One of my fondest childhood memories is going to the fair with my dad. He always bought us the arm bands and patiently waited as we rode rides over and over again. He let us play all the games and we always left with some great "prize". Knowing that I am an adult now and that those memories still mean so much to me really makes taking my kids to the fair that much more fun! For years now we have met my dad at the fair on Thursday night for arm band night - so the kids can ride all the rides they want. About 30 minutes before we were supposed to go this year, Nathan called me and said he got called out to work clean-up on a semi-truck accident and couldn't make it but he wanted to go on Friday night so he could go with the kids too. The kids were just fine with getting to go twice.
Thursday night we met my dad, sister-in-law (to be) Jessica, nieces Emma, Savannah, Eliza and Alex and my nephew Greyson. Nathan's mom came too and my sister-in-law and nephew Whitney and Paxton showed up just before we were leaving. We also saw so many friends there - one cool thing about our small town fair is getting to see so many people we know. I rode a ride with the kids at first and the spinning was not agreeing with me - I can ride any roller coaster there is, but I cannot handle the spinning rides. Noah rode one of the bigger rides and from the look on his face and his screaming "Momma! Momma!" while he was on it I decided he was not ready for those yet. We stuck with the smaller rides and playing in the petting zoo for that night.
Friday night we went with just the four of us, but ended up running into the kids babysitter, Mrs. Laurie, so Ryan rode rides with them while Noah and Daddy rode the bigger rides. I tried to talk Noah out of the bigger rides but he insisted and said "God protected him last night on it so he knows he will again tonight". So, of course with that reasoning I let him ride. He loved them! The bigger the better! We met up at the end for some games and went to the petting zoo one last time and to look at crafts before heading out.
I know a lot of people bribe their kids not to go to the fair, but not us. It is just one of the things I look forward to doing with my kids. It isn't cheap, it is dirty, but their faces and laughs make it worth it. Noah had tears in his eyes when he told the fair "bye" when we were leaving. Ryan has asked several times when we can go back to the fair. Those experiences are worth more than anything. Soon they will ask me for fair money and be gone - I am going to enjoy every second of being so important to them while I can!