Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Pumpkin Pickin!

I know it's been a little while since I've updated this. I suppose was just waiting until I did something halfway interesting to write about! Just to catch everyone up on the past week or so...this past weekend was the Iowa State Invitational Meats judging contest, and I helped out a little with that on Saturday afternoon. Ace is the coach of the University of Nebraska's team, so I also got to spend some time with him while he was in town. Dr. Carr and Stacy (a grad student from Illinois) were also here to serve on the official committee for the contest. It was so great to see both of them and catch up a bit. I also got to visit with some of the other team's coaches who judged the same fall that I did. The meats judging circuit is kind of like a family and every contest seems to be a mini reunion of some sort. I think that's why I love it so much...apart from the educational purposes of course ;) This coming weekend is the American Royal contest in Omaha, Nebraska and a group of grad students and myself are going over on Saturday to be group leaders for the contest on Sunday.

The weekend of visitors and fun led right into a fun filled week. Yesterday, Rita Wilcox (used to be Muehling) came over for supper. She went to U of I and lived at 4H House with Brooke, Abbie, and I. She lives in Dallas Center, Iowa now which is conveniently located only 45 minutes south of Ames! It was really great to have her here and catch up. Our original plan was to take her with us to a pumpkin patch, but the weather was less than cooperative. Brooke still wanted to go and I talked her out of it (which she didn't let me forget). So to make up for it. We made a trip to the pumpkin patch this afternoon with sun shiny skies :)
I found this place just by typing 'pumpkin patch Ames' into Google. It was only about 15 miles south of town, and it was awesome! They had acres of apple trees, a huge pumpkin patch, a corn maze, a cute little store filled with apple butter, cider, pie, jam, and loads of other goodies, and lots of other fun things. It was a search to find the best pumpkins. There were still gobs of green pumpkins, and then lots of rotting orange pumpkins :( Right as we were leaving, I found the most perfect one! It rivals the great pumpkin of Charlie Brown! We then tried our luck in the corn maze, and it only took us 23 minutes to find our way out. Brooke and I each bought two pumpkins, and then we got some apple butter, cider, and pumpkin pancake mix. It was just so great to get out of town for a few hours and be in the country. We're making plans to go back in a couple of weeks. When we got home we mixed up some pumpkin pancakes for supper and they were delicious!
Headed to the patch with our empty wagon.......

The patch was definitely a bit weedy. It was easy to lose each other!

The maze had these cut outs that you had to find in it.

Heading back with our finds. It was a great day :)

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