Rachel's Table

Strawberry Picking with the Joneses

I promised Cindi Filasky I would be back to pick strawberries, so a few days ago my dear friend Phil and I headed to Middletown. I was beyond excited about this adventure because Phil has two amazing children–Sean, a charming, melt-your-heart-with-his-smile  four-year-old, and Sophie, an intoxicatingly darling (and outspoken) two-year-old. Such great ages for the wonders of strawberry picking. Combine their adorableness with the the fact that they speak with a lovely South African accent and your heart could literally explode.

My heart stops a little every time I look at them, because these blonde bundles of energy belong to Jane, my BFF. Jane left this earth for the grandness of heaven almost a year ago. I miss her terribly every single day, but I’m blessed to spend time with her favorite people–Phil, Sophie, and Sean–since they moved back to the States from South Africa a couple months ago.

My Janie (pregnant with Sean) on the night we first met

I see Jane’s personality and sparkle in her children. Sean calls me “Auntie Ray Ray,” and when he greets me I can just hear Jane saying, “Hello, BFF!” (Yes, we called each other BFF regularly, because we’re cool like that.) On strawberry picking day, Sophie congratulated me several times for finding a red strawberry, “You found a red one!” she exclaimed. “Good job!” In that moment, I saw Jane smiling and heard her say, “Well done!” over some small accomplishment I had made (extra charming with her South African accent).

The Jones family and I enjoyed our romp through the strawberry fields. I could go on and on about our adventure and explain Sean and Sophie’s delight over each strawberry picked, but a photo’s worth a thousand words, so here’s a few to commemorate our day.  Filasky’s is open most days until 7; go make some memories!

Welcome to Filasky’s

Sophie checking out her freshly picked strawberry while Phil and Sean scour the fields in the background

Sneaking a bite!

Red means ready to be picked!

Phil and Seanie evaluate a berry

Sophie and I filling up our bucket

“Wait for me!”

Sean kept saying, “Look at the size of this guy!”

Sophie found a red one!

Sweet Sophie

Strawberry fields…forever


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