My internet service is going down on Friday, because I am changing internet providers, so I am posting Friday’s blog message Thursday night…

My boss brought two huge vats of freshly picked blueberries into the office the other day. Her husband is a blueberry horticulturist; he tries to develop and grow the biggest blueberries for a living. Needless to say, these were not your every day grocery store variety. Plus, they were free! My co-workers and I scrambled for every tuperware container and ziploc bag we could find.

As I was filling my containers with these juicy, blue jewels, I couldn’t help but remember the summer days of youth when I was out in the blueberry fields picking berries with my mom and brother. We always visited a farm that was outside of town, not far from Lake Michigan. My brother and I were always competitive with each other growing up, but when it came to blueberry picking we each had different goals. I aimed to pick the most blueberries possible; he tried to eat the most. The sweltering heat never deterred us, we hardly seemed to notice as we stuffed as many luscious berries into our mouth as we did our buckets. Within an hour, I usually had 2 full buckets; my brother would have one full stomach. He always creeped up behind me and quietly grabbed berries out of my buckets by the hand full in order to make his bucket appear like he’d done some actual work. My mom and I would catch on to his tricks, and we would all start laughing and make fun of his blueberry stained lips and tongue.

When we got the berries home it was like breaking open a treasure chest. Everyone wanted a share of the wares! My dad would gobble down blueberries by the bowl for a snack. My mom would make hot blueberry muffins. My favorite though were the juicy fruit salads we’d often eat with dinner filled with the berries along with thick cubes of watermelon, tart strawberries, and sweet cantaloupe. I could have eaten the fruit for three square meals a day if my parents had let me.

Now, as I sit eating blueberries picked by another hand, it makes me appreciate how much hard work and sweat went into grooming these especially plump berries. I hope to get back out the fields someday and pick my own. The berries I pick just always seem to taste years better than anything I can just buy off a shelf.

Friday’s Simplest Pleasures:

1.) One of the greatest pleasures of summer is enjoying the bountiful harvest of fresh fruits and vegetables.

2.) Picking fresh fruit is a wonderful tradition that can lead to nostalgic memories for a lifetime.

3.) Harvesting your own blueberries is as good for the soul as it is for the stomach.

Whatever you may choose to do this weekend, be sure to enjoy it…