Monday, March 31, 2014

SPRING! (I hope)

Yes! (pumping arm) It really seems like spring now. Two days of sunshine.  Yes I know spring in this part of the country could mean lightening and thunder ....  just not snow. Please no more snow.

Today was a work out day for everyone. After homework was done James had everyone working on their skills and developing new ones.  The girls worked particularly hard on the silk (a very long cloth on a trapeze rig that you slide, flip and flop on. It is quite elegant.

Victor worked out on the unicycle and some trapeze and the the diabolo.

I however, missed most of the day. A wave of Low T sleepiness hit so I was pretty much worthless. My supply of testosterone was delayed and not sure when I would get it I have been rationing my supply using only every other day.  Men, w/low T......don't do unless you gotta. It was a wipe out crash. Fell back to sleep a couple of times today.   It took me chucking a Mtn. Dew to give me enough energy to drive my wife shopping. (Good news doc office got the supply and my folks are sending it out. )

By the ways I've mention from time to time that the kids clean our animal cages quite often. I never told you there is one that won't let them, Bobbi the Cockatoo. Bobbi will only let my hands in her cage. So during one of my short awake cycles I did clean her cage....then I tripped over the RV's bunk bed ladder and comically nearly lost the bag of "stuff" all over the front room of the RV and jammed my pinky into the wall.  You see this job could kill ya.

Mami made a Parmasian-breaded fried chicken tonight to die for...there may be one left in the won't see morning.

BTW  the kids have reinvented stick ball with a stick (branch from a tree) and a smaller cut of that branch wrapped in duct tape as the ball.  They have been having a "ball".

Sure will be glad when we finally re-start the season. The weather killed March but I have a feeling since we are moving to a different market in both location and dynamic that all will be good soon. But we still need to fill some dates in May and June.  Keep that in your prayers and throw us any ideas you get.


Saturday, March 29, 2014

No Spring did not Sprung. It Spranged back to winter.

Fall forward. Spring back.....and that is what spring did. Some time last night a drop fell from the sky somewhere over most of the eastern parts of the midwest on down to the south. That little drop liked it down here so much he (or she, who can tell?) and invited his multi-trillion siblings and hence it has been raining all day.  Not the rain, shower, stop , repeat kind of rain. No this was just constant drench you under the armpits all day, will it ever stop? rain. As I type this I hear the pitter patter of little raindrops on the RV.  A sound I have not stopped hearing all day. This is KY I wish it would at least rain Bourbon, at least for five minutes.....

No pictures today. If you want to know what it looks like go find a puddle and take a picture of it and you have a picture from our day.

The reports say the rain will end....and it will possibly snow sometime tonight!  But it is supposed to stop sometime before dawn and the sun is supposed to pop out at some point tomorrow.

OK. So that was the weather, the news, and the sports.

Oh, almost forgot. Miles came down to the RV camp to have dinner with us. Always nice to have the kids drop in. Cynthia was a couple of hours away at a track meet. She called me from the bus at the meet to tell me her events were all canceled due to the rain so she would be spending the day in the bus.   At least our bus-like RV has slide outs and Tvs and no cold wet sweaty runners in it.

Well, that about does this episode.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Did Spring just Sprung?

Ok....the civil war played out with the weather last night. The southern warm front marched up and hit the Polar vortex from the north: there was rain and thunder and lightening. But on a scale of 1-10 it was a 2.

We rocked and the wind made us shake but compared to what we have experienced in the past last night's storm was nothing. Today (the 26th) it  was humid and nearly hit 70*.  How did that happen?

My natural instinct in the RV during a storm is to half sleep because, usually, we are at a show location and I half to keep an ear out for trouble (things breaking from the wind and a myriad  of other problems...remember in the past I was alone in the Rv during the travels....this is our first year with the cool new rv where we are all here..) So  I did not sleep well.  It is my hope that tonight I will sleep well. But then again on tour I rarely sleep as much as I do at home and it is good. But at home I slept badly due to the lousy neighborhood...three car break ins in 5 years, over $1000 of equipment  from my van, and random attempts to break into neighbors' homes.  (For the record,,,,,I invite anyone willing to do it while I am there....I will get to introduce you to God.

The weather is really the only news.  However, on the "side new"s area.....James is talking with a church in Atlanta about a special Easter service. It is a mega church and we want only to honor God when we do church shows....mega church or not.   I am in talks for some possible June and later gigs. I am also going to self produce a slew of shows in May.  That was once my specialty and I had a dream about it last night. It reminded me of what I used to do.  I did it in Cali for years but changes in rules and laws made it impossible to do anymore in the socialist state of California. We had created a special market niche about 5 years ago and the niche was killed by Cali regulations and certain cities' rules. (land of the free........ my white hairy.....head.)
But out here in Rand Paul land, where theres is a bit of opportunity for the one who dreams it might work. (sorry I don't share more about it it but it is an opportunity that I don't want others to take advantage of  before us.)

I suppose I should share one cool place in Berea that we have known about but visited for the first time today.  There is  a little Amish themed cafe/store. Everything is made within 500 miles of here. We don't have the spare change to get anything so we went ahead and bought 3 cans of birch beer (like root beer ....sorta) at .65 cents each.   We taped a tasting of it.    I can say it is like rootbeer but stronger.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

"No Spring for you!"" -Soup Nazi

I saw a great Facebook joke showing the picture of the soups Nazi (those of you outsider the know he is a restaurant owner who has a strict policy on how you order his soup (because his soup is soooo good) that if you don't follow it to"  the letter he yells, "No soup for you".   The Facebook (FB) joke is a picture of him saying, "No Spring for you!".

Tonight though it is a battle of te norht and south.   The Artic Vortex that has been killing us with snow and sub  freezing weather has come against a southern front.  The result is a sindy windy windy night.   No one one has predicted a tornadao but hee are the conditions...and we are at the endge of tonado row....and our Rv (even with the stabilizers up and in place we are a raockin')

It  is crazy  and I am up very late so I will cap it off by way of saying  the weather sucks.However,  We visted Hobby Lobby today. The kids love the place. I bought a fancy wood box for a trick that broke by accident when I close one of the slide-outs when we went to top off fuel.  Gosh, I hate spending money when we aren't making any.

A Facebook friend posted a silly inspanirational picture (there are sites that promote these) that say weather, and other outside obsticles aren't your problem it is the choice you make.  That maybe true in some cases....but when a storm is bearing down....then your choices, outisde what you do to prepare,mean nothing.   It was a feel good message to mean you should not blae outside elements for what happens in your life.   I invite him here tonight as our ver sturdy Rv with supports and other safty precautions rock. Yes, I decided to stay here byt God has taken from there. And if good or bad comes odf it it, it is al fo His Glory.

That is hard for those low in the "faith" tank to understand. But if that describes you. Let mer explain, no storm no cold, no heat, no governement, no war, no hate, no persicution brgins me. fear. The threat of it may bring me to prepare but ultimately I and my family who I have entrusted to God, are in His hands so thre is no worry.

Perosnally, I enjoy the  shaking and beats of the rain. In California there really is no "weather" so to speak.  This is life. And it can be scary.  Just like the finacal cruch we went through going through) this March as shows have been killed by "snow days".   I fon't know what God in store for us. But we are His. For noble or inoble purpose.
  Mom. I did not proof read this so sorry for the grammar and spelling.......

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Battle Of Richmond and AWANA in Berea.

Hard to believe we had a blanket of snow covering Berea yesterday. Today is chilly but nothing like yesterday, nothing like last night (17*).  Not sure how this whole weather thing works but it like we are on the wrong end of a cosmic joke.  Today is as nice as it was two days ago. Tomorrow is supposed to be really warm. So warm in fact that the clashing cold and heat will bring thunderstorms.
At the very least I can say it has been an adventure.  It always is.

For the first time in any tour we have filled our LP tank for the third time. LP gas prices out here are through the roof due to the extreme weather. I should start an LP gas fundraiser or try to dig my on natural gas well if the weather keeps up like this.  This tank is 2 gallons bigger than the one in our old rv to boot.

For the last week we have been trying to visit the Battlefield and related sites from the battle of Richmond. The weather and timing has interfered. When we visited one of the sites (the battle took place over an area 4000 feet wide by 20 miles long there is not just a single site) it was so cold we all came back nearly frozen through, more like the weather when Washington crossed the Delaware; wrong war , wrong season, same temperature? So much of the site of the battle is just part of the town now. They have gone so far as to name the golf course, "Battlefield Golf Course." There is a "Battlefield Garage", "Battlefield Market", etc. Very interesting.  I wonder what those fighting back then would have thought of that?

Well, we visited the Museum, which at the time of the Battle was the Roger's House and was used as a hospital during the battle and as a guest house prior to that. It has uniforms, weapons, furniture, and other battle and Civil War related things.  It was a perfectly beautiful day to go. And in spite of it being a museum and being beautiful outside none of us got bored with being in such a cool place. The old gent docent was very kind and informative and will appear in the video. He and the "friends" group that support the battlefield sites are very passionate about keeping the history alive.

Here is some modern and civil war history: Jefferson Davis, Amelia and I all have the same birthday.

Afterwards we made a bee line back to the RV to get ready for dinner then AWANA.  First the kids had to clean out the animal cages and make them warm and happy. That left them with just a few moments to wolf down a meal and get over to the church to participate in AWANA. (It's a Christina kids club thingy . All our kids participate in it at home so it was nice to find a church here that had it out here.)  They were welcomed with open arms and had a great time.  Olivia was even able to finish the book she was doing back in Cali. When we got back to the RV she wanted to call her AWANA leader back home to let them know she had finished the book.  Her leaders were happy to hear she was being diligent even while so far away.

 Below are the kids playing some games at AWANA. Miles was a helper there up to this year but his heavy schedule meant he could not do it this year.   When the folks recognized me as CC and Miles' they had many good things to say about my number 2 and 3 children.   I am pleased they have honored God and our family name.   The girls fairly quickly made friends there. The style was a bit more relaxed and not purely by the book as our home church but that didn't diminish the evening in any way.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Snow Day. A really beautiful snow day.

The weather report said it would snow. And they got it right on. We woke to a light fluttering of snowflakes drifting in the light breeze to the ground, the tables, the van, the Rvs, anything outside got dusted.  Virgin snow and three kids means a good time. Though the first dusting would melt off an hour or two later a second, third and forth dusting would be the run of the day. Each time those little crystals beckoned the kids and they answered, always returning with red fingers and wet clothes. (yes they wore gloves but you know how it goes, eventually the cold works its way in.

They were able to coax Mami into a snowball fight. Sadly Jim, like me spurned the snow and opted to stay inside. Jim worked on marketing and I worked on un-torking my back.  I torqued it when I twisted and contorted my body to look out my bedroom window to see if it snowed. Kyle has been like a big brother to the kids helping them build snow things and helping them master their snow fighting skills.

The amazing thing is today we had snow and it never got below 30* while when it was down in the teens last week the air was as dry as a frozen bone.

I was so turned on by the chicken gizzards I had last week that I bought a couple of pounds (talk about a cheap source of protein!!!) and asked Mami to cook them up with soy sauce and other spices.  Wow, they were fantastic. Most of the rest thought they were "OK" while Mami and Amelia didn't care for them. Fine, more for me.   I think I want t try squirrel now.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Blow Off Day

Ok, I stayed up until 4am watching movies from my home DVR.  I slept until 10:30 then spent next 3 hours on phone calls and emails. Then Mami and I had coffee then went shopping. The kids did their homework and show practice . That was our day. Pretty exciting right?  (Sorry to all of you about my typos and spelling errors the spell-check didn't catch) my mother told me tonight I need to proof read, so I will try to do that more in the future.
By the way, Union Fair Maine fans see you in August. We will be eating lobster at $4/lb under a light house again in just a few months.  Exciting.  The DeKalb outdoor Theater gig we have been working on fell through due to the economy (I am just loving our country's ability to recover so much!)    
But all things here in Berea are great but it is still COLD. I mean COLD.
Blessings to you all.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Church - A Battlefield -Pottery?

Well, I am beginning to suffer from the same disease everyone out her has been suffering all winter and spring, "Let's hang AlGore by his toes" syndrome.  Trust me there are no shortages of polar bears (by the way according to few reports I read recently in scientific rags the polar bear counts have actually been on the rise,but I digress) we saw a least twenty polar bear strolling the stress of Kentucky. They said it was too cold up north and Ky was just right.  (Joke to those of you not getting it at this point it is it's still cold.)
Since Kyle moved into the bunk house with James, saving him from being kicked by Titus in the middle of the night. I helped Mami with the dogs early this morning. Imagine, if you can, me in sneakers, a terry cloth robe and a hat in 30* weather trying to convince, one by one, poodle to doodle in the the crisp frosty grass.  The new RV is very warm and even keeping the  Gas heaters on low the place stays quite warm.  To save on the uber high prices of LP gas we also have a couple of space heaters (little ceramic ones) and it is amazing how well they work. On alone keeps our modified bnk house very toasty.
Needless to say I was back under the covers before you could say, "Bob's your uncle."

A couple hours later and we were all up, fed and off to church. We had hoped to meet CC amd Miles there but only Miles made it today.  So he won the opportunity to come back to the RV to have sushi.  The Sermon was about "Sloth" and our service as Christians. It was very good. I loved one line that I think is lost on so many of our faith. It's from the Scottish catechism, "Our purpose is to to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever."   hat I think is the deepest thing one could strive for and one of the hardest things to explain or teach; it has to be experienced.  (The last part is my commentary and so is this...) yet it is the easiest thing to do, we just keep getting in our own way.

After some songs service opened with the baptism of a young man. Like many churches there is a large tub like pool like thing built at the back of the stage and it is there that most people are baptised. Bastor wore his black cassock and the boy wore street clothes. He was dunked and raised in what was a very wonderful ceremony. A funny question came into my head as I watched. Does the past run off somewhere in the back and change or will he come out wet when he began preaching. There were still a few songs to go so he had time to change.  Well, just before his preaching started my coffee decided it wanted to finish its journey through my body and I went to the rest room. There hanging on the stall above the drain in the bathroom floor was the cassock, with a full pair of fishing waders sewn into them.  I wonder if they all do it that way.

After church, as I said Sushi at the Rv then Kyle, Vic Jr, Amy, and Olivia and I went on our quest to the Richmond Battlefield, a significant win for the south though short lived.  On the way we found signs to a Pottery place, museum, gallery, I don't don't they are called.  We just kept driving and driving and finally we found it, but it wasn't the one we were originally searching for.  This one is called Spinning Wheel Pottery just outside Berea.  The couple who run it are from the west coast but met at the same college my kids go to. They started the shop a few years ago and they have some great work.  But there was this one little item that I needed and actually could have used early today. It was a little square flat bottomed square like bowl that Japanese use to put small dabs of soy sauce and wasabi in when eating sushi. Using it you get just the right amount of soy sauce and not waste.   I have been using a big plastic bowl all this time and ended up wasting almost the cost of this little bowl in soy sauce and wasabi on this trip alone.   The owners then took us into their work shop and let maelia and Olivia "throw down" and try to make something. Each of them had a great time.  We video taped the whole thing and in about a month you will see it. You don't get to see it no because we need the finished product to give it a conclusion. It will take a week to dry then when they have enough stuff to put in the kiln they will fire it then ship it to my folks in Cali who will take a picture and send t to use....then the video will be complete.

Next we made it to the first pottery place we were aiming for. It seems this family had been doing it longer and the shop had a different feel. Nice, kind, but not heart-touching or, hmmm, its hard to explain.  The young man there was knowledgable, kind (in fact when he didn't have enough money to make change for my $20 he offered to give me the little cup for free, but I found four ones in my wallet (it was $6).

I want to drop a point that even though we are in financial tough times these folks can't be doing much better. As souvenirs go you can't beat these....not made it China, they have a story behind them, made where we bought them, and stays in the local economy.  And if after the time they spent explaining things to us, letting us do things, etc went unpaid in some way then shame on us. What would JC do?  (JC Dunn) ((I mean what would have done after squeaking his nose and doing magic tricks????)

Well, we finally made it to the battlefield. Here too we made a video to appear here later. Victor Jr Hosts. It was freezing.  The thermometer said 41* but the wind made it at least mid 30s.  Sad part of this historic area is developers have build luxury homes and a golf course right up to the back door of the old church that was used to treat the fallen soldiers. Over 5353 Union soldiers died or injured in the battle. We walked on ground that was once soaked with the blood of thousands of men fighting for what they believed. (And as I have learned more about that war I discovered that, and id you know this, most of the men fighting that war for the south had no slave, nor were very interested in that issue. They fought that war for the same reason  a hundred years earlier Washington and the boys fought England. (((don't get me wrong slavery was part of the reason for the war since it was wrapped up in the economy of the south but no the primary reason.))) You see the industrial north and their cronies in Washington had made it almost impossible for southerners to sell their raw materials to foreigners without high tariffs. So at rock bottom prices they sold to the north. They in turn made the items into manufactured goods and sold them at premiums to the south with high taxes.  No the politics of it all get muddled more with the unusual election results that least to Lincoln's win, and a whole bunch of other stuff. But I just thought I would lay a little bit of the record straight. (((((By the way slavery bad...period.))))

We still have some footage to shoot for this video to so please be patient.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Blues Skies and Track

For the first time in her four years of college and Miles' two years we finally went to one of Cynthia , and Miles') track meet. Mami and I went wearing our "Berea Mom and Dad" shirts. I have already become someone of a legend among CC and Miles' friends as being a bit unusual so we were greeted by a bunch of collegiates who seem to know us.   I want to thank coach before I get too far along for giving mami and I each a meet t-shirt.
CC won both her races handily but didn't PR any of her times. In fact she was disappointed with them. Miles likewise wasn't happy with his times but Miles seems to always take things in stride.  
Miles surprised us with a new hairdo. Even after his sister pointed him out to us us we had a hard time spotting him  because he didn't look like Miles.
In the middle of the meet I got a call from Jim telling me the police were at our RV So i ran out there and it was just a general welfare check. In other words, so busy body somewhere saw a bunch of kids and their family traveling during the school year and called the cops to make sure we didn't kidnap them or were somehow and otherwise evil . Turned out they ended up thinking our whole family circus thing was cool and were extremely kind. We invited them to our two shows in Berea next month.  By the way, it is rare but sometimes I have to field these type of things. As I have always said Kentucky cops are pretty down to earth folks.....the CHP however.............(LOL).
We were planning on going catfishing tonight but the park we wanted to go to closed too early so we will have to try early catfishing this week.  I like going at dusk.