Friday, August 24, 2012

State Fair Trip

We're on 12 years and counting, why stop now?

One day I'm going to be one of those people they interview on the local news when State Fair time hits. You know, those old-timers who haven't missed a state fair since 1949, or 1954, or something like that.

We're on 12 years and counting, babies, toddlers, and now grade schoolers included.

This year was probably the best in a long time, with no fights and no meltdowns. We were smart about taking the girls in different directions when wishes/needs were different, instead of forcing the four of us to stay together. Technology had a bit to do with that. This year I downloaded the MN State Fair app on my iTouch, and even though I didn't have a connection or GPS so it couldn't tell me where I was every second of the visit, it could tell me where things were that we wanted to see, and I could look to see where we were standing at the time.

Lindsey: "I want cheese curds. Let's get some!"

Me: "Good idea! Let me see. We're standing at the corner of Judson and Carnes, the closest cheese curd stand is at Judson and Nelson, just two blocks that-a-way. Let's go."

Two minutes later...

Lindsey: "Thanks for the cheese curds, Mom! You're the best!"

Okay, so my writing sometimes toes the line between fiction and non-fiction.

But it was incredibly handy for me, the direction-impaired one. I usually get so twisted around that by the end of the day Wayne has to lead us to the exit because I have no idea which direction we're even walking. Since I was able to check the map frequently and get a sense of where I was at, I was never lost.

Wayne and the girls visited the sheep (including cousin Rachel's, though we hadn't coordinated to see them while we were there), the horses and other animals while I parked the car. Then we met up and hit some of our favorite food stands, including Sweet Martha's Cookies, where they'll pile so many cookies into a paper cone that you have to walk carefully until you eat the first two off the pile or they'll slide off.

The Giant Slide was the hit that it always is.

A new attraction for us this year was the Mr. Bubbles bubble foam pit, where the girls were covered head to toe in bubbles. They used hand-held showerheads to rinse it off before continuing on, and it was just the cool down they needed to keep going on this hot day. I don't know if they've had this other years and we've just never seen it, but it was a big hit with the kids, not just ours.

After the Bubbles were done, completely and utterly wet from head to toe.
We spent some time at the Kidway but not as much as other years. I went on the "Lady Bug" ride with Marissa, which is just a line of cars that go around in a circle and slightly up and down. A barker tells people to scream to make it go faster, and eventually he makes it go backwards. She and I laughed and laughed, looking at each other and grinning our ears off. The lights of the ride glittered off her grey eyes -- she was so filled with joy, I just wanted to hug her but couldn't because we were spinning so fast. What a hoot.

We finished the day with a couple of special purchases for the girls, a beer for mom and dad, and a bucket of Sweet Martha's Cookies to take home.

So maybe some of the cookies got eaten before we left...

The best part about going to the fair for me is that everyone is so dang friendly. They don't call this state "Minnesota Nice" for nothing. Lindsey made a friend in line for a ride at the Kidway who went on two rides with her, and the girl's grandma used two of their own tickets to get Lindsey on the second ride since we had just run out of tickets. People in lines for food joked with each other, and the service people were friendly everywhere we went. I wore my "Vote NO" shirt supporting the LGBT community, and had people comment all over saying they liked my shirt, or if I knew where the booth was for that organization. I also saw the booth for the opposite side of that ballot issue, which had a big banner over it which said, "Marriage is for One Man and One Woman." I was tempted to stand in front of it, or go up and ask for information, but I resisted the urge.

My husband really IS a rock star!
The great Minnesota get-together was great once again.

1 comment:

  1. Looks like everyone had a blast! Great photos.