Grandparents Day at the Tree House
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Cider Season

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We are in the middle of cider season here on the Gray compound.

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The first (and most work-intensive) step is to gather up the apples. Kim puts them in old clean chicken feed sacks and loads them into the Gator...


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Here Kassie and Kelsey are filling the buckets with apples...

 

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...which Karter is pouring into the hopper of the cider press for Kaden to work down into the chopper.


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This cider press is well over 100 years old. In its early life, it was hand-cranked but now it's been rigged up with an electric motor.

 

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The apples get chopped up,...


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...the pulverized apples fall down into a slatted bucket,...

 

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...and then the cider is pressed out of the apples through the slats.


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The last step of the process is straining the cider, to get out any apple debris. 


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Kelsey and Kassie are experienced squeezers.


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This was our apple crew one rainy afternoon a few weeks ago. Our friend James from church joined the family crew that day.

 

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Every week we have a different crew, whoever happens to be available when Papaw gets the cider-makin' notion.

This past week it was Krew and Juni who helped us.

 

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Every week the cider gets sweeter and more delicious! 

 

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They both tried their hands at cranking the press down a few turns, but Papaw had to finish it up.

 

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If there is a living creature to be found, Juni is all about it...even this tiny worm...


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The pressed apple bits get dumped on the garden for natural fertilizer.


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Papaw and his two adorable helpers brought the coolers of cider up to the cabin for putting in jugs.

 

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So far we've made about 60 gallons of cider...with lots more to come. One of the reasons I love autumn...

...it's cider season.

 

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