I love heading out to Sauvie Island and Kruger’s Farm all times of the year, but when there are corn mazes and caramel apples, we’ve got even more of an incentive to make the short trek out there.
It’s hard to believe that all this farmland is just fifteen minutes from downtown Portland — and about twenty five from my house.
Once you cross the small bridge, everything feels different.
Kruger’s Farm is just a minute or two down the main road and the first thing we always do when we’ve got Bailey with us is walk out to the big oak three in the middle of the field and let him run around a little bit.
There were still some leftover items behind the tree from a previous party
and behind a wood counter out there I found a souvenir from what looks like one of their Farm Dinners (I went to one last year).
There was no longer evidence of any of those tomatoes or berries or other mid-season produce in the fields, but there were hundreds of pumpkins.
Oliver went right for one–as did I
while Charlotte looked around for awhile until she found the one that spoke to her.
We traipsed through the fields on this glorious Indian summer day with our pumpkins
and headed into their store to pay for them — plus a treat or two.
Roasted and buttered corn –
or candy topped caramel apples?
We’re such a “both” kind of family, so that’s what we did.
On the ride home, we noticed Bailey was particularly obsessed with the ear of corn Charlotte and I were sharing, so we let him try it too, holding it for him so he wouldn’t choke.
We had eaten most of it, but there were still some odd kernels left on it, and then he polished those off and then licked off every last buttery bite.
Bailey was in love — and then within seconds of finishing his corn he was fast asleep.
The next morning was the Big Day.
While the kids were at school I made a huge batch of Scarecrow/Boo Snack Mix and prepared it for deliveries.
I’ve talked about Chex Mix and my obsession with it before, but I thought I’d try to make it even better this year.
Imagine a garlicky and cuminy-butter drizzle over a wonderful combination of primo salty snacks (Kettle Ridged potato chips, Bugles, Goldfish, sourdough pretzels, Juanita’s Tortilla Chips, crunchy vegetable sticks and buttered popcorn in addition to Chex cereals). Now add candy corn, Reese’s Pieces and M & M’s.
The end result is a crispy, salty, crunchy mix that gives you every other bite or so something sweet or peanut buttery (just to keep things interesting).
It’s so trashy — and yet so so good.
I made 42 packages and started delivering it to various people– friends of my kids, older neighbors, and a few people I hadn’t seen in a while.
Luckily I had a helper who was willing to help me with all my drop-offs.
We had so many we had to make a couple trips.
I loved using these Japanese cups from Daiso (I go to their outpost in Seattle twice a year and stock up on party supplies and various goodies).
Everyone seems to like something salty as a respite from all the sweet offerings of this time — and it’s the perfect thing to nibble on watching hours of television or pumpkin carving.
(Or nervously watching baseball. Or the polls).
And last but not least, I decided that this year I was going to go all out with the trick or treat offerings. Time to up my game.
I love seeing kids all dressed up and now that I’m down to just one kid who will dress up (here she is in her homemade strawberry costume)…
… I’ve learned that a good stash of goodies lures in more people to your house and they tend to linger more when they like what you’re offering.
I’m happy to say that I think this year my trick-or-treat offerings were the best yet.
Here’s a glimpse of my table.
We offered three kinds of chips, four different kinds of mini-Pringle cans, six different kinds of full-size candy bars, gummies, peanut butter cracker packages, different kind of granola bars and Capri Sun cherry juice packets.
So whether you had a sweet tooth or you’re a salty snacker or if you (heaven forbid) just wanted something a little healthier or substantial, we had you covered. Any parent who walked to my door was also offered some of my homemade snack mix if they needed a little something something.
It’s all about choice here, and once Charlotte IG-ed our table, classmates started showing up and wanting in on the action.
So that was our Halloween — how was yours?
Did your kids– or you– have the opportunity to trade afterwards (arguably more fun than collecting is swapping for favorites)?
And judging from the lines at Target, I know I wasn’t the only one buying half-price candy yesterday, the day after.
After all, holiday baking is just around the corner.