October 4, 2010

Apple Picking Time!

Gathering Corgyncombe's Favorite Apple!
Corgyncombe's favorite apples in Diane's old crock.

"A mellow October day, when the air was full of an exhilarating freshness which made the spirits rise, and the blood dance healthily in the veins. The old orchard wore its holiday attire; golden-rod and asters fringed the mossy walls; grasshoppers skipped briskly in the sere grass, and crickets chirped like fairy pipers at a feast. Squirrels were busy with their small harvesting, birds twittered their adieux from the alders in the lane, and every tree stood ready to send down its shower of red or yellow apples at the first shake. Everybody was there, - everybody laughed and sang, climbed up and tumbled down; everybody declared that there never had been such a perfect day or such a jolly set to enjoy it, - and every one gave themselves up to the simple pleasures of the hour as freely as if there were no such things as care or sorrow in the world." - from "Little Women" by Louisa May Alcott

Diane's 5th great grandfather was 1st cousin to Louisa May Alcott's great grandfather Samuel May.

An apple picking illustration from "Kitty Darling Chatterbox".

The apple stem is caught in the V of the old apple picker and a gentle tug will bring the apple from the tree. It is then brought down in its cage and deposited carefully in a basket.

Diane takes great joy in using antique tools for their original purpose.

By the lamplight of Diane's favorite old oil lamp.
Now Diane will have to make another apple pie, apple sauce, and apple cake!

Apples are a frequent subject in Tasha Tudor illustrations. They easily and beautifully show and fit in with the loveliness that she is known for and the celebration of Autumn where work goes hand in hand with play. In Tasha Tudor's "Seasons of Delight, A Year on an Old-Fashioned Farm", apples are prominent in many of the activities Tasha illustrates for Autumn: Apples in profusion being gathered in the orchard, cider pressing, and bobbing for apples. In the text Tasha says in Autumn "It's time for picking apples, for making cider, and baking apple pies."

Here is a link to:
The Corgyncombe Courant's September 2009 post about Apples which discusses some books that Tasha Tudor has illustrated with apples


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