We drive over the gravel as the rocks and dirt kick up behind the car. We pull alongside a minivan and turn off the ignition. The kids hop out of the car before we can say, “Wait!” We hold hands as we head pass the little shack on the left with the organic honey and knick knacks to buy. I blink to get the dirt out of my eyes as the spores attack from every angle. We head up to the right towards a makeshift square made up of bales of hay with a Peanuts flag waving from the top. We stop at the tree right before and see the kids waiting to be pushed on the tire swings. The tree branches hang over to give shelter from the dark sky and full moon, the only real light. The kids laugh and scream as they fly through the air on the tire that used to be too high for them and now they drag their feet when they come back towards the tree. I breathe in the air, thinking I can smell the baby Christmas trees that will be for sale in less than eight weeks. When the kids have been given equal time on the tires with the promise that we will come back for one more push before we leave, we head over to the pumpkin patch. Twinkling lights light the way as we check out the orange and white pumpkins that have been picked up, put down, dropped, and deposited in one of the wheelbarrows scattered throughout. Once we decide on a couple, their dad goes to have them weighed while I take the kids on a hay ride. We cough and sneeze but still laugh as we circle the farm in the darkness.
Ever since we moved back to the OC last year, I have been trying to make the kids as comfortable as possible and help them realize that making them leave everything they knew was a good thing. Taking them to new places, encouraging them to find new friends, and hopefully establishing new traditions. We have been taking the kids to multiple pumpkin patches since they were babies. But their favorite was Wickerd Farm. It has all the caveats that other pumpkin patches have plus the beloved tire swing. So I am making a list of places to take the kids this fall so we can make some new memories.
Curls loves her books and what better way to encourage that with a book festival geared specifically towards her and her brother. On 9/30 they will have 125+ authors and illustrators plus book sellers and other vendors.
Since we are lucky enough to live close to the beach and the weather will continue to be warm until November, the Corona Del Mar sandcastle contest on 10/7 will be fun to check out.
The Disneyland Halloween party is an event we have been going to for years. The kids love wearing their costumes, seeing others dressed up, trick or treating throughout the park, and riding Haunted Mansion decked out a la Nightmare before Christmas. They close the park in the early evening to regular guests which helps with the crowds and also put on a fireworks show narrated by Jack Skellington with Disney villains making an appearance. Knott’s Spooky Farm is not as done to the nines as Disneyland but seeing the Peanuts gang in costume is fun.
Irvine Park Railroad has paddle boats, a train, a hiking trail, and a pumpkin patch during the fall. They even do a weigh in for large pumpkins. Now we just need to find out if they have a tire swing….
Do you go to a pumpkin patch before Halloween? Or do you buy your pumpkins from the store?
I hope you find passion and happiness this weekend!