April 28, 2010

Two Worlds

Our life right now consists of two opposite worlds:
On one hand this job is crazy busy and demands more of us than anything else that we've ever done before. Today in our staff meeting we started looking at the month of May on the calendar and between open house, sr. recognition day, Junior/Senior Banquet, finals, dorm party day, soccer, track, SAT's, AP exams, field trips, class parties, graduation, etc, etc. . . . the calendar actually made my heart start to beat faster with fear and a sense of being overwhelmed . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

And then Danielle had a lunch appointment and I took the kids on a 10 minute walk behind our house. We laid out a blanket and had an amazingly relaxing and restful picnic. Today for lunch I had the undivided attention of Titus and Addison as we sat on a hillside overlooking beautiful vineyards and resting in the shade of a large old tree . . . does it get any better than that? Yes! Because in the middle of the lunch Titus turned to me and said, "Dad I have to tell you something."
"This is a really nice picnic spot, I'm happy!"
"Me too, buddy. Me too!"

April 25, 2010

HBR weekend!

The weather today in southern Germany is gorgeous!
It's been a full weekend, but another good one: Friday night we had a cards tournament and gave away some prizes to the winners. Unfortunately our staff RA’s did too good of a job and ended coming in 1st and 3rd so some of the candy ended up in the staff’s hands instead of the students. After guys were out of the tournament we put on the movie “The Prince and the Frog” for the them to watch.
Beyond that, this weekend seemed nearly identical to last weekend. On Saturday there was a track meet that involved a total of four department of defense schools and BFA. Between that and the four soccer games yesterday (Varsity and JV guys and girls) it was a full day in the sun! BFA soccer guys and girls have started out the season undefeated, and yesterday both the boys teams won and the varsity girls won while the JV girls tied. HBR junior, Andrew, managed to score a goal in the varsity game, and the team needed it as the final score was 5-4. In the JV game Sam L. had a nice assist and just missed a goal in a 3-1 win.
Track was a little bit harder for me to keep tabs on, with all the heats and different races. I think some of our guys said that they had times that “qualified them”, but I’m not really sure what that means. I think for the end of the year final meet you have to run a certain time, or throw a certain distance, etc, in order to compete in an event and so some of our guys met that goal yesterday and were excited about it.
Today for lunch we had burgers and chips out on the basketball court. It felt like a big family picnic as we turned on the grill and everyone just kind of hung outside and enjoyed the weather. Then after lunch a group of guys went over to a field in Holzen and played some ultimate Frisbee. We had a pretty good turn out . . . but I think that had something to do with them being told that a girls dorm was going to be there . . . and then they never showed up. So after about an hour, and once the realization that the girls weren’t going to be showing up, many of our guys surprisingly decided that they were too tired and ready to go back to the dorm! It was still fun and with such nice weather it was great to be outside.

A beautiful soccer crowd!

Sunday lunch outside

The ultimate Frisbee crew
Brandon posing
David makes a save
Marco was a first time hurdler . . . and he came in 2nd

Ross winning his 100 heat

April 21, 2010

I hate Volcanoes in Iceland

For the past 3 days I have been trying to help my friend and boss Earl Cecil get back to the States. On Monday his flight was canceled and we tried to get him a train or a flight to anywhere and nothing was moving. On Tuesday we woke up at 3:00 a.m to drive to Paris . . . and before we left, we found out his flight was canceled. Then Tuesday afternoon we drove to Lyon France and tried to get him a flight or a train, no luck. Finally today we made it to Barcelona and he was able to fly out at 1:00 p.m. . . . .and then I had a long drive back to Germany.

April 18, 2010

HBR weekend

The weekend started with class parties on Friday night. The seniors did some swing dancing; the Juniors prepared for the Junior/Senior Banquet that is taking place in 3 weeks, and the sophomores had a bonfire/smores at Palmgarten. The guys came home full of energy and afterward 15 of them went up to the Rec room and watched a movie! Saturday morning started almost as early as a regular school day. Eight track guys had breakfast from 7:30 – 8:00 and then were at school by 8:30. They met their team and traveled into Lorrach for a “mock meet”! Here were some of the highlights that I saw: Marco threw the discus the farthest, followed by Ross and Jay. David B., Tony, and Isaac ran in the 800 and both did well. Isaac also ran in the 400 and won it! Sung ran in the sprints and even though I missed them, some of the guys told me he was really fast. Parker kept everyone well hydrated and laughing as the team manager. As the track guys were finishing up I was able to walk about 100 meters over to the soccer field and catch the varsity and JV games. Our guys were playing a friendly against Vienna Christian School. Our varsity guys fought valiantly and finished the game in a 2-2 tie. In the second half our guys scored a late goal to tie it up. Five of our guys played in the varsity game and four of our guys participated in the JV game. In the Varsity game Andrew and Austin controlled the midfield, and Phil played defense and tried to protect his dorm brothers in goal as David and Sam M. split time playing goalie. Just for fun the two teams had a shoot out after the tie game . . . and BFA won the shoot out. Our JV guys played to a 1-1 tie and David C. made a nice save to preserve the tie with about two minutes to play.
Yesterday we had beautiful weather and we ate dinner outside and then, last night was annual BFA talent show. We didn’t have too many guys involved, but our RA’s participated in some lip syncs and Brandon did a humorous magic show, that wasn’t very magical but was extremely hilarious.
This afternoon the guys were bored and about a dozen of them started a water fight and we finally directed their boredom toward the creek behind the house, where they built a dam. Finally to round out the chaotic weekend we met at 5:00 tonight to take our dorm picture. We were waiting until after Spring Break in the hope that Michael would be able to join us, but instead we printed off a picture of him and held it up. The guys looked pretty good all dressed up and it was fun to see how "normal" we looked as a dorm, even though moments before this picture was taken we had to yell at them all to pay attention! Ha!

What a good looking dorm

If you look closely . . . we are trying to spell out HBR . . . the "B" was tough

Dinner outside . . . note our guest - Earl Cecil!

Our Super Soph. Austin who played most of the varsity game.

Isaac in the 400
The strong discus guys

April 14, 2010

Welcome Home and a Dorm Swap

Things at BFA are busy already! We had six airport runs on Monday (including taking Mom P. to Zurich and picking up 21 of our guys). It's always great to see them attack each other with hugs when they arrive! On Tuesday we had our last 2 guys show up and on Tuesday night there was a concert at the school . . . .then really late last night we got a surprise! OUR GUYS ARRANGED A DORM SWAP WITH THE LADIES FROM PALM. At 2:00 am all of our guys snuck out and walked about 2 miles into town and spent the night in the palmgarten girls dorm . . . meanwhile their girls left at the same time and snuck into our place in the middle of the night and crashed in the foyer, computer room, pool room, pretty much there were people everywhere on the main floor! I came down this morning at 6:45 and was quite surprised. We made them some french toast and made sure they caught the bus . . . this was a big treat for them since they normally walk to school (I harassed them all and gave them pointers on how to get on a bus)! Kudos to our seniors for arranging this and from what I heard they made sure that no one talked to a girl when they passed each other in between dorms at 2:15 am! This job is full of surprises

April 11, 2010

Spring break pics

Tomorrow the guys return from spring break and we are back at it. This past week has been great for all of us. Danielle and Mom P and the kids enjoyed Easter morning and then hung out in nice and sunny but not so warm Spain. Meanwhile Todd and I had fun "road tripping" it through Germany and Switzerland (We also drove through Austria, and ate lunch in Liechtenstein - just to say we had been there!) I picked Todd up in Zurich and we hung out in the beautiful swiss alps for a couple of days, then we came back to Germany and rested, then we drove to Munich and saw Neuschwanstein castle and Dachau concentration camp. We ended our time with some fishing and we spent 8 hours Thursday trying to catch a fish and came up with a whole lotta nothing! Enjoy the pics

Titus wearing Grandma's glasses

new shades for the beach
the kids are packed

Lucerne, with its famous covered bridge and the alps in the background
The best part about this picture is that the only way down from here was by taking a black run . . . and Todd pretty well fell down this mountain
We thought this was the famous castle in Liechtenstein . . . we were wrong and basically spent 15 minutes walking around some old abandoned castle


last five minutes of the day we tried "fishing rally caps" and caught nothing while we looked like idiots
At least it was pretty where we fished