New England Weekend

  1. We stuck around Boston this weekend, and even though we usually like to get out of town, it was a pretty awesome Indian Summer weekend.
  2. On Saturday, I took the boys to meet up with my best college friends and their families at the Head of the Charles regatta. There is nothing better in this entire world than old friends. Getting the three boys out to such a huge event wasn’t totally ideal, but I wouldn’t have missed it for the world.
  3. We met up afterwards with Jonathan and Nina and Leo and walked around shopping on Newbury Street. Sounds like a nightmare with 5 kids, right? It was actually fun. Especially once Nina and I ditched all the boys at Sonsie and headed off just the three of us–Me, Nina, and Amex 😉
  4. On Sunday, we went apple-picking at a local apple farm. I never went apple picking before I met my husband. Apparently its a very New England thing to do and literally everyone goes every single year. No one could understand how I made it 28 years without picking my own apples.
  5. We apparently waited a little late in the season–at first we couldn’t find any apples on the trees, just a ton on the ground. I was not about to spend $100 for apples off the ground. Luckily we met some nice girls who told us the secret…look on the lowest down branches, close to the trunk. In other words, get on the ground and crawl under the trees and you may find 3-5 apples per tree. Or, alternately, send your small children in for you.
  6. Another thing I’ve learned since having kids is that apple-picking is not just about the apples. Each farm has its own little country fair rolled into the venue.
  7. River rode the mechanical bull, and he dove off as soon as it started moving. He jumped up and said “Mom, that was a WILD ride, right?!?!” Sure thing, dude. Wild.
  8. From the apple farm, we headed to Nonna and Papa’s house, where we like to do most of our baking. We settled on apple crisp, apple muffins, and apple butter. I ran into the store solo to grab ingredients and while waiting in line, realized I was gently bouncing the boxes I was holding. As if they were a baby. Serious Mom brain.
  9. I usually just improvise when making apple crisp. But River has been learning to follow steps in directions and recipes, and really wanted to look one up.
  10. Vegan cooking tends to have a lot more ingredients. But in the end it all honestly tastes so much better. We found our apple crisp recipe on Minimalist Baker, and everyone agreed it was the best they’d ever had.
  11. We also made some Apple Oatmeal Muffins (from our imagination…scroll alllll the way down for the recipe!!), and Apple Butter, from Oh She Glows, another of my favorite recipe sites. I’ll have to let you know how that one turns out, though, because it’s still simmering!!
  12. Our whole house smells amazing. Like fall. I could have just bought a scented candle but this was much more fun.

APPLE OATMEAL MUFFINS

3/4 cup flour

1/2 cup almond meal/almond flour

1/3 cup coconut sugar

1 cup oats

1 TBS baking powder

Dash of salt

1/2 cup almond (or other nut) milk

1/2 cup applesauce

1 small banana mashed (I do this instead of an egg, helps hold it all together)

1/4 cup melted coconut oil or vegan butter

1 cup diced apples

Add and blend the dry ingredients first. Then one by one add the liquids, followed by the mashed banana. Sauté the apples in a little coconut sugar then add them to the mixture last. Bake at 350-ish for 20-ish minutes and voilà!

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