My mother called me the other day nearly breathless. “I have an idea for another fair entry,” she said from our home on Sengekontacket Pond as I pressed my hand up to my ear to block out the honks and horns of Midtown Manhattan.

Mom had already shown me the slightly out of focus photograph she planned to submit to the Agricultural Fair. When I pointed out the photograph’s fuzzy nature, her response was quick and to the point: “Well, it’s meant to be artistic.”

Her new idea involved a mossy display. Collected rocks and branches would be arranged in a container of some sort. Her enthusiasm for her project would be a blue ribbon in my book, no matter what the judges had to say.

As the 156th fair kicks off at the Agricultural Hall this weekend, it is that beaming enthusiasm that my mom and countless others, including myself, look forward to year after year. I’ve received several phone calls and texts over the last few weeks from family members and friends asking my opinion on entry items. Should it be framed or just a mat? How about that ceramic mug I made? There was even a consult on a two-year-old’s first fair entry.

I can’t remember a year when I didn’t submit something, almost always of the baked good variety. Cakes, cupcakes, brownies, you name it — the pride of seeing your dish in that glass display case is unparalleled.

By the time this essay goes to print, I will have already spent too much at a cake decorating store in New York to bring up to the Island for my baking project. I will already have been elbow deep in buttercream frosting, numbing my tongue with sugar into the late hours of Wednesday night and Thursday morning. There probably will have been a few tears, and my mom will have assured me that everything looks great.

But the moment of truth comes when the grand barn doors finally open to the exhibitions. I’ll pace myself through the hall, masking my nervousness with measured footsteps over the wide barn floorboards. I’ll walk by Paul Jackson’s overflowing cornucopia of Island goods and remember the time a judge once described his produce to me as “stratospheric blue.” I’ll pass under the perfect vegetables and sunflowers grown by Vineyard kids all summer long. And I’ll make my way to the back of the barn where the baked goods are displayed. My heart will rise in my throat just a little.

On Monday this week, my mother called me to tell me she had submitted everyone’s forms.

“I made this little moss garden that I couldn’t figure out the category for so I wrote down six of them,” she said. When she arrived at the Ag Hall, the fair staff suggested she consider the category of “Sing Me A Song — arrangement inspired by a song.”

Lo and behold, a bowl inscribed with the phrase “come live with me by the sea” was not only in our kitchen but also a song lyric.

“I’m officially crazy,” my mother said. “But I had a really good time.”

Remy Tumin is a news assistant at The New York Times.