Friday, May 20

Sandy River Apples

I love apples. Actually I love red delicious cold crisp apples.

Let me back up. I have a very dear friend, Carol Gilbert. We met in 1978 when our boys were in pre-school in Poway we've been friends for a very long time! Carol is a magnet. She attracts friends wherever she goes. She is one of those gals that everyone loves from the get-go. I could probably spend hours if not days writing stories about Carol and the fun we've had over the years.

At the time we met. her husband was in the Navy, she had two boys who became very close to my own two boys. Oddly enough though, pre-school was the only time they shared a classroom. But that didn't stop us from building a close relationship.We were constantly taking our boys to the park to play or had sleep overs and pool parties.Carol babysat my boys as I returned to work part time.... I put shelving paper in her kitchen cupboards when they moved to Ramona. Carol brought me dinner when I had back surgery, I did her laundry when her washing machine broke. You get the picture.... best friends.

But being a Navy family, they were transferred back to DC for a few years...we kept in touch best we could.. in fact Jerry and I took a vacation back east and stayed with the Gilberts for a few days.. wow that brings back memories! They lived outside DC near Arlington if I remember correctly... her husband worked at the Pentagon. I remember telling Carol one thing I wanted to do while we were there was to take the Subway into DC at 6am and experience that with all the worker-bees starting off their day.. as I had never been on a Subway and the thought of it was pretty exciting... ok I'm weird. In fact I remember Jim, her husband (and Jerry), looking at me like I was nuts ....  maybe I was. Regardless, the next morning  me and Carol and Jerry and four little boys ranging from 3 years to 5 years old,  found ourselves on the Red Line or Blue Line or Yellow Line.. I'm not sure which, along with probably 3000 other people who were dressed in business attire, reading their Wall Street Journals, or sipping Starbucks, or sleeping.... on our way to the smack center of our nation's capital.... I was jazzed!

But I digress.... so back to loving apples.... As I mentioned, Carol and I tried to keep in touch and in fact they ended up back in Poway, then moved to Ramona, Carol had another baby boy, moved back to Poway, Jim retired from the Navy, Carol ends up becoming a realtor, then a teacher then maybe even the Principal.. can't remember... as we didn't get to see each other much .... our boys now all graduated from high school, married with kids... you know how life flies by so quickly. All the while the Reeds were still in Poway.. same place.. .same job... digging roots....

So here's the best part... I run into  Carol at Albertsons a few years ago... in the Produce department of course... sooo tickled to see each other... we vow to get together.. and we did a few times... and now even more recently we've both drawn closer again and I couldn't be happier. Ends up they live about two miles from us... we're both empty nesters now... Carol loves to Quilt... I love to stamp... it's like time stood still and we were never apart.

Carol grew up in  Maine, where her father still lives on the Farm in the house where he was born back in 1913. It's an Apple Farm. I remember Carol always talking about her father and the farm and remember she would visit him often. And more recently now as he's gotten older, Carol goes back several times a year to be there.... especially to help manage the apple business.... and of course as ingenious as Carol is, she's turned their farm barn into a Quilting Retreat for her friends to come and get away for a quilting weekend.... better than a bed and breakfast! The Sandy Farms Quilt Retreat opens this August... I'm sooo excited for her... as her life long dream of doing this comes true!

Of course she still is also managing the apple farm business... check out their Blog here. And especially check out the tab about Restoration on the Barn here. In fact, this Fall Jerry and I are going to finally go visit her and help pick apples! I'm so excited!

Here's a very special quilt square if you will that Carol made me when Judee died. Carol and Judee had met each other, because of course you want all your own best friends to meet each other too,  and of course they hit it off together too as they both quilted... we event went Christmas shopping together on my favorite shopping day of the year... December 26th!... we had lunch we chatted we laughed we bonded... great wonderful memories!

So thank you Carol so much for being such a great friend over the years... I'm so excited to spend more time together and finally come to the Sandy Rivers Apple Farm and share a very special part of your life with you!

ps... wait til you see one of the cards I'm making for June Stamp-a-Stack... here's a hint... apples anyone?

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