Tag Archives: fall

The Corn Maze and the “Fun” Farm

The weather lately has been quite gorgeous, it almost still feels like summer. Apparently that ends today, but this past weekend was sunny and beautiful and after spending the majority of Saturday inside getting all my stuff out of boxes and organized, Sunday I just wanted to be outside. Evan and I decided to hit up Pingle’s Farm, an apple orchard/fun family farm-type place in Durham Region.

First though, we stopped at my Dad and Mona’s since we were in the area. They have a new addition to the fam and we wanted to meet him.


This is Ritson. He is a 12 week old golden retriever and he is just a little beauty. We took about a million pictures of him, but he is still a crazy puppy and will not sit still for one second, so this is the only one that isn’t blurry.

Well, this one too.


You can see my dad’s fanny pack peeking out. He really loves that thing. Very handy for him, because storing his wallet and keys in the pocket of his sweatpants was making them fall down. Big troubles, I tell ya.

Anyway, I loved Ritson immediately and I forgave him for all the scratches he gave me on my bare legs when he jumped all over me because he was just so cute. He almost made me want a dog. Almost. I am not yet ready, and Winnie says no thanks.

After fam time it was farm time. We headed over to Pingles, which was absolutely rammed with people. I think Evan and I were the only ones there who didn’t have children with us, but you are never too old for fun farm times, so I didn’t feel out of place.


We’re all mounties in Canada, eh?!

I was really excited to visit this particular orchard because it has a giant corn maze.


This is unlike any corn maze I’ve ever seen. It is eight acres of corn maze amazingness, and it is shaped like Canada. Here’s the map:


So the black lines are where you walk through the maze, and the white parts are where the corn is. Here’s the aerial view (back in the summer though, when the corn was still green).


Pretty groovy. I’ve never heard of a corn maze sponsored by a morning show before, but I guess someone needs to pay for the upkeep of that thing (actually I’m pretty sure the people are paying for the upkeep because it’s $6 to go through it).

I checked their website first to see if this would be a suitable orchard for us to visit, and when I saw that maze I was sold immediately. I didn’t care about the price and I didn’t care if everything else was lame, I just wanted to check out that corn maze. So after a quick lunch at Pingles (turkey sandwich for me, hotdog for Evan the hotdog), we headed right for the maze.


There are little checkpoints throughout the maze so you can kind of reorient yourself, and they have interesting facts about Canada all through it.


I had no idea about the pancakes. I did not see any pancakes at the Calgary Stampede when I was there last year. Must go back.

The corn was really tall and the entire time I had no idea where we were going or what direction we were headed in. Evan would look at the map and point and say “Oh, we’re in Hudson Bay,” and “Oh, we’re in Saskatchewan,” and I still have no idea how he knew that. I thought we were just lost in a corn field. Everything looked the same to me, and had I been alone it probably would have taken me hours to get out (if you do the maze correctly it takes 45 minutes to an hour).


But we made it out of there successfully, and we made good time. It was absolutely the highlight of Pingles for me.

Afterwards we scored some candy apples…


And then we headed over to the “Fun” Farm area.


That sign was fun, but overall I was pretty unimpressed with the “Fun” Farm. I was really excited to see the animals, but there were only a couple of chickens, two hiding bunnies, and a few goats. Possibly an alpaca but he was also kind of hiding. And a few other activities for kids as well. I think it was $5 to get in there, and I remember thinking that Evan’s parents should start charging admission into their little farm – it is WAY more fun.

Honestly, aside from the maze, I was not very impressed with Pingles. It just seemed like a big obvious cash grab. If you go there with children, you are spending $100 easily. It cost money to do everything. And to get into the actual apple orchard it was $25. You could not even enter the orchard without paying (or spending $25 for an empty bag, same thing). Once you were in there it was basically all-you-can-pick (or as many apples as you can fit in the bag they gave you), but even if you picked 100 apples, that’s still 25 cents an apple and not much better than the grocery store. And even if you picked 100 apples, what are you going to do with them all? I wish I had time to spend my days making apple crisp and apple pie.

I was hoping to get about 10 apples, but I am not spending $25 for 10 apples, so…no apple picking actually went down. I have been to apple orchards before and it was free to get in and then you just paid for the apples you picked by the pound. I went to Algoma Orchards a couple years ago and they had way more farm animals and it was free, you just paid for the apples you pick. It was a much better operation if you ask me. Here it just seemed like they took a fun and cheap fall activity and exploited it.

I guess this farm was more commercial. Like the (super lame) amusement park of apple-picking.

And end rant. I’m sorry for that, but it bothered me.

We did have a fun day though, and I did LOVE the maze.

I also had the best ice cream cone of possibly my life on the way home.


Which I would have spent $10 on, so I guess I have my priorities.


Apples and Sheep and Llamas, Oh My

Yesterday in the late morning, Ando and I headed out to the grocery store, but since the weather was nearly 30C with beautifully sunny skies, we decided grocery shopping could wait – we wanted to be outside in the sun!

Instead we drove to a nearby apple orchard for some apple-picking action.

It felt weird to be doing such a fall activity in such summery weather (I was sweating hardocre, it was HOT!), but it was an amazing time.

I have not been apple picking in years, and I don’t think I have ever been to this particular orchard.  Even though it was late in the season, there were still a ton of apples.

And beautiful views.

There was also a corn maze, which I was pretty excited about since I also have not been in a corn maze in years.

Can you spot Alejandrew?

He was trying to sneak up on me, but I was watching him like the big creeper I am.

And we made some new friends.

Sheep! They were actually extremely cute. It made me want a sheep for a pet. They reminded me a bit of Winnie (our cat, if you are new around here).

But any cute animal that is a bit chubby and on the slow side reminds me of Winnie.

And then…

Llama time!

The llama’s were not quite as nice as the sheep. And actually, I thought they were quite snobby.

But somehow we lured that little llama out of his snobby shell and got him to smile.

It was an awesome little impromptu trip to the apple orchard, and I am pretty sure we are going to have to make this a fall tradition.

We went a little crazy on the apples though…

I have no idea why we got so many, or what in the name of pizza I am going to do with all of them… But apple crisp sounded like a good start.

I love apple crisp, it is one of my favourite desserts, but for some reason I have never made it before.

My friend Joanna‘s mom makes the best apple crisp, and she knows how much I like it, so when we were in high school, whenever she would make apple crisp she would send a little plate of it to school with Joanna just for me. I will always remember that.

Anyway, I have always assumed that apple crisp was really difficult to make, but after doing some googling and checking out recipes, I saw that it actually looked super easy! I ended up settling on this recipe from AllRecipes, but I did change a few things to slightly healthify it up (a bit, there is still quite a bit of sugar and butter, so don’t get too excited).

Here is the recipe with my modifications.

Apple Crisp



  • 6 large apples, peeled, cored and sliced
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 tablespoon whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup water


  • 1 cup oats
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Place the sliced apples in a 9×13 inch pan. Mix the rest of the apples ingredients (white sugar, flour, ground cinnamon) together, and sprinkle over apples. Pour water evenly over all.
  3. Combine the oats, flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda and melted butter together. Crumble evenly over the apple mixture.
  4. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for about 45 minutes.

Mine turned out beautifully.

Seriously addicting though.

Andrew told me that is what he ate for lunch today, haha.

I will be back with regular eating stuff tomorrow, but tonight I am feeling lazy after my busy day at work.

Have a great night!


Thanksgiving Swag

Hey guys! Happy Thanksgiving to all of my fellow Canadian pals! Or Eat Day, as it is otherwise known :).

My big eat day was yesterday.  We headed up to Ando’s parents in the early afternoon to start the celebration. It is also Andrew’s sister Catherine, her fiance Corrie, and Taylor’s birthday’s within the next week, so we had a lot to celebrate!

The table was beautifully set in honour of the occasion.

Taylor, Ando’s nephew Devyn and I made those pumpkin place settings in honour of Thanksgiving four years ago, and they are still kicking around.

Taylor is always the birthday girl on Thanksgiving, so her pumpkin is extra special.

The weather was GORGEOUS. This entire weekend has been absolutely ridiculous on the weather front. Pretty amazing for Thanksgiving weekend. I can’t get enough of it! Since it was so nice, Taylor, Caitlyn and I hung out in the backyard for most of the afternoon until dinner was ready.

We had a pretty serious handstand and cartwheel contest, and some other games that Caitlyn made up.

She is seriously the cutest ever, and such a little ham for the camera.

Buzz Lightyear (aka Sam) made an appearance as well.

But he is only Buzz while he is in costume, just FYI. I made the mistake of calling him Buzz when he was back in his regular clothes and he said “NO!!! I am NOT Buzz anymore!” all angrily. I guess it is like a Superman thing. You need your costume for special powers.

Taylor really wanted to teach us how to be “swag”.

Which I’m pretty sure I fail at.

Andy seems to have it down though.

It is all about the pointing, I guess.

Papa (Andrew’s Dad) is clearly a natural as well.

Actually, I think he may be even more “swag” than Taylor.

We definitely worked up a pretty huge appetite after our backyard shenanigans, which is a good thing because Thanksgiving dinner is a BIG DEAL.

That giant plate of deliciousness is alllll mine. From left: ham, squash, carrots, corn, mashed potatoes, turkey, and Andmo’s grandma’s amazing sausage stuffing in the centre (I had never tried sausage stuffing until I had Andy’s grandma’s, and now I am obsessed.) I also had gravy on the turkey, potatoes and stuffing.

I cleaned my plate entirely and I was absolutely stuffed. I could barely move afterwards. I usually try to stop when I am full but not too full when I am eating, but on holidays, I definitely embrace being TOO FULL. It is not very often a holiday dinner like this makes its way onto my plate, so when it does I take full advantage. I love Thanksgiving! And Christmas, and Easter.

After dinner it was time to do the birthday thang.

The Birthday Gang

Happy Birthday to Catherine, Corrie and Taylor! Taylor turned 13! She is officially a teenager, and way too cool to smile for photos now as you can see.

Though that cake looked delicious, I had a big craving for apple pie since my slice on Saturday, so I opted for a piece of that instead.

With ice cream, of course!

It was a great day, and a great dinner. I am feeling very thankful for food, friends, family, and sunshine. And I am thankful that I will be back into my regular eating routine tomorrow, because my pants can’t take much more of this. Bring on the veggies!

What is your favourite holiday dinner food?
Turkey, mashed potatoes and stuffing for me!


Tell Me About the Pumpkin Goodness (My First Video Blog!)

Hey guys!

Tonight I am abandoning my regular post for a video blog!  I love it when bloggers to video blogs because I feel like I can get to know them a little better, so I thought I’d do one up.

This is my first time ever doing one, and I’m feeling a little antsy posting this but…here ya go!  (Can you spot my little black kitty chilling in the background? :))

(If you can’t view the video, click here)

Hope you have a great evening!