Tag Archives: University of Houston

A Brief History Lesson

Nice mural!

Nicely done

On our way home to Houston after visiting our older son in San Antonio last Sunday, the Mister and I stopped in Seguin for awhile. We wanted to watch the second half of the Houston Texans-Kansas City game (new quarterback Case Keenum is a University of Houston grad, just like the Mister), and the Garmin indicated that a sports bar and grill was close to I-10.

After we were done yelling at the nice, flat-screen TV (it’s hard not to get worked up when it comes to our poor Texans, even in public . . . hope we don’t see any of those people again!), we walked around to the Honda Odyssey and saw the above mural painted on a building’s wall.

Very informative

Very informative

We figured that Seguin probably was pretty historic, seeing how it’s named for Juan Seguin, a prominent player in Texas’ drive for independence from Mexico. His remains are buried in the town.

But we were surprised to learn that the very street where we had parked our minivan once was a stagecoach route. I could just imagine the dust, dirt, passengers, and horses. As well as an Indian or two.

It seemed almost apropos that we watched a battle between the Texans and the Chiefs right there!

Another “Catastic” College Visit

Nice logo!

My younger son’s college tour made its second . . . and final . . . stop last Saturday in San Marcos. The destination? Texas State’s Bobcat Day.

Even though the Mister and the kid have played disc golf on the campus’ course several times, this was a new experience for me. My first reaction to walking around the many buildings? This must be the hill country! I’ve never seen so many stairs before! What goes up must come down . . . and that was us over and over and over. Gosh, I get tired just thinking about it.

Tanner and my #2 son pose.

A highlight for us was touring the rec center and eating lunch with my older son’s friend Tanner, who is a sophomore there. He was able to give us his point of view about Texas State and all that it offers, which is invaluable to an impressionable high school junior.

Texas State is a large, pretty campus with several different educational options for my #2 son. He seemed drawn to its marketing research classes for some reason, and he even talked to an enthusiastic senior philosophy major about that concentration, as well as checking into the Exercise and Sports Science program. Browsing all the academic departments was an eye-opener for him.

One of the many disc golf baskets on campus

Of course, Texas State’s major draw for the kid is the campus disc golf course and club team. Who wouldn’t want to matriculate where they could play their favorite sport every day and get the chance to travel and compete?

I’m not sure which college—the University of Houston or Texas State—my younger son eventually will choose. Will he end up as a cougar or a bobcat? Only time will tell which feline wins his heart.

The College Journey Redux

So welcoming!

Didn’t we just do this dance a few years ago? Same time of year but different places?

We sure did: The University of Texas, the University of Texas at San Antonio, and Stephen F. Austin State University. Those were the colleges we looked at when our older son, who eventually chose UTSA, was a high school junior. Now it’s his younger brother’s turn to send my maternal emotions on a roller coaster ride.

Must I climb aboard?

The Mister studies a far-different campus map than when he walked the sidewalks.

Last Saturday we took those first tentative steps towards a collegiate destination for my #2 son by attending the University of Houston’s Preview Day. UH is less than an hour away, depending, of course, on traffic. My younger boy always has wanted to be a Cougar for one reason: It’s the Mister’s alma mater. But he hasn’t spent much time on the campus. The day finally had arrived to see if reality jibed with his long-lived fantasy.

Michael and my son check out the grounds.

It was nice for us to see other students from my son’s high school also attending the Preview Day, which attracted a big crowd. We toured the campus with his friend Michael (who he’s known since elementary school) and his dad, who coached both boys in flag football one season. Seems like it was only yesterday.

After spending time listening to the recruiting pitch (which included the spirited pep band playing an overkill three times), we attended an academic session. My boy chose the College of Technology; the digital media technology degree is right up my alley! We ate lunch at the impressive dorm cafeteria with my older son’s good friend Josh and his girlfriend Leslie, who had plenty of words of wisdom for us. I really came away very impressed with UH and definitely could see my baby boy matriculating there.

In fact, all three of us enjoyed our visit on campus.

Sheer beauty!

For me, it helped that there were azaleas posing for my Nikon 50mm lens.

Dad and son are glad the fierce cougar is just a statue.

The Mister, who is proud of his hometown school, would love for his son to walk in his footsteps.

As for the kid?

It’s bowling time!

He found the game place in the University Center and immediately wanted to bowl. After a couple cheap games, he had made up his mind.

“I don’t need to visit any more colleges,” he declared as we drove back home.

But we will see a couple more, so he can compare them to UH. After all, Texas State boasts a club disc golf team!

The Chanukah List

The #2 son’s Chanukah list

Tonight is the first night of Chanukah. The first and the eighth nights are my favorites of the holiday—all the excitement of the start of the celebration tonight, and then the 18 candles (two menorahs) filling the dining room with a warm glow eight nights from now. Plus all that lovely low-light photography featuring my Nikon D700 and Nikon 50mm lens in between!

Recently, I asked my sons for their Chanukah lists. My #1 son only wants two things: Music and books. Those (and videoing) are his passions. Pretty easy.

But then there’s the #2 son. That’s his list above, scrawled on a dry-erase board. On the left side are the discs he’d like for disc golf; on the right is everything else.

A closer look at #2’s list

#2 knows, of course, that just because he wants something doesn’t mean he’ll get it; he’s not a super-materialistic kid anyway. But it’s nice to know what’s on his mind.

Let’s look at his list:

Jelly Car

1. An iPod Touch. He especially wants this so he can play Jelly Cars, which, apparently, is the crack of app games. I put it on my iPhone for him, and he loves to use up my battery power moving those silly cars through obstacles.

ATM bank

2. An ATM bank. He saw this in a Bed, Bath, and Beyond mailer and thinks it would be a great place to keep his money. Instead of strewn around his room, as it is now.

3. UH stuff. As in the University of Houston, the Mister’s alma mater. Easy to find here in the Houston area, especially with the football team doing so well.

Daunte Culpepper quarterbacking the Detroit Lions

5. Culpepper jersey (not Miami or Vikings). #2 is a big Daunte Culpepper fan. He already has the quarterback’s jerseys from his stints with the Dolphins and Minnesota. Now he’d like one from Oakland or Detroit. The price of Culpepper’s Detroit Lions jersey? 80 bucks. As in . . . don’t think so.

4. I skipped #4 at first, because it makes me laugh so much. First of all, can you even read what it says? At first glance, I couldn’t decipher what #2 wrote after the word “No.” Was that “boots?” Or “Beatles?” #2 shot me a withering glance and said emphatically, “It’s ‘no books,’ Mom.”

No surprise there. It happened several Chanukahs ago when my sons opened their presents one of the nights. I’ll always remember how #1’s eyes lit up when he saw that he had several new books. And I’ll never forget how #2 scowled as he held his mini stack of paperbacks. What he said next are words that will haunt me for the rest of my life:

“I hate this night! I always hate book night.”

And that’s why #2 made sure to note that he did not want any literature gifts this Chanukah.

Now, there’s never been a Chanukah that I didn’t give the boys books as a present one of the nights. Even after that fateful declaration of hatred. What’s my plan this year? And will #2’s list be fulfilled?

We’ll know in a week!