Tuesday, August 12, 2008

The Northwest Washington Fair






Monday was the first day of the Northwest Washington Fair and Larry was working at a table for Community In Schools so I decided to go with him and wander around the fair to see the sights. It has been four years since I went to the fair with my daughter Kelly.

I found the exhibition building with quilts and admired the artistic craftsmanship and also found myself comparing my mother’s quilts to the ones who had won awards. One of the differences in my mother’s quilts and most of the quilts at the fair, is that my moms quilts are all hand pieced, appliqu├ęd, embroidered, and quilted on an old fashioned quilt frame. Not a machine stitch on her quilts. My mother just learned to quilt in a different period of time and that style of quilting might soon be lost.

I checked out all the vendors but really didn’t find anything I wanted or needed so I went to view the rabbits and chickens. The bunnies were really cute but my bird dog would just love to hunt them down so I don’t think I’ll have bunnies in my backyard. The chickens came in every color and size. Some of the roosters didn’t seem to realize that sunrise was hours ago. I would love to have a little hen house in the backyard and then I could call them may Harley chicks.

There were dahlias to see in every color, art, photographs, baked goods, table settings, and what would a fair be without home canned fruits and vegetables. Cotton candy, snow cones, and donuts, the smells were wonderful and I didn’t give in to temptation.

The dairy cow barn was next on my list of items to see. Some of my earliest memories are living on a small farm in Missouri. My mom had three cows, a Guernsey, a Jersey, and a Holstein. I remember mom said that one was better for butter and the others for drinking milk. I just remember how big they looked when I was so little and how good they smelled in the barn with fresh hay. Two of the cows at the fair will probably deliver calves at the fair and that will be an experience for those who get to watch a live birth. I saw my first calf born when I was about nine, visiting my aunt’s farm.

The baby goats, lamas, and sheep were cute and they were judging while I was there. It was fun to watch the kids dressed up and taking charge. Other kids were cleaning and grooming their animals and several were milking goats. Warm milk is another one of those smells I remember from the dairy barn.

I had saved the best to last, the horses. Miniatures to Clydesdales, three barns full. You could hear the clip clop of the heavy hooves on the pavement when the Clydesdales came in and out of the barn. They were magnificent with their manes braided and decorative ribbons in their tales. The wagons were all lined up and the draft horse hitches show will be later in the week. All the 4H kids were working in the barns, cleaning, straightening, answering questions and they had all the stall doors decorated. One couple had a pair of mules and it was fun to talk to them since I am from the show me state “Missouri” known for being stubborn as a mule.

I met Larry at the end of his shift and we found a shaded food area to have lunch. We had our picture taken back in the barns for a wanted poster and then we headed home. It was a wonderful day and brought back a lot of childhood memories.

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