It’s official. I’m addicted. To blueberry picking.
A couple months ago I took my oldest strawberry picking out at my parents’ in SW Illinois. Ever since then I’ve been chomping at the bit to try some blueberries. After all, we really don’t live that far from the “Blueberry Capital of the World“. So when I got the “official invite” from my friend my response was “When can we go?”
I really wasn’t too sure what to expect. My strawberry picking experience included a lot of squatting down and rummaging through leaves to find nice ripe berries. My friend kept telling me we had to climb up little hills to pick our blueberries. All that kept running through my head was Fats Domino singing, “I found my thrill…on Blueberry Hill”! Oh, and how am I ever going to get any blueberries picked with a 3 yr old and 1 yr old??
We wanted to get an early start. Because the slogan at the Allen Family Farm in Belleplain (NJ) is “The early bird gets the homemade cinnamon bread.” My friend called to make sure there were plenty of blueberries and to see what time they opened. 6am? Not with all our kids! (Did I mention she has a 4 yr old and a 7 mo old?) We aimed to meet at her house at 8. Which turned into 9. The kids were beyond excited the whole ride up. And so were we!
We were able to strap the two little ones into my double jogger and push it out to the blueberry field. The big kids walked on their own. My friend taught us all which berries to pick (the darker, the better) and we were off. The best part is – all the blueberries you eat in the field are FREE! And our kids sure took advantage of that. (Heck, so did we!)
If you’ve never had totally fresh, organic blueberries, you don’t know what you’re missing. And at $1.25/ lb (roughly 75 cents/ pint) you can’t beat them! Plus knowing that I went out there and picked them myself is totally rewarding. And with all the vitamins, antioxidants, and fiber inside blueberries, it’s one snack I don’t mind my kids noshing on all morning!