Support For Christi Thomas

This blog is to help offer support to the Thomas Family and their daughter, Christi, in her battle against cancer. Please visit Christi's website at www.ChristiThomas.com to learn more. There, you'll find journals, photos and a lots of other information about this amazing child and her family.

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Friday, July 31, 2009

Back to the State Fair

Armed with "Star" and her visual aid; ready to walk across the fairgrounds to compete in the "Demonstration" competition. I couldn't believe she wasn't nervous, but I know she wasn't. She said, "I'm excited, but I'm not nervous. I like doing stuff like this."

Demonstration Competition Today. Shayla did an amazing job with her competition in the Demonstration event today. (Not that there was any wonder if Shayla could "talk". She's always done well with that one! And give her a microphone - oh my! LOOK OUT!) Her project tie-in was to her "Beginning Horse Management" project; her title was "No Horsing Around Around a Horse" (Horse Safety) She had no notes or outlines. It was memorized and perfect in my mind (bias mom, of course).

Shayla was so happy to have her two trainers/instructors from "Lane of Dreams" farm there in the audience to watch her and to clap for her. When she was finished I said to them, "How did it feel to hear everything you always say come out of her mouth instead of yours?!" We all chuckled. Shayla said, "They are the greatest horse teachers," then she went to give them hugs. They asked her to make a poster of some of her one liners to post in the barn to remind their college students of safety. (The Tiffin University Equestrian Team rides at "Lane of Dreams" farm.)

She had practiced this demo off and on for weeks and had it down incredibly well. Some of her one liners in her 12 minute speech/demo were a hoot:

"Tighten the girth so you don't fall to the earth"
"Here's the deal, you need a sturdy heel"
"The hardest thing about riding a horse is the ground: wear a helmet"
"The only good kinds of worms are gummy worms"
"Wear jeans so you don't get a rash, if you know what I mean"
"If you get kicked in the head, you could be dead."

And I thought her intro was incredibly cute too. She said, "I've been introduced, but someone here has not received a proper introduction so I will introduce you to Nikki (her American Girl doll) my demy doll and her horse, Star. They will be assisting me today as I tell you about horse safety from head to toe."

At the awards ceremony she was happy to receive a lovely trophy and a big blue rosette ribbon - and a bid to the state fair. Shayne asked her if she wanted to go and you can imagine what she said. I'm more than happy to take her - there are a lot of foods we didn't get to try (wink) and seriously a lot of things we didn't have time to look at on Thursday. I'm very blessed by not having to work in the summer. It will be my pleasure to take her back to Columbus to the State Fair.

Our little one is exhausted, but thoroughly loving camping at the fair, staying up late with her fellow 4H friends every night watching movies projected on the side of a building, taking care of their animals, riding horses and playing games and dancing. (Shayne and I are pretty tired too, but we're trying not to admit that!) The volunteerism of so many here is simply amazing. When I walked in a fundraising food stand to work this morning at 6:30 and I was the LAST one to arrive, I felt like a real slacker. These kids most likely have no idea how richly blessed they are with their advisors and parents doing all of this for them. I'm in awe of God's great people!
My sister cracked me up emailing and saying, "Words I never thought would come out of my sister's mouth, 'I want to go camping'"! Yes, I'm really enjoying it and.......I was able to finish chapter four (108 pages) and email it to my advisor and I also was able to write and submit a proposal to present at an international reading conference next year. (Fingers crossed!) I never could have done that without an air-conditioned camper (and when the sweet little kids accidentally unplug us they let us know - sometimes. We have funky shaped Popsicles in our freezer to prove it - what a hoot!)

Poster Competition. While waiting to give her demo today the lady in charge of the county's 4H program came over and talked with Shayla. She told her she was having an incredible year with her projects' judging; however, she should understand that most years are not like this and she should consider this one as being very, very special and if it doesn't happen next year she should not be disappointed. I couldn't agree more. This has been a very, very special week! I just wish Christi were with us to enjoy it all. I keep seeing her friends and I'm amazed at how tall they are. I just can't imagine Christi, our little girl, that tall. It has been taking my breath away.
We heard through the grapevine her "Collections", entered in the Senior Fair, housed in the Grange Building won "Best of Show" so we went to check it out. Now, I happen to think all of the kids' "junk", cough, I mean "collections" looks exactly the same (like..ummmm.."collections"...) so I don't even know how it could be judged; however, Shay seems to think her piggy bank collection is pretty special - even if she was limited to a 12" X 15" display and we had to take home more piggy banks than she was able to display. After that wee bit of "stress" (cough) Sunday afternoon, I think next year she'll read the rules before everything is loaded up to go to the fair.

Friday Night Horse Club Dance in the Horse Arena
One more really big day - tomorrow! (And just one more dissertation chapter to write - Chapter Five, a short one, good thing as I'm already at approximately 275 pages now and getting tired of it.)

1 Comments:

At 1/8/09 1:28 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh dissertation exhaustion - I hear ya! Well done on the progress though - mine is capped at 80,000 words, which seemed like a lot at the time, but is now like fitting an elephant into a suitcase!

County fair sounds so much fun! I remember going to the agricultural fairs over the summer in Ireland and loving the experience. My cousins were pros at winning categories like "most unusual shaped potato" - but they were great days out.

My parents always encouraged me to believe that "if you aren't in, you can't win" - which gave me confidence to participate in everything when I was in school. They balanced this with a strong ethic of the participation being the most important thing about competing. Values I've taken through life.

I forgot to mention in my last message - but I said a prayer for Christi at the shrine of the Infant Jesus of Prague in the Czech Republic this week. Her story (and yours) has touched me - and I prayed for her soul.

Irene

 

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