We went to the state fair yesterday. It's only the second time we've been, and we've lived here nearly 15 years. The weather was not especially great (a bit chilly and cloudy and a possibility of rain), but Mark had arranged to take the day off, so we bundled up the kids and headed out anyway.
We didn't really have any kind of a plan as far as what we wanted to see, so we just started wandering. We came in through the Midway, with Matthew getting very excited about all of the games, but Mark told him he'd have to wait until the end of the day for that.
The first thing we did was watch the Top Flight K-9 show. I really wish I'd pulled out my camera and gotten some shots of the amazement on Matthew's face as he watched the dogs leaping high into the air and the delight in Kaylee's eyes as she clapped along with the crowd.
Next on the agenda was finding a place where we could sit down and have some lunch. We'd wandered the wrong direction away from the food court, so it took us a bit to make our way back down there. We went through the auto show, and stopped by a video game that was set up in a car on our way out (leave it to Matthew to find a video game at a fair). Once we found the food court, we filled up on pizza and hot dogs and gyros and soda and lemon shake-ups, and then it was back out to explore.
After a quick stop for Mark to try to change his luck by buying his lottery tickets there (it didn't work LOL), we let the kids play for a while on a big elephant statue outside the Natural History Museum.
Just a short way down from the museum were the swan paddle boats. The kids got sooooo excited when they saw those. Mark gave Matthew a choice between riding the boats or playing a game on the Midway, and Matthew chose the boats. I waited with the kids on a bench while Mark went to buy more coupons, and it was all I could do to keep Kaylee from running over to the dock. Mark got back, and we went and got the kids their life jackets and got in line. I was really afraid that Kaylee would change her mind and throw a fit and not want to get in, but she didn't. Matthew and Mark took one boat and Kaylee and I took another. We had a lot of fun out there paddling around. Kaylee spent much of the ride just staring at the pedals on her side of the boat going around and around. The only mishap was while handing the camera off to Mark, the umbrella fell out of my jacket pocket into the pond, but I managed to grab it before it sank.
After that, we headed back towards the Midway, stopping to watch the barker - an illusion whereby he was only the top half of a man stuck on a pole, which, of course, inspired all kinds of questions from Matthew. I don't think Kaylee knew what to think.
Even though Matthew had agreed to no game, he still wanted one of these ginormous inflatable hammers he had seen some other kids with, so Mark decided to have a guy try to guess his (Mark's) age. He looked back and forth from Mark to me and the kids several times and finally settled on 34, missing by a mere 11 years, so Matthew got his hammer. :-)
Last stop was to fill the one item on my request list - no trip to the fair would be complete without eating funnel cakes. They weren't the best I've had, but were still quite tasty.
Then we trudged back to the car and headed for home. We had been at the fair for only about four hours, but with two young kids and trying to keep track of them in the crowd, that was plenty, and we were all pretty tired. Kaylee zonked out in the car almost immediately, and Matthew followed later, leaning so far over the side of his seat that his head was almost in Kaylee's lap (and the darn camera was in the trunk). :-p
Overall an exhausting but fun day. :-)