Monday, 2 August 2010

Outdoor Monday: Pick your own

It's taken us all summer and a night filled with dreams of anxiety to finally embark on our very own picking your own adventure.

Let me explain: Firstly, my excuse is that I'm pregnant. For everything. So yes, I had a night full of anxiety dreams that if we didn't go fruit picking TOMORROW we would never ever go fruit picking. That is a serious, dramatic, and panic inducing thought. If you're pregnant. Because, as I now know, it doesn't matter WHAT you are anxious about, even if it's a stupid, ridiculous thing like fruit picking, what matters is THAT you are anxious, the actual feeling. I mean, when I woke for the 10th time that night, I knew I was being stupid to experience such anxiety, but it was still real. Very much so in fact. Previously, our plans to pick our own were abandoned due to atrocious weather (I'm talking serious downpours, not a bit of drizzle) and my SPD (as I say, you can blame anything on pregnancy) which rendered me almost immobile for the best part of 8 weeks.

So I decided to make a fool of myself to Mr Cartside (and now the whole world by blogging about it) and tell him about it. How I would love to go fruit picking because Cubling would love it and it was almost the end of the season, and then there's going to be a baby and if the baby was anything like Cubling, we wouldn't be able to do it next year (screaming baby syndrome) or the year after (runaway toddler syndrome). Plus considering our weekend plans for the next weeks, there was NO TIME LEFT. It was NOW OR NEVER.

Am I shouting? I tried not to, but yes, I guess I was.

And we went fruit picking. Straws were "scarce", fair enough, I'd just bought 4 packs at a supermarket (Scottish grown though) when a shower came down and "fruit picking" in a supermarket suddenly became appealing again. I hadn't bought raspberries and they were still going strong, and all was well.

Need I say that Cubling loved it? Just look at the pictures - we spent twice as long as we'd intended, picked twice as much as we'd planned, and spent a lot more than we had estimated. Cubling actually liked the pea picking as much as the raspberry picking.

The following days were spent: jam making, preserving, eating. My intention to cajole Cubling into eating fruit has backfired though: now that she knows that real fruit makes it into jam, she no longer eats jam. I give up. At least she loves picking and jam making, that's a start, isn't it? And she's fine with peas, straight from the pod or cooked. We now have 14 jars of jam to carry the summer goodness into the winter, a very knackered but happy mummy because there's little cooking I enjoy more than making jam.

There were lots of families there, with children younger than Cubling. So it may not be totally unimaginable to pick our own next year. I'm reassured all around. We went to East Yonderton Farm, the only Pick Your Own farm near Glasgow (Renfrewshire to be precise). It's located right next to Glasgow airport, so the kids can watch planes take off and land as well. The farm has all kinds of soft fruit and some vegetables - you can pick your own at weekends and buy produce from their shop weekdays. For a list of all Pick Your Own farms in Scotland, you can find the details here. On this site you can also find farms in England and Wales.

This post is part of Outdoor Challenge Monday, hosted by 5 Orange Potatoes.



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