Some of my best childhood memories surround the Westmoreland Fair. I entered handmade items every year from around age 6 until age 14. For several years, I also participated in 4-H entomology, and I raised monarch butterflies several times with my family.
But then I became chronically ill at age 14 in May of 2015. I entered in the fair one final time that August, never imagining that I would be too sick to enter again until I was 21, and yet that is exactly how the future unfolded. If you're a longtime reader of my blog, you know my story, but if you're new, you can read more of what happened here. The short story is that for years I became too disabled to do almost anything but lay in bed, eat, and use the restroom as a result of chronic Babesia odocoilei and Bartonella infections and complications. Both infections are spread by ticks and Bartonella by cat scratches also.
There was a time I thought I'd never enter in the fair again, but this year, I made a comeback. After being too sick to participate for 7 years, this year I entered 23 handmade items and purple cone flowers! I received 18 ribbons, 6 of which were 1st place, 2 of which were 2nd place, 5 of which were 3rd place, 3 of which were 4th place, and 2 of which were 5th place. Below are photos of my winning entries.
The entry that was most meaningful to me was my monarch butterfly wall hanging, and I was excited that it took 1st place. Praise the Lord that little by little I am emerging from my chrysalis and am beginning to spread my wings.
The Westmoreland Fair continues until this Saturday, August 27th. If you're local, I hope you'll visit and enjoy the many handmade items, floral arrangements, produce, animals, and more!
Me with my new friend. Maybe I will have my own goat someday. :)
Thanks for being excited for me, Cassie! I figured you would enjoy this post since we both love crafts and grew up in 4-H. I’m glad to hear how much you like the snowman ornament.
This makes me so happy for you Lauren! Thank you for sharing your beautiful projects. The snowman ornament is especially adorable. Way to go!
Kerry, thank you so much for commenting and for your encouragement! I saw some of your items at the fair; congratulations on the ribbons you won! Yes, I too love entering regardless of whether or not I win a ribbon, and I always become inspired when I see everyone’s talents on display!
Your smile says it all! Congratulations on all your ribbons! That is a great return to the fair. Love the pictures of your items, you are talented for sure. Some of your items are close to mine on the display. I love entering the fair and even if I don’t get a ribbon, I always learn something that I can use for next year’s entry. Here’s to next year and I can’t wait to see what you do.
Mrs. Durbiano, thank you for cheering me on from Illinois! I’m glad you enjoyed the photos. We miss you and Mr. Durbiano!