Monday, August 18, 2008

Cardboard Rock

This is what happens when you have lots of cardboard laying around, a drizzly day, and no TV.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Surprises in the duct work

Rob sat down last night to finish up the tile in the kitchen. Before putting in the grout he decided he'd clean the vent in the dining room. We have seen Seth sticking things in there and he wanted to get it out. We were surprised at what exactly that kid managed to get down the vent. Here is a picture.
Yes, that is a jar of baby food. We are assuming he got that one down there while the vent cover was off. Those little white things are the spacers we used to set the tiles. We are anxious to find out what else he has put down the OTHER vents since we've seen him hovering around those, also.
He was watching Rob pull all this stuff out and I asked him if it was him that put all that stuff down there and this was his response:

He just laughed at me :)

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Recent Events

I'm not keeping up with my blog very well right now. I don't have a great place to sit and do it, have to sit on my bed and it's not the most comfortable spot to blog :P

First big event was Jonathan's 9th Birthday on July 18. He got to spend the day at Day Camp and after we went to my Dad's for ice cream cake and presents. The following day we were supposed to do the Spaghetti Factory and watch WALL-E but the stomach flu hit and he was sick :( We made up for it last night. Good movie, we recommend it. Anyway, here are some pics from his little family party.
A week later Rob's company, Cognex, paid for a day at Oaks Park, an amusement park down in Sellwood. They had Buster's BBQ come cater our lunch. That is some really good food! We had to sit around for about an hour after before going back on the rides. I was sure I'd have sick kids all over but they did great. Nathaniel and Jonathan are big enough now to ride all the big scary rides and they went on them all! I can't do it anymore, the mini roller coaster is my limit now :) Seth even got to go on a few rides, mostly the carousel. We had a great day and stayed there for about 8 hours since we had no where else to go. We were homeless again for a few days.
Seth really likes snow cones now :)

Thursday of last week was the belt testing at the dojo. I had attended enough classes that I could test if I wanted. The kids were testing again too but Nathaniel didn't have enough lessons. It takes more and more the higher you go. He was asked to help lead warm ups so I have a few pics of him doing that. Three of his classmates tested for their orange belts and I'm sure they earned them, they did a great job!

Nathaniel helping with warm-ups.

This is his class. Senpai Devon is on the left, Senpai Lance is on the right.

The kids thought it would be fun to tackle Senpai Lance. Senpai Devon got in on the action also.

Following the kids were the adults. I was only going for my low blue belt but I was so stinkin nervous. I've never tried to earn anything in sports before so this was important to me. They had some former students come in to help with the testing so the dojo was packed, it was so fun to see. Warm ups wore me out, because we were testing we had to show off :) Next we had to demonstrate our kata. First thing I did was screw up three of the moves. I was so mad. Fortunately they have us do the kata twice and I did much better the second time around. If I had done really bad they would have let me do it again so I wasn't too worried. Following that we had to use the Sabaki pads to show that we could do some pad work and follow directions. I like doing that so I wasn't too worried about that.
This is me working with Senpai Trish.

Last was the sparring. Since I was the lowest belt testing I got to go first. I had asked Sensei Heather who would be my partner but she just gave me this mischievous look and said she'd let me know when I got up there. I didn't think anything of it. As a white belt I'm only required to spar one 1-minute round. That's all I was expecting, and maybe a few rounds later with the higher belts testing but that would be their test not mine. I got on the mat and saw that Senpai Trish was my partner. I love Trish, she's helped me with most of my training. Of course, she also knows all my weaknesses!! I did get her down at one point but I went down with her having lost my balance. In a real Sabaki challenge I would have lost the point. So we got through the round and I was glad it was over. It's amazing how just one minute of that completely wipes you out. So I was headed over to sit when Heather threw her little secret at me. Alex, a black belt, had come to help with the testing. I was told right then that I would sparring her as part of my test. Rob said the look on my face was pretty funny, total shock. I was worried for about 5 seconds then realized Alex wasn't there to kill me. She was there to test me. So I relaxed and had fun with it. You'll see in the video the first thing she does is a smooth roundhouse kick to my head.
I cannot see those coming. That is my goal is to learn to recognize those and block them and use it to my advantage. That is my biggest weakness right now is not being able to see the kicks coming. At least it wasn't a hard kick. She was fun, I was glad for the opportunity. Sensai Heather told me later that she did it cause she knew I could do more then a white belt. That makes me feel good. I'm too hard on myself, feel like I should be able to do so much more and I get frustrated when I miss the blocks or forget how to throw someone. There were three others testing that night. They all did really well. Lance, Heather's husband, was testing for his brown belt. He sparred eight 1-minute rounds. I can't imagine, I was wiped out after two. He was a lot of fun to watch. We both showed up yesterday morning for kickboxing and he was limping. Those guys get pretty intense when they spar each other :) I came home from kickboxing and went straight back to bed. I was feeling pretty good yesterday morning and was surprised I wasn't more sore but by evening I was feeling it. Every muscle in my back and around my ribs was just aching. Feeling much better today. I'm pretty sure I earned my belt. Have to wait for them to grade everything, had a written test also. Will be nice to see some blue around my waist instead of all white :) I have really enjoyed karate. Lots of bumps and bruises and some nights I come home just exhausted with knees and feet hurting. But there is great satisfaction in knowing I did what was required of me, that I could push my body and make it perform the moves.