Friday, March 21, 2014

Jim and Jen Fellows, Spring Break Camp and St. Patrick's Day OH and a Gymnastics Meet

Last weekend was a super special time around the Loudamericans as our friends, God Parent, Wedding Singer and World Famous Lasagna maker Jim Fellows was in the house WOOT WOOT.
This is Jim's first trip to visit us on one of our " overseas" assignments and he even brought his lovely bride of one year Mrs.'s Jennifer Fellows!!!

The kids were just finishing up Spring Break camps when they arrived early Thursday afternoon. Jim is a huge fan of BBQ, well less the sauce but that's a whole different story, so he requested smoked brisket. Tom fired up the smoker and delivered an awesome meal. We spent Thursday night catching up telling stories and basically feeling the love of Jim & Jen. On a side note: Jim is the only person the kids refer to by first and last name, it has never been Uncle Jim, Godfather, always" Hi Jim Fellows", not sure why but they just do, so by the e3nd of their stay Jen was also calling Jim, Jim Fellows, cute :).

Friday the kids were off to the last day of camp, Tracy to work, Jim & Jen to Niagara Falls and Tom to get ready for the St. Patrick's Day Party which was later that night!!
Jimmy was partaking in another sports camp this time the Elite Basketball Camp, one week of drills conditioning and battling amongst the other :campers" for best team in camp. He, as always, was 110% in and even though he had to miss one of the afternoon games to get his football equipment (more on that later) his team won 'best in camp' 6 games to 1, way to go Jimmy!
Kay was involved in several different cooking camps this break as she has been to so many it was a stretch to find the camps she has not done. This Spring was mainly centered around candy and sweets, go figure. She did make 2 cameo appearances at the renowned Chef Upstairs where there was a collective sigh from the group when she arrived on Chopped day to defend her title.
Billy spent the week at... you guessed it Taekwondo camp... where he honed his skills, went to the science museum and basically had an all around awesome time.

Tracy, Jim& Jen arrived back home in time to help Tom put the finishing touches on the house and then the neighbors, classmates, work friends and general rif-raft descended. The St. Pat's concept is not that big here in Canada but the crowd was into it. Green face painting, drinking beer from a boot, and having a grand old time! Jim & Jen were our Grand Marshals and had a blast. We had to call it quits at 1:00am because...enough is enough!

Saturday was tour Toronto day and after breakfast off we went. Kensingston Market, for those of you who have been here and or follow the blog, know it is one of our favorite places. The shops, street vendors and food make it a real Toronto landmark. We headed off to The Path, for our first time, which is an underground shopping mall, it goes for several miles under ground is connected to the subway, walkways and  allows one to enjoy the shopping experience without having to go outside!
Jim and Jen were introduced to Roots, fell in love and bought a nice set of work clothes for Jen (aka sweats:)). They then took us out to dinner at yet another of our favorite places, Jack Astor's! Once home, Jim set about making the aforementioned World Famous Lasagna for Sunday nights dinner. Tom was the sou-chef and the two of them were up until 1:00am when Jim declared "you know Tom there are only 2 options for the extra sauce, freeze it our eat it", but really there was only one, so they ate the  sauce and drank all the milk in the house, super fun.

Sunday was brunch day and Kay's first gymnastics meet of the year. She was a bit nervous coming off the year she had last year but Kay is Kay and determination is one of her genetic building blocks.
I am not going to go into all the details suffice it to say Kay was robbed of her first place overall title. He coach was super upset and vowed that it will never happen again. She was spot on for the most part, and true to form after the drama on the uneven bars and beam, she nailed the floor, period.
Kay finished 4th overall, received her first ever gold Medal for her performance on the floor. There were several teams there, around 10 all with multiple (10+) team members, Kay and 2 other girls were there representing Discovery and those three girls owned the podium and came away with the best overall team, very proud!

Sunday night we had the best dinner (of course) when Jim makes Lasagna it is expected. Tradition around here is that at dinner we talk about the best part of our day/week and it was unanimous that having Jim & Jen here was the best. There was a time when we would joke " Who the hell is Jim Fellows". I can say Jim is a fantastic Godfather and role model for our kids, he is a great and caring Husband who has an equally wonderful wife, Jim is a Step father and takes the role very serious, he cares about people, loves his Catholic religion and all it stands for and he and Jen are our family and friends, we love you and we are blessed that you were here.!

Monday was off to the airport but not with out one last stop at Tim Horton's......
more to come

Sunday, March 09, 2014

Tae Kown Do - Billys on fire!

Billy is killing it in Tae Kwon Do lately. He just tested for Blue Belt and we very cute/nervous. You could see the relief when he passed with all A's and 1 A+ on form. He is thrilled to be a blue belt and is now 1/2 way to black belt. We'd like to make it before we leave Canada as it would be nice to stay in this dojo until the esteemed black belt but we shall see:)

This weekend was his 1st competition of spring. The tournament was in Kitchener (about 90 min away) and we were on deck to check in at 8am on Saturday. Given Toronto traffic, the start of spring break and the fact that Mike, Frankie, Grace and Lucy live near Kitchener, we made a weekend of it.  Tom headed over with the kids int he afternoon and they swam in the pool. We then met the crew for dinner at an Irish Pub (or figure) and got caught up. The girls were enthralled with teh VERY cute drummer in the band saying he looked like Justin Timberlake. I thought he looked more like Daniel Radcliff (Harry Potter) but what do I know. Jimmy was not impressed with the drummer skills, but it was fun to see a live band perform in an Irish Pub.  Billy was begging to go back to the hotel (should have been my 1st clue) and so we called it a night and watched Diners Drive Ins and Dives in the hotel while Kay ate Ben & Jerrys. Sounds like the good life, eh? :)

The next morning, as we were getting ready, Billy started to complain about his throat. We figured it was just sleeping in a dry/hot hotel, so we pumped him up and set off.

In the tournament, Billy did amazing, taking bronze in pomsae (patterns) and silver in sparring. The sparring is nerve racking as a parent. The kids are trying to kick each other to get points and each match is 90 seconds. Its elimination rounds until you have a winner.  Billy seems to have a strategy of ...let the other guy get way ahead then come back. Not good for Mom and Dad's heart and not endorsed by his coaches. In round 1, it ended in a tie.  Sudden death is the name of the game, they put another 90 seconds on the clock and the 1st to get a point wins. Thank GOD Billy got the 1st point 15 seconds into the round.  Billy 4-3. Then, onto round 2, again, he's behind, comes back and wins 4-3 again - he has now secured a bronze.  Round 3, for the gold. He's behind, he's ahead and then the other kids makes a MAJOR play. Billy holds him off and its tied. 4-4.  5 seconds left . The other kid comes in and nails a kick. Billy is silver at 4-5.  Afterwards Billy said, "I should have just slid back and let it go into overtime" when I ask why he didnt, he said "I just thought of it now!"     We are really proud of him though and he said "I'm proud of myself because I did my best".

Now its Sunday morning, the boys are still asleep (its 12:30) and Billy got up, complained of a headache and fell back to sleep on the couch. He's got a 101.8 temp and a sore throat. Poor guy. He's a champion that one...

Luckily its a lazy day and next week is spring break, he's got plenty of time to recover.

Proud of you Billy!!