There are many reasons we are so fortunate to live in rural America, in such a beautiful and fertile part of the world, in the midst of such a rich agricultural community. One of those reasons is our access to so many fresh off the vine fruits, from berries in the spring and into the summer, to autumn apples and pumpkins, and even Christmas trees at winter's brink. Some of my earliest and favorite memories involve picking blackberries with my great grandparents on their rural Virginia farm. What is about picking fresh berries that we love? Is it the feeling of warmth so early in the year, sunshine on our cheeks and necks, the strangely sweet and earthy smell of freshly plowed fields? Maybe it is the instant gratification of enjoying the literal fruits of your labor. Maybe it is the sweet strawberries themselves. For me, it is all those things, plus the faces of my children studying each berry to make sure it is ripe enough, carefully making their selections, and the looks of delight on their smiling faces as they fill up each berry basket, sweet as strawberry pie.