Up Periscope

What a weekend. I’ll get the the title of post later on but first a few other things.

This weekend was The Kiddos TaeKwonDo Test for his Orange Belt. As much fun as it is for the kids, it is by far less fun for the adults who have to sit through it some months. This month wasn’t too bad as there were only 10 kids going for their next belt in range from White (first belt) to Blue (3 before Black).

The test always starts with the National Anthem as sung by Celine Dion (yeah I know, maybe the Master just likes her) then on to warm up exercises, push ups, sit ups, jumping jacks, etc. From there the class moves onto the more interesting stuff like kicks and board breaking.

Here is the Kiddo on one of his rounds of kicking, they change the style each time the group makes a complete lap around the room to each of the 4 stations.
After the group kicks and what not, we move onto the demonstration of form. In order to move up to the next belt you need to have mastered the current belts 10(ish) steps of form, I say ish because I am not really sure how many moves there are and everyone counts in Korean.

New to The Kiddos belt is Sparring. Once you reach Yellow belt you are required to Spar with the other students, and Spar as part of the belt test to move on. It is not required that you Win at sparring but that you demonstrate the proper sparring technique. W

We will find out this week whether The Kiddo has passed completely or if he has to redo any of the  pieces and then the following week he will be presented with his belt.
After the Belt test and our normal Saturday errands we gathered at a local steak house to celebrate our Nieces 5th Birthday. Now she had Mac & Cheese, it was her Dad (my brother) who wanted the steak. It was a nice night filled with good food, good drinks, and great company.

Now onto the story around the title, Sunday’s day trip over to the USS Nautilus Submarine Museum and The Hubby’s Reunion from one of the subs he was on. When The Hubby was in the Navy he was stationed in CT and worked at the museum for a few years so when the Reunion came up he decided we were going to go early and tour the Sub and indoor exhibits.

Man the torpedos
I didn’t realize they used actual fancy china on these submarines. I guess it was only the officers who got it.  On deck prior to heading down into the depths of the tiny doorways and small passageways.

We spent about and hour and a half looking at all there was to see and The Kiddo had a relatively good time. We then headed back into the car and made our way over to the Park that the picnic was to be held in. It was a beautiful day and the grounds had a nice playground for The Kiddo to play in. We had Hamburgers and Chips and The Hubby got to hang out with a few of his SubMates from when he was on this particular Sub. The Kiddo played and I wandered. the worst part of the day was all of the traffic we sat in on the way home. Ce la vie.

Now on to a new week and 2 more parades (after having last week off from paraded I can’t complain about them), and next week we head out for Grapehounds 2015!

Lake, woes be gone

4th of July Weekend found us with an extra day off on Friday the 3rd, so we packed up The Kiddo and the car and headed out to our friends lake house in Sullivan County, NY for the weekend. It was nice to unwind with nothing to do but eat and drink and enjoy the country air.

We headed out around 9am, grabbed some breakfast and gassed up the car and hit the road. We had a few alternate routes to take to avoid some traffic but still managed to make it in time for lunch.

This is the view from their deck.The house is co-owned by our 2 friends and their Brother and Sister-in-law. It’s hard to believe it’s been 10 years since it was built. It’s a 3 bedroom open air plan house with a decent size kitchen, large living room, loft off of the upstairs bedroom and a full size basement.
The Neighbors decided to do some afternoon floating in the lake and on our friends dock. None of us complained at all. As it would turn out we saw quite a bit of the neighbors over the weekend. Around dinner time on Friday 3 of them came knocking on our door asking if we had any spare charcoal as they miscalculated and ran out before they could finish cooking dinner. Our friends use Gas so they did one better and offered up the grill for them to use as we were not quite ready to cook dinner yet. Brock and Mike and Liza were a delight to sit and chat with while they cooked. They were each half of the 3 couples who were up from Brooklyn who crashed their friends place while they were honeymooning in France.

No holiday weekend is complete without a Cheese and Salami Plate. We enjoyed this on Saturday after our trip to the Farmers Market and a dip in the lake for The Kiddo and I.

The Hubby decided he wanted a Fire to enjoy on Saturday evening. The weather all day wasn’t the best, mostly cloudy but spots of rain off and on. Here is my Boy Scout with his kindling going to make a fabulous fire we all sat around. Even The Kiddo enjoyed it while eating his ice cream before bed.

FIRE!

Saturday night and the lake is as still as could be and almost mirror like.

The Kiddo had to have one last swim in the lake on Sunday Morning between breakfast and lunch before we packed up and headed home. We all enjoyed ourselves and look forward to getting back up there again soon.

The work week has been pretty uneventful. We have 3 parades coming up this weekend, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday night. Let’s hope the weather cooperates with us and the only moisture we have to contend with is from sweat and not rain.

Parade-a-palooza and Daddy’s Day

Last past weekend was the first of a few trips we have planned. The Drum Corps was hired to march in Lake George, NY for the annual Hudson Valley Volunteer Firemen Association Convention parade.

Normally The Hubby and I drive up on Friday morning and get there in time for lunch. This year we talked about it and decided to head up there after work on Thursday which allowed us a bit more Family time before all the hulabaloo started.

  We started with dinner out just the 3 of us, The Hubby had a local beer, I had a margarita and The Kiddo had Pepsi.

Friday we got up went and had a lovely breakfast, and then wandered the Village, doing some shopping. The day started a little overcast as you can see from the picture of the lake above.  IMG_4370 Once the clouds burned off The Kiddo and I took the opportunity to head to the pool and get some swimming and relaxing in. He enjoyed the pool both days and  practiced with his Snorkel for the cruise later this summer.

Along with the Dress Parade on the Saturday of the weekend there is a Mardi Gras parade on Friday night. A small group of us decided to go with a Super Hero T-Shirt and Cape ensemble. I of course had to go the extra mile and wear my new Kilt while marching. It was certainly well received.The Shirt happens to be the Sales Team shirt I designed last year.  The Hubby wore his new Kilt as well to watch the parade. Look at those legs….

Now I am all about the Dress Uniforms for the Firemen on the day of the Parade but I certainly did not complain about this view prior to the parade starting.

We were in the escort division which was nice since we had a shorter march (even though we walked to our line up spot, then all the way back to the hotel after the parade). Unfortunately the Corps did not win any trophies but our Color Guard walked away with the Best Color Guard Non Firematic award.

After the parade on Saturday we had some more pool time then headed out to meet our friends Walt and Ken for dinner. They live not far from Lake George and they were actually both in town for a change so we took the opportunity to get together. Walt always travels with some sort of action figure and this time he didn’t disappoint with the 11th Doctor.

Sunday was Fathers Day along with the day we packed up to head home. The above picture takes me back to when I was The Kiddo’s age. The Lone Bull was the place for Family breakfast every year when my family would visit. It wasn’t the same without Mom but I felt I needed to continue the tradition she started with my family and introduce The Kiddo to the Cow syrup pitchers.

After breakfast we went back to the hotel packed up the car and headed out in the rain. Our first stop were the outlets a couple exits down the thruway from the Hotel. There were the typical stores we avoided, but did find some good deals on some shoes. Naturally we stopped at Rileys one of the biggest Souvenior shops there and picked up a few t-shirts for The Kiddo (who has already worn all of them). After our little shopping trip, and based on a tip from one of the drum corps members, we headed over to Sushi Yoshi for lunch. They were running a Fathers Day Special, bring in your Kid and Dads eat Free! Best Idea ever. The Hubby had Sushi, I had Mongolian Beef and The Kiddo had Chicken Wings. The best part was both The Hubby and I got our meals for free! CHA-CHING!

Back in the car we went and onward home. I unpacked our clothes, did some laundry, made out lunches for Monday and then a lovely dinner. All in all pretty quiet and subdued for our first Fathers Day.

With no school and summer camp not starting until this week I ended up working from home with the Kiddo on Monday and Tuesday. Monday was also a trip to the Vet for our Foster Dog Vic to have his staples removed from his leg. Weds and Thurs I had to drag The Kiddo to the office with me, he enjoyed it a little, he prefers The Hubbies office since there is Wifi there.

Tuesday night found us at the little hole in the wall restaurant by our house for dinner with the extended family for Dad’s Birthday. Wednesday was another parade, no rest for the weary, followed by a rainy weekend of errands and hanging around the house.

Well that about catches y’all up with the goings on round here.

Forward March

Well Parade season is under way, we have 6 under our belts so far with another coming up this weekend along with a Flag Day Ceremony performance.

Last Saturday we had the pleasure of celebrating our friend Geoffs 40th Birthday. It was a nice gathering of friends in a pot luck style picnic. I brought a fabulous Corn and Black Bean Salad and some interesting cookie I made. They were so simple to make using a box cake mix, a tub of cool whip, and an Egg.

Other than parades it’s been pretty quiet with activities with the exception of a day trip over the border to Birds of Prey exhibit. We have seen signs for this previously and one thing or another got in the way of us attending. Honestly we were surprised at how big it was but disappointed there weren’t more Birds doing bird things. The other disappointment was we totally missed seeing Neil Patrick Harris there with his family.


    

After our day out with The Kid and our Nephew the Hubby and I had to go pay our respects to our good friend who lost his sister. These are the types of friends you would do anything for. We are on the calendar to spend July 4th weekend with them at their Lake house and hob knob as some pretend Sullivan County Gays.

But before we hob knob we have another weekend away with the Drum Corps in Lake George, NY. Not just a get away but we have 2 parades to march that weekend. The first one is the Friday Night Mardi Gras parade where all of the fire departments either dress up in crazy costumes and/or have some funky floats. Saturday is the Dress Parade where the Fire Departments and bands compete for best in the area. The last time we marched in this parade I was the Drum Major and the Corps won Best Overall.

Thats about all for now, work has been work, not too crazy not too quiet. Some lunch time walks have been had which is always a thrill when the Geese families are out on the path around the pond. Hiss indeed!

 

Brunch with a Capital B

When we last left our brunch gang it was So many months ago. Well we picked up the pace and half of us got together for a most excellent meal with some great company.

Our friend Corey certainly knows how to set a mean tablescape! He and his Husband Allen played hosts for this shindig. So much delicious food, lets see if I can remember it. We had French Toast, plus BLTs made from the same French Toast. Schnitzel Sandwiches on biscuits with coleslaw and onion. Fresh Fruit and Yogurt. Home made Linzer Strudel. Of course Extra Bacon. The Hubby and I brought Shrimp and Chorizo skewers which we grilled there that were a big hit.

The Biggest hit of the party were the Ice Cream Sandwiches (as shown in the pics below).

  We started with some Bacon Fat Gingersnaps, because Why not?

  Add a half a slice of bacon and some Vanilla (shown above) or Coffee (shown below) Ice Cream. Slap on a top and freeze!

I’ve missed these brunches and seeing the gang we do them with. We will have to make it a point to try to do a couple over the summer.

Wedding Bells

This past weekend we had the pleasure to attend the nuptials of our amazing and fantastic friends Steven and Paul.

Words cannot do justice to the night we had so I will not even attempt to describe it. The Maple Syrup Farm where the ceremony/reception were held was gorgeous, as was some of the staff. The food and drink were flowing and the Macarons that were wheeled out at dessert were delicious. The eclecticism of this group of people brought together for one night really spoke to the type of guys Steven and Paul are. As was said during the night “Opposites truly do attract, and in this case Complement each other”

We were honored to be invited and partake in the love that filled the room that day.

Here are some pictures from the happy occasion.

               

Hup 2, Three, 4

And so it begins again…..Memorial Day weekend is not only the unofficial start of Summer but it is the Official Start of Parade Season.

This weekend did not disappoint in the Parade Shenanigans. We started with 1 parade on Sunday afternoon which was kind of the warm up to the 2 parades we would have on Monday.

Don’t I look amazing? This was taken Monday morning as we had breakfast and prepared for the day. The Niece (who is 4) let me borrow (begrudgingly) her Princess Headband and Sunglasses to snap a quick pic.

Once breakfast was had it was on the bus and off to Main Street for the line up.

 

This was the view from where we started. It doesn’t look it up this end but most of the parade route the people were 5 deep and in some spots 10-15 people deep. The weather really does help the turn out and this 21st year of Marching down Main Street was made that much better.

After the local town parade we got back on the bus and headed to the next town over for their parade. Over the years this parade has gone from good to bad to worse back to good.

The good is the length, less than a mile. The bad is the fact that every kid in town is in this parade. The good is they are all behind us. The bad is that the group in front of us moves way too slow. At least there weren’t any horses in front of us like there were at the parade we marched on Sunday.

So here’s to another parade season in full swing, next one is this Friday, see you on The Street.