Today I took my daughter, her friend and my niece to the State Fair. First stop: All you can eat ice cream social. Second stop: Team roping and horses! Third stop: The rest of the fair. The monsoon created a very windy storm upon our arrival, but we waited it out in the ice cream tent. Poor us. Then the weather was perfect.

We visited the horses, tickling their lips to try to get them to be silly. Most looked angry we were bothering them at dinnertime. Then we found a man “riding” a giant chicken and got pictures with him. We looked at some exhibits, a ton of animals, and headed out. No, we didn’t go on any carnival rides. My mother always said, “Never ride a ride that arrived on a truck.” We also didn’t eat chocolate covered mealworms or fried alligator. I am not a culinary adventurer.

I share this with you because my attending the State Fair is a HUGE step in my moving forward after my husband’s death. One of our most memorable dates was at the fair and we always took our kids to the fair. My husband grew up in a rural area and really enjoyed the fair. There he could see tractors, the new boats and tanks of huge fish he wished he could catch. He loved the ice cream social, the quilts and vegetables, and the photography exhibits. The fair has a bit of everything, much like my renaissance-man husband.

While I didn’t go and do all the things we used to do, I am pretty proud of myself of walking through the gate, smelling the animals and fried Twinkies and smiling at the memories I have.