Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Growing Up on the Road . . .

One of the interesting sights that customers often notice when the convention comes to town each year is the change in our children as they grow up.  My son Ryan was eight years old when we first started traveling – in four months he will be 26.  He was one of several kids who grew up together on the circuit – none of whom has been seen at a show in several years.  But they have been replaced by a whole new generation.

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The Lindeman kids (Noelle and Alana – their parents are Steve and Michelle from Toomuchfun) are different from most – they were born on the show circuit.  And I have taken lots of pictures of them around our booth over their lifetimes because they are both in love with Keia Arn0ld.  Keia and her mom Robin started working with us at shows in Indiana, Michigan and Ohio when she was about ten years old – so we have watched her grow up in our booth as well!

Last weekend, we were in Indianapolis – and very little has changed . . .


Saturday was Noelle’s turn.  Early in the day, we were too busy for visitors.  But as the afternoon wore on . . .

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. . . there was this magnet that just drew her to Keia.  And it’s obvious by the way she interacts with kids that Keia was born to be a teacher.


By Sunday, Alana also found her way to our side of the room.  Of course, the kids could have spent the day – there were Snowmageddon Warnings all weekend so most of our customers came on Saturday and we had plenty of time to visit (and very little snow – the “up to a foot” that was forecast turned out to be about two inches).


Midafternoon Sunday proved that kids can be exhausting.  Keia has been out of college for almost a year, but this reminded me how easy it is for the college-age bunch to fall asleep anywhere.


They also recharge their batteries quickly.  This shot was taken just as we started to tear down the booth – we were right next to an open garage door and Keia was freezing, so I offered her an extra sweatshirt that I carry in the truck.  She said her dad would be less than pleased that she was wearing an Ohio State logo (he’s a Purdue alum).

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This was the slippery view during teardown – the second round of snow began just as we started, and of course it was blowing into the truck!  And it was a long snowy walk for Robin as she walked across the parking lot to bring her car closer to the building.  Maybe Spring will finally come by the time we get to Allentown, Pennsylvania in ten days – but at this rate I doubt it . . .

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