Thursday, October 22, 2009

Oak Glen - The New Pumpkin Patch

Usually, we go to Cal Poly Pomona for our pumpkins. We've done it for years...all the way back to when cousin Hailey was a baby. Each year, their event has gotten bigger and bigger and the people have become more and more obnoxious.

This year, we decided to try something new. Oak Glen is a little area in the mountains just north of the city of Yucaipa. For a reality check, this is over 100 miles from our house. We knew that it would be quite a drive for Gracie and Luke, but we figured the prospect of getting to be with Bianca, Brandon, Nathan, Aunt Bec, and Auntie Ten Ten would be enough incentive to not fall completely apart. Of course, we packed the DVD player just in case!

There are several small apple ranches in Oak Glen. There is a restaurant we used to go to when I was little called Apple Annie's. I did some research on the internet and found a ranch called Los Rios Rancho. They purported to have a U-Pick your own pumpkin patch, hayrides, petting zoo, and the best apple pie ever. It looked like it would be fun, so I directed everyone to it. It turns out that Los Rios Rancho is the last ranch a the top of Oak Glen. We passed ranch after ranch. Waved buh-bye to restaurant after restaurant and finally, after 8 miles of curvy road, we made it!

We pulled into the parking lot of the pumpkin patch and paused for a brief moment to take a picture. Bianca was sporting an amazing pink and orange Hello Kitty skirt and top, by far the best outfit of the day. Gracie wore a headband that sadly only lasted for 30 minutes before being ripped from her head and tossed in the stroller. See, Lukie? Get a good look at him, because this is the cleanest he was all day. It is also the only picture I have of his hair slicked over to the side. That did not last long either. Brandon is hanging out in the back. He and Lukie jumped off of the rock they are standing on about 5 seconds after this picture was taken.

We trudged through dry uneven dirt to get to the U-Pick pumpkin patch. We discovered that 2 weeks into October is apparently too late to really come pumpkin picking. There were very few pumpkins left. The good news was that most had already been removed from the vines so all we had to do was pick the ones we wanted. Aunt Becca directed the clan from pumpkin to pumpkin, carefully avoiding the diseased ones. Cries of "Punkin! Punkin!" were heard every few seconds or so.

Gracie found her pumpkin right away. She made me carry it around after her, chattering away about her "Punkin."

Lukie was happy to walk up and down rows, throwing rocks, picking up and dropping pumpkins.

When he found his pumpkin, I did not know at first what he was pointing at. Upon closer inspection. It was indeed a pumpkin.

Wait. Can you even see that?

We ended up with a different pumpkin entirely and we made Daddy push the pumpkins in a stroller because they were too heavy for us. I would like to note here that our Oak Glen pumpkins were considerably more expensive than the ones we saw at Fresh N Easy the day before. Fresh N Easy had pumpkins for $2.50 each. We paid $7.50 for our Medium-Small pumpkin and $4.50 for our small pumpkin. Apparently, they charge by diameter of your pumpkin (25 cents per 1/4 inch).

After we had spent some time getting horrifically dirty, we headed across the highway to the Los Rio Rancho Petting Farm and Store. There, we paid a small fee and ran around terrorizing goats and chickens. The big goats scared the heck out of Gracie and Luke, but when we discovered a baby goat, Bianca showed them how to pet the baby gently.

After we were finished torturing the baby goat, we moved on to the chicken. Well, Gracie did. Lukie was too scared. He just kept pointing and saying "chicken."

We eventually escaped the pen and made our way to the haystack. All of the cousins had a great time climbing on the hay. We were lucky that Luke did not think about jumping off!

Attempts at a group picture did not go well.

At this point, I gave up. Mostly because the children escaped.
The kiddos headed over with us to the store and food area. They were fascinated by a Blue Grass band made up of brothers and sisters aged 11 - 17.

They stayed there, dancing occasionally, and having a great time. However, that only lasted until the hot dogs, lemonade, and chips made their way to the table. After lunch, the cousins ran happily around the grass while Aunt Bec and Auntie Ten Ten made sure there were no injuries.

Bianca got tired early. I thought she had more stamina than that!

At this point, we were all tired, full, and had collection of pumpkins. We headed to the cars. Within a mile, I looked behind me and saw this:

He slept from Oak Glen all the way to La Crescenta! Gracie did too. We had a great day with all of the cousins, Auntie Ten Ten, Uncle Jerry, Aunt Becca, and Nana!


  1. Looks like a really fun day - I love the pumpkin patch!

  2. wow! That looks like a super great day!


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