Sunday, November 20, 2011

Temper Tantrums and Ink

Today the kids and I arose early to get ready for our local Heritage Festival. This is put on once a year and goes from the Revolutionary War through the Civil War with many volunteers who are dressed in the traditional uniform, extremely knowledgeable about their particular time period with fun music and activities to participate in and watch.

I grabbed a box of granola bars, the kids had all eaten breakfast and we set off. Upon arriving I should have known that this would not be "our" day as Hannah refused to sit in the stroller. We strolled up, handed the lady our tickets and walked in. I am pushing a stroller while holding Hannah who is screaming bloody murder at 9 AM!!!!! What on earth! There are so many cool tents and places to learn and hear about but I have a toddler screaming hysterically in my ear! I felt so frazzled!

We arrived at the first tent and I set her down. However, Hannah was not interested in listening to the man describe how to load a musket, no she was interested in venturing to the nearest smoldering fire to take a look. So, I was constantly picking her up and moving her to safe location only to have her two seconds later venture back out again.

I did hear some interesting facts and encouraged the boys, especially, to ask questions. However, my time was predominately spent with a determined 15 month old who cared nothing for the reenactments and everything for the most dangerous object within arms reach. We moved over to a tent where there was mountain men from the time period prior to the 1830s. The men who explored the Rockie Mountains. I am not sure if this was Lewis and Clark era but it was pretty interesting. Again, Hannah gravitated to the hot, smoldering coals.

To be polite we stayed and listened as an older gentleman, wearing the traditional mountain man outfit, began on a lengthy story telling spree. Three of my kids were staring into space and Hannah was screaming, screeching, tripping, eating mouths full of dirt and squawking. Wow, this is LOADS of fun!

My goal, at that moment, went from wanting to make it to 4pm to just get us to the Revolutionary War skirmish and then I wanted to leave. Hannah then, went ballistic. She was so bad that everything was quiet except her screaming. I put her in the stroller, told the kind gentleman "Thank-you." and we took off to the parking lot. I was hoping that I could give her a granola bar to settle her down. She was strapped into the stroller yet was hanging her body as far out as the straps would allow her, screaming, thrashing and snotting everywhere.

The lady at the gate said, " Oh, I'm sorry...I hope you aren't leaving." My reply, " We'll see." Why do I have expectations?? Why, oh why???! I find the granola bars, and gave her two, She needs one in each hand, you know. I gave her Jayden's water bottle, she screams because it kept falling out of her hands, even though she insisted on holding both granola bars at the same time. Finally, she manages to slurp the water as it drips all over her making the dirt on her clothes now mud all the while still maintaining control of the granola bars.

We set off, back into the festival and she starts to scream again, Riah starts to cry because she is hungry- this is 10 am ! I just stop. I'm like, " Either we all stop crying or we are all leaving." Riah decides to join the " no tears club" and we continue back in. Hannah, again, refuses to sit. All for the love of my boys, I hold her when all I wanted to do was throw her into her carseat, strap the heck out of her and leave.

We walk around and she smiles at me like, " Wow Mama, holding your hand with my muddy shirt and dirty granola bars is the absolute best!!". I smirked at her, I'm sorry- smiling at her was more than I could muster at that moment.

Finally, we ended up over at the Gold Rush era and a lady there was so helpful and knowledgeable. The kids, with a couple of their friends ( I told the kids we would not join their friends if Hannah continued to scream. There was no sense ruining the experience for everyone) ground coffee, talked about winding wool into yarn, wrote their names in calligraphy with a feather and ink, and saw some very cool blacksmiths at work. The kids then jumped around some bales of hay and visited an out west school room where Hannah managed to tip an entire ink holder with black ink all over a bale of hay and coated her hands. This was the third day of the festival and we were the first to add black ink to the hay.

Finally, oh finally, the Revolutionary War skirmish began. The boys ran up to the front while I sat back with the girls. This was  very cool, loud and authentic. I hope that the kids enjoyed it as much as I did and the funny thing was that the loud cannon and gun noises did not even faze Hannah Lou. Not one bit. The kids watched the entire battle, it was very well done. The whole show was well done but I was just a tad distracted the ENTIRE time. I do not think I will take an one year old with me again.

I bought the boys coon skin hats and Riah to go along with our upcoming out west and Revolutionary war study. We left, picked up a $5 pizza at Little Caesars and now everyone is napping/quiet time.

Oh, and PS. I must mention that Hannah required her white and pink sleep blanket with her at all times. This is whether she deemed it necessary to whip on the ground, under the stroller, roll around on the grassy field or hold it. It must, at all times, be under her control. I ran into the pizza place and Riah had given Hannah a chocolate chip cookie, while holding her blanket, with ink all over her hands and grass stuck in the blanket. I then gave her a piece of pizza with cheese and sauce, in her carseat with chocolate on her hands and ink all over them. Then, came the water, drinking, slurping, spilling. We come home, I wipe her down, changer her diaper, put her down for her nap, thee end. Some days, are just meant to be "toddler" days. She's lucky I wiped her down.

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