Thursday, August 26, 2010

How do we know if Summer Vacation is to long?

Or what happens when you let an 8 soon to be 9 year old on the computer

Jimmy's first forray into graphic arts

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Happy Birthday Jimmy

Another year has come and gone and Jimmy is now 9! He is growing up to fast.

Jimmy was so excited the day before he kept wanting to go to bed so he would wake up and it would be his birthday. As it was he woke up a 6:00 and was ready to go, trouble was that the rest of us were not. We managed to delay him until 8:30 and then it was off to the presents. The big gift for this year, and we can not believe we got talked into this, is a Guinea pig. Tracy managed to talk him out of actually getting the little critter until after labor day!
Kay,Billy and Nikki were more focused on Jimmy's other passion and gave him a Vikings hat, backpack and the needed accessory the foam finger. We had a big breakfast and then it was off to the party.

Jimmy had several friends join him for a day of roller skating,pizza and fun. The roller garden is the place to be when it is hot and humid outside, it is air conditioned and cool inside. The boys all got into the whole roller blading thing and enjoyed themselves. The old sound tracks from days gone by have been replaced with the current artist of the day the likes of Justin Bieber, Lady Gagga and several others I have no idea of, the kids seem to know who is hot and who is not.
The day ended with the Mike and Gretchen coming over for dinner and a dose of football. Jimmy had Mike in the backyard for a hour or so running plays, practicing kick offs and returns. The Vikings were playing a preseason game and we watched number 4 return tot he field. He played four downs, Jimmy could not believe it and when we tried to explain to him that pre-season does not count he launched into a Vince Lombardi type tirade that every game counts and the whole season is the meaning of football and team work, after that he was so exhausted he finally went to bed.

The final gift came on Monday at football practice, his first jersey!

Happy 9Th birthday Jimmy
We Love You!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Old Friends and a Birthday

This past week we had the great fortune to re-connect with our friends the Cady's. Pat, Mary Griffin, Marley and Pipper were just passing through on their way to Switzerland. Pat is on an international assignment for the company that he works for and they stopped over in Minneapolis to see family and friends before heading off for this 2-3 year assignment in SWITZERLAND! (jealous much?!)
The Cady's moved to Arkansas while we were in India and we were all to happy to see them again. We laughed about old times, before kids and the new times, with kids. Speaking of kids 5 of them had a blast, Piper is still to little at 6 months to get into the mischief, however enough was had for her as well.

Kay took over as drill Sargent and had the kids lined up and down doing 20 in no time.We look forward to hearing of their experiecing in Switzerland and hopefully we can get them hooked up Debbie, Simon, Hope and Freddy our friends from Bangalore who are already in Switzerland and I may add are raising a pet pig!
Safe travel and God Bless!
Love,The Loudamericans

Our good friend and world renouned rock star Will Hale turned 50 over the weekend and we were invited to his birthday party/jam session. Will plays childrens music with a rock flare and our kids, along with a whole bunch more, love Will. His brother was the host there were several talented musicians at the party and when the signing/jam session started Jimmy was right in the middle.

He was beat boxing along with them and then at one point Will handed Jimmy a harmonica and Jimmy played Wills song "Meet me at the Library" to Will's astonishment. He commented that he never thought he would hear a kid play one of his songs let alone on a harmonica.

The whole night was great fun. Will likes cool hats so we gave him a cool hat from Shimla which is in Northern India in the Himalayans.

Happy 50th will rock on!

The Loudamericans

Monday, August 16, 2010

Camp Christmas Tree

The kids began week two of camp - we have them signed up for camp three weeks in a row. (dont read too much into this, august can get long for parents and kids on summer vacation:))

Camp christmas tree is assocaited with the YMCA and the kids went to the day camp program.

The week was super hot (hottest week of the year) so being at camp on a lake proved to be awesome. (tornados and thunderstorms aside) They have all the typical camp stuff - archery, swimming, song, skits, gaga (dodge ball game played in a circle), dirt, camp store, junk food, teenage counselers, tie dye tshirts.... You name it, if you went to camp, you are probably re-living it all right now:)

The week ends with family night - the parents get to come out, tour the camp and meet the kids friends. Its a free for all. Really. Tasteless hot dogs and skits that are only funny to 7 yr olds. Jimmy was to cool to sit by us and Kay laughed at everything in the program. Billy was funny to watch too as he acted like he was seeing it all for the 1st time and seemed more interested in rolling down the big hill than participating in the program (well, who can blame him?!)

From a "lets wear the kids out" perspective, it totally fulfilled its purpose. We had them on the bus by 8am and they came stumbling off like drunks with a hangover at 5:30pm. For god sakes, my kids dont usually even WAKE UP until 8:45am, so this was a long long long day. They were filthy dirty, hungry and tired. Perfect kid week:)

Now, next up .... nature camp. We'll see how that goes:)

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Are you ready for some football

Jimmy is more than ready. Monday night was pick up your equipment night and Jimmy was the first in line. The HFL, Hopkins Football League, begins official games on September 2nd, the season is 8 weeks long and the game schedule, which at the time of posting, has not been set... however there will be 8 games.

Jimmy has been practicing his moves and as you can see one of the most important aspects of football, from the defensive side is your look. Quarterbacks beware Jimmy will be bringing you down!

More to come as the season on folds!

Friday, August 13, 2010

Korean Culture Camp

The long awaited week has finally arrived and the kids are too excited to sleep. The daily cry "do we have Korean camp today?!" is answered with a resounding YES! and the loud cheering Korea Camp Korea camp.

The camp is a week long affair with the kids learning all about their culture and partaking in Korean food everyday.This year Billy was old enough to go to camp and Tom spent the whole week in the kitchen.

The camp separates the kids into age groups and then each age group gets a colored t-shirt that they have to wear each day and then the parents have to wash each night. There were around 315 campers, 100 teen helpers and 100 adult volunteers. The camp is for kindergarten age until 6Th grade, then what is really cool all the 7Th graders and older get to volunteer as jr counselors and teachers. It is great for the younger kids to see the older kids still involved and active.

The Van Meters car pooled with us and the Buckley boys and Shin Bee met us at camp. The kids have a ball learning tae kwon do, how to speak Korean and Jimmy's favorite class - self esteem. The lunch room is crazy with all these Korean foods and kids all eating plate full of kimchi, mandu, chap jae, etc. The kids eat like it is there last meal and the amount of food and rice that is consumed is unbelievable. For instance during the week we went through 20 - 40 pound bags of rice, 50 gallons of soy sauce and sesame oil and I can not even calculate the amount of sugar, small wonder the kids love it.

The week ends with a presentation/family day. This is perhaps to date one of the most pain full events to sit through. Each child has his or her moment in the sun and showcases something they learned during camp. It starts sometime around 9:30 on Saturday morning and ends roughly the day the camps opens the following year.

The week ended for us with two separate dinner parties. Leona, Bob and Shin Bee, along with Sandy, came over on Friday night and it was great fun to catch up with them. They have relocated to Connecticut and it is the first time we have seen then since the move last spring. Saturday night was another blast with the Van Meter's and the Buckley's. It is great to see the kids continuing their friendship over the years (remember, we were all in Korea together when we picked up Jimmy, Hayden and Joey) and spending time with each other, it is hard to believe that 8 years ago we all met in Korea and here we are still celebrating the gift of adoption together, to cool.

The kids would bring home different cultural experiences each day and they were speaking Korean to their Korean friends. Korea camp is a close second in the kids favorite things to do, Christmas is still in first place but the jolly Old Elf better keep an eye out.