Thursday, October 25, 2007

A Date with Johnny Appleseed!!

We went to pick some apples and raspberries at a farm in Leominster (pronounced Lemon-stir, don't ask) where the famed Johnny Appleseed supposedly planted some of famous trees!! I didn't realize Johnny was a Massachusettite, Massachusettian, well whatever you call someone from Massachusetts. Who could miss that opportunity? Not us. So we raced over there to get in on the fruit goodies. It was beautiful there, it is only about 30 min. from where we live, although the difference is striking. So we picked some apples especially the Macoun which are the specialty here and only in season for a few weeks out of the year, and some raspberries which were delicious that I made into some freezer jam. But mostly it was fun to be together and just enjoy the beautiful scenery and weather!!
Don't be gourd looking at all these pictures!! Ha,ha,ha.... I know, I know, bad pun, but sometimes you just have to do it!

Picking out his favorite gourd...
Sorry Candyce and Bob, I had to put this one in because it's just awesome!! It looks like a secret service man came out of no where to take down a raspberry thief!!
The Beckstead Men!

Taking a break from picking! All work and no play, makes Oli a dull boy! He loved playing ball with Grandpa!

Kris Tina was right, Oliver is no baby anymore- so we put him to work!! Although I'm not sure how many raspberries actually made it in the bag?

Bubbie and Oliver.

Grandpa, Bubbie, and Oliver picking raspberries.

Zack with our loot of apples and raspberries!! And Oliver doing something suspicious in the background.

I guess Oliver didn't think one bag of apples was enough!

OK not particularly a great picture of me, but the view is the important part. It was beautiful there.

I love when Oliver puffs out his cheeks like that. I don't know why, but it's cute!

Did Johnny Appleseed plant pumpkins too?

Mom and Oliver looking at the Pumpkins!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Our visit to Newport, RI

While Zack's parents were here we went to Newport, RI to see some sites. It's not too far from where we live and so we jetted down there for an afternoon of fun. We ate some lunch and walked around a little. The have a street that has famous old mansions of people like the Vanderbilt's and what not, so we took a drive along this. Our plan was to see these during the daylight, but we got a late start since Oliver had napped longer than expected and so we had to settle for a dark drive by. So--from the dark drive by looks of it, they were amazing and expansive!! We'll have to go back another time and maybe take the tour or something. They all looked like big old chateaus. By the harbor is such a fun seaport kind of feeling. It was really fun to walk around and see the shops and different architecture! Anyway, it was fun and the food was good, and the company was great!!

The harbor near where we ate lunch.

Oliver and Dad at lunch.

We had some chips and salsa and sour cream at lunch and Oliver was having so much fun dipping his chips in the sour cream! I was surprised that he liked sour cream.

Sour Cream Hands!! This boy loves to dip!

Apparently Oliver loves getting water out of a straw! Who knew?

Are you going to finish that?

Grandpa and Oliver

Bob, Candyce, Zack, and Oliver in front of the Cooke Restaurant. Because of course we are part of the Cook with and E family. Maybe not this particular Cooke (with and E) family, but a Cooke (with and E) family! We should have gotten a free meal there I think!!

Beautiful Harbor in Newport

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Reading with Grandpa and Bubbie

Zack's parents came to visit us for a week and we had so much fun with them here!! But I think Oliver enjoyed the undivided attention the most!! We were sad to see them go. It's never long enough when family visit. At least this time we got to have some fun and relax, when my parents came to help us move, we just made them work! (Sorry Mom and Dad- next time we promise to have fun, fun, fun...) Anyway, it was fun and here are some pictures of us kicking around the casa!

Fun with Grandpa and Bubbie

At the farms!

3 or 4 weeks ago I decided we needed to get out of the city and see something else, so I thought maybe there would be some apple picking or something we could do around. Turns out that MA is chuck full of gardens, farms, and orchards to go to and many cater to families. So we picked one not to far away that sounded fun and off we went. It was beautiful and crowded!! I guess everyone else had the same idea. But you could pick your own apples, raspberries, and pumpkins, they also had a corn maze, hay rides, a playground, and a small petting zoo, oh and I can't forget the food!! Homemade apple donuts, apple cider, apple get the picture! So here are a few pictures from our fun there. Oliver didn't really care too much about the goats, but mostly about the wood chips and he liked watching the other kids on the playground. In the end we opted to buy some pre-picked apples only because otherwise you had to pick a whole bushel or peck of fruit and we weren't sure if we could eat all that ourselves. But the apples were delicious and there were so many varieties, I hadn't even heard of a few of them before. All in all it was a great Saturday!!

I'm not sure if this hat was a good idea or not, but I wore it anyway. It did make me easy to spot!!

The Pumpkin Tree

Deciding if he should stick with Dad, or check out the goats.

This goat gave meaning to "Billy Goat Gruff"

I think he was way more into the wood chips and what other people were feeding the goats to actually care to much about the goats themselves.

Oliver enjoying the petting zoo!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Our Baby Oliver

At the Ball Diamond

Oliver loves to go outside and he loves to go to the park by our house. It has a few ball diamonds and a big open field. It also has a playground for little kids, but it is really filthy and garbage everywhere, so we haven't ventured there yet. But the fields are relatively clean especially for MA standards. So we take Oliver there sometimes before or after dinner to run around and have fun. The video is funny because I think I have mentioned before how much Oliver likes rocks and dirt and in the video I guess he is trying to take some home with us because he is putting the dirt in the stroller seat!! That's my little helper!! And the pictures are just plain cute (at least to an adoring mom!)

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Hard at Work!!!

So Zack and I have been busy doing things around the house to get ready for a visit from his parents. We had a room in that was totally out of control because it was basically wall to wall boxes and thus was going to be a tad bit difficult for his parents to sleep in, unless they were going to sleep standing up or draped over a box. So we were in crunch time....We cleaned up the room, found homes for almost everything, patched up the holes in the closet walls with plaster (something our land lord should have done in my opinion), and generally cleaned up the place. So it was good to have the pressure since otherwise I would have probably taken a few more months to get to it all. But anyway-- these are some pics of Zack hard at work scraping some contact paper off the wooden shelves in the hutch in our kitchen and me with my domestic products!! I decided that since the corn was delicious here and I found a deal for 12 ears for a dollar, it was too good to pass up! So I bought 36 ears and prepared it for the freezer!! So now we have a bucket load of frozen corn and yesterday I made some freezer jam with raspberries that we picked with Zack's parents at a local farm here. YUM-O as Rachal Ray would say!!

Elvis and Freud reunited....

An Oreo cookie mouthed Oliver before the Freud fiasco with Dad

Sorry about the sideways picture, but is that baby Elvis trying to sit on Freud's lap??? Baby Elvis doesn't look to happy about it.....maybe he doesn't agree with Freud's theories!!! At Clark University they are pretty famous for their Psychology program, but more importantly it is the home of a nice Freud statue. This is because it is the only place that Freud ever lectured at in the United States, ever. He came to speak at Clark University because he had a friend there or something and so agreed to speak there during his first and only visit to the United States. He gave a speech there and I guess decided he didn't like the U.S. and left immediately after the lecture and returned back to Europe and never came back. So Clark has a statue of Freud out in it's common area in front of the Psych building that Zack attends classes in. (He doesn't usually have pink lipstick on. Oh, those freshmen!!) Oliver has never been afraid of him before, until we tried to put him in an Elvis suit and make him sit on his lap!!! Apparently this was just asking too much!! Yep, that's Oliver crying. Oops.

This is me trying to get Oliver to sit on Freud's lap!! He did not want to, he was afraid of him.....I know what you're thinking---what does that mean? Does he hate his Father and find a jealous relationship with his Mother? Or is there something more? Did Freud secretly steal his gold fish??