Monday, October 13, 2008

Fall in the classroom, and Dixie Classic Fair

Fall is in the air. It's not quite as fall-ish looking as the watercolors the second graders worked on this week, but it's getting there. Temps are cooler... the skies are blue and clear.

Steve and I took advantage of the pleasant weather and a Saturday with both of us home. What to do? We haven't visited family living in the foot hills of North Carolina since Christmas. It was time to pay one of his brothers a visit. We drove to King, NC to visit with my brother-in-law and his wife.

Saturday evening the four of us drove to Winston Salem for the annual Dixie Classic Fair. It's been over 30 years since we attended the Dixie Classic... I think we were dating the last time we walked the fairways, rode the rides, and played a few games. The Dixie Classic is huge (they get about 325,000 visitors each year during the ten days it's in town)... the second largest agricultural fair (I imagine the Raleigh State Fair takes the first position) in North Carolina.

It was late afternoon when we got there, and we stayed until almost closing time... the sights and smells can't be beat. I enjoyed checking out the gourd entries by the kids. This photo to the right shows what some kids made out of apples. Check out that buffalo apple! Cool.

Food... the big draw at the fair for me. I love the smell of country food... the barbecue, the sausage, pepper, and onions,... the cotton candy, popcorn, and peanuts... then there was this vendor who sold apples covered with everything sweet and salty. I didn't buy one, but I did take a few pictures. To share with y'all.

I don't know how I resisted, but I did. I made up for it on Sunday, though, when we stopped at some candy making shoppe in the mountains, and I bought six chocolate truffles. Six, and I haven't eaten a single one as of this evening. I'm saving them for a moment I can savor them... as a treat for not eating a lot of junk food all week!

I don't plan on eating the truffles all at once... maybe one each week!

A young man was stacking cards in the vendor hall... he was in the middle of building the skyline of Winston Salem... not a house of cards, but a city of cards! His name is Bryan Berg.

I found a YouTube video of Bryan working on the Rhode Island State Capitol.

I enjoyed walking around the fair, taking in the sights, sampling the fare, and spending time with family.

My BIL and SIL live closer to the mountains than we do, and they're about a ten minute drive from Pilot Mountain. On a clear day, Pilot Mountain beckons the hiker in me. But we didn't go hiking on Sunday.

Instead, we embarked on an old fashioned Sunday drive for Mabry Mill on the Blue Ridge Parkway in Floyd County, Virginia. The day was perfect to visit this old mill. It used to be a gristmill and sawmill, owned by Ed and Lizzie Mabry.

Something else I've noticed about this blog... the spaces between paragraphs keep growing with every added photo...editing takes a very long time here at blogger. Much longer than it ever took at aol journals. And I don't see any features allowing us to embed a YouTube video, so I'm going to check into that... one day.

I like to begin and end my entries with photos of students working on their art, or at least a sampling of what they've done. That's how I'm going to end this entry.

Do you find it hard to believe that the artist is a second grader?
Even if the reflection doesn't line up with the trees, it's still a nice painting! I found that the most difficult concept for them was to paint the tree reflection directly under the tree. That may be a perceptual development thing... I'm going to look into it.


  1. The city of cards is very cool. Glad that you had a good trip :o)

  2. Love the childrens' paintings. When my girls were young, I had the posted on my office at work in frames, LOL. They certainly brightened my day. Sounds like you and your family live in a very pleasant place. I talked about migrating to the Carolinas once upon a time. Just wasn't meant to be, I guess. My family will be traveling to Skyline next weekend, however, to do our annual Fall pilgrimage. Love it up there! Have a great day!

  3. School again. I am sorry it is taking longer for you to post photos but you always represent the kids and their art so well. I am thinking about our fair but don't think I will make it this year so I am glad I got to view some pictures from one who did. I do think that tree painting is lovely. I know you are going to be incredibly busy, so have a happy school year, Gerry By the way I like the new name, too!

  4. I miss county fairs and have enjoyed viewing the pictures of yours and your narrative. I have to say that picture your student painted is fabulous! A budding talent there!!!

  5. I wish when I'd been in school we'd worked with oils and pastels. I'm glad they there are programs like yours (and teachers like you) for today's schoolchildren. Loved the pics. Looked like a great way to spend a day with your husband, and I'm glad you got to visit with family.

  6. Sounds like a fun road trip! Of course, it's a rarity that a road trip ISN'T fun!

    Also loved the kids' pictures--I was impressed with the reflection of the trees!

    To add any video (we're not limited to just AOL Video and YouTube now) to your blog, just get the embed code, switch the tab on the entry screen to HTML, and paste in the code. Voilà!


  7. Hello friend. I'm from NC too. I really like your blog. Wonderful pictures!

  8. Wonderful paintings and beautiful photos of the fair. I love agricultural fairs. We only have one in Vancouver every year and that is at the end of August for two weeks. Like you, I love the food. My favourite is the hot fudge sundaes and mini donuts. I miss the ease of uploading pictures, also. ::SIGH::