Sunday, July 22, 2012

Lessons learned.

I love my hometown.  I do.  I love most small towns, but I love mine the most.  I can probably say this truthfully because I left for most of my 20's, and came back to kick off my 30's. 

Homespun is a yearly festival with arts and crafts, music, rides, food, a parade, a 5k, a duck derby, and topped off with fireworks.  It's always hot and crowded, and for me, at least, it's always worth it.

This year was the first year that I've attended avec bebes, and like pretty much everything else, they only made it more fun.  I have a lot to learn about life with kids, and Saturday was no exception. 

I started the day at 6:30AM by greeting runners who were registering for the 5K.  This was special for me because it is run by our church - Crossview Community Church - and it was the first event that I volunteered for last year when we started attending.  This year was almost twice the size as last year, as now we are a qualifier for the Peachtree Road Race.  It was a busy morning!

After the race, I met Mom, Cameron and the kiddos at the First Methodist church for my favorite Homespun tradition - hot breakfast cooked by the Methodist men.  Unfortunately, after breakfast, Cameron had to head off for work, leaving the kiddos and me to our own devices.  We made one lap around the festival to check it all out and decided that as soon as the parade was over, we'd head back toward the bouncy houses.

1st lesson - You CAN have too many balloons.

Too many balloons leads to tangles and general mayhem.  These are fantastic kids, though - Tyler lost a balloon, so Des let him have one of hers.  A little later, Des lost her remaining balloon and Tyler gave her one back.  This was all with NO prompting.  *happysigh*

Des loved the parade - it was her favorite part of the day.  She loved the clowns, and she positively beamed when one threw confetti on her.  I watched her jump up and down on her toes in an act of completely unbridled joy.  {For a minute, in my eyes, she was 4 years old again.}  She also wanted to ride on the firetruck.  She says that she'll be a cheerleader if she can ride on the firetruck.  That brought me back to the present.

We did some bouncing on the bouncy houses post-parade and then headed home for cool-down, lunch, and naptime.

When Cameron got home, we headed back down for his favorite part, the food trucks.

There was chicken on a stick, homemade chips (ribbon fries?), fried fish, fried pickles, a blooming onion, and fried cheesecake.

2nd lesson - Take a blanket.

We sat in the grass to eat our fill of greasy fried deliciousness.  The tables were all full, and because I'm usually content to stand and eat, the logistics of sharing platefuls of food off the ground with two kiddos under 7 who were overly concerned with grass and every tiny bug that crawled by didn't occur to me until we were in the moment.  No harm, no foul, I suppose.

3rd lesson - Kiddo tummies are much MUCH more hardy than mine at this point.

Just watching this happen directly after eating made me queasy - but the boys enjoyed it.  Each of the kids got to choose one activity post-dinner.  This was explained to them very specifically.  Destyni did a great job standing with me and watching the boys go round and round.  Once his ride was over, we walked back to the bouncy houses.

4th lesson - Des will ALWAYS choose the bouncy houses.

Tyler was very unhappy to watch his sister bounce without him.  Those blue eyes welled up, and the bottom lip started to quiver.  It hurt my heart - and Cameron's too, but he had been presented with his options.  We had to stick to it.  I would not tell him, for obvious reasons, but I will tell you, dear Peekers, that sometimes working to raise responsible human beings sucks.  My heart wants to give them everything that they want now.  It's so hard to say 'no', but my prayer is that they will learn the hard lessons, and one day say 'no' to their children - so that I won't have to.  (Isn't that what we have to look forward to as grandparents??)

5th lesson - There's always time for one more ride.

As we walked to the car, we saw a train of carts pulled by a John Deere lawnmower making laps around the park.  We had seen it in the parade earlier, and it was just too good to pass up.  The kiddos hopped in for a spin, and Cameron and I stood in the relative quiet, holding hands, and taking it all in.  I love my family.  I love my life.  I love Homespun.  I already can't wait for next year.

Final lesson - ...


  1. I love your blog... and I LOOOOVE you!! Great job, sissy. You're going to be such a super mommy (even though you already are, but you know what I mean).