Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Ramblings: Fair Fun

FYI directed to all those non-Texans out there: Texas L.O.V.E.S. its state fair. In elementary school, they spend a week or two pumping them up for it, making projects and reports about it, and generally brainwashing them about just how cool it is. Every school district even gets a day off and free student tickets to attend. Our Fair Day was last Wednesday and since we didn't want the children shunned by all the super-Texans out there, we decided to take them.

The fair is famous for picking weird fried foods to feature each year. Plus, I think they want to try to induce as many coronary attacks as possible within the gates of the Fairgrounds...just for fun.
This year's lucky winners were: 1) Fernie's All-American Fried Grilled Cheese Sandwich 2) Fried Banana Split 3) Chocolate-Covered Strawberry Waffle Balls 4) Deep Fried S'Mores 5) Fire and Ice (Deep fried pineapple ice cream) 6) Fried Chocolate Truffle 7) Chicken Fried Bacon 8) Texas Fried Jelly Beans. I couldn't get Jeremy to try any of the ones that actually sounded tasty--he went for #7--because bacon isn't greasy enough plain, it needs to be coated and then fried again. Nothing like eating hot greasy food in 85 degree heat.

I wonder how much they'd charge to deep fry that Blackberry for me?? Sounds good right? Deep fried Blackberry...

The kids were pretty good--especially since we broke down and bought them their cotton candy at 10:30 so we didn't have to hear about it for the rest of the day. (But first we all had to donate a few gallons of blood to pay for all of it.) Needless to say, the stickiness overwhelmed us for the next hour. Plus I told them the police booth was designed for parents to drop off naughty children--scared 'em straight pretty fast.

We started at the building with the big petting zoo inside. Although we were almost convinced we wanted nothing to do with it after we read the huge sign at the entrance...hemmorrhagic colitis? Yikes. I karate chopped Jeremy because I blame his profession that they have to post stupid signs like this.
You can buy big cups of food in there so we figured the kids would enjoy getting in the faces of different animals and slimed by them as they tried to feed all the animals. But apparently, some of the animals have sensitive stomachs...

It took the little boys awhile to warm up to the idea that these animals weren't secretly trying to eat their faces off. Eventually they'd stand within a few inches of the fence and pretend to pet them, but they were careful not to turn their backs on them. Avery would get so excited every time he saw something new...that is until it came close enough to possibly bite his face off.

I'm going to add to that collection of kids books about llamas. Mine is going to feature Aidan and Avery and is titled "Mama, mama. Scared of Llama." Avery didn't want to pose because he was too nervous about the critters in the background "getting" him.

Remember when I said I couldn't find any digital pictures of that hideous permed Afro haircut I had as a kid? Well, I found one. I hope mine had slightly fewer things stuck in it.

Alex searched for about five minutes before finding this guy's eyeballs under all that hair.

This big mama prompted far too many "your mom" jokes. Sort of reminded me of what I felt like when i was pregnant with the twins.

But seeing these little piggies all smooshed together just makes you want to take one home with you! Not to mention all the chicken fried bacon we could sell in a few years.

Then we ate lunch and went off to find Big Tex. The kids had learned all sorts of facts about him at school--like what size Wrangler pants and boots he wears. When we found him, Alex was less than impressed. "That can't be Big Tex. He's supposed to be bigger than that. That guy's not big." Well, sadly for him it was The Big Tex. My memory of him from when I was a kid was that he was alot bigger then. So maybe Big Tex has been downsized--or like all old people, he's been shrinking a little bit every year.

We took a quick walk through the auto buildings and let the kids climb around it all the new cars to get it out of their systems.

I found a funny sign on one of the car windows--I still don't really know what it was supposed to mean, but I"m thinking of having it tattooed on my arm so that when someone asks me something, I can just point to one of the answers.
Alex and Jeremy competed to see who could be the cause of the most severe case of whiplash.

We found some rides that even the little boys could ride. Aidan loved the canoes--he let his hand drag in the water as it floated its way along the little stream. Avery was ornery that the seats were wet and it wasn't going faster.

We were shocked when we tried to load the boys to ride this spinny ride and Avery FREAKED as soon as he sat down. He is normally the fearless daredevil and Aidan is the fraidy cat. But Aidan laughed and loved every minute of it after we had to rescue Avery before it even started. Must've had something to do with the fact it was prime-time nap time.

We all rode this pretty tame caterpillar roller coaster together and did the big metal slide that you ride down on sitting on big carpets. (FYI, not as fun when you have to carry a 30 pound kid and 2 huge, heavy carpets up the equivalent of five flights of stairs.)

This picture of Aidan and Jeremy shows just how alike they look---even down to Aidan's open-mouthed smile. The real set of twins...

At this point, it was getting pretty hot and everyone was getting cranky and whiny so we were ready to go. Plus, I think that we were close to having to take out a second mortgage on our house in order to pay for any more rides.

But on the way towards the exit, I happened to notice a guy carrying not only his kid (who was maybe three or four), but also wearing a huge hiking type backpack. On top of that, he had fastened this stiff four foot Spiderman doll that had to be fairly heavy. I'm guessing he probably felt really macho for winning it and insisted on taking it, no matter how awkwardly he was perched on his back or how sweaty he was at the end of the day from lugging all that junk around. That is some serious Spiderman love and it was a good laugh to end a fun day at the fair. Even better, we stopped at Sonic's happy hour on the way home--the BEST way to end Fair Day.

What fried snack would be your choice? Would you haul around Spiderman? Would you pet animals regardless of the risk of colitis?


Deanna said...

Looks like fun times were had by all.

That picture of the boys with Avery screaming and Aidan having a great time cracks me up.

Poopsy Doopsy said...

Answers to your question, NONE, NO, HELL NO! Sorry about the language, but two out of the three could cause some serious intetsinal damage!!! No thank you!
I think you should go for the tatoo! Sounds like you had a fun time!

The Parkin Family said...

I miss the state fairs and am so glad some one put up some pictures. So cute!

Travis and Jamie Shepherd said...

You didn't get a smoked Turkey leg?? UHH, that is the only truely good thing at the Fair. And tell Alex he isn't the only one that thought Tex should be bigger. I remember thinking the same thing last time I went, and Trav said that he was dissapointed when he went on his mission. Yes they let the Elders go to the fair. They had to set up a booth and pass out Books of Mormon. I can only imagine the looks they got and the BOM's in the trash. And you HAVE to pet the farm animals. Isn't that why they started having fairs?

The Lowe Family said...

i do far too many hand mouth excercises to visit the petting zoo so, would i have done it? check the box hell no!

Ciana said...

We had the lucky misfortune of living right next to the fair grounds in MN like just a pond and a road separating us. MN State fair claim to fame was that it was the next biggest after TX. We just loved the nightly 10pm fireworks for two weeks while it was in session that would wake up our kids. Or the drag racing in the track at the fair. The sad thing is we only went to the fair like twice in the three years we lived there but Dave made like 500 bucks selling water to the suckers who went.