My parents came to town for a visit last week and we took them to the coolest pumpkin patch EVER. Seriously, if I could hand out a cool award (as if my vote meant a dang thing) why, I'd walk right past Beth Moore (who is truly soooo cool) and I would crown the owners of the Proverbial Pumpkin Patch as the coolest. Heck, I'd give 'em sashes too. And that's BIG folks, because really, who passes up Beth Moore? ;)
So why the award for the pumpkin patch people?
Check this out.
They place laminated leaf-shaped tags on every. single. pumpkin.
In the entire patch.
And do you know what was on those leaf tags?
A verse from the book of Proverbs.
On every single last pumpkin.
Of course, they get bonus points in my book for being a homeschooling family who is teaching their children all about running a family business as well. In addition to the pumpkins, they're selling homemade potpourri and baked goods too, taking pie orders for Thanksgiving.
This was our first time to this patch. It was a good 20 miles from us, but sooo worth the drive since I absolutely love being in the country and they were definitely out in the middle of nowhere (or so it seemed).
We had seen their sign from the main road, "U-pick, 5 miles south." Okay, 5 miles is a bit of a hike off the main road, but it was a beautiful, balmy fall day filled with lots of sunshine so we thought, "Why not?"
The first time we got lost was when the more traveled country road made a 90º turn to the left and we either had to stay on it or take the less traveled gravel road that continued straight. We decided to knock on a door and ask.
"Naw, I don't think the family down that stone road planted this year, so you'll want to head that'a way. Patch is 3 miles on up."
Now, my parents were following us in their car, which just so happens to have a good paint job (deduce what you will about my van's paint job based on that comment). And after 3 miles had long come and gone, there was still no sign of a pumpkin patch. We again stopped and asked a man on his riding lawn mower (stop #2).
"Aw, yeah. Just cross over the ce-ment ("SEE-ment") bridge, then second stone road on your right."
Okay, will do.
My parents followed behind us, good paint job now on the stone road.
That road twisted and turned and switchbacked us all over the place, then ran along a good couple hundred acres of corn. Still, NO pumpkins.
Through the rearview mirror, we saw my dad stop and ask a farmer in a combine if he knew where the "U-pick" pumpkin patch was.
"Uh,....nope." (stop #3)
On we drove, until I saw a farmer talking with a neighbor. We had all but given up, but I figured we'd been driving around in circles for the better part of an hour, so what could it hurt? One more inquiry (stop#4).
"Sir, can I ask you...."
"Ma'm, are you a pie maker?"
"Whaa? A pie...me,..make,...no. Noooo, I'm not a piemaker...Why???"
"Well see, now that's a pity because I got more squash out back than I could possibly eat. I mean, I eat squash and we love it too. Squash pie, roasted squash, squash soup, and........you don't make pies? Too bad. I was gonna give you some of that squash."
"Well now, wait a minute. My mom makes pies and she's right behind me. And,...we do eat lots of veggies and I could make other things with squash."
Weeell, he gave my mom and I at least 10 butternut squash each, in addition to the biggest squash I've ever seen, the cushaw squash. Oh my! It's a good 2 feet in length and as round as a socker ball in circumference.
Told us he planted 3 plants last year and got just 4 squash off them, then planted 4 plants this year and got 77. Ha!
We promptly thanked him for our bounty gift and were on our way again, with yet another set of directions.
"Cross over two ce-ment ("SEE-ment") bridges, then take the second stone road to your left."
Sheesh, those country folk were fond of their ce-ment bridges and stone roads.
Well, gourd-man was a dang genius, I tell you, because there it was. After many miles on gravel and a good four stops for instructions (not to mention trunks full-o-squash), we finally found the Proverbial Pumpkin Patch.
Our kids carved their pumpkins this evening as we told them how being a Christian is a bit like carving a pumpkin.
"God picks you from the patch,
brings you in, and washes all the dirt off of you.
Then he cuts off the top and scoops out all the "yucky stuff", sin.
He removes the seeds of doubt, hate, greed, etc.,
and then He carves you a new smiling face
and puts His light inside of you to shine for all the world to see."
"You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden."
Live wise in Him!