Tag Archives: Tom Bass Park

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!

One-Word Wednesday

There was a gorgeous sunset last night after our weekly Southwest Handicap Mini at Tom Bass Park.

The sunset was gorgeous last night at Tom Bass Park.

Nature!

Blue moon!

Blue moon!

Disc Golf Physics

Hiral’s birdie putt is on its way to the basket.

Hiral’s long birdie putt is on its way during last Tuesday’s Southwest Handicap Mini.

Action!

Yes!

Success!

Reaction!

Sam jokes around before teeing off at Tom Bass Park.

Sam jokes around before teeing off at Tom Bass Park.

And just plain goofy.

One-Word Wednesday

There was an unusual spectator at Tom Bass Park during last night’s disc golf mini.

Hawk!

After determining that plastic didn’t look tasty, the big bird flies away.

Ending the Week on a Beautiful Note

These little bells were hiding in the woods.

A week of blog posts without pix of wildflowers?

A lonely spider lily

That will never do!

Love these delicate blue flowers.

Guess it’s time to rectify the situation.

A cluster of pink wild garlic

I snapped these photos this week in Tom Bass Park.

White mixes with pink wild garlic

There were so many more wildflowers blooming than when I last shot there in mid-March. Color was everywhere you looked.

A bee hangs on to this large weed.

These guys, too, unfortunately for me.

Achieving Disc Golf Photography Goals

My #2 son lasers in a putt.

When I shoot a big disc golf tournament like last weekend’s Texas State Championship, I keep several goals in mind. The first? Always get a few good pics of my younger son. You never know when colleges will start doling out disc golf scholarships, asking for visual proof of expertise.

That probably will happen right after I win the Mrs. America title.

Eric shows off his perfect putting balance.

Next, I try to snap good photos of our friends.

Glen’s cap is so stylish!

Could be they’ll need pix for their scrapbooks.

Will Casey’s jump putt be successful?

After that, I look for compelling shots that will help tell the story of the tournament, which was held at Tom Bass Park in Houston.

Jimmy keeps his eyes on the prize.

I used my Nikon 70-200mm lens with a Nikon 1.4x teleconverter so I could really zoom in on the action.

Open women’s winner Valarie tees off.

Finally, I wanted to snag some strong shots of the pros for “Disc Golfer” magazine. In the women’s competition, Valarie Jenkins had a huge lead, so it was easy to concentrate on her.

Catrina putts.

I did need to take photos of Catrina Allen, too, because the Mister thinks she’s cute.

My favorite photo: Paul putting

The open men’s competition was nip and tuck, with the lead changing constantly. I’ll admit I was rooting for Paul Ulibarri, because this pic of him would look sweet on a magazine cover.

Cale tees off.

But in the end it came down to Cale Leiviska canning a putt on the final hole to win by one stroke over Will Schusterick. It was so exciting!

After the tourney, I felt I had achieved all my goals. And Cale?

The champ!

He walked away happy, too!

A Beautiful Equation

The duo

Two yellow . . .

Lots of purple

Plus multiple purple . . .

A nice mix

Equals some lovely, spring wildflowers at Tom Bass Park in Houston!

A Photographic Disc Golf Dress Rehearsal

The #2 son putts.

Recently, #2 played in the aptly named Dress Rehearsal for Texas States at Houston’s Tom Bass Park. Texas States is a huge, two-day disc golf tourney (that happens to be this weekend!) at that location. The one-day, 36-hole dress rehearsal gave players a chance to check out the course. And it gave me an opportunity to prepare for shooting photos at the real deal.

Ryan’s drive flies off the tee on top of a hill.

I was looking forward to making sure I was ready to take decent disc golf photos. I hadn’t shot at Tom Bass since last year’s Texas States, but I soon remembered why the course is so tough for players and photographers alike: It’s swampy (this was a muddy, warm day) and long. I was dragging by the end of 18 holes, and I hadn’t hoisted a disc!

T.J. putts uphill.

But I wasn’t complaining, because I was getting my fill of two of my favorite photo subjects: The #2 son and wildflowers! It was too early in the year for an abundance of flora. But there were enough to make me take more pics of the flowers than the players.

These delicate, small white flowers were all over the park.

I used my Nikon 105mm macro lens with my Nikon D700, because it does a good job with action and flower close-ups. There were a few times when I wished I had opted for my Nikon 70-200mm lens on shots of the players putting (I needed the 70mm range), but I was willing to sacrifice for the 105’s macro capabilities.

Even weeds can be pretty!

I’ll be using the 70-200 this weekend, because the disc golf action will take precedence. But I’m sure I’ll still get some close-ups of different wildflowers that have sprung up since the dress rehearsal. They’re so easy to capture, because they don’t move!

Yellow flower

Shooting flowers gives photographers a great opportunity to work on bokeh, that lovely blurring of backgrounds.

These little yellow flowers looked shiny close up.

The key is to open up your aperture (set it on the smallest number, e.g., f/2.8 or f/4), move in close, and focus on one spot.

They’re the same type flower, but one is white and one is purply.

And don’t forget that if you can’t effectively crop when you’re taking the photo, you can always cut out the excess in photo-editing software like Photoshop Elements. It’s not cheating to crop! It’s still your photo; you’ve just made it a more-effective picture by zooming in on what’s important. Our high-megapixel digital cameras are made for cropping; you don’t lose any resolution, so your photo stays sharp.

Brown, reedy stuff

The dress rehearsal did give me a chance to kick that nature-photography jones temporarily out of my system.

A branchless tree looks stark against the sky.

Just like the disc golfers, including #2, I’m going to be rarin’ to hit the course and see what I’m capable of at Texas States. Let’s hope I take more photos of the active players instead of the inactive wildflowers!