This past weekend, we made the short trek from Chicago to my home town of Grand Rapids, Michigan. Knowing I would make my annual trip to Robinette’s Apple Haus, a fifth generation, family run apple orchard and winery, I became fixated for days, dreaming of hot cider and hot pumpkin-spiced donuts.

Autumn is indeed my favorite time of year and being at an orchard intoxicates your senses with all things Fall…. the crunch of crispy leaves under foot, brisk air on your cheeks, mounds of bright orange pumpkins, flannel shirts, hay rides and the smells…. oh those autumn smells… cinnamon, fresh-pressed cider, fresh baked goods, leaves changing, kettle corn popping, fresh hay, pumpkins and earthy goodness.

If you can’t get yourself to an orchard, bring some apples home and make something appleiscious to get you in the mood. Try this apple crunch cake, or this amazing looking chai-spiced apple oatmeal bread, or perhaps apples in pajamas. (I know you are all going to click on that last one… like I was saying last week, some recipes just draw you in by name alone!)

Happy Autumn!