We knew Mermaid Linden was going to be at The LA County Fair for most of September, but I didn’t think we’d be able to go. As you may recall, Mr. M is working right now on Dancing With The Stars – and he’s been working a lot. Over 90 hours/week, to be exact. (Really!)
He hadn’t had a day off work in weeks, and I was not about to take all the kids to the Fair by myself. For one, Ellie (7 months) is still not a fan of the car, so I was worried she would cry the whole way and I’d be driving on the freeway with a shrieking baby. Eeek! It’s about a 2 hour drive to Pomona (in traffic) from where we live – so that would have been rough. Once she starts crying, she just doesn’t stop.
Well…for weeks, Paprika was near-tears every time I looked at her. Then, I found her sobbing into her pillow at night, hiding from me her disappointment. She knew we couldn’t go to see Mermaid Linden- and she didn’t want me to find out just how disappointed she was. My heart broke.
Then, because of an Editor’s Guild union rule – Mr. M had to get a day off work! He got last Wednesday off – his first day off in many weeks – and so, of course, we went to see Mermaid Linden at the LA County Fair!
We didn’t tell Paprika beforehand, because she would NOT have slept a wink the night before. Not one wink! I wanted her to be rested, so we surprised her in the morning!
We arrived in time to see the 3 pm show (her first show of the day!) – and we stayed for every show on the hour until 7pm! So, that’s 3pm, 4pm, 5pm, 6pm, and 7pm!
Here is me and Baby Ellie waiting between shows. Ellie was so happy and excited to be there!
Ginger (6) dressed up in her finest mermaid attire and probably asked the most questions of anybody at the shows. At first she was so quiet – and then she got a little more confident every time!
Violet (3) was pretty shy at first. Before long, she warmed right up to Mermaid Linden!
After every show, Mermaid Linden did a Meet and Greet, where she took time to talk to each child and sign autographs. Can you guess who was in line every single time waiting to talk to her?! Us, of course! 🙂
I started to get kind of worried that we were being Mermaid Linden hogs! I mean, the girls were just eating up every single word she said and could not get enough. Whenever there was an opportunity to ask questions from the audience, all their hands shot up! When it was time to get to talk to her afterwards, they raced to the line! I really tried to be fair to the other sea fans – but it was hard to quench the girls’ excitement!
Sidenote: Violet (3) loved these little photo booth opportunities that they had all over the Fair where you put your head in and take a picture. I have about three dozen different shots of her in different cut-outs. She would run up and say: Please take my picture!
It was kind of hilarious (maybe you had to be there?!) Ha!
After awhile of feeling like a Mermaid Linden hogger, we decided to go and see the Farm Animals. We trekked all the way across the Fair (in 100 degree heat) to this barn with lots of smelly animals. Ginger (6) is a huge fan of pigs, so she had to see them. She really wants a pet pig (another story for another day)!
Well, we were there at the Farm Animals, and Paprika was not excited at all. It was an endless loop of: “Where is Mermaid Linden?! Are we going to miss her show? Why are we in this hot barn? We have to go back now…please!”
(Daydreaming of Mermaid Linden):
So, after visiting with the Farm Animals for all of 90 seconds, we high-tailed it back in time for Mermaid Linden’s next show! We made it there just under the wire! Whew!
Paprika was so nervous each time she got a chance to speak to Mermaid Linden! It’s kind of like if you got to meet the Beatles back in their heyday. She was that nervous! She could barely speak. She managed to eek out a few words each time – and then afterwards, she’d say: There was so much I wanted to tell her, but I got a little tongue tied. 🙂
I have to say, meeting Mermaid Linden has been a beautiful thing for both me and the girls. Not only is Mermaid Linden a real mermaid – she is also a great science teacher! I can’t tell you all the marvelous discussions we’ve had about sea life and marine conservation since we started watching Mermaid Linden’s Mermaid Minute videos together on YouTube.
It’s had such a great impact that I’ve decided to structure our Homeschool Science Lessons around her videos. It’s a great jumping off point for us – and it’s led us to research so many amazing scientific principles. Paprika (9), Ginger (6), and Violet (3) are SO excited about science now that we’re approaching it this way. I’ll be writing more on how that’s going in upcoming posts, as well as some ideas for Homeschool Unit Studies based around these videos! Check out this amazing video she posted about Sea Turtles – it’s been a great conversation starter for us here at home.
One last thing – Paprika used her own money to buy one of Mermaid Linden’s Hoodie Towels at the Fair. When we got home, she wrapped herself up in it like a blanket. She said it felt just like Mermaid Linden was giving her a big warm hug – and she’s slept this way every night since!
Sweet Dreams, my little Paprika! I know what you’ll be dreaming about…swimming in the sea with Mermaid Linden, of course! 🙂