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Sticks, leaves and dirt...OH MY!

Almonds are harvested off a tree, where we shake them on the ground. Then they are swept into rows and picked up. Sounds like a fairly easy and simply process but there are a lot of moving parts with several steps and processes along the way.


If you start with shaking a tree, the vibrations don't just knock the almonds off the tree but of course any loose sticks or leaves will also fall too. This could cause a problem when it comes to sweeping the nuts. The sticks could get caught in the sweeper brushes and maybe even get caught up in the irrigation hoses.


Once the nuts are in the rows and the harvester is set to run through to pick up the almonds, those sticks could be troublesome again. The harvester will generally have to run at a slower speed through the field as to allow for the sticks to not get caught up in the series of belts that carry the almonds up. When the harvester empties the almonds into the shuttle cart and further on the elevator, sticks can clog up belts and c…

The calm before the storm

I've been quiet in the social media and blogging world over the last couple months. I do have a good excuse though. Our family has taken some much needed vacations! We call it the calm before the storm. Our chance to unwind, relax and take in the views. All before the storm of harvest is about to begin this week! Every one needs a little time to calm yourself and regroup. This is just what our little family has been doing, and man did we enjoy ourselves!
Earlier in June, we were lucky enough to go to Kauai with my parents, sister and her family. It was great that we were blessed to have the chance to go. Living 5 hours from my family, we don't see them too often. So, I was looking very forward to spending a week with them all. I was a little nervous to fly with our then 6 month old baby. But he was a trooper and did a great job! I was so proud of him and the 6 hour flight.
I originally thought a week in Kauai would be so long and we wouldn't have enough to keep us busy. But, man was I mistaken. We didn't have enough time to do everything we wanted to. We enjoyed a Luau, sunset dinner cruise, drove up the Waimea Canyon,  relaxed on Poipu Beach, went shopping, toured the Kauai Coffee Plantation, road the train about Kilohana Plantation followed by rum tasting of Koloa Rum. We were busy all right, and not to mention the house we stayed at had great views and pool all while being ocean front! Ocean front homes are the way to enjoy a Hawaii vacation while traveling with a large group. Having 6 adults, 2 kids and a baby I would highly recommend staying in a house. The house gave us the opportunity to all be together and have private space in the same residence.
Kauai was a beautiful island to explore. It was lush and green everywhere without being too rainy or humid. There were great hiking trails for the adventure type, shopping for the laid back and a great view for everyone. It was my first time in Kauai and I will definitely go back.

While it was our first time in Kauai, we are no strangers to Pismo Beach.  Pismo Beach, Ca is right in our backyard about 2 hours west from our farm and home. My almond farmer and I actually went to college and met about 15 miles north of Pismo Beach at Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo. We love it there and always have a nice relaxing time. Every year though, my husband's family and three other families sync our schedules and enjoy 10 days together at the beach. That's right, about 40 people together for 10 days. We are spread out over 4 houses, but manage to join forces for dinners and beach time. Pismo was about 30 degrees cooler than our nice warm Central Valley, so needless to say it was a great escape from the heat. Since we are so familiar with the area we didn't need to go exploring. We made sure to stop at our favorite restaurants, shop our favorite locations and even enjoyed a concert night out! Relaxing by the ocean was a great calm before the storm.

Coming home yesterday, we were greeted by 97 degree weather, trees that needed to be harvested and a pile of laundry that exploded from our suitcases. We were blessed this summer with some great vacations to help us relax before the storm of harvest starts this week!

Until Next Time,
Almond Girl




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