So what did we do to celebrate the big day? Well, we spent it together of course. We didn’t do anything fancy. We didn’t dress up. And we didn’t spend very much money. But we did us. We actually originally planned to go away for the weekend to a bed and breakfast and winery in Northern Minnesota, but we made the hard decision to cancel the trip after we had a few unexpected expenses recently (like our tree removal). Yep, we are that boring couple that lives within our means and occasionally forgoes fun for the sake of saving money. Yawn. But it didn’t stop us from having a relaxing day together Saturday with a casual meal and a fun activity on a beautiful day.
Where does one head for a low-key anniversary around here? Well, after loafing around until 11 we finally got our act together to hit the internet looking for apple orchards. Because the inevitable entrance of fall screams apple orchard. We’ve been to quite a few around the Twin Cities over the years, but we wanted to go to a smaller one than some of them that are way too crowded (like Minnetonka and Afton). So we headed to Waconia.
Located about 25 miles west of St. Louis Park, we had never been to Waconia, which is situated on Lake Waconia. We decided to start with a little lunch. We picked Lola’s Lakehouse based solely on its location right on the lake and the possibility to sit out on a patio on a gorgeous Minnesota day.
It was a really fun place with a nautical vibe. This funky chandelier graces the entryway.
We got there at 12:50 and since breakfast was served until 1 we took it as a sign. I went with the buttermilk pancakes and fruit.
While Dain rocked the smoked salmon eggs benedict with breakfast spuds.
They were both pretty good, and the atmosphere was awesome. We took our time out on the patio watching the boats go by and pull in and out of the nearby marina. When we were finally ready to go, we headed to Deardorff Orchards located just a few miles outside of Waconia.
We picked it because they have our favorite apple ever, the SweeTango, which is so popular it sells out at places. If you’ve never heard of it, it’s a hybrid apple created by the University of Minnesota as a cross between Honeycrisp and Zestar apples. They have a patent on it so there is some controversy about who can grow it, which makes it really hard to find. It is kind of creepy to think that people create apples, but this is one good apple if you’ve never tried it. And lucky for us, the cooler in the goodie barn was full of SweeTango, but there was a limit of one bag per family. So we quickly separated and acted like we didn’t know each other so we could get two bags. Just kidding. But the thought did cross my mind.
We’ve never actually picked our own apples, but we took this as our opportunity. It was great because it was not crowded at all, and you could roam among the rows of apples looking for the perfect pick.
We didn’t fill a whole wagon full, but we did come home with two small bags of hand-picked apples.
Unfortunately, they did not have pick your own SweeTangos, but they did have McIntosh and Haralson ready to pick.
We also couldn’t resist an apple donut to share, which was amazing. And they had samples of all of their apples and a lot of their specialty jams and salsas as well as some wine slushies.
And it’s not just apples. They grow grapes too, and it’s connected to the Parley Lake Winery. For $5, you can sample all of their local creations, which is a pretty good deal.
After our afternoon at the orchard and vineyard, we headed home for more relaxation. We enjoyed some carrot cake with our wedding cake topper on it, which was a good alternative to freezing wedding cake for a year (ick). It came with a few different flags and of course one says Happy Anniversary.
We also set up the tripod and took a picture of ourselves with a little “1″ sign so that hopefully we can do this every year and make a little photo collage someday.
So like I said, it wasn’t anything fancy, but it was nice to take a break from all of our projects for a day and to just relax. How about you? How do you celebrate anniversaries or other special occasions in your life?