School was over for two weeks, North Texans have seen a few 100F hot days' already, and children start to get restless inside. It was time to go outside and it was time to pick some blueberry.
Picking blueberry in early summer has become a family tradition for us in recent years. We went to blueberry picking every year at local berry farms - mostly with one of Justin and/or Nicholas' friends and his/her family. Last Saturday we went to Bailey's Berry Patch at Sadler, about 60 miles north of Dallas, with 4 other families.
As we walked close to the berry patch on this hot, windy Saturday morning, we saw that the west side of the patch had quite a few bare spots, and many berry trees were barely a foot tall comparing to the usually 6 foot tall trees. We went to the east side. Even there I could hardly see anything blue on the berry trees! Nevertheless we started searching for ripe blueberries, with a low target of picking 1 bucket of blueberries from the whole family for the morning. Under the sunny blue sky, with live country music from the farm's store, we looked for blueberries by walking around it, changing viewing angles by squatting by the tree, and we could find one or a few full ripe blueberries once for a while!! After about 90 minutes, we picked only about half bucket of blueberries. This is apparently not a good year - in previous years we could easily pick 2 buckets of large blueberries in 2 hours. It turned out that the hails this spring did much the damage. The change to less experienced owners did not help either.
We quit picking berry around 10am, and stopped at the store to enjoy the live music, chat with each other, and cold water or drinks. The four girls in our group each had a face or body painting there.
Despite the fact that picking blueberry this morning was more like panning gold, we enjoyed it - finding blueberries, breathing fresh country air, and listening to live country music.