! Check it out…

We sure did give thanks. Obviously we’re going again next year. 🙂




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