Thursday, October 26, 2006

Lots of nieces

Unfortunately, work hasn't let me get up to Illinois to see Allison and her three girls. Mom made it up there a few of weeks ago to see Anna (going on 3) and Lily and Clara (just 1). Anna is at the age that she's pretty independent. Lily and Clara are both walking now. Al and Robert were really excited, but now may be wistfully remember the non-walking days.

They all keep Al and Robert really, really busy.

When I look at the pictures, I see a lot of Allison and me in Lily and Clara and Anna looks a lot more like Robert. Looks like Lily and Clara have the Kline hair. And look at all of their gorgeous big blue eyes!

Have to share pictures of my adorable nieces!

Friday, October 20, 2006

Better Made Pretzels

A few years ago, while playing our week of golf in Michigan, we made a wonderful discovery by accident: Better Made Butter Braided Pretzels. The best, butteriest, crunchiest pretzels you could imagine -- and Tom, Jason and I didn't discover them until the last round of golf when I opened up the bag. We were hooked.

The following year, we bought them the first night we were there and I vowed to remember the brand so that we could try to track them down. Of course, we didn't. Ditto for the third year.

2006 comes and I unfortunately wasn't going to Michigan because of Sturgis. But, Jason had instructions to bring back some pretzels. He lives up to his promise and brings back a bag (or two or three) of Better Made Butter Braided Pretzels (or as Ron calls them "popcorn pretzels")

On the back of the bag, they have a URL: -- with a store. But you can't order them online, so I email. Donna Seder is great and emails me back that I can order them over the phone: 313.925.4774 x 100. You get 5 bags of the 12 oz size for $12.95 plus shipping.

Today, I finally ordered them. They ship on Monday so I should have them for next weekend's round of golf.


Monday, October 16, 2006

Woodbridge Takes the Gold Cup

Last weekend, Woodbridge (my home course) played Plantation in a Gold Cup Tournament (read: Ryder Cup, but for copyright purposes, we probably had to be original and come up with our own "original" name). Practice round Friday. Best Ball and Alternate Shot matches on Saturday, Sunday Match Play. I know I'm boring you non-golfers, so you can just skip this blog.

Friday was practice round at Plantation, a course I've never played. Playing from the Whites (aka Old Mens Tees), I quickly discovered I had NO ADVANTAGE off the tee. Also discovered that there is a lot of OUT OF BOUNDS. Another good thing to know.

Then we had the Skills Challenge -- long drive in a grid and putting. We were trounced. But, last year we won the skills challenge and then didn't win the Gold Cup.

Appetizers (read: fried chicken tenders, fried chicken wings, fried mozzarella, fried onion rings) and cold icy beverages followed with introductions to the teams. Great group of guys. They all seemed much younger (sorry, guys!) than our team.

Saturday morning, I try on my my uniform shirt (buttercream on Saturday, baby blue on Sunday), not so sure I'll be able to fit into men's small shirts. While a nice thought that Eric thought I could fit into a small, not sure it'll fit in the boobs. It does fit, kinda. But, thankfully it's chilly so I put on my black turtleneck and head to Plantation (note to Laura: I also put on mascara and tinted sunblock). Keith and I are playing Best Ball. I've brought "extra smokes."

We're the 3rd group off after Ron and Frank and Garrett and AK. Gary and Tom are behind us. Playing with Dennis and some guy that Jason called "Jukebox." Who's Jason to talk -- we call him "Radio." Jukebox starts off his morning with a double Jack and Coke in the clubhouse at 7am and they have beers already in the cart. Should be fun at least.

Keith and I were off to a really, really rough start and were 4 down real quickly. We finally settled down and played steady, no blood golf. Make the turn and both Keith and I started playing better, or rather, smarter. Hear that Ron and Frank are winning. Garrett and AK losing. Gary is playing lights out (better than his practice round). Rest of the matches pretty close. We know we need to wake up. We win 10. A birdie on 14 helped, net eagle. Now we're only 2 down. 17 and 18 -- 2 down, 2 to go. 17 is a par three. I'm having some "issues" with their par 3s because they are a lot longer than Woodbridge. But, I'm liking my 7 iron so I hit that. Make par and win the hole (it didn't hurt that our partners didn't fare so well). And now there are lots of people from both teams watching. Great..... spectators.

Last hole. One down. One to play. The 18th hole has a carry over water and water ALL OF THE WAY DOWN THE LEFT SIDE. I tend to like the left side, so I begged Keith to help us out. He hits it OB into some backyard. But, Dennis managed to hit his drive left of left into someone's house on the other side of the water. Somehow, I managed not to duck hook, shank, banana slice my tee ball and hit my drive into the middle of the fairway. Use my 7 iron to just in front of the green (I like my 7 iron). Make putt for par and All Square the match. Pretty intense. I need a beer.

Second round is Alternate Shot and I'm not playing that afternoon, so I get to ride in the cart with an opposing team member. He has LOTS of beer and we end up consuming LOTS of beer while riding around, taking a few photos with Pete's camera and watching the rounds. Again, drinking LOTS of beer. Woodbridge ends the day ahead 6 1/2 to 5 1/2 going into Sunday. A bunch of beers consumed, the guys are concerned about my driving home (I'm not), so I get to follow Tom closer to home. He's worried that my lead foot will get me in trouble. I make it home safe.

Sunday, wake up and it's pouring. We're not playing until 12noon and the weather isn't looking promising. I'm now happy that I'm not playing "golf that counts" on Sunday because I don't particularly like playing with a cart cover, wet clothes, wet clubs. Call me a girl, but it's just no fun. And it wasn't for anyone. Advantage Woodbridge. And we weren't wearing those silly knickers that Plantation was wearing. Woodbridge wins our first five matches and then our seventh match so everyone could go in. Pretty cool to win the Gold Cup.

Wait until 2008.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Van Break In

Saturday, 9/31, I head to the golf course, as usual. This time I have to shove 10 pills down Maggie's throat for her eye infection, hot spots, etc. Poor baby. Not a great round at all. But, I'm playing from the white (aka old men) tees until after the Ryder Cup tournament and then the Dallas Morning News Club Champion Tournament (if I might brag, I came in second in the second flight of the Woodbridge Golf Club Championship and first in the women's flight to represent the club. I'm more proud of the former than the later since I'm the women's club champion by default, not for winning). So, time to try to get some semblance of a game. Get done at least 45 minutes before the next group and Tony's already calling about going for a ride. I bolt and he tells me his van has been broken into again. This is the third time and he's not a happy camper. I know I live in the "hood" but it's really a pretty decent neighborhood. Things like this give it a bad rap and now we're trying to figure out what to do.

So, today I went online and ordered: 1. solar powered motion sensor flood lights (figure that would be easy to install) 2. wireless receiver to receive notifications of intruders 3. two motion sensor outdoor "things" to detect "intruders" (read: squirrels, rats, possuums, and hopefully mean people trying to break into vehicle. I'll tell you how this goes.

The neighbors are also suggesting a multitude of other things requiring moving the fence line and installing an automatic gate with extra lighting to keep mean people from breaking into our house. By changing the fence line, they could look into the back yard at our mean ferocious animals that will attack on command. I'll tell you how this goes as well, since it involves: 1. pricing 2. certificate of appropriateness from the historic district 3. paving the driveway 4. moving fenceline 5. installing automatic solar powered fence.

We'll go with the easy solution first and hope for the second one sometime early 2007.