Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Golf 101

For those of you that don't know my oldest son Stephen got a job this summer working at one of the local Private Golf courses, and it's turned out to be a pretty sweet job...he gets to work at 5:00 am and is home by 2:00 or 3:00pm giving him the rest of the day to play. Anyway one of his "Benefits" or "Perks" is that he can get us onto the course for free. Now I know a lot of my friends would be driving out to "Pick him up" from work everyday, and maybe sneak in a few holes while they were out there. Me I've never played golf in my entire life, with the exception of PlayStation, which I'm pretty good at, so it can't be that hard...right?

(almost worth it just to drive around in the golf carts)

So this last Thursday Stephen, Justin and myself decided it was about time we gave it a hard can it be?

(a swing, and a miss... This seemed to happen alot)

The Golf course is on the very north end of the Springs and it takes about 20 minutes to get out there...the whole drive out it's threatening to rain...and all I can think about is that we are going to show up on the evening news, and the lead in to the story would be something along the lines of..."3 stupid golfer's were struck by lightning tonight..." I mean, you can only tempt fate so far, and I think your crossing a line somewhere when you go out into an open grassy area and raise metal rods up into the air in the middle of a thunderstorm.

Luckily for us by the time we got there it was just a drizzle and by the time we got to the first tee, it was beautiful weather...slightly overcast, no wind...the PERFECT weather for golf.

(I think Justin got 3 feet of this shot)

We stopped at the driving range to hit some balls, and get a "feel" for it...out of a basket of about 25 balls I think I got 2 to make it off the ground and out to the 100 yard marker. I'm not a hugely competitive person....I'm more the do it because I enjoy it, and try to do better each time. I also am not 18-20 years old anymore, and I figured I'd be doing well to just keep up with my boys, It was kind of nice to find out that I was actually a little better than them, at least I could hit the ball straight 90% of the time. (I wonder if "larger" golfers can get more weight behind a swing...hmm)

(I think this was one of my better shots...I actually chipped it onto the green...I felt very "Tiger Woodsish")

Anyway we teed off and decided that since this was the first time, and in an effort not to tick off the team behind us, that we would just play best ball, and not keep score (Thank you, Thank you, Thank you...we would still be out there looking for balls if we hadn't)

Just a few observations about golf.
  • I can see how people could get "VERY" frustrated trying to hit that stupid little ball.

  • I think if I play about 2000 holes I could probably get better.

  • If I had to pay, I would have to be better.

  • Spending time with my boys...priceless
Will I go again...Yeah sure I's worth it just to be with my boys, plus I think in another 2 or 3 days those muscles won't even hurt anymore.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Ward Campout

Camping in Theory:
It's not that I don't like camping... The whole idea of camping is wonderful, I love it... getting away from civilization, all the pressures and stresses of everyday living, the opportunity to commune with nature and enjoy the beauty of the outdoors, the chance to contemplate life and your relationship with the great creator ...I love the idea. The reality of camping is sometimes a whole different thing.

Getting Ready to Camp:
Have you ever been getting ready to move, and you have the nightmare where your loading the moving van, and no matter how many times you pack and rearrange all the items you just can't get them all in? ...welcome to Camping.

Getting ready to camp is the worst part of camping...I'm reminded of the Disney cartoon when Goofy and his son go camping, and they have everything they own strapped to the top of their we were heading up the canyon, we passed a van towing a trailer to hold all their "Gear", and I found myself thinking. "maybe I should consider getting a trailer"... How much Stuff do you have to take to spend one night in the wilderness?

I think I must have been spoiled as a scout, we used to camp in the desert, and we would throw some food items in our backpack, bring a ground cloth and a sleeping bag, and we were good to go for a couple of days at least. If we got hungry, then we knew to bring more beef jerky next time.

Once your married though the whole camping dynamic changes, now there's diapers, and formula, collapsible cribs and blankets, the list goes on an on... (luckily we've made it past that part of life, so now we have twice the room that we used to.)

And if we're keeping it real the whole age factor definitely does come into play, gone are the days where you scoop a little sand out of the ground to make a depression for your butt, and you roll up your jacket for a pillow, now you've got Air mattresses, blankets and real pillows to bring, you'll need chairs to sit on, and a table (or two) to put stuff on, flashlights, lanterns, and glow sticks (ostensibly to keep the bears away) and bug spray to ward of the bugs attracted by all the lights...and last but not least a cooler large enough to double as a small refrigerator with enough food and treats to feed a small army.

Somehow we managed to get it all in the Van...and we were Off to find Nirvana.

We arrived at the camp ground around 5:00 pm, and there was only 5 other family's there. I did some quick math (okay, I did some math) 5 families, average family size around 4 or 5 so that means 20-25 people, considering that there are 530 people in our ward, not a very good turnout. I didn't take into consideration that most people don't get off work until 5:00 so by 7:00 pm I had to redo my math... there were about 20 families, and 90% of them had children under the age of 5.

(Justin obviously didn't go hungry)

I've decided that camping and babies don't mix really well...they are kind of like land mines that are set to close to each goes off, and it sets all the others off. Needless to say I'm pretty sure there was a baby crying sometime during each hour of the night... (I have to take my wife's word on this, as I was so tired I fell asleep on my nice air mattress, with my warm blanket and soft pillow, and didn't hear a thing)

(First law of Camping: "You can't call it camping unless there's a campfire")

When all was said and done... we had a great time...Randie and I got to meet some people that we didn't know, Sarah got to play with her friends, and Justin had time to relax with some of his friends.

(Second Law of Camping: "You have to wear a hat") year I think we'll be packing it all up to do it again... I might even bring the Dutch oven this time.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Soccer Visit

Randie's nephew Chris ended up playing in a soccer tournament, and as luck would have it they ended up holding it right here in the Springs. We love it when family comes to visit because it's just our family and theirs....unlike when we go home and it's our family and 11 other family's. (not that we don't like to go home...we do. Sometimes though we get pulled in so many directions that we don't get much 1:1 time with anyone.)

The Tournament was held at the Air Force Academy, which is right at the foot of the mountains, and you can look out over the whole valley...very inspiring.

Chris's team the Rangers did exceptionally well and made it to the Championship match, which unfortunately they lost (the officiating left a little to be desired) and they ended up taking 2nd place.

It worked out well for us though, because our families got to spend some time together...Hopefully they will have another tournament here again in the future.

...I bet you can't guess who the soccer player is

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Utah, the Final Frontier

We just recently returned from our yearly pilgrimage to visit the place of our birth, and revisit our roots. With the rising cost of gas we were a little concerned about the cost of driving, normally it costs us just under $200.00 to make the 1200 mile round trip. This time it was $260.00 (it wasn't as bad as I initially thought it would be) the average price we paid was around $4.00/gal.

This year we had the added bonus of getting to see my Sister Melanie, who came in from Florida, it's been 3-4 years since the last time I saw her and her family. Plus my youngest sister Becky had just given birth to twins just before we came there was a lot going on... and since both of our families live in the same city, It quickly turns into a whirlwind, and by the time it's over your head is spinning so fast, you can't remember what's next.

All in all it was a great trip... we are looking forward to doing it again in November when Stephen leaves on his mission.

Here's a quick recap
  • 10 hour drive to get there
  • LeBaron family get together
  • Local swimming pool with Ron and his family
  • Short visit with Becky to see the twins
  • 2nd LeBaron family get together
  • Fireworks outside the Stadium
  • Baptism of Randie's Niece
  • Breinholt get together at Jodie's
  • Water sports with David (no one died)
  • Boys went Dirt Biking (still no deaths)
  • 10 hour drive home (me and Stephen... Randie, Justin, and Sarah stayed)
  • Camping with Breinholts
  • Kids went to Movie's to see Walle
  • other various visits and activity's
  • Randie, Justin and Sarah flew home
A few pictures...

The Twins

Fireworks on the 4th