Friday, August 21, 2015

Wrist Warmers and the County Fair

Falling for Fall, Thing the First: wrist warmers. In my neighborhood here in the North, there is no need for these things past, say, mid-October, because temperatures will plummet and fingertips must be covered, but until then, they make me really happy. Picture me snuggled up in a long woolly scarf, maybe also with a cute denim jacket and tall boots, rosy-cheeked and red-nosed, sitting on a log next to a bonfire and wearing these, hands wrapped around a big mug of hot cider. There's singing, and spooky stories. Guitars and sparklers. Yes, I see it! Autumn, you are not horrible! I don't have a denim jacket, must go thrifting...
These are pretty easy to make, just start knitting a mitten but quit before it's done. Embroider a big yarny flower on it, with a clump of french knots in the center. Use fall colors. Nice.

My girl came home for a visit, and we went to the County Fair, which might have been Thing the Second if the weather hadn't been very hot and not at all Fall-like. How is the Fair where you live? Our Fair is a very rural affair, mostly animals, which all give you a suspicious side-eye as you approach, and the cows are all aimed business-end out, so I feel an extra need for vigilance in the beef and dairy barn. They are all raised by wholesome-looking teenagers who listen to country music and do crossword puzzles or sleep in the hay in the next stall while their animals are on exhibit. Outside are fried pickles and Oreos, NASCAR trading card booths, 4-H macaroni projects. Bucket-sized cups of fresh lemonade. We got all rhapsodic over the vegetable exhibits; the idea of someone curating their six most perfect cherry tomatoes, carefully delivering them to the Fairgrounds on exhibition day, hoping for a blue ribbon and the accompanying cash prize of 75 cents, it just seems so beautiful. Imagine the farmer's wife in her calico apron, picking that one most exemplary leaf of kale, maybe wrapping it in a damp paper towel and holding it on her lap in the truck until it could be laid carefully on a paper plate for judging. She is famous for her kale. She wins every year. Nobody can touch her for kale perfection. My friend Al bought most of a cake for eight dollars--one piece was missing, the piece tasted by the Home Arts judges. Can you imagine a better cake than one bought at the County Fair; a perfect, buttery, careful cake, someone's very best effort, missing one telltale piece?

 

13 comments:

  1. I love the wrist warmers, beautiful colour so reminiscent of Autumn. The embellishment is so simple but effective, beautiful.

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  2. Kate, when it becomes much too cold to have your fingers exposed, wear gloves under the wrist warmers! I do it all the time, as we also have winters that you want your fingers to get warm, keep warm and not have frostbite.

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    1. I never thought of that! Thanks for the tip.

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  3. Kristen, I had a wonderful time going to the fair with you, via this post. Many memories arose of Virginia State Fair visits from long ago.

    Earlier this week, NYC reached the sort of heat and humidity readings whose exisitence I try to deny during the rest of the year. Energy sapped. Naps longed for even when circumstances prevented the follow through. Have another glass of water, and so forth.

    Today is just a tiny bit more bearable. I like the look of your embroidered mitts, and know that in a few weeks (if the cooling trend continues) I might try begining this sort of thing for myself. Or...I might just go for the full mitten design, finger-enclosing mittens...and then get out my embroidery needle for some decorating.

    Thanks for the inspiration. Love to you and yours, particularly GoGo. xo

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  4. Lordy I hope we get a cold enough winter this year so I can wear some cute wrist warmers such as these. Love the embroidered flowers.
    Our state fair is just 30 minutes away, but I missed it this year. 100 degree heat just sucks the fun right out of it. But I like the quilts, animals and food!

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  5. We will be attending the Kitsap County (WA) Fair next week, and it sounds exactly like what you describe, which isn't much different from the Eaton County Fair in Michigan in the 50s! Llamas, chickens, sheep, cows, goats, draft horses, guinea pigs, rabbits, horses, 4H projects, Grange produce displays, quilts, and the best of all - Fair Food! Elephant ears, smoked turkey legs, Hawaiian and Filipino. Hurray!

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    1. Hawaiian and Filipino food! That's something I've never had, and I'm quite curious now. Will there be deep fried pineapple??? :D

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  6. Our 'fair' is quite an affair. It's called 'The Royal Highland Agricultural Show', where the landed gentry and farm folk mingle relaxedly and compare the size of their shiny new Range Rovers. The farmers' wives are all hale and hearty-types with rosy cheeks and ever-so-flamboyant outfits, a bit akin to 'Mother-of-the-Bride' -wear but with even bigger hats. I love the equestrian section the best, especially all those pretty horsey ladies decked out in their fabulous outfits complete with top hats and riding side-saddle. Also, the huge,lumbering Clydesdale horses are gorgeous in all their brassware and are quite humbling when you think of the hard work they used to do. I avoid the 'Hog Roast' stalls and the venison burger vans. The next 'fair' I'd like to go to is next weekend and comprises of 5,000 Harley Davidson bikers performing a rideout among the beautiful Scottish countryside near Inverness.It's an all-weekend thing and the atmosphere is supposed to be great. It's called 'Thunder in the Glen'. Only, I don't own nor can't ride a motorcycle! I'll just look at the pics on their FB page. I love those new wristwarmers.



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  7. I'm one of those wholesome teenagers in the hay - all grown up now of course. The fair was the highlight of the summer - partly because it was the climax of our work but also because it was the most unwholesome of social occasions, the only time of the summer where we had any time to lay about in the hay ! *blush*

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    1. LOL! I knew it, the braids and freckles are a ruse! I once saw a barefoot girl scooping poo with one hand while eating pizza with the other--was that you? :D

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  8. We try to leave town when the fair hits! The traffic is impossible - forget about getting near the grocery store that week! Ours has become a commercial mess, but the animal section saves it for those of us who swoon over bovine eyelashes and beaming 4-H'ers.
    I love your wrist warmers - just gorgeous, as usual

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  9. Funniest description of the fair ever, and so accurate! I especially cringe at the food truck offerings at our county fair - fried everything - while inside the Health Department booth hands out nutrition pyramid literature and there are 4H displays about the food groups, etc. I have become that kale lady, and even now I am tending some special plants destined for fame and glory at our fair.
    Love your blog,
    Sandra in MD

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    1. Oh, wonderful! I hope you win a blue ribbon, and maybe the 75 cent prize that goes with it! xoxo

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