So I’ve ventured to the Farmer’s Market—one of my favorite autumn activities—and decorated the exterior of my house.
Autumn is my excuse for buying mums, pumpkins, chai tea, apples and apple cider. Farmers from the Blue Ridge and Great Smokies come to Raleigh and sell from their mountain orchards a variety of apples, perfect for applesauce or pie.
When my girls were small, every autumn we planned a long weekend to a different corner of NC and camped. Okay, my version of camping—renting a cabin with electricity, indoor plumbing and preferably close to a larger lodge to which to walk for all meals.
But we had a fireplace, made s’mores and I lugged some of my favorite autumnal children’s books with me to read aloud to them in front of the fire and after the s’mores. Books like Miss Suzy by Miriam Young from my own childhood; Blueberries for Sal by Robert McCloskey; and We’re Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen—which we re-enacted all over the cabin.
These weekends included hikes to lacy, cascading waterfalls and picking our own bushel of apples from a local orchard. We tried to do something for everyone so for mom that included visits to mountain quilt shops.
But with busy, social butterfly teenage girls, my mountain vacation has been reduced for now to a stay-cation involving a stolen afternoon with the girls and a trip to the Farmer’s Market. This year, we bought Magna-bonum’s (ranked as one of the ten greatest Southern apples) and here’s the apple pie that resulted.
How do you celebrate the arrival of autumn? I’d love for you to share your memories and what traditions you built with your families.
If you’d like a list of my favorite autumnal children’s books to share with your children and grandchildren or to try my Foolproof Piecrust and apple pie recipe, email me at email@example.com.