Taking a Baby to the Fair

10:54:00 AM

I have so may memories of going to the fair as a child. Some of the memories are distinct, others are just a blur of childhood. I grew up in a small town, my dad is from an even smaller farm town, so between our county and visiting my grandparents, we were at at least one fair a summer. My family went to concerts, demolition derbies, rodeos, carnivals, and anything else we could.

Since Brett and I have been married I have been dying to go to the fair with him, but it never worked out for some reason. But each summer that it didn't happen just renewed my motivation to take my children to the fair. There are some things I know are going to be lost on Corinne at such a young age, like Disneyland or nice clothes, but I was so excited to take her to the fair for the "traditional family activity" factor. Creating traditions with our kids is one of the things I have looked forward to and enjoyed the most. However, Corinne's young age means we need to really prepare for outings like this.

Plan for the Right Time of Day
Corinne is a rock star at sleeping in her stroller or in her bed, so we knew that we could lay down the stroller and she could take a short nap. We didn't want to push our luck, so we made sure she got a really good nap in the morning and left for the fair as soon as she woke up. We didn't want to push our luck with her bedtime, so taking advantage of a Saturday afternoon was perfect for us.

Pick Appropriate Activities
Since we were taking advantage of the afternoon and knew we would make it back in time for bed we wouldn't be there for the rodeo, concerts, or for dinner so we decided to spend our money on other activities. For example, instead of focusing on what was a good thing to eat for dinner, we let ourselves eat the fair food junk that I love. Really, I LOVE fair food and ate a funnel cake the size of my face. We also spent a few dollars on tokens for carnival games rather than rides, something we could do together. And I even won a game, so added some extra fun!

Set Realistic Expectations
We wandered all over those fairgrounds. Sometimes Corinne was in a baby carrier, but most of the time she was in the stroller. We weaved our way through all the buildings and exhibits whenever we needed to take advantage of the air conditioning. We took breaks on benches to let her stretch out and eat. Generally we took in the fair at a nice slow pace, not making any sort of concrete plan of what we had to do, just continuing as long as she was able to handle it. Since we did it this way, I think she was able to last a lot longer than if we would have tried to rush and fit in everything as fast a possible in case we had to leave.

So until next year, and hopefully all the years after that.

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