Strawberry picking at Chiles Orchard

Yesterday my wife was determined to go strawberry picking. It’s not that I didn’t want to go, I just had a million things to do and my oldest daughter desperately wanted to go to the pool for her first dunk of the season. So we decided to divide and conquer. I put Willa down for her nap, Lauren took Eden to the pool and I got a few hours of work done before we headed out to pick strawberries.

We drove out to Crozet to Chiles Peach Orchard. Why we’ve never been before, I am not sure. I think my wife wondered if perhaps it was the end of the world and she had indeed gone to Heaven. We are opposites in many ways, one being she is pure country mouse to my city mouse. But I had to agree, it was an amazing setting with the mountains as a backdrop to the fields of strawberries. At one point we even heard a train approaching and the girls got to watch it pass by. It was right out of a movie.

The girls were completely enchanted. Eden, our oldest, was amazed that the insides of the strawberries were actually red, and not white like the store bought berries. “Look, look” she’d yell, “it’s red”! Exactly the way it is supposed to be. Willa had a hard time grasping the concept of putting the berries in the basket and instead popped them in her mouth. The girls (my wife included) didn’t want to leave, but we finally lured them away from the fields with promises of donuts back at the barn. Those were some very happy, juicy smiles.

The berries have been washed, hulled and frozen. Next up…homemade strawberry ice cream.

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