Eckert’s has become a very important part of our family’s traditions throughout the year. This year, we did almost everything they offered, although we did miss blueberry and tomato picking, and we always have an artificial Christmas tree, so we’ve never picked our own. I haven’t taken a class at Eckert’s yet, either, but that’s on my to-do list, hopefully sometime next year!
In April, we went on a farm tour. This was the first time we really got a behind-the-scenes look at Eckert’s, and it was fascinating. We learned about their greenhouse, blackberry trellis, and new vineyard. It was truly an educational experience!
In May, I took Bunny and Ladybug to go strawberry picking for the first time. It was a lot of fun, and we really enjoyed the fruits of our labors!
In June, we saw a Dock Dogs exhibition in the Eckert’s parking lot. This was another new experience, and also a lot of fun.
Later in June, and again in July, we went blackberry picking for the first time. I think this may have been my favorite thing to do at Eckert’s this year, and we went back a few times. They were easier to pick than the strawberries, since they climb trellises, instead of growing on the ground, and they were so incredibly delicious!
In July, and again in August, we picked peaches. I think this was our least favorite activity, because although fresh peaches are amazing to eat, it was much more challenging to find the fresh ones in the orchard. Some things are best left to the professionals, I guess. It was still fun, though, and I made some nice peach desserts (one of which also involved a homemade blackberry syrup).
September saw our annual trip to the apple orchard, where we picked several varieties. I thought we had picked a lot, but they were all eaten before I really had the chance to bake with them, so I guess we didn’t get enough!
Also in September (and again in October), we enjoyed seeing the newest additions to Eckert’s family…two adorable baby goats named Jonathan and Goldie!
In October, we went on our annual trip to the pumpkin patch, and picked pumpkins so big we didn’t know what to do with them all! Chickadee really loved this outing, and kept kissing the pumpkins every time she walked by one!
The Holiday Open House is an annual event in November. In the past, it’s been a big weekend event, so we were a little disappointed to learn that this year was a scaled-back weeknight event. We still enjoyed lots of samples, live music, and looking at all of the pretty Christmas decorations!
That brings us to the end of our Eckert’s year. We were there for specific events in every month from April through November, although I don’t think a month goes by where we don’t visit the Country Store at least once for something. I’m so glad we live near such a wonderful place that allows to experience a little sliver of country life!