Wednesday, August 22, 2012

A Family A-Fair

I never went to a state fair growing up - at least that I can recall at this moment - but somehow I've managed to go to the Montana Fair every year since moving here (that's 3). It's right in town, so that makes it easy, and it's just the right size to get a good fair experience and not be completely overwhelming (or your bank account completely emptied).

My first year, my mom and I went to the Kelly Clarkson concert; then mom, Zoey, and I went last year, so this year it was Jacob, Zoey, and I. We made a family morning of it. We had breakfast, got ready, and got there just a little after 11am, which was perfect. Some things were open, but not everything; and the weather hadn't gotten too hot, yet. Also, there weren't very many people, and that's always a plus.

 First stop: got Zoey a hat that says, "Angel." And she really was. (Actually, the first stop was Jacob getting some much-needed Calvin and Hobbs stickers for the cars).

 Watching Daddy pop some balloons with darts in the name of stuffed animals.

 Super excited for the Pick-A-Ducky game, where every duck is a winner!!

She won a stuffed lobster that she now insists on putting above her head in bed.

 Daddy playing another balloon 'n dart game.

 Yelling, "YAY, DADDY!!" after he popped all 4 balloons in a row and won her the as-requested stuffed frog.

 The frog she decided to carry around at least until we got to the next activity.

Zoey's first fair ride. She was under the height requirement but was able to go on the rides if I went with her. Such a dunce, I have no idea why I didn't choose to sit on the same side as her. Afraid I'd throw off the balance? Probably just an awful mother.

 It started out by going 'round and 'round, then up and down. She was having fun - even saying, "this is fun!" - until it started going up and down.

 Then she hung on for dear life and was not a fan.

She didn't cry, just was very uncomfortable, and unsure of what was happening. I should have paid attention to the direction it went and made sure she would have been traveling in the forward-direction.

 When the ride started to even back out, then she said, "now it's fun!"

Feeling like Mother-of-the-Year, let me tell you.

 We decided another ride would be adequate to round out our fair experience and decided on the Merry-Go-Round. Zoey needed little convincing.

 Excited to get things going.

 OMG, she had a freakin' BLAST! Every time we went around she'd start yelling, "LOOK AT ME, DADDY, LOOK AT ME! I RIDING HORSEY!" Then she'd giggle like crazy and say, "this is a fun one!"

 Down in the left-hand corner you can see how much fun we're having.

When the ride ended, and we were down to our last $20 bill, we headed for the free petting zoo.

 Checking out the 5-week old piggies.

 Now the goats.

 Trying to feed the goats.

 Daddy and Zoey.

I had my heart set on getting a Funnel Cake. I shared one with some work gals when we did Lunch Bunch at the Fair the previous afternoon and man was I jonesin' for it. What I ultimately picked, though, was the strawberry kabob. If you've ever had a strawberry dipped in chocolate, they are absolutely impossible to refuse. Jacob joked that of all the crappy fair food, I chose probably the most healthy item.

Zoey was thoroughly pleased as well, I couldn't keep it away from her.

By then, we had gotten the full fair experience; we played games, rode some rides, ate crappy food (oh, and Jacob got an old-fashioned Orange Creme Soda), and it was passed nap-time so we figured we'd better head home. We were there for only 2 hours but it felt like an entire day. Not even home 10 minutes and Zoey was zonked out.

It was a good day and we had fun, but we're glad it's only a once-a-year thing. As Jacob said, "I've spent $100 faster, but I don't think I've gotten less."