It’s apple harvest season! Here in Ontario, we have an abundance of apples! According to Ontario Apple Growers, there are 15 main varieties of apples grown on the nearly 16 000 acres of land dedicated to the production of the fall fruit. The top five varieties are: MacIntosh, Gala, Empire, Red Delicious and Northern Spy. My favourite happens to be MacIntosh. They are smaller and a bit more tart. Ohh! My mouth is watering just thinking about it… apple butter on warm toast, apples and peanut butter… apple pie, apple crumble, apple crisp (is there a difference?) … apple sauce smothering a good farmer’s sausage…. Okay, Okay, I digress.
One of the neat things about living in Canada is when the cooler days of September begin to roll around, the farmer’s markets begin to pop up everywhere… with not only local apples, but an abundance of harvest goodies. We happened to frequent a few in the last couple of weeks, and the hubby and I marvelled at the people carting off huge bags full of peppers and tomatoes and colourful bouquets of flowers! Rich, rich shades of golds and reds and deep pinks and chocolate browns. Truly, our Creator has displayed His handiwork in the beauty of the harvest!
Now, I am a city girl born and raised in the suburbs… so I know I cannot comment on the work that encompasses the idea of “harvest”. However, I am very thankful for the farmers who do provide me with the fruits of their labours! Yet, I was reminded again, just today, that although we can plant a seed, water and tend it, and even though we hope and pray and wish it to grow… only God can do the actual miracle of life thing. I am fascinated, as a life scientist, by the idea of cloning and test tube creations. I am thrilled by genetic codes, developmental biology and mutation, diversity and evolutionary principles. We have learned to “create” so much… but not quite from scratch yet… we still need a starting point. Apparently there are some 7 500 varieties of apples worldwide. Just think about that. A simple “apple” could conjure up 7 500 varieties. Each one of those varieties then produce different actual fruits: some perfectly round, some bumpy, some red, some green and some yellow! And, of course, they taste slightly different… tart, sweet, sour… wow… I am boggling my own mind. So let’s move on….
Let’s think about the symbol of “apple” for a moment… for many of you (and for Google!) the first symbol that comes to mind is for apple computers and all things “i”. Apparently Steve Jobs came up with the idea for apple from Newton and the idea of knowledge, gravity, the falling of the apple from the tree and all that. Many educational institutions have adopted the apple for their symbol for this reason as well. Education and the idea of “an apple a day keeps the doctor away” has promoted it as a symbol for health and growth and the furtherance of good futures. The apple tends to have a slightly darker theory as well… especially in religious circles, as the “forbidden fruit” of lust, sin and the fall of man through Adam and Eve (although the Bible doesn’t say the forbidden fruit was an actual apple…). Needless to say, the seemingly simple apple is not so simple… in fact, it is quite complex!
Personally, I have been thinking about apples in terms of their great diversity and abundance. It symbolises the bounty of the harvest and the thankfulness for our many blessings. Each one of us is different, with our own unique looks and tastes. Yet, the bunch of us, as a whole, can make a significant impact for good in the world. Or the opposite. One rotten apple can ruin a whole basketful. By blending a variety of apples, and adding just a bit of spice, you can create such rich and comforting delights. So many foods blend well with the simplicity of an apple. My grandpa used to say that apple pie without the cheese is like a hug without the squeeze… isn’t that cute? There’s just something about an apple that evokes feeling blessed.
And so… it is with great delight, that I announce a new adventure at mittonmusings! The new “apple of my eye” shall we say? A new learning experience that (we hope) will not only have you feeling blessed, but present you with a chance to bless others! With apples as our theme, we have developed a 30 day course (think random acts of kindness with gratitude journal) designed to give you a focus for the day: with prompts for action, daily verses, and practical tips to strengthen your relationships with God and others. Imagine it as that big bushel of harvested apples… each of us unique and different, harvested with comfort and care. Then we get all shined up so that we can be passed around to enrich others, furthering health, knowledge and the furtherance of good futures! All achieved within the comforts of home!
Want to join us? We’d love to have you! See more information and get sign up information on our 30 Days of Blessings! page. It’s absolutely free! The adventure begins Oct. 15th! Don’t wait!