In Lehi, we have a week-long city celebration called "Lehi Round Up Days." It's mostly centered around the Lehi Round Up Rodeo, which runs all week--but there are also loads of fun activities. Seriously, the whole city just comes to a standstill--the library closes early, the grocery stores have special events, residents set their chairs and blankets out on Sunday to save a good spot for the three (yes THREE!) parades on the coming Thursday, Friday, and Saturday.
I mean, it's a huge celebration, jam-packed with fun events all day for a week.
And folks, I love getting into community events like this.
As I was perusing the Round Up magazine trying to decide which activities we would participate in this year, I saw the baby contest ad. I thought, hey, I have a really cute baby who smiles all the time. And this could be my only smiley baby. Also, the contest was themed--that meant costumes. Yup, that sealed the deal.
I spent the whole week gathering items for Scarlet's "Dorothy" outfit (idea thanks to a cute dress from Grandma Center). I know it was kind of outrageous, but I was really excited! The day came and we headed to the Legacy Center (rec center) for the contest, with all of the other really cute babies.
Here she is:
|Dorothy and Toto sitting in the "picture spot"|
|I love this concentrated face!|
|She loved playing with the banner|
So adorable! I couldn't help but post all those pictures :-).
A whole bunch of Royalty (the Rodeo Royalty, Miss Lehi Royalty, and some others??) were the judges. I brought her in and she smiled and kicked, and they all laughed and said "She is the smiley-est baby!" And then I thought, hey, maybe she even has a chance to win a prize!
When I picked up Tommy from preschool afterwards, he asked about going to the baby contest. Apparently he thought he was going to accompany us, and was pretty disappointed. He REALLY wanted to go. Then my friend told me that the age categories go until 3 years old. But I didn't want to mess with nap time (since I already messed with morning nap for the babe).
Long story short, kids were awake, Tommy wanted to be in a contest enough to obey my instructions, so we threw on Tommy's superhero outfit and ran to the rec center 15 minutes before the contest ended. In the car, Tommy practiced telling me his name, his age, doing his superhero face and arms. What a cutie! But of course when we got there, he was pretty nervous in front of the "Princesses." He did manage to say his name as loudly as he could, hold up his fingers for his age, and give a little version of his super hero face. I thought, well, next time I'll just have a neighbor put on a crown and we can have our own contest at home!
The good thing was, now we got to be there at 3 for the winners announcements, and I was excited to see if Scarlet placed at all.
Tommy ran laps around the gym while they called out winners. Scarlet didn't place, and I was strangely disappointed! Ha! Even though getting ready and doing it was a lot of fun. And then, they started announcing the 2 year old winners. And they called out "Tommy Center!" Thomas, who was running laps, stopped in his tracks and looked around like, wait, I think I know that name! I was shocked because he had been so shy, and we had literally thrown it together, after a week of prep for Scarlet! Ha! It was pretty exciting!
|Holding his prize box outside the rec center|
And then I found out...winners "get" to be in the parade on Friday.
Oh man. I didn't realize that! What were we going to do? We borrowed my parents wagon and decorated it up, and I bought some little squirt guns to squirt the spectators in lieu of candy.
And you know what? This little superhero had the time of his life.
|It took him a bit to figure out the squirting thing|
|But he got the hang of it fast!|
Oh my gosh doing the baby contest was worth everything just so that Tommy could be in the parade. He ran nearly the whole thing, in the blazing heat, squirting everyone who cheered at him. It was pretty hysterical to see him running along, cape flying, and then people cheered because he was so darn cute, and he'd run up and squirt them in the face. I was dying.
He was also a little afraid of the horses in the line-up behind us, and was literally running away from them, and trying to squirt them down with water.
With him trying to squirt everyone and wanting to walk, our contest buddies left us way behind. We ended up behind the horses, two marching bands, and a couple of floats from where we started. The spectators probably wondered who in the world we were! Finally Tommy hit the wall and climbed in the wagon and drank 3 sippy cups full of water.
He was still happy at the end! These are the pictures Robert took when he picked us up at the end of the parade route. Tommy ran towards him to get him with the squirt gun.
I think that cape and shield that I bought nearly two years ago at some random warehouse sale were a good buy, don't you? Although those strange goggles from Grandma and Grandpa M might take the cake.
And that, my friends, is the overly-detailed saga of the baby contest.
(Or in Tommy's words, the "big boy" contest).