Thursday, April 22, 2010

Video Blog 1.1 April 2010 Pizza Festival

We have included Video of the day, life and Adventures of the Kent Family Magic Circus on the road to the Lemoore Pizza Festival. The glamour and not-so-glamorous!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Pizza Festival Post Log: Nearly Lost a Wheel and Didn't know it!

You may have seen our video blog regarding our trip and performances at the Pizza festival. What wasn't on the video was something that could've made for a very bad trip. When we got back I smelt a metallic burning smell around the van and trailer. I walked around the units and discovered the smell was coming from a rear wheel of our trailer. I touched the hub cover and burnt my finger. After pouring gallons of water on it and creating plumes and plumes of steam for over 10 minutes I let it sit to cool.
The next morning we discovered the bearings were burned out and the wheel was sitting askew. Closer inspection showed metal on metal damage around where the hub met the axle and burnt grease and metal chips clinging to the inside of the wheel and wheel well.
When my mechanic lifted the trailer up he was able to lift the tire off without loosening a nut! There was 1" play all around the axle. We could've lost the wheel while driving but by the grace of God we didn’t. Especially if you saw the roads we had to go over on the drive.
It explains the worse than usual gas mileage.
$488 later we have a better axle, better bearings, better grease system and a lesson to always check the bearings before a long trip! Yes it's the same trailer that had a bent axle two years ago.

Never a dull moment and this adventure of life goes on!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Lemoore Pizza Festival 2010

This was our 5th or 6th year back in Lemoore for their Pizza Festival. Their first year at the beautiful campus of West Hills College. Lots of fun. Titus and Mami joined us.
Our day started by waking at 5 am, in the van by 5:30 and the long 5.5 hour drive was on. We made it to Lemoore one hour before our first show so it was a rush to get things set and ready to go. But true to form the kids did an awesome job setting up. Even with the addition of two new members (one being disabled) and a new dog (future star) the set up went well. Kudos to Jim, Miles and Victor Jr.
The audience was smaller than we were used to. This was our first Sunday performance at the festival. We were told Saturday broke attendance records for the event. Still the audiences we had were enthusiastic.
Mami performed her juggling and yes she dropped stuff but hung in there and the audience appreciated her for it.
Jim was happy to be able to get back into the stilts and stroll the of his favorite things in the world to do.
Titus drew "first blood" a term meaning he got the first freebie (see below). We also got 6 free pizzas from Fattee Alberts out of Hanford....they were delicious (especially the Mexican pork Chili verde Pizza), a free bag of Kettle Corn, and free bags of cotton candy.
After a long day Mami and Titus really enjoyed the cotton candy and Pizza. The kettle corn bag was empty before we made Fresno on the drive home.
Fatte Alberts also hosted the Pizza eating contest: two people had 15 minutes to eat as much of a 28" pizza as they could. The winner won money for a charity. It was gross! Yet it was funny.

Post show lessons on wand tricks for kids int he audience.

Titus was given this stuffed doggy by a carnie who was touched seeing Titus there.

See a video of the day at

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Colusa Children's Festival-

This is our 11th year or so with CPAC and the Colusa County Children's fesstival. It's a small event with only about 1500 people in attendance. But they have been loyal clients having us back year after year and we enjoy performing there. We have several similar local clients. (By local I mean within 2 hours ofour home base.)
We performed our Foy routine and Titus and Mami got to perform, getting ready for the big tour this summer. Belle also made her first festival appearance and though she is still siddish towards crowds she is getting better.
The kids also got to enjoy the activities at the festival.

Where's Alf?

Miles and Sudoku between shows

Mami smirking at me.

Peanut Butter Snack between shows.

Olivia the artist between shows.

Cynthia, Belle, and Victor on a walk between shows.

Jim and Titus on a walk between shows.

Cynthia and Belle kicking back between shows.
We did three 50 minute shows today and the seats were packed with folks standing as much as 4 people deep. The last show was the smallest with all the seats taken and few standers. Still they were a gracious audience. many have grown up with us over the years and I heard "remember when" stories more than once.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Titus Rides a Horse

Those of you who don't know Titus, he is our 12 year old. Bron with a metabolic disorder he cannot walk, talk and has no fine motor control. However, when on a horse he becomes a new child. He is still unable to walk or talk but he and the horse communicate on some different level.
He has been going to Handiriders (a program offered to kids with any kids of special need, found all over the US see the NARHA.ORG WEBSITE) for a few years.

Titus has been going horseback riding at a therapeutic horse riding place 20 minutes from our house for several years. But it just dawned on me we haven't been taking any pictures of him there since his first day....sooooo here is a photo journal.
But first a picture of Mami and Victor Jr who attended an old time village where visitors have to dress up and participate in 1700-1900 living. The parents become the demonstrators (which is funny since no one knows what to do initially) and the kids get to make candles, make rope, churn butter, bake, etc.

Oh, and before I get to the Titus pictures....while I was at the horse place I took a few artsy pictures (not touched up in any way).

Getting on the horse takes work but he loves it too.

he's a new kid on the horse. His hypertensive hips relax and he's able to straddle the saddle. His hypotenisive back becomes ridged and strong able to hold him erect. It's fantastic.

They provide handler volunteers to walk along for safety.

One exercise is to put rings on a cone after riding through a course after taking a ring off a cone at the start of the course.

Easter With the Kents

Our Easter celebration, or as we prefer to call it Resurrection Celebration, took part in parts. A few days before Easter we gathered with a home school group and had an egg hunt. Uncle Eddie was still here and he and I hid the eggs. There were a lot of eggs. Fortuantely the park had been mostly mowed so the high grass was only on the fringe. The kids had a blast looking and looking. Amazingly the last ones to be found were the most in "the open"; just laying on the grass.

Even Titus, with the help of Uncle Eddie and Mami got in the game.

Part 2 of our Easter was spent performing a Christian program at a church in the North Bay Area town of San Rafael. Three 15 minute highly visual, full gospel message shows. The event was open to the public. The guests broke up into three groups. While one group watched us, one other group was hunting eggs, while the third group was doing crafts. They made bags to use to hold the found eggs and the decorated cookies as well as a number of other activities. Then we fellowshipped with the church members over lunch. My three little ones participated in the crafts but since we were performing they did not get to hunt eggs. That wasn't a big deal though since they had done so a couple of days earlier. And, with the chance of making kids everywhere angry, they had too much candy anyway.

Jim juggled in the show. Cynthia and Miles were on their drive back from a missions trip to Mexico where they built two homes for needy families.
Part 3
Easter at our home church. It was a morning filled with lots of music.