My Trip to the Hill

I don’t think I’ve mentioned this before but a few months back I decided that I needed to celebrate more. Especially since I hate on my birthday so much (more on b-day 2012 soon). So instead of making it all about Oct 14th I decided that the 14th of every month was my new “vacation day” because as an entrepreneur I’m a few years away from getting back to 2 weeks off vacations.

Thus: mini vacations.

In August I started with a day out in San Francisco with some of my favorite ladies: Kasey and Ana.

In September I was in Ft Lauderdale for a conference with Katie, Bianca, Jess, Patrick, Lynan, Lea, Jennifer, Lily, Angela, Andrew, and Ana.

In October, on my actual birthday, Patrick and I explored New York City and then took the train into Stamford, CT.

And this last week my day brought me to Apple Hill in the Lake Tahoe region for a day of frolicking about, books and fruit. I’ll go back and recap those other trips soon but for today: trip to the Hill.

First of all, Apple Hill isn’t so much a city as it is a destination. Spanning Colusa and Placerville, on the way up the mountain to Tahoe, it’s an independent apple grower’s association and consists of over 40 apple, pear, organic fruit, pumpkin and Christmas tree farms.

Most are open for the season though I found that many were closed mid-week. While it can be packed on any given weekend September through November, the week days are pretty deserted making it perfect for my day off.

I stopped in Folsom for coffee + masterminding with my peeps which was pretty uneventful. Except that my hair was out of control.

(ignore the pasty white skin plzthx, the hair – it curls!)

After the coffee break I drove to Placerville for a stop at one of my favorite stores, the Bookery. They have a fantastic selection and if you’re willing to dig a little you can find great books for low prices. I usually hit their young adult section and this time I found two Lois Lowry books I was on the look out for and 3 Nancy Drew hardcovers.

I’m most excited about Messenger, the third in the series from Lowry starting with the Giver and Gathering Blue. These might end up being my Thanksgiving food coma books.

Once I had the books I was looking around for a lunch stop but only succeeded in getting stuck in sidewalk traffic behind a gaggle of graying women. So I ducked into a consignment shop where I ended up finding a really warm purple sweater:

(this is me light testing for a video in my office)

That’s about as much shopping as I can stand nowadays (being old and cranky like) so I went back to the car and headed to Carson Road which goes by many of the stops along Apple Hill. On a busy weekend you can’t even turn on this road there are so many cars. But it is beautiful:

Many of the places I came across were closed, but that didn’t mean that I didn’t stop.

This little path through the trees dropping their leaves so was picturesque. The leaves were turning and I had to snap quickly since I’d just noticed the “no trespassing” sign (come on I went around the lake bit and missed it. honestly.):

There were a few places open and I skipped the ones I’d done before and headed right to the Apple Barn:

That’s what I love about this place: lots of apples. And even though it’s “apple hill” there are some places that don’t have an orchard on site. Some places have pick your own, heres a box of fruit and then there’s the Apple Barn which boosts a pie shop and various baked goods, apple cider made on site and a good variety of fruit:

Personally I got the bags of Fuji and Granny Smith (3 pounds ea) and a quart of apple cider. All for under $9.

This wasn’t even the best part of Apple Barn. Ready for it?

Yeah, it was ridiculously beautiful. Especially compared to today when it’s gray and rainy, this was the perfect day. And while enjoying this view, you might as well enjoy some lunch. including:

I’ll admit, it was a little splurge, but after so much hiking around the hill and orchards and book shopping I needed a little fortification.

I headed home earlier than I normally would knowing that traffic through Sacramento would make me want to scream. Which was a good choice because the pain pills I’d been taking all day?

“May Cause Drowsiness”

It’s a miracle I made it home without nodding off, thanks in no small part to the open window, cool mountain air, blaring radio and talking to myself.

At home I put the cider in the fridge, let the dogs out of cages and then slept for 18 hours. Whomp. Whomp. Dull end to an otherwise fabulous day but I’ve got apples galore, pie plans in the making and more photos to share.

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