It's still sunny and warm most days but Fall is definitely here. I love driving through light fog in morning, wearing cozy sweaters and seeing pumpkin spice lattes on the menu at Starbucks. One of the family outings that really signals Fall for us is visiting the pumpkin patch at Bates Nut Farm. Driving to Valley Center is a bit of a trek but it's totally worth it to arrive at the farm to see fields of Big Macs in all their orange glory. The Macs were a bit smaller this year, probably due to the drought, but they were still awesome to walk among. I remember when we went last year, Parker was barely sitting on his own and we kept worrying that he would fall off a pumpkin. This year, he was walking about pointing at all the "balls" in the field and fearlessly putting his hand in a goat's mouth to feed it corn kernals. He's getting so big! Truthfully, he was grumpy for most of our visit because his morning nap had been cut short but we were able to capture a few good photos. Besides the pumpkin patch, Bates also has goats and sheep you can feed, pony rides, quilt displays and a whole bunch of tractors on display that the kids can sit on.
1. Arrive early, especially if you want to take photos. The later it gets, the more people there are ruining your shot. The farm opens at 8:30 AM. The lighting is terrible later in the day.
2. Bring plenty of wipes/antibacterial handsoap. There are no hand washing stations where the animals are. Grosssss.
3. This is a porta potty situation.
4. Wear the right shoes. You will literally be walking through a field so wear the right shoes.
5. Last year there were food trucks when we went. This year the only food offerings I saw were kettle corn and ice cream from Mariposa. I would suggest leaving the farm if you want to have a good lunch.
15954 Wood Valley Road
Valley Center, CA 92083
[That dimple though. This kid is growing up so fast.]
Shirt and sweater: Letter Cardigan Zara Kids
Jeans: Skinny Jeans Gap Kids
Shoes: Declan Chukka Boots Target
[Less we ever forget that he's a little boy through and through]
[80% of his photos looked like this. Poor kid. So over sitting on pumpkins.]
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