Sunday, August 07, 2016

A Visit to New York and another Wushu belt.

We went from spending a couple weeks with one set of grandparents in California to flying out to New York to visit our other grandparents.   On the first day at Grandma and Grandpa Steves' house we went fishing in the morning.  The bite was a bit slow, but we did manage to have a fish fry that evening.



After dinner we walked to get ice cream... well actually it was soft serve frozen custard. I'm not sure what the difference is, but it tastes great.


The walk to ice cream is not with out it's perils... for example take a look at this super spiky tree.


We also had to walk along the road without any sidewalk.   


Once we got there we discovered that the frozen custard was worth the walk.


I goofed around a bit in the play structure.   I'm starting to realize I might be a little big for some of these things now.


We spent a lot of time outdoors at Grandma and Grandpa's.   Here's the view of Lake Ontario and the Chimney Bluffs that we saw during a hike with Grandma and Aunt Tami.



We spent another day fishing on the Oswego River and we caught smallmouth bass, a catfish and I even caught a small rockbass.

 

Aunt Tami and Uncle Eddie had us over for a BBQ.  The food was great, but my favorite part was staying up late and roasting marshmallows around the campfire in their back yard.



Aunt Tami and Uncle Eddie also took us the the Sterling Renaissance Faire.   We learned that Aunt Tami actually worked here when she was younger, which meant she knew exactly what we should see, do, and eat.


I was going to have a giant turkey leg, but ended up faving a "Steak on a Stake".


We got to watch a real jousting tournament with armored knights riding large armored horses.


They weren't fooling around.. when they hit each other with their lances sometimes the lances would break.

We saw a "Trail and Dunk" where the local judge would pass judgement on people like thieves and if they were found guilty they would be dunked into the pond several times.


I think the judge kind of enjoyed dunking people, because at one point he even had his assistant dunked.  


Tami was really excited to have us watch "Don Juan and Miguel". They were really funny and did really good cool tricks swords and whips.


When we weren't outside chasing fireflies or practicing archery, we played lots of games.  We played dominos with Grandma and learned to play Othello.


Grandma and Grandpa are antique dealers so there are lots of cool things in the house to check out.  Grace had a fun time trying on old hats.


We had a great time visiting Grandma and Grandpa as well as Aunt Tami and Uncle Eddie and we miss them already.



 Now that we're back at home we have to figure out how to entertain ourselves... Since we watched spy kids on the plane, we were in full spy mode for a while, lots of secret pockets, and then practicing navigating a laser field in the hall.


 In an effort get us outside (we are so excited to be home that we are lothe to leave), Mom took us out to the Leach Botanical Garden for bit on a perfect morning.  I will say I was a bit disappointed there were no leeches and when we went to the coniferous forest, I was really hoping for a lot more carnivorous plants.  


 There were lots of pretty paths, our favorite was the pollinator hotel.


 As well as all of the spiders hanging shining webs along the paths.  We accidentally ran into one, and watched as the spider reset one of the lines and repaired the web with some very impressive acrobatics.


 To keep us motivated, Mom brought lollipops... totally worked until Grace dropped hers in the dirt (we managed to wash most of the bits off).



 On Saturday, I finally got caught up in wushu after all of that traveling time.  I had missed the belt test so had to get the end of my southern staff form together before testing.  Finally on Saturday they thought that I had it together.

 I had an epic wushu day, first my new class (nine sectional whip), then my make up review, and then testing!


 I did great, as Master Gao observed, that when I focus I do really really well.






 On top of my very long form (that looked great!), I had to do my strength testing for class, so we did flexibility, the various kicks that I know (all great) and then was a bit dismayed to find that for the red belt, I have to do 40 v-ups and 40 push ups... it was a lot to ask for after an extra long day of wushu already, but I managed to do them all well.. even if it turned me into a big puddle of sweat.


 I am moving up now to red-gold from red-white, next up my brown belts!!


 but first I have to learn the nine-sectional whip, this one is going to be awesome!


 To celebrate, we had a hawaiian themed afternoon with Poke at the new Poke Mon restaurant


 followed by some great shave ice at Wailua across the street.



 Of course, today, after squeezing more than a dozen lemons and making some really amazing lemonade, we got a pretty cold day to have a lemonade stand, we had a few sales, but really not a lot of foot traffic this afternoon, so we packed it in and will try again tomorrow or when it warms up a bit.



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