Fun at the County Fair

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

One of our annual favorite fall traditions is to attend the world's largest county fair...the Clay County Fair. Lucky for us, it is right down the road, and doesn't require much planning aside from making sure our stroller and a small cooler with snacks and drinks for the boys make it into our car. Of course, this means you can usually find us there several times during fair week :) This year's visits were so much fun because the boys both were really curious about everything going on, and loved getting out of the stroller to participate a bit more than in the past.

C's fascination with all things train related was put front and center as the fair has an entire building, 'The Depot', with miniature trains and different scenes set up. This year, he was particularly curious about the restaurant in the top of the space needle, and the snowplow trains in the mountains. G enjoyed the trains too, but for him, the animals were where it was at. He LOVED visiting Grandpa's Barn, a barn catered towards kids filled with all sorts of baby animals, and had a few close encounters with the baby calves, who came right up to him and licked his hands.

 Another BIG highlight of this year's fair-going was spending some more time to watch some of the arena shows. This year, the boys had so much fun watching cowboy mounted shooting (a timed event involving shooting balloons while racing through a cone obstacle course), and the horse-drawn carriage event. G could hardly contain his excitement, and tried just about everything he could in order to get into the arena! If he continues to be this excited about everything, we may have a future 4-H-er on our hands! Other highlights included playing in the corn box at the John Deere Pavilion, driving tractors, sipping on an overwhelming amount of strawberry smoothies, and dragging both sets of grandparents all over the fair!

We had a great week at the fair, and look forward to visiting again next year!

Off to School: 2017

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

I'm not really one to get too sentimental, but the end of an era of having C home all day every day has finally come, and it's hard to tell if I should shed a tear because A.) he's growing up and turning into a big boy...B.) tears of joy for having him out of the house three mornings a week so he can learn and discover new things that I could never dream of dedicating such time to with my little sidekick G getting all up in our grill every. single. time. we try to work on any sort of educational project or learning activity. Either way, I'm positive that C is absolutely going to love school, and we can't wait to watch as he grows and learns this year at three-year-old preschool.

In honor of the momentous occasion, I asked C a few questions as he heads into his first school year. I hope you enjoy his responses as much as I do!

How old are you?
'2 months...I'm 6 months.' Upon prompting...'I'm three years old to you.'

What is your favorite color?
'The green shirt is a color.'

What is your favorite food?
'I like to eat soup and tomato sauce. You're not cookin' anymore meals tonight.'

What is your favorite movie?
'I like trains and Minions.'

What do you want to be when you grow up?
'Ummm...let me think...maybe a superman.'

What is your favorite thing to play with?
'Trains are the best to play with.'

What do you love most?
'Choo-choo trains, airplanes, and the Ferris wheel.'

Cheers to a new routine and lots of learning this school year!

Sweet Summertime 2017

Monday, September 4, 2017

Summer... Living at the lake is wonderful in many ways, but like any small rural American town, it has it's ups (three months of glorious summertime with extra restaurants, shops, and tourists), and it's downs (pretty much the entire winter). Memorial Day through Labor Day is to most what would be considered true 'summer' where we live, so this post will be 100% focused on ALL. THE. FUN. had in those few short months of sweet summertime.

One of the great perks of living here in the summer, is the easy access to Arnold's Park Amusement Park. A lakes staple to be sure, for this mama of a toddler and one year old, it has been, and no doubt will continue to be, a summertime staple with trips at least twice weekly all summer long, and a great reason to get out of the house and play in the fresh air. Pizza slices, nutty bars, coffee shop dates, car & boat shows, basketball at the park, and lakeside dinners are just a few of the great things about summertime at the lake! This summer at the park was especially fun as it was the first year C had a park pass, and was able to ride the kiddy rides. His fascination with trains did not disappoint, and he enjoyed more choo-choo rides on the trains than I care to count. Of course, he LOVED every minute of it! G mostly tagged along for the ride, but did enjoy going on the big train and ferris wheel this summer. As you can tell from the pictures, he was completely in awe, and loved looking all around to see what was going on.

One of the many highlights for C was his first time on the kids roller coaster. Not something he probably ever would have considered in a million years on his own, but with his best buddy and fearless cousin J along, he didn't even think twice before following right onto the ride. HAHA. His face afterwards - shock! Such a riot. Other favorites were the boats, fish, and playing on the playground. C asked all summer long to go on the bumper cars, but will likely have better luck next summer when his hair sticking straight up isn't the only reason he hits the 44 inch mark to clear him for the ride!


One of G's favorites from summer 2017 was playing at Harmony Music Park in the Queen's Court just outside the main amusement park. I should also mention that indulging in frozen yogurt while watching the Queen outside on a picnic table by the lake was a very close second! Or maybe going on boat rides and playing in the boat...or splashing in the water table...trying to eat sand from the sandbox...crawling lickety split down the hill on the side of our house...any way you slice it, he had many great summertime adventures, and was a complete joy to be around!

Other highlights from the summer included catching a couple of live performances at the local children's theaters (we saw Cat & The Hat, and Aladdin), trying popsicles - G was not immediately a fan, but soon came around and decided they were amazing, shooting hoops at the park, bike rides, dining on the deck, celebrating July 4th, C catching his first fish, and the boys loving on each other so much it resulted in face squishes! So many wonderful memories!

Summer we love you!

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