Ok, ok. I know it’s a proper blogger cliché, but I couldn’t resist it. This weekend we went pumpkin picking at Brooksgrove Farm, in Haverfordwest. And I’m so glad we did as I think I’ve ended up with the nicest set of photos of the boys to date.
We had two choices of farms for pumpkin picking – Hendrewennol, near Cardiff, or Brooksgrove Farm, in west Wales. Having seen that Hendrewennol sold out of pumpkins last Saturday and not wanting to be limited on choice if it was busy again this weekend, we decided Brooksgrove would be the best bet even if the weather didn’t look great.
Thankfully, my lovely camera – an Olympus Pen – which gave up on us during our recent holiday, was in tip top condition for our day out after being in for repair and its new shutter was ready to be put through its paces.
It took around an hour to get to the farm, and Ezra had a nap on the way while Santi made demands from the back seat for his drink, snacks, George Ezra etc, and asked at every bend if we were there yet. The highlight of the journey was being told “no talking, or laughing”. What a killjoy! Finally, we turned into a country lane and followed the PYO pumpkin signs to the car park.
This was where we realised it would be quite a rustic experience, with muddy puddles, a dirt path through the trees, and people pulling on their wellies. Of course I hadn’t thought to pack the boys’ wellies, and somehow only one of mine was in the boot, so Stew was the only appropriately dressed person among us. Oh well, what’s a bit of dirt (she says, still hoping the mud will come out of Ezra’s trousers).
We walked through the trees and round the corner, where a scarecrow with a pumpkin head welcomed us. Behind him was a field dotted with hundreds of orange pumpkins. There were probably thousands, actually, it was really impressive!
Along the side of the field there were three huge overturned crates piled up with pumpkins as if they were tumbling out. This is where Santi made a beeline to choose his favourite. Some of them were huge, but he had a good go at picking them up.
I love this photo of him. Sometimes I’m trying to get a nice, smiley shot, but end up with a natural one that really captures his personality better than a posed photo.
There were only a couple of other families there when we arrived at around 12, but Santi soon spotted another child with a sledge to pull their pumpkins along. It quickly became his mission to get one of his own, It was a bit awkward because I didn’t know if the parents had been super organised and managed to load the car up with wellies and a pumpkin vehicle, or if it belonged to the farm.
Thankfully, it turned out it was the farm’s sledge, and the second the other family gave it back to the farmer Santi was there like a shot … and within minutes he was pulling Ezra along the field.
We said we would buy five pumpkins. One for each of us, and a spare (alright, two for Santi). Stew, being a man, wanted the biggest he could find, I wanted the most Instagram-worthy little white pumpkin, and Santi just wanted them all. We were trying to sneak them out of the sledge as quickly as he could put them in, but at one point we were carting around 15! He just kept finding pumpkins that he “needed”.
It was so nice just to be outside after being cooped up in work and the house all week. We’ve had a few quiet weekends with Stew working and me being on call, and haven’t really had a chance to go anywhere. The boys love being outside, and this kind of free range activity is what they thrive on. I think they’d have spent all day wandering around if they could have.
Although Ezra took a little while to warm up as he kept slipping on the path and wasn’t too keen on getting his hands muddy, but it was nothing a little sip on his bottle couldn’t sort out. He’s a funny little thing, he thinks nothing of having food all over his face, but if his hands are dirty he’ll make sure you know about it … or sneakily wipe them in your clothes…
It’s strange, when Santi was his age we were desperate to get him off the bottle, especially during the day. As second-time parents we’re so much less stressed about little things like that. Ezra is so lovely and happy (most of the time) that it seems silly to worry that he’s having too much milk. Just look at him with his big eyes and little curls…
Just as Stew was starting to get bored with all the pumpkin fun (or fed up with constantly telling Santi he couldn’t have more than five), I managed to get the boys to sit still for a couple of photos. When I say sit still, I mean for a couple of seconds … they are impossible!
Oh, and if anyone’s wondering just how dirty Ezra managed to get himself…
***If you haven’t had enough pumpkin photos, head over to my Instagram, where there will be plenty of spam over the next few days!