This evening I went to the homeschool curriculum fair at the Frederick Fairgrounds in Maryland. It’ll be there again tomorrow if you’re local and want to get your books without having to pay for shipping and handling. I hope everyone made it home from the fair ok and that their eyes didn’t pop out halfway through their ride home.
There are four buildings filled with books, books, books. Not just story books, but text books and teacher’s guides, and fossil samples, and microscopes, art supplies, and games. The list is endless.
The walkways are scarcely maneuverable because of the crush of people all reading the books, assessing whether or not they want this book or that book. My eyes are like little dried peas from all the reading, reading, reading as fast as I can so I can move out of the next person’s way. No way can you stand in one spot and hog the books. It’s like trying to see the Mona Lisa. Every human on the planet wants to see the Mona Lisa, so you have to get in line and they zip you past so that everyone has a chance to get their glimpse.
I had already narrowed down what I wanted before I arrived, but even then, my eyes are all dried up from looking at all the stuff that was there. And since it’s hard to drive with dried pea eyes, I’m hoping that everyone made it home safely.
While I was there, I bought some grammar curriculum that they use in Mennonite schools. I know—Mennonite! But those Mennonite know their grammar! At their country fairs, I’m pretty sure that right after the hog chasing contests, they have sentence diagraming competitions. The Mennonite who run the stand wear old fashioned clothing and are soft spoken and smile sweetly at you. Don’t confuse them with Amish. Mennonite people drive cars and use a bit of technology, but not as much as the rest of us, and the Amish don’t use any technology and certainly don’t drive cars.
I gathered my $70 worth of grammar books and went to pay, but they only accepted cash or check. Check! When’s the last time someone would take a check!? No one wants your old checks anymore, because they’ll probably bounce.
I didn’t have enough cash or the checkbook with me. Earlier in the day, when I was getting my backpack ready I had to decide: Clarisse or checkbook? Clarisse won.
I told the man, “I’ll have to order the books later on the computer.”
He gave me an assessing look and said, “Well…you can just take the books and mail us a check later. You’ll do that right?”
Well, yeah, but wow! So trusting! He took my address and gave me their address and let me wander off with $70 worth of grammar books. Later I found an ATM machine that charged me $2.95 to withdraw money, and you better believe I paid the $2.95 and went back to the Mennonite guy and paid him for the books. No way am I going to be the one to crush his faith in his fellow man (woman.)
That’s about everything I have to say about today. While I was there, I bumped into a few people I know, so here are their pictures:
This is Shelley and she’s my oldest friend. I’ve known her since I was seven, so we’ve been friends for 32 years. She’s about as close to family as I can get. Instead of saying, “This is Shelley and she’s my oldest friend” let’s just say, “This is my cousin, Shelley.” Because that’s what she is.
And here are Becky and Heather whom I met about five years ago when I started homeschooling. I think these two are family, too. They’re always together and having brunch and eating yummy food. And I’m never invited! Hrumph! I’ll even eat the gluten free muffins if they invite me.
Heather owns a farm a couple of miles down the road from me. Every year we go to her pumpkin patch and pick our own pumpkins. It’s one of our favorite days of the year.
Becky started coming to Photo Club a couple of weeks ago and recently got roped into taking pictures of a wedding. She posted the pictures on Facebook and then was horrified to discover that people started stealing her wedding pictures. Watermark, Becky! Watermark!
This is Kellie whom I just met this year at the homeschool co-op. I barely know her, but her son and my son are becoming fast friends, so we’ve set up a picnic in the near future, and I’ll be getting to know her more in the next few months, I’m sure. (Her dad took the picture of us.)
I took a picture of one other person, but she looked so miserable that I was taking her picture that I’ll have mercy on her and not post it.
Updated to add: And a lizard was there, too! You know I love lizards. Here he is: