As we are going through the process of reaquiring life insurance this week, Chrissy and I have had to face hard questions…especially as we decided to add a rider for life insurance on the boys. Determining to purchase life insurance for 3 little boys must needs make you sober. As I was making some of the decisions from my office, it made me ache to want to go home to squeeze little boys in big hugs. Chrissy and I had to speak frankly about what our responses would have to be in such a case, and it is truly great that we are on the same page. Further could be said but these hard things made us not be able to wait to make some memories with our boys, and I know full well that memories can be made by sitting at the dinner table and playing in the yard, but we had been wanting to go to the fair.
Last year we had a terrific time at the Centerville Fair, but that’s not until August or September and we instead drove 1 1/2 hours to the Ionia Free Fair on Friday. It’s the largest free fair in America…which means it’s the largest fair in America that lets you get in the gates before it stiffs you and your wallet.
The fair truly brings out all sorts. It is a virtual opportunity to see the wide variety of what makes America America. From the toothless man who handles Clyde the camel, to the pot-bellied men who ran the go-carts (we had to go twice…it was a riot), to the vendors plying their wares, to the old dwarfish man who swallows fire (he is one of the original Munchkins of Wizard of Oz note), to the sword-swallower, to all those poor girls visiting their fair who can’t afford clothing…they had to wear their little sisters clothing and it was soo tight and small, and their boyfriends came from poverty also…they had to wear their fathers’ pants which were so big they kept sliding right off their behinds!
And then the food. I truly felt like Templeton who said, “The goose was right, this fair is rat’s paradise.” The fair is just a street riot if you don’t include the food! With the sounds of a demolition derby in the background, a real helicopter giving rides above the fairgrounds, and a renonwed hypnotist doing his routine within earshot (we skidaddled before the karaoke finals got revved up), we feasted on overpriced concoctions that made our bellies smile. We splurged.
The fair is truly a smorgasbord for the senses. Lights, noises, smells and sounds filled our eyes, ears, noses. The animals a-plenty captured our attention for their share of the time. We didn’t spend the $.50 to see the woman with the 2″ hand span or the 1,100 lb. hog or the ginormous alligator. Tempted we were…rock-like was our fortitude.
The boys will remember these things for a long time. They remember very well last year’s fair when they held a baby tiger!, rode the ponies, watched the rodeo, ate the corndogs, got sneezed on by a horse, etc., etc.
We were pleased to take my sister Dana (Aunt Bubba — don’t ask) with us. It was a sort of last hurrah before she gets married on Friday…at which point she disqualifies herself from making memories with my family????
Make chances to make memories with your kids! Savour days. Capture moments in your mind that will make you smile in your old age. It costs money to go to the free fair, but the blessings linger for a long, long time.