Wednesday, August 29, 2012

First Day of First Grade!

She's got a new backpack, new clothes, new supplies - at the same great school where everyone's excited to see her return!  This year's classroom is only one door down from her Kindergarten classroom - so she knows where everything is.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Minnesota State Fair Alphabet!

Even before the Fair opened, as we walked around the grounds, we thought it would be a cool idea to find all the different letters of the alphabet in all the wacky ways they were styled. After a couple trips, we have a folder full of letters!

See if you can guess where we captured each one!

We'll probably have enough for another post like this after our next trip there!

Saturday, August 25, 2012

2012 Minnesota State Fair, First Visit, Part 2

Why "First Visit" in the title?

Well, now that we live only a few blocks away from the Fairgrounds, it'd be kind of silly to go there only once each year, yes? So when I picked up advance tickets, I got another set of passes so we can go back as a family again next weekend.

So we came home at lunchtime. Ann and I passed out - Wynn cooled off downstairs with some TV (but no nap.)  I did some more work in the backyard in the mid-afternoon while the others took it easy inside - weeding & preparing a garden / walking path under the big pine tree.  Ann & Wynn had a little dinner, and we headed back to the Fairgrounds at 6:00.

There was a good crowd even up on Machinery Hill - but hey, we've walked around in Hong Kong and this was nothing compared to that. Wynn wanted to check out the kids' farm exhibit, which was a bit young for her and she got bored.  (She got a can of corn for a prize ... she could have picked Cheerios or a bag of potato chips, but she wanted a can of corn.)

We strolled around for a while - I had a Papa Pup for dinner - checked out some art, caught a bit of a concert, and headed back home at 9:30.
Cob 'o Corn Hat!

Building a Sand Volcano ... they have a giant sandbox set up near the 4-H building; it's a great 'chill-out' spot for kids & parents. Fenced off so that people don't wander through, tables & seating so that families can sit down and have a quiet picnic. Good thinking!

Wynn can get sand in her shoes like no other kid I've ever known...

The Kidway after dark ... it's so neat to see everything all lit up
We kept Wynn up late so she could see fireworks for the very first time!  (Normally they shoot them off at 10:00, but last night delayed because the Alan Jackson concert went REALLY long ... was almost 11:00 by the time the sky show began)
And this is how big it looked right in our own backyard!  Wynn was thrilled ... "this was the BEST day ever!"

Friday, August 24, 2012

2012 Minnesota State Fair, First Visit, Part 1

We headed over to the Fairgrounds at 7:30 this morning and rolled back home at 11:30.  Taking a nap and cooling off in the air-conditioning now ... we're stamped so we can return later this afternoon.

We had breakfast at the Lunch Box cafe ... and some mini donuts, and a Pronto Pup, some honey ice cream from the Agriculture building (Ann's must-get each year), some fried gyoza from Pham's Deli, and a strawberry smoothie.  I am actually a little bit hungry now...

Have a bunch of photos!
So much less stressful just walking down the street to Machinery Hill rather than fight the traffic...

Giant pumpkins!
This tractor costs more than our house!
We can see our house from here! ... well, it's in among those trees up there
Sharing is caring, especially when it's the Honey ice cream
Rides on the Kidway
Getting a bit crowded as lunchtime approached - time to step out for a while...

Monday, August 20, 2012

Getting Ready for the State Fair

The Minnesota State Fair opens this Thursday. The Fairgrounds are only a few blocks from our new place, and it's a favorite spot for us to go walking around - an abandoned city for most of the year. About 2 weeks ago the organizers closed up the gates so that crews and vendors could begin setting up - we took one last walk the day before they locked us out.

In just a few days this street will be mobbed from side to side. But now, it's just us for as far as we can see.
Rainbow benches stacked up under the Grandstand Concourse, waiting to be distributed.
Wynn found an empty stage near the Agriculture Building - and rushed it. She did a three-song set with a different kind of dance for each number.
In Mandarin, of course. Whatta ham.
Soon, Pronto Pups, very soon. Fried sticks of batter and meat are the GREATEST FOOD EVER!
Contemplating the view of the DNR Building and the All You Can Drink Milk Bar, lost in thought.
Wynn doesn't care for pickles at all, but is perfectly willing to shill for them. She even kind of dressed for the set.  Aren't you kind of short for a giant pickle spokesperson?