Saturday, August 29, 2009

good ride, great super smokers!

deanna and i weren't about to sit around today and get bitten by the cleaning virus. you know, that virus that covers the walls and the floors and even the ceilings in your house. it waits for you to get a free moment, then covers you in guilt and despair over the condition of your messy house. right when you want to plop down and take a rest, the cleaning virus pummels you and in no time you've got a mop in one hand and a broom in the other....all the while the only free time you've had in days goes out the window.

well, i'm here to tell you that while our house did get cleaned tonight, the virus didn't attach itself to our sensitive immune systems until after we'd had a good ride and a good meal.

we did our favorite eureka/wildwood loop again, this time adding a bit to make 25 miles. deanna has a few more miles in her legs since the last time we rode together, so it was a bit more brisk and a lot more fun today. again the weather cooperated and made for an ideal time to be outside.

afterward, we cruised up the outer road from six flags and met uncle kevin and katie at super smokers. they had kept the little general overnight and we were delighted to have them meet us for a meal. i told deanna that i want to have super smokers served at my funeral. especially the blt and the giant nachos. and make sure they have those green beans, too.

little general safely in hand, we reached home and caught the cleaning virus so bad that it's 9:12pm and we're still shuffling around straightening and wiping and sweeping. but, we rode our bikes together, which is nice.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

concrete production

regardless of what you might think is used in concrete, i'm here to tell you that THIS is concrete. what is this, you ask?

it's the residue from honey bunches of oats (with almonds) and milk. yes, the common bowl of cereal. you see, here at the kakouris household, concrete production pretty much goes on every morning...sometimes at night, too, when a quick snack before bed is required. when a bowl of the dastardly stuff is not rinsed out after the person eating it has finished, the residue is left to fester. once dry, the milk/honey bunches of oats (with almonds) mix turns to concrete.

instead of chip and seal (which is a common way for st. louis municipalities to cover aging road surfaces) may i recommend milk/honey bunches of oats (with almonds) to coat your road instead??

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

my shadow

rosco is my shadow. he follows me wherever i go during the day. upstairs? downstairs? bathroom? kitchen? yes.

about the only time he will stay put is if he's in a deep sleep on the towel i have laid out for him next to my desk. i can make a quick run upstairs and come back down, and he'll still be sleeping. but if i'm gone for more than a minute he's looking for me.

right now, as i type this, he's wandering around the basement looking for something to chew on. sometimes he chews on the cardboard. yuck.

it's nice to never feel like you're alone.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

bandana's bar b que

we went to bandanna's bar b que on saturday night. it was a loooong wait for our food, which is a little uncharacteristic, so we had to resort to some type of entertainment. after beating me at tic tac toe, hanna played games on the ipod touch and won those too.
the fried corn is a favorite of some people. here, eli demonstrates the "stray dog" method of displaying a kill.
tyson: here, maw...why don't you try some o' dis fried carn? it's dag gum delicious!

mtb race cape girardeau

today's race in cape girardeau, missouri was a good one. very hard fought, as all of the players in our area were out in the old man class. the john's (rines and matthews) just don't let me win. they work me over and it's pretty tough since they're both better single track riders than i am. finally, with only about a 1/4 mile to go, i got clear and won. i was cramping, i was tired, i was seeing stars, but i did it.

how? my cheering section, of course. the little ones shown above, along with the beautiful mrs k, shouted loud enough every time i went by to be heard as far south as memphis and as far north as barnhart. on the last lap, when things were looking grim, it was just what i needed to make it happen.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

rick thorne


rick thorne, legendary freestyle rider, is in the movie mall cop. the family sat down to watch it tonight, and i instantly recognized one of the thugs as rick. he used to frequent big shark back in the 90's, and was friends with guys like tim neff, himself a very good guy. i think rick had done other stuff on the tele, like some espn freestyle shows and such. very cool!

holy chocolatey face


we were sitting in our room last night before bed and eli came rushing up to tell us some story in 3 year old english. he was yelling and waving his arms and then i stopped him to ask what the heck was on his face. i knew darn good and well it was chocolate, but i was just taken back by how much. the photo is not doing the mess justice.

new clubhouse

all of the kids (and one big kid) were goofing off in the little tikes house in the back yard. i don't know how the crappy camera phone got a photo this good, but i think it's great. what a beautiful group they make.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

nature's light and sound expo

last night had to be some of the loudest thunder in recent memory. it was rapid fire, too. crash, crash, crash. the dogs were panicking, the kids were up, the beautiful mrs k was practicing damage control. it was quite the lightning show, if you're into that sort of thing.

just when it seemed the lightning and thunder were abating, it would start up again. i have to admit, i was a little scared. lighting can put a pretty big hole in your house. or knock a really big tree over. oh, i don't even want to think about it.

i still ride bikes

i have ridden my bike sometime in the past week. i pedaled in anger last friday, which felt fantastic. i rode with mrs k on saturday, too.

i did the tuesday night worlds, too. i left the house around 4:30 and pedaled pretty much up to the start time, 6pm. i figured i'd get a little more saddle time that way. the race was harder than i wanted, and i didn't feel so hot. then i pedaled home, making it a 3 hour ride with some time spent standing in line for registration. not bad.

i pedaled into ucity to visit my brothers at the shark on wednesday night. the traffic was a mess at that time of day, but it was phenomenal people watching conditions. some crazy concert going on, or ticket sales, or something...

i still need to dust off the supafly from spanish lake. the supa needs a new chain, too. sigh. after a long day today (12 hours of work time, yikes), i'm not too keen about working on it. i sort of have to, seeing that we're racing in cape girardeau on sunday.

i'll get to it. probably.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

at the bus stop

waiting at the bus stop for tyson's first day.
ELI: what's all the fuss about? i should have stayed in bed. take me to grandma's.
TYSON: i'm going to pretend that i'm excited to go to school. maybe then they will stop taking pictures.
DEANNA: if i stick my tongue out, no one will take this photo seriously. i hate getting my picture taken...but i want to be in the blog more often.
TYSON: please, woman! enough with the hugs and pictures!
DEANNA: i can't believe he's going to be a third grader!
TYSON: mom stuck her tongue out, so it must be a good thing.
ELI: i'm going to try to keep my tongue out all day like this. it feels neat.
TYSON: bye!
DEANNA: bye honey!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

school starts!

yesterday was hanna's first day as a fourth grader. to me, it was quite the big deal. i kept waiting all day for that phone call from her, telling me all about it. it didn't come so i called her last night.

she was pretty laid back about it. no big deal. it was obviously more exciting for me. it's not every day my first born goes to fourth grade, but that didn't seem to concern her much.

tomorrow is tyson's first day as a third grader. he's a bit more torn up about it. he's not quite as relaxed as hanna is about things like this. i'm pretty sure by this time tomorrow night, things will be all good...at least i'm hoping.

in a couple of weeks, the little general will start pre-school. the world will be introduced to eli...at least his pre-school class will be. one of his girlfriends is going to be in his class, so that may have a calming effect. or precisely the opposite. hope with us, will you, that it will be a peaceful, wonderful experience for eli and all of those involved?

a nice ride with mrs k

saturday was one of those rare times that the beautiful mrs k and i were able to ride together. uncle kevin and katie were kind enough to take the little general off of our hands for a little while and we rode a bit in wildwood and eureka.

what a great day it was! the humidity was extremely low, and even though it was supposedly in the 90's, it just wasn't hot. ok, but it was a dry heat.

maybe when we're in our 50's, we'll be able to ride more together. wait...i'll be in my 50's when she's in her 40's. i probably won't even be able to keep up then.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

shopping

shopping in a department store is a big adventure for a little guy. everything is a potential bonanza of wonder and intrigue. here, women's clothing becomes a great disguise.
posing as an affluent shopper looking for expensive watches is another great game. wearing sunglasses can fool the sales lady into thinking you've got some real money, like a movie star or something.
of course, wearing sunglasses can also serve as a disguise when checking out the women's undergarments, too. probably should wait a few years on that one, big guy. trust me.

Friday, August 14, 2009

eli is a born sportsman

whilst bathing, eli began to arrange his sticky numbers on the bathtub walls. he called some of them defenders and some of them goalies. yep, he's been tagging along with the beautiful mrs k as she coaches the older kids soccer team.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

roton products - americans building awesome stuff


i visited my friend ethan at his place of work today and took a personal tour of the whole shooting match. it's a place called roton products.

they actually MAKE stuff. really cool, useful stuff out of tons of different materials. you know how hospital beds go up and down? it usually takes something like the screw and nut set up in the photo. that's precision stuff. roton makes the screw, the strange looking nut (that one rides on ball bearings that actually circulate through the little pipe and back again into the threads...super trick), from bare metal stock. there were more machining tools than you could count, all state of the art stuff. not only that, but they have people that make machines and parts to make the parts. they even custom make the boxes that the long, threaded screws are shipped in...right there, right when they need to be boxed up, in mere minutes. there is also a killer quality control lab, with sophisticated machines that measures the parts in 10,000ths of an inch!! and yes, the guy that runs the lab showed me how some of it is done. get this...there's even a testing machine that runs most of the day, every day, for a loooong time, to see if a bolt or a screw or a particular material will stand up to the use and abuse that it's supposed to!

so yes, americans do make things. some of them make a LOT of really good, high quality things from scratch. ROTON PRODUCTS

just rewards

why is this kid so happy?
because he worked all spring and summer on my sorry excuse for a lawn. and why does that make him happy? because it netted him credit in the bicycle bank. good old uncle tim (that's me) happens to know someone who knows someone and can hook a kid up with a bike...especially if it means i don't have to mow the lawn myself. so this kid (max) mows a lawn, does a darn good job, gets a bike. niiiiiiiiiice. good job, max.

many thanks to the guys at big shark. max found a bike he liked, and i went and picked it up. it's a beautiful thing.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

1968 Shelby GT500KR

on our way to eat dinner saturday night, the beautiful mrs k and i saw one of these. it's a 1968 Shelby GT500KR Mustang. That's a lot of words and letters for one car, but it's pretty special.

it was sort of an odd sighting. it was in original condition, which means that it was not pristine. there were some real paint blemishes, and a tiny bit of rust around the top of the front fender. in other words, an unrestored example of a very valuable collector car.

an older couple was driving it, and i couldn't help but wonder if they had bought the car new. they looked about the right age. it would have to be a hard decision: keep driving the classic, super valuable car or plunge the money into it to restore it, making it more valuable? because a poor or incorrect restoration is worse than none at all.

oh well. i don't have to worry about it. but one does wonder.

Sunday, August 09, 2009

spanish lake

i have mixed emotions about racing at spanish lake. i think i raced there first back in 1989, maybe 1990. it was nothing more than some jeep track connected by short single track sections back then. today, it's still jeep track and single track, but the single track has grown to comprise 60% or so and it's pretty challenging stuff.

be that as it may, i don't particularly like racing there. i've had really, really good races there and really, really bad ones. it's a great place to race, as it always produces good competition...i just don't like it.

i did have success today, regardless of my feelings for it. it was in the 90's by the time we lined up, so i have to admit to planning on taking it easy and letting the race come to me. but i got all flumoxed sometime early in the first lap and started attacking. i can't tell you why. i just did. by the end of the second lap, it was just the murderous john matthews and i picking off the young'uns on the trail. it's always a tricky deal racing that guy. we have almost the same strengths and we're both pretty experienced. after sprinting for the finish and being told we had another lap (curse the timed mtb race format!!) i was a bit demoralized, but i think john was more demoralized and for the first time we had daylight between us. i actually caught up to chris ploch momentarily, then he decided he didn't want me doing that. so i ended up with 6 laps and a lot of sweat for first place in the old man expert class.

the best part of the day was seeing mrs k and the boys. they arrived with one lap to go, which was good because there's no good reason for them to bake in the sun to watch yours truly at another mtb race.

thanks for all of the cheers along the course, it seemed like there were people everywhere with nice things to say.

funny people

the beautiful mrs k and i came up with a date night last night. as you may remember reading here, it's not easy. we have kids everywhere, dogs, jobs, spills, thrills, raccoons, 'possums, bikes, hail storms, soccer games...these things all work against a good date night.

mrs k looked pleasantly hot (i was going to take photos, but you know...) and we sought food. we decided on casa gallardo because it was close to the movies. it was pretty tasty and we left there quite full. we could have rolled down to ronnies, but we squeezed ourselves into the car and drove down instead.

we chose funny people, a rather dark-ish adam sandler movie. he's always good for a laugh, though, and he didn't disappoint. the supporting cast was good, too, and despite the cynicism that seems to surround the comedians, it's worth seeing. especially if you're an adam sandler fan.

it was a long movie, 2+ hours, so we picked up the little men pretty late and we were beat. ah, date nights don't end the way they used to....

Friday, August 07, 2009

fill 'er up!


i swear, this is what i found when i went to the basement after eli had been down there. man, that kid is good.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

dakota goes to colorado


i thought i'd take this opportunity to heap a little fun on john "don't worry, it'll make it" twist, as he drives the dakota to colorado. the road to ruin is paved with....

anyway, i think i'm just jealous. he's going to be riding in riding paradise.


and i won't.

:(

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

miscellaneous ramblings

1. kids repeat things you say. no matter what it is that you say. and when they say it, it may be much cuter than when you say it, but that doesn't make it right. tip: don't laugh, it only encourages them.

2. i hate to drink water. i have never really liked it. i have to force myself to drink it instead of the 1001 things that taste better.

3. it has occurred to me that banks, many of whom are still having some financial difficulty, could possibly dig themselves out of the hole they are in simply by NOT sending useless mail. like a letter to tell you that you will receive a letter at a later date.

4. can i call a beat up brown grand am, full of young kids heckling me on while riding my bike, GRAND DAMAGE?

5. i used my power tap whilst doing the crit tonight. i will never download the data. somehow it's just better that it's being used instead of sitting on my desk.

6. i was thinking about my friend chris doing the insane 500 mile CTR race while i was riding home tonight from the crit. i got on my bike at 5pm, rode to the course, raced, rode home and arrived by 7:40pm. yep. long enough for me.

7. my friend doug, who i have raced with on and off throughout the years, seems to be riding his bike again. we made a fast trade the other day...i think i got the better end of the deal.

8. i'm not buying a cross bike to race this year. i'm going to race the supa fly. don't nag me, i'm not winning anyway.

9. hanna spilled a big slushy in my car the other day. now the car has an odd fruity smell. a few more hot days and it will be an odd decaying smell. anybody want to buy a wagon?

10. i dropped the "good" camera a few weeks back and now have to use packing tape to hold the battery door closed. is that ghetto?

11. i need a snack.

Monday, August 03, 2009

CTR Race going on now!

be sure to give a shout out to my good friend chris neumann, who is doing the ctr race for the second time this year. you can make the leap to his blog and hit the links he has at the top of his page (his blog is on the right of my page, denvertodurango) or you can click

HERE

to check out his progress. he looks to be doing very well right now.

go chris!

losing battle

gratuitous castlewood race photo

i feel that every day i'm losing the battle with the boys. they demand so much energy and it is so difficult to keep up with their gyrations and swings of mood. tonight elijah drew on the walls with an ink pen. i think that the best thing for them is to put them into an ironman training program so they are too worn out to cause damage to the home.

then i think about how much i try to do in a day, and it sinks in that i may just have to stop what i'm doing and devote all of my attention to them. the beautiful mrs k has been telling me this for a couple of years. she likes to tell me "i told you so" (even though she hasn't about this yet) and this is one of those times that she'd be right.

hanna has always been a bit different. not that she's a perfect angel, but she just doesn't have the destructive tendencies that seem to be a young male exclusive. lucky for us she likes to help us clean and straighten the house, especially now that we give her an allowance based on her help.

i don't believe in those super nanny shows one bit, but many days i wish that i had a crystal ball to show me how to handle the boys.

Sunday, August 02, 2009

the old standby, castlewood mtb race

i've been racing at castlewood since january of 1989. yeah, the place has changed pretty dramatically over time, but it's still the same place.

i was talking to people over the last few days and we were musing about how hard it is to get pumped for another race at the 'wood. there is only so many ways you can cook chicken, and there are only so many ways to race at the same park.

after today, i have to say that i was wrong.

today was a backward up grottpeter, rollercoaster, ranger station, love, grottpeter, justin's loop that i would have never liked on paper but really liked in practice. it was quite fun, even the gratuitous creek crossing.

there was a great turnout today, with plenty of speed represented in both the younger and older expert classes. not only did i have to contend with the murderous john matthews, but john rines finally got over the masters racing phobia and joined in our little group. of course, mr. rines made it a very hard race and i have to think that if he had been racing all year like i have, the outcome would have been different. i managed to win this incredibly fun race and the drj boys made sure we were paid well for the efforts. fantastic race!

notable events at the race:
-my pit crew (the beautiful mrs k, hanna, and eli) helped me immensely by cheering me on and handing me water
-mike barro flew past john rines and i so fast down ranger station that we thought he was shot out of a rocket. really, it was a sight to behold. i even told him so when i climbed past him on the love climb...he was on a single speed, too!
-the rider traffic on the course while the race was going on was pretty dense. that leads me to believe that there must have been a good turnout in the other classes, too.
-ruben and cristel brought isabelle to the races and the kids enjoyed the creek, and the girls went for a ride after the race was over.
-eli disappeared from the pavilion just before the awards. i frantically sought him out, finding him at the pavilion at the rear of the park. that's about a quarter mile away. how he got across that whole field before i knew it, i'll never know. scared me to death.
-the kaiser returned to racing today after a forced layoff for a neck problem. he and i now share pain in the neck stories.

Saturday, August 01, 2009

the hanna show

rockin out to selena gomez

saturday morning used to be all about cartoons. now it's about checking out the latest videos from your favorite bands. eli is dancing with a little debbie fudge cake...no, i didn't give him all of it.

big boy haircut

he looks so much older with a hair cut!
he looks like a little man.

warning

any unattended comforter can be confiscated at any time for emergency nappage.