Friday we went on a homeschool field trip with our county homeschool group. We drove about 3 hours to go to the nearest local pumpkin patch - in Riverton. In Wyoming, everything is very spread out - and we had to drive around a mountain range too.
Pumpkins take about 88 frost free days in a row in order to grow. We're doing good to get half that many here. Literally. We are above 7,200 feet elevation too, so that makes a big difference. Anyway, we made the drive, and took a daycare kid with us. We had a blast :)
My daughter was obsessed with finding the perfect, round pumpkin. She picked a really nice one, but then we decided we had too many so we didn't get it as it was one of the bigger ones and would have been more expensive. After we found out how little we had spent I wished we would have gotten this one too. But then, what good are they really? By the way, this patch had millions of pumpkins. See behind her? That was maybe one-sixth of the field.
They had these oddly shaped flat red pumpkins too. We got one of them because they were so strange. They also had gourds and squash of all varieties. We brought home an acorn squash and a butternut squash to cook, along with several gourds. They had Indian corn too, but we decided against getting any of that.
Of course each kid had to pick their very own pumpkin. And since we had gone such a long way to get one, I told the seven year old he could pick any one he wanted.
He picked one that was so heavy he had to roll it to the cart.
His two year old brother tried to follow suit. :)
It was a bit of a challenge to navigate the pumpkin patch with all the little ones. We had our two year old (who is almost three) and one of our daycare kids who is one (almost two) in the pumpkin cart on the way out.
Of course they got to get out and pick their very own pumpkins too. These are more their size!
But they spent a lot of time looking :) We weren't moving very fast at all... and that was perfectly fine with me. I figured if we were going to go all that way to get pumpkins, we would take our time and enjoy it :)
After we filled our cart with pumpkins, our two year old was pretty upset. He thought that was his wagon, and tried to throw the pumpkins and gourds out of it. Aah, two year olds :) Anyway, we finally convinced him it was okay, and he got to ride on the top of the stroller we had the baby seat in. (You're really not supposed to put a kid there, but we were pretty desperate by this point.)
See our cart full? All that, and everyone through the corn maze only cost us $22! We got the school discount rate by going with the homeschool group - otherwise just our three big pumpkins would have been $18.
We all got stamps on our hands to go through the corn maze. I'm not really sure why. There wasn't anyone there to check them. But it was a highlight for the seven year old.
The corn maze was... well, an adventure. I had never been in one, and it probably would have been very relaxing and enjoyable if we had known our stroller would have made it through there fine. We'll have to remember that for next year.
The baby wasn't a problem. He rode in my baby carrier the whole time and seemed to enjoy it. I finally figured out he could face outward (which he loves) as well as toward me (which he hates), so things worked out well.
This little man was our problem. Our two year old didn't want to cooperate at all. He didn't want to walk. He wanted to swing cornstalks around and pick up ears of corn.
And try to eat them...
This is how he went through pretty much the whole maze. My daughter carried all 35 pounds of him. Oh, and note the heavy jacket. It was much warmer there than we expected. She roasted. The one year old daycare kid (in the foreground) was wonderful. He walked the entire way - running most of it - and never complained. He was so good the entire time.
Before we finished, the two year old was very tired. So was my daughter :) Not sure why he was tired though, since he was carried the whole time ;)
You should have heard the cheers when our group finally located the exit!! It ONLY took us 1.5 hours! Yes an entire hour and a half wandering around a cornfield that couldn't have been bigger than two acres! Wow. It was very well done. But we did have a lot of fun :)
After the big walk, I got the kids together for a picture. We had planned to do this and had outfits picked out for everyone. But we should have done the pictures before we went through the maze. We didn't bother changing the seven year old, and the two year old refused to take his jacket off. Oh well.
About the time we finished with the corn maze there were buses pulling in. I think there ended up being six or seven of them (not all in the picture).
Yikes. It was like a swarm of locusts.
We hurried up and finished our kid pictures.
The daycare kid wanted to be in some of them too :)
After all that, we did a little shopping at Walmart, then headed to Lander to the city park. This is the most awesome park I think I've ever been to.
It has this whole little town that has stairs up on the back side of it, and the kids can stand on the balcony of the hotel or cross a bridge to the slides.
It even has a couple of climbing walls.
There is a "tot lot" playground fenced separately for the littler kids, which has a railroad theme to it. See the horse on the fence?
That was a maze puzzle that the kids can put their fingers into and trace through the puzzle (there are channels - not just paint) and these are all around the playground area.
The fences are lined with these tiles - made with concrete, with etchings in them and then painted to look old and faded. They were all original and hand created.
There were several benches for parents to sit at, as well as this cool table that had a tile checkerboard on it. How fun is that? I want one of these for our backyard - ha.
Needless to say, the kids had an amazing time playing here.
These two - can you believe it - share the same birthday, but are a year apart. The one on the right is our two year old. The other is our daycare kid who is one. They played together so well!
Not sure whose kid this is on the left, but my two year old is in the tunnel.
It was a challenge to get the seven year old to hold still long enough to get a picture. He had a great time playing with all his friends.
The two year old was most interested in running and playing with sticks. Typical boy!
The trees were the perfect golden yellow, and the park was full of them. We enjoyed our lunch and a long time playing before deciding we HAD to load everyone back up for the long ride home.
It was a fun day! We also stopped at a ghost town on the way home, but I'll leave that for another post. This is far too long already!