Country life. I grew up in upstate NY where the dairy farms are a plenty, and I was submerged in country life. I have memories of fields being sprayed with manure (yes, it smelled foul), cows escaping their fences, ice cream stands that gave you the best heaped cones of goodness for cheap, acreage to explore and neighbors that lived a bike ride away.
When I married Jonah we started our life together near Atlanta. And we lived in the suburbs. A big adjustment from my country days. And I was okay with that! It was exciting to build a life with Jonah (and still is!).
But as the years have gone by and we’ve added two little boys to our home, priorities have changed. Now I crave the open fields, and land to roam on. I look forward to having acreage to plant our own produce, and maybe even have some chickens. I love to be outdoors and I love letting our boys just be boys outside, in the dirt.
So when we had two opportunities to pick strawberries this spring I was thrilled! I felt at home in the strawberry fields in a small way. Strawberries are a sentimental reminder to me of my late grandma. My grandparents had fields of berries that they harvested, and I remember driving with my mom and sisters to pick them. I wish I had paid more attention back then to what it took to actually grow them. I only remember the yummy berries themselves and the sweet strawberry jam my mom would make. I am so glad we were able to take our boys to do something I have childhood memories of.
Jonah loves strawberries. Shortcake, ice-cream, cobbler, whatever it may be. I love them too, but the taste of the strawberries in the stores are just not the same. I have told him this, probably every time we buy strawberries. Farm fresh berries are So Different. When we arrived at the fields and started picking I was almost afraid to bite into one because in my mind I had the memory of how sweet they had tasted from my grandparents farm. Would if I was wrong?
Let me tell you. A warm sun ripened berry picked right of the vine is F-A-N-T-A-S-T-I-C. It really does not compare to the ones picked and shipped in the grocery store. It was a sweet (literally) reminder to me of berries from my childhood days. I’m so thankful we were able to let our boys experience this too. It was neat to see where they were grown!
Perhaps one day we will have a bigger patch of our own strawberries in our back yard. Right now we have a small 3’x2′ patch that continues to spread each year. It was a great picking experience this year and I think we will head back next year. Or maybe we’ll wait for blueberry season!