Monday, September 23, 2013

The Pig Finale and 7 random Fair things

We are now piggie-less, but not penniless.  The kids sold their market hogs in the 4-H auction at the fair, and walked away with enough money to get started raising a steer for next year.

I'm so thankful to all of the faithful buyers who come to the sale every year and support these kids by purchasing an animal.  There are still good people out there that restore our faith in humanity... and many of them sit in the bleachers of 4-H auctions. ;)

I'm always sad to see the hogs go because they have a high entertainment value with all of their antics and hilarious personalities, but I will not miss the feed bill. Nope. Not one bit.

For the last two years, the kids have purchased local hogs from our county, and this year the hogs each placed 6th in their weight classes.  That's enough to put them in the higher end of the show, and also put the kids near the beginning of the auction.  But it's not enough to place in the top 3.  All of this year's winners were purchased out of state.  Our dilemma with this is that out-of-state hogs cost much more money to buy, and then you have to tack on the fuel and travel expense to go pick them up.  In the end, our little county fair doesn't generate the sales prices to make it profitable.  Folks who buy their pigs out of state are purely in it for the competition, and the ribbon...not for the money.  

In our county, 7 year olds can't raise and sell a market hog, but they can use their sibling's hog to enter into a pee-wee showmanship class. I'm kicking myself for not bringing a camera that day, but it was a hilarious sight, to say the least.  There were pigs running amok all over the show ring with little cowpokes chasing them in a scene of mass chaos.  Our littlest girl was smiling like crazy and looking right at the judge with her pig front and center, and then proceeded to nearly take the judge's eyeball out with her pig whip.  He couldn't stop laughing, and neither could we. It was hilarious. Everyone got a "special person" ribbon in that class because it's hard to give places to a class that bad. The judge spoke to every one of the kids and they all felt like they were the winners. HA! So funny.

In other fair news, our daughter's sewing projects all brought home 1st place ribbons in their prospective categories. She was very excited about this because she worked really hard this year.

Here were her prize winning projects:

Velvet pumpkins, lined makeup bags with zippers, and a ruffled apron.

Seven more things about the fair:

1. I had to share my funnel cakes with the family, which I did begrudgingly because they were $6.00 a piece. Highway robbery.

2. There was a grasshopper plague of biblical proportions on the night of the demolition derby and the arena lights were swarming with grass hoppers so thick, you couldn't take a step without killing a few.  Totally weird.

3. The "Carnies" in charge of the Ferris Wheel stopped us at the top and left us up there for 10 minutes so we could have a bird's eye view of the demolition derby without having to pay to watch it. With all those grasshoppers in the stands, I'm glad I wasn't a paying customer.

4.  My children talked all week about a certain boat ride called "Pharaoh's Revenge" that swung them back and forth through the air.  All they wanted to do was ride that ride.  Then, when the time came for us to go to the carnival, they sprinted to the front of the line with all of their friends. Once the ride started, they were convinced they were going to fall to their death with each swinging pass.  The look of sheer terror on their faces told me that they wouldn't be riding that ride again anytime in the near future. If only I had a camera.

5. When we go to the fair, it's so far away that we have to pull a camper and stay at the KOA with the rest of our club.  At home, it was pouring down rain every single day, but at the KOA, it was sunny and 20 degrees warmer.  The kids spent all their free time swimming at the outside pool for the last time this summer.  Tonight we are calling for freezing temperatures, but the kids are still sporting their KOA tans from the fair.

6. My least favorite day of the fair is the day of the auction. I get so nervous for my kids, praying they get a good price for the animals they worked so hard to raise. After it's all said and done, there is a huge weight lifted off my shoulders, and then I can completely relax and enjoy the rest of the exhibits and booths. I even made an impulsive purchase on a new pair of jeans I saw at one of the booths.

7.  We're so exhausted from the fair that we need a month to recover.  It takes a full year of preparation and practice, and it all comes down to one giant marathon week of competition.

Thankful it's over but feeling quite blessed,



  1. She did awesome on her sewing projects!! Way to go kiddos for showing and giving it your all!

  2. I love county fairs, I can't wait until my kids are old enough to participate!

  3. Love the pigs at the fair! LOL! Its amazing what people pay for the auction animals. Wish we could get that much for our calves! HA! Great job kids!

  4. SO Thankful we live in a County that has AWESOME 4-H supporters as well...God Bless them all! Don't feel bad about the funnel cake...I treat myself every year on the last day of the fair~around 9pm when the auction is over to a $6 bloomin onion lol!
    I have had a SERIOUS grasshopper problem at my house...I walk to the clothesline and they fly up out of the grass in record numbers~kind of creeps me out!
    We had Pharoh's revenge at our fair boys have never liked rides, saves us about $20 a kid each year!
    Get recouped from the fair...I feel the same way when we are done. Takes a week to regroup!

  5. Amazing sewing projects. Seriously I want lessons from her :)
    Grasshoppers have been absolutely insane this year, what is up with them.
    I saw that ride and one of my son's football buddies wanted him to ride it with him and trust me my son wanted no part of it. Haha!
    That is so exciting about the steer next year. I raised Dairy Cows when I was younger and it was so fun. Glad they all made out well. Miss you!