Flashback: Apple Picking at Mountain Orchard

photo (8) Apparently this is THE place to be for apple picking every year! Ali wrote this post several years ago....have you been to Mountain lately?

It's that time of year again. The air is getting crisper and the kids are settling into their school routine. For me, fall always means apple picking. Every fall for the past several years, my girls gather a bunch of friends and we go apple picking.

Mountain Orchard has always been our orchard of choice. It's a great place for families, it's close to Ottawa (only a short 40 minute drive on the 416 toward Kempville) and the majority of the trees there are actually the direct descendants of the original McIntosh tree, first discovered by John McIntosh in Dundela, Ontario, in 1829. I think that's pretty cool.

donut5Mountain Orchard is about more then just apple picking. There are corn maizes, wagon rides, a hay jump and (best of all) the hot fresh apple cider donuts that are made right in front of you. They are the real reason we go back every year. Well, that and the fresh apple cider.

16My girls love climbing into the apple trees to get the apples and there are trees for kids of all ages - with ladders for the older kids to climb and low hanging branches for the little ones.

No matter where you go apple picking, it's a great way to spend time with your family and friends and get outside to enjoy the fall weather. All the apple orchard near Ottawa are open now and many, like Mountain Orchard, are open every day until the apple picking season is done (usually by the end of September).

Have you been apple picking yet? We're going again this weekend! 




Flashback: Apple Picking At South Mountain Apple Orchard

by Natasha

Apple season is upon us - do you go apple picking?  What's your favourite place?

You can tell that fall is just around the corner when the Apple Orchards are open and buzzing with people.  Whether you are out to pick the delicious fruit to make the perfect pie, apple crisp or just simply enjoy an apple as is, the apple orchard is the perfect outing.

We recently visited Mountain Orchard with our family and friends. It is located just 10 minutes outside of Kemptville.  Our family and friends had a great time picking delicious, juicy LOBO and Macintosh apples.

When you arrive, there is wagon ride to take you out into the orchard to pick your apples.  Mountain Orchard has Lobo, Macintosh, Spartan, Cortland, Eden, Empire, Honey Gold, Silkin, and Honeycrisp.   Depending on when you go to pick apples each type may not be available based on the growing season.

Mountain Orchard has a ton of great activities to offer families.

There is a cute little park beside the store that parents can sit and relax, sip their apple cider and watch their kids play on the swings.

The whole family can explore the giant corn maze.  It’s a barrel of laughs running around trying to find your way out.  Kids can also roll and jump around in the stack of straw.

They have the most delicious apple donuts I have ever eaten, called Apple Cider Dougnuts - YUM! Mountain Orchard is open daily from 9am to 5pm starting at the end of August and the season concludes Thanksgiving weekend.

Make sure to call ahead to avoid disappointment!

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Playing together

by Lara There are days when I struggle not to just hand over the iPhone or the iPad to the kids so I can get something done with a bit of quiet - for my boys it's pretty much the only surefire way to make that happen.

I realized recently though, that the iPad can be something my older son and I can enjoy together.  Because it holds his attention so keenly, there is no other activity, even if I sit with him to take part in it, that he enjoys at much.  Instead now, we have found a game that we like to play together!

Water is a Disney game (that only costs 99 cents!) that requires thought and logic, all while trying to give a crazy gator a bath :)There's water and slime and acid. There are ducks and cogs and hoses. Together we figure out if the water eliminating the slime so the acid can contaminate the second pool of water, thereby burning the fast-growing moss is the best way to get the last container of water down through the tubes to the gator.  It's hard, and my five year old loves trying to figure it out.  He also loves when we work together to figure it out.

So now, instead of just handing over the iPad when I need some down time, I realize that the iPad can be some us time and I'm really enjoying it!

Do you play video games with your kids?

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Recipe: Give the gift of Apple Crumble!

by Amanda I love this recipe, it's a great idea for a little giveaway for the holidays, relatively inexpensive and very easy to do on a Sunday afternoon.

Apple pie filling

2 1/4 cups granulated sugar 1/2 cup cornstarch 1 tsp ground cinnamon 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg 1/2 tsp salt 5 cups water 1 1/2 tbsp lemon juice 1 lb granny smith apples, peeled, cored & sliced

Place a rack in the bottom of a large stock pot. Fill pot with hot water. Sterilize 5 x 1 pint canning mason jars, 5 lids and 5 rings by placing on rack, jars upright. Bring water to a boil.

Boil 10 minutes and remove with a holder and allow jars to air-dry.

Combine sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and water in a large saucepan. Place over high heat and cook until thick and bubbly, stirring frequently.

Remove from heat and stir in lemon juice.

Tightly pack apples into sterilized jars. Slowly pour syrup over apples, covering them completely. Gently tap jars on countertop to allow air bubbles to rise. Screw lids on jars.

Carefully lower jars into pot using a holder. Add more boiling water if necessary, until tops of jars are covered by 2 inches of water.

Bring water to a full boil, cover and let stand for 30 minutes.

Remove jars and place on cloth covered surface until cool.

Once cool, press top of each lid with finger, ensuring that seal is tight - lid doesn’t move up or down at all. Sealed jars can be stored for up to a year.

Crumble Topping

3 cups brown sugar 2 cups oatmeal 1 1/3 cups all purpose flour 4 tsp cinnamon 1 cup butter

Combine brown sugar, oatmeal, flour and cinnamon in a bowl. Cut in the butter until crumbly. Package in cellophane bags.

What's your favorite Christmas gift to make?

Amanda was born and raised in Ottawa where she continues to live with her husband and son “J”. Amanda is bilingual and interests include reading, blogging, socializing, and advocacy on children and teen issues.

Canadian Mint Family Pass Giveaway

Our second winner of a Family Pass to the Canadian Mint is Sherry!

Methodology: Tweets and comments are put in chronological order and a random number is generated by Random.org. The number today was 4.

HOW TO ENTER We are going to be giving out one pass a day for the next 10 days.  To enter leave a comment on the post from that day or tweet the following:

I’d love to win a family pass to the @canadianmint from #kidsinthecapital this holiday season!  http://www.kidsinthecapital.ca/?p=6700

You can enter every day, but you can only win once. One entry per day per family.

Winners will be picked each day from all comments and tweets received by 8:00pm of the same day. If you'd like to know more about this giveaway and the Canadian Mint, please read our introduction post.

Best Apps for Kids –Alexandre Minard

by Kari If you read my earlier post, Best Apps for Kids - Toddlers, there were several great suggestions for toddlers and more from fellow Kids In the Capital readers.  One in particular caught my eye, FW Deluxe.  Within a month of our iPad purchase, I was told at a BBQ that I *had* to get First Words.  No problem.  Um, which one?  I downloaded a smattering of lite or sampler versions, including FirstWords Sampler, First Words Lite, and then I fell in love with Alexandre Minard.

As I love free, I initially downloaded the Alexandre Minard’s My First Words Animals lite – the English, French, Spanish, and Italian versions.  Eventually, I laid down my $1.99 for the entire My First Words collection.  Yes, I did the same for the Mes Premiers Mots and Mis Primeras Palabras.  The graphics are fun, the sound effects cute, and the clincher - there are three difficulty levels.  My toddler can play on the simplest level, my five year-old the second level, and my older nieces and nephews use it on the hardest level.

Once I discovered my love for Alexandre, I had to see more.  My next purchase would be Animal Matching for Kids, a worthwhile purchase at $1.99.  In an effort to curb my spending, I downloaded the lite version of My First Puzzles and My First Puzzles:  Circus.  I lasted a week before I caved and bought the full versions!

At this point, developers began to build In-App Purchase capabilities in their apps.  Alexandre Minard is no exception; you may download almost all their apps for free but you will only get a subset of the functionality.  In the My First Puzzles line, it appears standard to get two of the puzzles unlocked.  As a word of caution, it may be best for all involved to disable In-App purchases under Settings -> General -> Restrictions.  If you want to upgrade, it only requires a few taps, your password, and a minimum of $1.99.  Four months post-download, my children continue to happily play the limited versions of My First Puzzles Numbers, Alphabet, Dinosaurs, and Snakes!

Do you have a favourite Developer or Series? Let us know.

Kari is the mom of two girls, a 5 year old and a 1 year old.  She can be found frequenting free activities throughout the city in hopes it’ll tire them out enough to sleep through the night.

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