Monday, October 31, 2016

Happy Halloween!

I'm so bad about entering posts. It's Halloween and another summer is in the books. Highlight of the summer is how Grace changes weekly and how amazingly well she communicates. She loves to hop and dance, clap her hands and spin in circles, such a delight. We can't see her as much as we'd like but we can visit regularly on facebook. Grandma & I took Grace to the zoo and had a blast.

Chris & Carole just got back from 2 weeks in Italy. Don't need to add that they had a great time.

Ben has really been traveling a ton this year. He just got back from Amsterdam, he also went to Milan, WA D.C. New York and of course, down to Napa for a quick review of their new wine they are bottling. Matt is also doing great, he just went to D.C. To take an exam to become a judge, amazing!
Riley and Carter are both doing good, they enjoyed our stay in Borrego and we are getting ready for an even longer stay starting this November.

Travis is really doing good, Dillon & Bailey present their unique challenges but he's always positive. He is enjoying his new job and received a very nice promotion.

Didn't do much in the yard, reseeded the front yard this fall but it's been so wet, I won't know how well it takes until I get back from Borrego.

The truck is in the shop getting repaired from being run off the road. Lucky I didn't get hurt.

Came home from Borrego to find out we were burglarized. Thieves took various items. Took all my SWP rings, watches and collectibles that can't be replaced. Most items were covered by insurance, we were lucky they didn't do much property damage. We've got a better plan in place for this winter.

It's been an interesting year at work. The committee that formed last year is a pain in my rear. We've had a good year financially, yet the committee has recommended to close down the golf course Nov-Jan. It's disappointing but I now have another couple months off to spend in Borrego.

I'll close with another picture of my little girl, As excited as Chris & I are to spend more time down south, we will miss our kids during the holidays.
This picture of Grace came from a recent visit. Jake & I were watching the "Hawks", Grace was watching Curious George on dad's I-phone.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Getting caught up AGAIN

Hard to believe I haven't created a post since December! Where to begin...
For the first time, Chris, the dogs & I packed our bags and spent 3 months down at our new place in Borrego. Chris rode down with Carole, so it was the boys & myself for the 2 1/2 day trip. We had quite a few things done while we were still here in Hoodsport but there was still plenty of work to do once we got down there. Overall, I think both of us were very happy with the painting, flooring & landscaping we did. I think Chris enjoyed picking out new furniture & I got to go TV shopping.
Time flew by, I worked a couple of days at the golf course which allowed us to both golf for free. Chris played at the roadrunner and enjoyed the group there, while I played at the springs. It was pretty easy to get into a routine of golfing, working around the place and the weekly shopping trip into Palm Springs for groceries & stuff.

While down in Borrego, our home was broken into. We lost items that can't be replaced but at least they didn't trash our home. Lesson learned, we have set up a security system which will allow us to monitor our home and be notified if there is any activity on our property.

Work has been a little stressful, a new golf course committee has been formed, majority of the membership in the committee are the same old crows who give us crap because they have nothing better to do. Fortunately, the golf course is having a good year so far (through May). As summer approaches, the critics have found other things to focus on and things are somewhat back to normal.

 Chris (Nana) has had several opportunities to watch our little Grace. She's adorable! She's getting around great, talking all the time and has become quite the dancer. While Chris was watching her, she would FaceTime me and I'd have 5 min. to make her laugh! She really likes to see Riley for some reason. She always asks to see "more Riley". This coming weekend we'll be going over to her 2nd birthday party. Jake & Em are doing a great job, she is a delight!

Ben & Matt came over this past weekend to spoil us with their cooking. They are both doing fantastic. they recently sold their condo and are now living downtown in a new larger apartment complex. I need to get over there!
Working out in the yard is not quite the same for Chris & I, we are just trying to maintain things. I work too much to help like I use to and Chris does what she can but has never been a real fan of yard work but our back patio flowers are really doing great this year. Who knows how long this golf course job will continue. certainly want to get through this year (I turn 62 in Dec), that seems a certainty but the future is murky. If the new board does not allow for my 3 months off Jan - Mar. this will be my last year. Probably depends on how we finish the year. If we continue to post good numbers they would be foolish to make a change. The board is unpredictable and allows the membership to sway its opinion. None of the people that hired me are on the board anymore but I have good relationships with most of the current board members. Only time will tell.

The boys are pretty good and really seemed to enjoy our stay in Borrego. Carter is really starting to show his age (he turns 10 this month) but he's pretty healthy but developing some very weird, quirky behaviors like not wanting to walk on the hardwood floors and we now have to leave the upstairs stairway lights on because he can't see the steps and has taken a couple of small tumbles. My guess is he'll be with us again this next winter in Borrego, he really looks forward to going to the dog park to chase that ball!

I'm skipping a lot of the small stuff but that's kind of the highlights. Hope to post a little more often.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Christmas 2015

Time fly's between these posts! It's early in December and the recent weather makes us wish for an early spring. We've really been hit hard with rain and it seems like it will never end. Last weekend we went to Seattle to celebrate the holiday season with Ben & Matt. They hosted a lunch, we drove up to Jake's and helped him with Grace (Em was out of town). Grace was amazing (again), the party was from 1-3 which is right in the middle of her nap time. She smiled and visited with everyone and stole the show!

With each post there seems to be changes. Due to budget constraints at work, I now have Jan-March off. Chris, the boys and I are going to take advantage and head south to Borrego. As I sit here typing, we are having work done at our place. Rosie is working on building concrete patio's and landscaping while Phil is inside repainting. We have a lot of work still to do. New flooring is going to be installed after the painting, new furniture will be delivered when we get down there. Once we get the phone, internet and TV's set up it should be very livable and of course a little warmer than Hoodsport.

Merle & Donna are home for a few weeks, they've been gone since late July. We went over and saw the photo's from their trip across Canada, sounds like they had a great time. Merle shared several of the local beer flavors he acquired during the trip and he brought back several hat clips for me from several of the golf courses as payback for keeping an eye on his place while they were gone.

Back to Grace, she's now walking! She is just so darn cute! She gives us hugs, wet kisses on the cheeks and as the picture above shows, she loves blowing kisses. Jake & Em are doing a great job as mom and dad. Here's another picture of Grace in her evening fur collared coat.

Travis is doing good, he's just moved into his own place and now has a good paying job in a local factory in Wisconsin. His kids are growing fast and as always, keep Travis on his toes. Dillion will be a senior next year, he played football this season. Bailey just got a job at McDonalds.

Ben and Matt are doing incredibly well, both very successful, both very proud of each other. We sure enjoy their visits, they don't stop cooking from the moment they come in. Ben recently opened a new store inside the Roaster in Seattle and yes, that's Howard Shultz with Ben at the grand opening!

Christmas will be pretty low key around here as we make a shift in our lifestyle to spend time in Borrego. We are incredibly blessed to have such a wonderful family, good friends, a fun and diverse lifestyle and our health.


Wednesday, August 26, 2015

End of Summer 2015

Six months has flown by since my last posting! Several items to get caught up on. Of course the lead story is Grace, Jake & Em are doing a marvelous job raising her, she is a delight. I'm always after Jake to send me pictures or a video since we don't have much of an opportunity to see them very often. She's not quite walking but she's getting real close, her latest trick is climbing up and now DOWN the stairs.

We had another great time this spring down in Borrego, weather was good, golf was great as they re-opened Rams Hill, a beautiful golf course on par with our Salish cliffs up here. Ben and Matt came down for a week and enjoyed cooking for us and lounging by the pool. We really enjoy getting to spend this time with them as do our friends. It was down in Borrego when we noticed that our good friend Jeff was having issues. Unfortunately his condition got worse when he got home, had an accident and has been hospitalized now for the past 12 weeks. I miss his wry humor, he's in Seattle, which makes it difficult to get time to visit. I hope by my next posting, I'll have good news to report about his recovery. At the end of our Borrego trip, Chis and I decided to invest in a double-wide on the RoadRunner golf course, it needs work and we are preparing to go down this fall to begin making it into our winter home. I think we bought at the right time, I just spoke to our realtor down there and all the golf course homes that were for sale have all been purchased. We'll miss our rental home but it'll be fun having our own place down there.

It's been an extraordinary dry summer, we did not get the typical wet months leading up to summer and it has been hard on the plants, the yard and of course the golf course. It's been a crazy busy summer up at Lake Cushman and now that it's late August, our tournament season is finished and I'm looking forward to working less hours and spending some more time here at home. Business has been very good, hope we have a good labor day and finish the year strong, I think we will. Pretty proud of my self for getting my handicap back down in that 8 or 9 range, finished second gross in the club championship - not bad for a hack!

This July we celebrated Christal's 60th BD, it was fun having Ben, Matt, Jake, Em & Grace over for the weekend. Hard to believe how fast time goes by, I think we are both glad to be working and productive and in reasonably good health. Chris gets the occasional call to help Jake & Em to babysit Grace while Em is away on work, she really enjoys some extended time with Grace.

Didn't do anything new in the yard, with the tough dry & hot summer I postponed any yard rehabilitation projects, maybe I'll do something in the fall.

Other noteworthy items that come to mind...Ben got promoted to a directors position at Starbucks. The stock market is having a tough summer due to issues in China. I traded in my Honda Ridgeline for a new Ford F150 (Seahawk Blue). that should give us the room we need for Carter, Riley, Chris & I to travel together to Borrego. I really like my truck! Donna & Merle are on their 5 month journey across the US & Canada. Donna has started a blog to chronicle their adventure. Bill & Debbie are well underway with their new home, nice to have the Ashby gang up here this summer. Superbowl 49 didn't work out well for the Hawks as Russell threw a pick in the final seconds when they should have given the ball to Beast Mode (we'd be celebrating our second straight championship). Looks like we'll fire up the family feud fantasy league again, I had a good year in 2014-15, not as optimistic for this season but it'll be fun. Good way to stay connected to the kids (Travis is commissioner).

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Catching Up!

  Here's our amazing Grace! She is a real cutie. We went over on Thanksgiving and had a great time with everyone, topped off with plenty of "Grace Time" and a real fun watching of the Seahawks beatdown of the 49ers.
  I can't believe how fast time goes. Just a couple of weeks before Christmas. We have everything decorated here and at the golf course. Even got a little taste of early Christmas snow.
  Should be a fun Christmas, Travis will even be here this year. In years past it's been mostly Chris & I but this year there should be 10 of us!
  My thoughts come to me randomly as I try and remember the past 5 months. Work continues to be fun and challenging, I'd like to think I'm making a difference, cleaning things up, improving things on the course, building a good team and most importantly, creating a positive attitude. We just finished a "Turkey Shoot" golf tournament where we raised about $1,500 in cash and food for our local food bank. Got a real break in the weather. Had a good year personally on the golf course getting my handicap as low as an 8, by far the lowest it has every been. I'm now back up to an 11 - a good number for the winter.
  We will be going to Borrego Springs again this spring, have not decided if this will be the last time I rent the house. Might look for more affordable options. I might also try and stay down there a little longer than a month. Might be a good compromise with the BOD to give me more time off vs more money.
  The neighbors are down south now in Borrego, the Merle and Donna should be coming home for Christmas soon. By the time they leave again I'll only have a couple of months to go before I head down.
  Riley & Carter are good, they haven't been able to get out as much as they would like but they are quick to adapt. We kenneled them over Thanksgiving, they got their nails trimmed and got a much needed bath.

  Thinking of projects for the spring, one is to build a pond out front where we have an undeveloped area that is a pain to weed. I saw something I liked
during our stay at the beach. It incorporated natural things to outline the pond, things we have in abundance on the property. I asked Annie to inquire about the person who built the pond at the beach, he has since moved to Texas. Might be something I can tackle.

Ben just completed work on an amazing project for Starbucks. Starbucks took an old Packard auto sales building on Capitol Hill and turned it into a Roaster. Ben had a large part in the interior merchandisers design, we went to the grand opening last night. Ben & Matt then hosted a dinner at their place afterwards. It was a fun evening!

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Welcome to our family Grace!

 Grace Annabel Nelson - Born June 3rd @ 8:52 am
Grace was born @ Evergreen Hospital in Kirkland. Chris and I got the call that Jake & Em were heading to the hospital at about 11:00 Monday night. We got to the hospital about 2:30 and didn't get to see Grace until about 10:30 that morning. Some anxious moments as we waited there with Linda (Em's mom). I'll never forget seeing Jake pop out of that delivery room beaming with both arms in the air and both thumbs emphatically pointing straight up. We were all guessing her weight, I (of course) was the one to correctly guess her weight at 7 lbs 3 oz, she was 21' long at birth. We couldn't be prouder and happier for both Jake and Em.

Just 3 days later...
Fire rips through their home, thank God none was injured, but they will be displaced from their home for at least 6 or 7 months. Jake thinks a compost pile might have started the fire but nothing yet has been determined. The upstairs is totally gone, that means all the bedroom items and nursery items. They have to go through the painstaking process of identifying all the things they lost and making sure the insurance company rebuilds their place to their total satisfaction. Takes away from the time they could have spent enjoying their daughters first months at home - how sad.

Despite the setback, the kids are in good spirits and we are anxious to get to know our granddaughter. We are heading over today to babysit while Jake and Em do some shopping.
Everything back at our place is good, Chris planted her garden and has been trying hard to help me outside. I really like the condition of our yard, we are slowly starting to add planting to the hillside. The boys (dogs) are good, they are enjoying the nice weather and spending more time outside. It's good to have our neighbors back and they already have their yards in beautiful condition, it's hard to keep up!
Ben and Matt have both been busy as ever and they are both enjoying their careers and they are both excelling. Ben sold his large viaduct painting and is working on it's replacement, should be amazing when he finishes it. It's been so long since I've updated this blog, I don't know if I had previously mentioned that Ben & Matt got married, we are so happy for both of them. There ceremony was held on the state capital grounds and a reception followed over at Peters in Olympia. It rained but as usual the boys were prepared and we all had fun celebrating with them under the tent. They honeymooned in LA @ the Beverly Hills Hilton and had a great time.
Trav seems to be settled in to his new place, much closer to his work and he is working hard to strengthen his bond with Bailey and Dillon, it hasn't been easy for him but he never gives in and I'm continually amazed at how positive he remains.
Things are good up at the golf course, our very wet spring has got us off to a slower start then I would have liked but I'm really happy with my staff and I will not be working as much on the weekends as I did last year. That's good because it gives me more time to visit Grace.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Happy New Year - Seahawks Superbowl Champs

It's February 4, still reveling in our epic beat down of the Denver Bronco's in Superbowl 48 (43-8). Seattle's hosting a parade on Wednesday, it would be fun to go but we got our tax appointment in Lake Stevens. Work has been good, we've had a very mild winter, cold temps but very little precip.

Only three weeks until my Borrego trip. Looking forward to seeing our friends, playing golf everyday, hitting the pool and generally warm up. I think I have everything covered at work and I'll bring my laptop with me to keep in touch.

Last year was a success at work, we installed wifi, installed epoxy flooring on our stairs and restrooms, updated fixtures in the proshop, created an office for me and now I have organized our financial and personnel files and have established phone lists and vendor files. We revamped the website, now have an electronic reservation system. This year we are re-doing the lighting inside and outside our buildings, beginning an improvement project on our driving range and modify hole #2. Created a real nice rack display that I plan to take to the parks, hotels and our visitor center to promote our course. Always plenty of improvement projects. I have really enjoyed the job, I look forward to see what we can accomplish in 2014.

Our family has quite a 2014 planned. Ben & Matt are getting married in 2 weeks, I'm so happy for both of them. Jake & Em are expecting a baby, there has been a lot of concern about Em's pregnancy, the baby has been diagnosed with Turner's Syndrom but with several visits to Children's Hospital they have been given good news about delivering a healthy child, we are very excited for them. I'm anxious to see Jake transform into a dad, he'll be great. Travis has been promoted and hopes to move his family closer to work as his hours and responsibilities will increase. He has worked so hard, nice to see him be rewarded.

The dogs are great, Riley's barking concerns us, I hope he eventually grows out of this. They enjoy hanging out with Chris and chasing balls out in the back yard. Chris and I are starting to walk Riley down to the mailbox, he really enjoys the walk and it's good for us as well.