Tag Archives: Glen

Battery Recharge

Back to his usual position on the supersofa.

Back to his usual position on the supersofa.

Look who brightened up our weekend!

When we Skyped with our younger son last Thursday night, we talked about him catching a ride with RJ’s dad, who was picking up his roommate the next day to bring home for a visit. The kid decided that he wanted to reconnect and recharge. It was great to get a hug in person!

Netflix streaming has led to addictions.

Netflix streaming has led to addictions.

The first thing he did was plop on the couch and queue up the final season of “Scrubs” on Netflix. The kid loves watching that show, and on more than one occasion, I’ve been caught up in his marathon viewing sessions. This was no exception.

Zzzzzzzz!

Zzzzzzzz!

Of course, he is a college student. Mainly, a tired one. After a couple episodes, he succumbed to the allure of soft pillows and snoozed for a few hours.

A crowded card: Hiral, Chris, Adam, Eric, the kid, Steve, the Mister, and Marcus

A crowded card: Hiral (hi!), Chris, Adam, Eric, the kid, Steve, the Mister, and Marcus

With the next day being Saturday, only one activity could fit the bill: Disc golf, of course.

The Mister putts.

The Mister putts.

The Mister and the kid joined bestie Eric and five others for a round of 18 at the nearby River Pointe Church’s course.

Easy-peasy!

Easy-peasy!

Even though he hadn’t played much since we moved him in at SHSU, my son managed to win by a stroke.

Talking strategy

Talking strategy

It was fun watching the collegian interact with his older buddies again. And it always tugs at my heartstrings to watch him and his devoted dad together. Those two are closerthanthis!

After that, he played a round at Tom Bass with his other disc golf bestie, Glen (the highlight was that the Mister and I got to visit with the ever-lovely Kelly and a snoozing baby Jonas; little Glen was napping in his room).

Until we meet again, this smile will have to do.

Until we meet again, this smile will have to last for awhile.

Before we knew it, we were taking RJ and our son back to Huntsville on Sunday afternoon (after watching a thrilling Houston Texans victory). The kid got a chance to relax, knock the rust off his disc golf game, and even do his homework and prepare for the week (yes, I actually witnessed him studying!).

And the Mister and I got to spend time with our beloved baby boy once again. Totally win-win!

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Shuffleboard Hustler

Glen watches over his protégé.

Glen watches over his protégé.

After my younger son and Glen finished competing with metal clubs at TopGolf last Sunday, we went into the (thankfully air-conditioned) game room. While we were waiting for lunch, Glen innocently walked over to an indoor shuffleboard table and suggested that he and the kid have a friendly go at it.

The kid didn’t realize it at the time, but what should’ve been flashing through his mind was “SHARK ALERT!”

Glen concentrates on sending a blue puck down the board.

Glen concentrates on sending a blue puck down the board.

Even though his bushy beard hides his baby face, and he has an easygoing, sometimes goofy demeanor, Glen’s eyes twinkle when he’s up to something. I had a feeling that, unlike my son, this wasn’t his first time playing.

Lots of blue in the scoring areas

Lots of blue in the scoring areas

Sure enough, Glen easily won the first game 21-1. My son had been schooled and hustled.

So my nonreader learned a valuable lesson: You can’t judge a book by its proverbial cover!

The Backlit Photo Challenge

This is a big place.

This is a big place.

When my younger son’s adult bestie Glen gave him a TopGolf gift certificate for his graduation, I knew two things: One, they’d have a blast together, and, two, I wanted to go along. Toting my Nikon D700, of course.

Last Sunday was their last chance to use the gift card for awhile, because Kelly was due to bless Little Glen with a baby brother the next day (welcome, baby Jonas Henry!). It was now or wait a looooong time.

The outside part of TopGolf

The outside part of TopGolf

TopGolf is a deluxe, three-story driving range . . . plus more. The golf bays are outside, with the golfers protected by an overhang. Food and drinks can be served at the bay or inside at the bar or in areas that feature pool, indoor shuffleboard, and big-screen TVs. And it’s fun for all ages.

You can see the available targets on the board.

You can see the available targets on the board.

Golfers can use the facility as a typical driving range or they can compete against friends and/or family in point-scoring games, like hitting targets (the balls are microchipped).

We watched the Canadian Open final round as well as the scoring monitor.

We watched the Canadian Open final round as well as the scoring monitor.

It came as absolutely no surprise that Glen and the kid were up for some friendly competition. Just like when they play disc golf. However, my son had an advantage over his pal: He competed in junior golf, and he still possesses a nice, natural swing. Glen, not so much. Good thing he’s so athletic.

Nice silhouette effect

Nice silhouette effect

When I got to the bay and looked at the 240-yard bright, green space, I knew I’d have a problem with strong backlighting. Sure enough, my first snap of my son with my Nikon 24-70mm lens (great for wide angle and telephoto photo ops) showed that capturing the TopGolf action was going to be a test of my skills.

That stronger light causes the camera’s sensor to expose for the background, severely underexposing the foreground. As in the golfers. Great if you like silhouettes, not so good if you like to see faces. Which I do.

Spot meter with -1 exposure compensation

Spot meter with +1 exposure compensation = meh

So I switched my meter to the spot setting and fiddled with the exposure compensation to add light to the foreground.

Glen with spot metering and +2 EC = still meh

Glen with spot metering and +2 EC = still meh

Fortunately, I had about an hour to try to get decent photos. And I needed just about every tick of the clock.

Honing in on the right setting: Spot meter plus flash and -.67 EC

Honing in on the right setting: Spot meter plus flash and -.67 EC

Finally, I figured out that I had to use the D700’s onboard flash to illuminate the kid and Glen. I rarely use it for action shots, but, then again, I rarely have this kind of a lighting problem. Fortunately, neither of them seemed bothered by the added light. I decreased the exposure compensation to try not to blow out the background so much.

Got it!

Got it!

I also changed my photographic approach. I stopped looking at this as an action assignment, because it was almost impossible to get the club on the ball or follow the ball in the air due to the lighting. Instead, I chose to shoot portraits of the two, which cut out the too-light sky.

The kid got very sweaty.

The kid got very sweaty.

So our TopGolf adventure turned out to be a win-win experience. Glen and the kid had a great time trying to best each other, while I learned to be a more-flexible photographer.

I’d definitely need to clean the windshield.

I’d definitely need to clean the windshield.

Still, I’d much rather shoot facing the players. Maybe next time I can ride in the ball picker-upper!

Rainy Day Players and Photographers

My younger son lasers in his birdie putt amid the raindrops.

My younger son lasers in his birdie putt amid the raindrops.

According to the Southwest Handicap Mini’s fearless leader, Eric, it should never rain on Tuesdays during the 18-hole disc golf tournaments. So we were all surprised when Mother Nature had the audacity to defy Eric and briefly dump some drops on our heads during this week’s contest at Community Park in Missouri City.

Mike keeps the basket in his sights.

Mike keeps the basket in his sights.

As much as I don’t like getting my photographic equipment wet, I went with the flow (literally) and just kept on shooting while hoping for the best. When I looked at my pics in Photoshop later, I loved how my fast shutter speed had captured not only the action but also the rain.

Glen hams it up with his no-look putt.

Glen hams it up with his no-look putt.

Talk about your spray and pray!

Graduation Support

The motley crew: The Mister, Uncle Mike, #1 son, Aunt Carol, me, and Grandma surround the kid after his graduation last Saturday.

The motley crew: The Mister, Uncle Mike, big bro, Aunt Carol, me, and Grandma surround the kid after his graduation last Saturday.

It was a given that his loving family would be cheering on my younger son at his high school graduation last Saturday at the Toyota Center. The Mister, our older son, and I were joined by my mom (who flew in from Chicago), as well as the Mister’s siblings, Carol and Mike.

Best disc golf buddies: Glen, the kid, and Eric

Best disc golf buddies: Glen, the kid, and Eric

But adding to that support crew were two men who have been special in my son’s life for several years, Eric and Glen. They are his best friends, adult division.

Eric advised my son at the 2010 amateur disc golf worlds in Ohio.

Eric advised my son at the 2010 amateur disc golf worlds in Ohio.

We met Eric in December of 2007 at my son’s first disc golf tournament (the kid was 12 years old). They played on the same card in the first round. Since then they’ve made great doubles partners, winning the 2011 Amateur World Doubles championship, as well as good traveling companions and friendly adversaries.

Glen and the kid walk together during a tournament.

Glen and the kid walk together during a tournament in 2010.

Glen came into my son’s life in 2009, and it seemed like they instantly bonded. Their mutual love of sports and ability to not take themselves seriously enables them to always have fun together.

I’ve trusted Eric and Glen to take care of my beloved baby boy on numerous occasions, including when Glen and his wife Kelly toted the kid to and from Michigan, playing disc golf along the way. It’s wonderful how both men can be terrific mentors and friends for my young man in their own separate ways.

The Mister and I really appreciated that both of them took time out from their busy lives to attend our son’s graduation. We know it meant a lot to the kid that they were by his side during this important milestone.

It does, though, make me wonder one thing: Who will miss my son most when he’s at Sam Houston State this fall? Me or Eric and Glen? I know the kid definitely will miss them, too.

And maybe even me!

Double-Glen Bowling

Glive smiles at his mom.

Glive smiles at his mom.

While it was wonderful that my older son’s friends joined him for bowling last Saturday, another special guest really made the Mister and I smile: Little Glen.

The Glens bowl . . . and ended up with a spare!

The Glens bowl . . . and end up with a spare!

My younger son’s best high school buds all were busy, so he invited his adult bestie, Glen, to join us. I was thrilled, because his wife Kelly and Glen V (aka Glive) tagged along. We always enjoy our times together (we just can’t help but love that tiny cutie!).

This was no exception.

High five!

High five!

Little Glen, who turns two next week, preferred checking out the lane action with his dad rather than chatting with us. So big Glen helped him roll the ball down the lane a time or two.

That's my boy!

That’s my boy!

It was so exciting when that slow-roller finally knocked down a pin, resulting in a spare!

Bowling for two

Bowling for two

Other times, IV balanced V as he played. It didn’t seem to affect his game at all. In fact, it added to a precious memory that made my son’s 21st birthday even more special.

It figures that little Glen would continue to bowl us over!

Gee Times Three

That’s one cute Kan!

G to the third power descended upon our backyard this week.

The first “G” was Glen Vaka Glive. We see the toddler sporadically, so it’s always a treat when he visits with the second “G.”

Little G gives Big G advice on his throw.

Who, of course, is his dad, Glen IV. Who looks more like a mountain man with that bushy beard of his.

The Gs make a play.

Big and Little G had fun playing KanJam with . . . surprise! . . . the third “G”:

Uncle Greg throws despite his unhappy nephew.

Glen’s look-alike brother Greg, who is visiting while on a break from teaching kindergarten in China.

Did I like having three cute guys KanJamming in the backyard? Gosh, oh gee, yes!