Family picture

Everybody loves a fair, especially Grace!

September 18, 2010 · filed under: Grace Evelyn by Jill

With Grace’s love for animals right now, we knew that we had to take the opportunity that the fair presents to enjoy some barnyard buddies. Grace must have known that a visit was coming, because the week before the state fair we noticed that she knew all of her farm animal sounds (and also the lion, kitty, and bee sounds, too). It was a sign that fun-filled trips were in store.

Our first fair of the season was the Iowa State Fair. Grace enjoyed this one twice–first on a Friday evening and again on a Sunday afternoon. Grace made her debut here as a subject in Mommy’s photo on display in the cultural center (Daddy had a photo displayed here, too). As a fair celebrity, then, she loved taking in all of the animals in the Avenue of Breeds (a favorite of Daddy’s too!) and mooing at the dairy cows before eating homemade ice cream. She equally enjoyed quacking at the ducks and petting the baby goats in the Animal Learning Center and baaing at the lambs in the sheep barn. Grace also proved that she could be a little farm girl at Little Hands on the Farm, sported her first ISU tattoo from the Varied Industries Building, and enjoyed cookies, corndogs, lemonade, etc. from the junk food vendors. What a fair!

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Two weeks later, Grace got to enjoy a bonus fair, the Guthrie County Fair. Mom and Dad decided that a visit to Guthrie Center could be worked into the long three-day Labor Day weekend, so Grace took in the sights and sounds once again on Friday evening and Saturday day. A bonus for Saturday was the parade. Although Grace didn’t seem to care much about the parade itself, she did like the candy–or rather picking it up to put in the bucket and then dumping it out again!

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At this fair, Grace enjoyed all of the animals again, especially being able to get up-close and personal with them in the smaller venue. Grace’s favorite place of this fair was probably the small animals barn. She loved being able to reach in the poultry and rabbit cages that hung at her eye-level and pet the animals. She also rode her first carnival ride when Mommy took her on the carousel ride. This seemed to be a hit, too, since Grace said, “Weee!” repeatedly and cried when the ride was over! Of course, there was fair food here, too, so Grace enjoyed another corndog, funnelcake, ice cream and frenchfries. Good thing the fair only comes once a year! When our little girl had finally gotten enough of the fair, a quick visit to Great-Grandma Bea and Great-Grandpa Bob wrapped up the day.

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In addition to the photos, here are a few videos of Grace enjoying the fair:

Enjoying the sights and sounds of the poultry and rabbit barn:

chickens

turkeys

Watching the hog show, right up close!

hog show

Exploring the cattle barn:

cows

With fair season over, we will await another round next year. For one last look at our fair fun, don’t forget to check out the gallery for lots more photos!

Back to business

September 10, 2010 · filed under: Grace Evelyn by Geoff

Well, it’s back to work for all of the Janes family! All are officially back into the routine of work, school, and days at daycare. Our summer officially ended on Monday, August 16th when Jill went back to school, Geoff went back to regular hours at admissions, and Grace went back to Heather’s for days with her friends. Although we had the best of intentions of recapping our summer with a post to commemorate this occasion…back to work means being busy for us all. Thus, as things start to settle just a bit, we are finally getting to that post!

9 weeks of summer seemed to fly by this year, especially with all of the trips and visits we have previously highlighted here. In between our times away from home, though, we all found plenty of time for good, old-fashioned summertime fun. Having Grace around brought the kid back in all of us! Whether it be swimming, playing in the sand, visiting the playground, going to the zoo and the fair, attending library storytime, or hanging out with friends, our summer fun usually revolved around Grace.

The biggest surprise for Jill and I during the summer was the number of changes that we saw in Grace.  She went from a baby still at the beginning of summer to a little girl.  Many of these pictures and videos illustrate these changes.  So without further delay, here is a recap of some of our best summer moments:

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And a few videos can really tell the story as well.  This is one of the first videos from the summer, and at this point Grace was still REALLY wobbly as she walked.

tennis_balls

Another early video of grace feeding herself with a spoon.  She has now mastered this technique.

eating

Grace taking a dip in the pool:

swimming

And a final video to show how much she’s grown, a recent clip from the fair:

running around chickens

So as we turn towards fall, we look forward to all the new fun adventures we can have with our wonderful daughter.

And don’t forget to check out the gallery for lots more photos!