Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Happy Valentine's Day!

Valentine's Day is more than just that special sweetheart in your life.  It's about the support systems in your life.  We all look forward to that special note, text, letter, e-card, or very rarely anymore, that special phone call from someone telling you how special you are to them.

For those of us that have been through a few of these days, it may not have the meaning it used to, but it's still an important day.  Are you going through health issues?  Maybe trouble at work?  Are you having some challenges with your kids, or maybe a relationship? 

Today is the day to reflect on those support systems in your life that make those difficult days that much better.  The support systems that pick you up when you are down, or maybe center you when you get out of whack.  These are the Valentines that touch our gut when we really need it.  These are the ones that really matter.

It's time to pick up the phone and make someone's day.  Put a smile on their face.  Tell them how much you appreciate them.  Make their day.

You will be glad you did.

Happy Valentine's Day!

Monday, February 5, 2018

Went to a party and a golf tournament broke out

Over 191,000 people attended the Waste Management Phoenix Open on Friday.  I'm guessing 150,000 or so don't even know what a bogey is.

Who cares.

It's February and 80 degrees in Phoenix.  White pants for women are in, and you don't have to know anything about golf to have a good time at this event.  To go from ski boots and layers to shorts and flip flops.  Nobody was complaining here. 

This was the second time I've attended this event and each one was a memorable one.  We were fortunate to have passes to a corporate tent that lines the 18th fairway.  Only the water hazard on the left side of the fairway separated us from the golfers.  The scoreboard was straight across from us so we knew how everyone was doing.

We had our choice of all the food and drink we wanted, we even had access to Jello Shooters.  They had a selfie station with different contraptions you could use in the photo op.  Young, beautiful women were there to deliver drinks, you could learn a lesson on customer service here.

How big is it?  The wait for the Uber ride only took an hour, people were throwing up in line, there were fights, we even got to watch movies and listen to music while we stood in line.  I don't like rap but it didn't matter on this day.  What a great weekend to celebrate the Super Bowl.

Every year they set records for attendance.  It's not hard to figure out why.  Add this to your bucket list.

This is the Waste Management Phoenix Open. 

Friday, January 19, 2018

The Healing Begins for the Cougar Nation

The first text came in from a close friend and I couldn't believe it.  "I'm getting word that Tyler Hilinski committed suicide today".  My heart dropped.  Not only in disbelief, but these are the texts that just don't come across my phone.  Moments later my iPhone started blowing up.  Texts were coming in from all over the country.  People don't realize the nature of being a Cougar.  It's a very small nation, and a tight one.  I really can't recall anything that has gone so viral in such a short amount of time.

The next four hours literally dropped me to my knees.  My close Cougar friends banter back and forth via text about a lot of things.  Mike Leach and his no-run offense, coaching changes across the country, even predictions on what's going to happen next year.  When are we going to name a new Athletic Director.
People are so excited about a versatile quarterback leading the troops next year.  What an extra element Tyler Hilinski will bring to this offense.   The future is bright.  This tragedy was not supposed to be part of the equation.

Little did we know how much #3 was hurting.  I lost my best friend to suicide years ago and I still have trouble processing it.   I do know he did share with me the demons he was facing, but he was such a gregarious, positive guy that I didn't think it was that serious.  I knew he was getting help, I would visit him at a halfway house frequently.  I still wonder if I was still in town if I could have helped him.  Unfortunately I would have to find out the hard way.  I received a phone call that I lost my best friend.

There is something positive we can take from all of this.  This will undoubtedly  bring the whole Cougar Nation closer, specifically the football team and those close to it.  It's so important that we all focus on the ' here and now', we just don't know when our time will come.

Tyler Hilinski's time came much too early.  And the whole Cougar Nation is mourning because of it. 

RIP #3


Sunday, January 7, 2018

Overcoming our fears in 2018

People laugh at me but I like watching the Hallmark Channel.  During the Christmas season I swear I watched a Christmas movie almost every night.  Maybe it's because both my parents are gone and I'm living through these movies, I don't know.  But one thing is true, there's always inspiring stories about people's passions, goals, values, and of course the sappy thing we call falling in love.

Last night I got excited because the movie this time was on the slopes.  Love on the Slopes was all about people following their passions.  Katrina Bowden (who plays Alex) a young aspiring writer trying to fulfill her life long dream.  There's obviously something romantic about falling in love on the slopes but the message here was a lot deeper than that.  Thomas Beaudoin (Cole) played an accomplished photographer fighting through his own fears. He was a shy, unassuming introvert who had problems opening himself up to people and doing the things important for his business, and his own personal growth.  Both helped each other get out of their comfort zones and overcome their fears.  In the meantime, they fell in love.

As we enter 2018, what are you doing to get out of your comfort zone and overcome your fears?  Maybe something you've never done before but have always wanted to?  Is it time to attack that fear that both of these actors were able to do with the help of each other?

Often times it takes another person we become close with who can help recognize our fears and help us get over them.  Wishing you the presence of mind to achieve this in 2018.

Happy New Year!

Monday, June 12, 2017

My trip to Semiahmoo and the beauty of having a dog

Just last week I did something I haven't done in a long time.  Even though my golf game has been lousy, I played in a major golf tournament.   I've been battling tendonitis in my left thumb, which isn't a good thing either.  I've arguably had the worst stretch of my illustrious golf career.   I've missed the competition, your name being called out on the first tee, and just being around great players.

Bonfires every night weather permitting
One of the reasons I signed up for this event is because I have never been to Semiahmoo Resort, and what a great place it is.  I was expecting a little more modern resort, but then realized how time flies and this place has been around a lot longer than I realized.  I also was looking forward to playing both Semiahmoo and Loomis Trail, truly one of the best tracks in the northwest, with water on every hole.

It was a milestone of sorts for me during these three days.  My scorecards had a little bit of everything, double bogeys, triple bogeys, I even sprinkled in a 9 on a par 5, something I've never done in competition before.  It almost became comical, and all I could do was laugh.  At the same time, an older guy I played with the last day dropped more F-bombs than I can remember.  I hope to never be paired with him again.

We played in the pouring rain on the final day,  and it reminded me of my junior days at Sahalee Country Club, where we used to sit and wait for it to stop raining, but it never did.  It was refreshing, considering we don't see that much rain here in the desert in Southeastern Washington.  It felt like home again.

When I traveled for this event I realized its a lonely existence being out there on the road.  I frequented the Oyster Bar that sits right on the property.  It was also telling how much I missed my dog.  Bella is a huge part of everything I do.  She travels with me to our place in Lake Chelan, she gives me the look when I leave, she greets me when I come home, she constantly brings me her Kong.  She is truly the epitome of a companion, always there when you need her.

When I arrived home after being gone all week I was expecting her to snub me and be disappointed with my play.  It was virtually the opposite, I've never seen her more excited.  She was ripping around, sticking her butt up in the air, jumping on the couch and wanting a hug.  Her buddy was home.  She could care less how I played, or the numerous train wrecks I displayed in the tournament.

The beauty of having a dog.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

When you hire an advertising agency

When you hire an advertising agency you are putting your business in the hands of an expert in the field.  You are creating more time for yourself to focus on the vision of your company.

Many people hire an advertising agency to provide a different perspective and plan with your marketing and branding.  An Advertising Agency can provide an unbiased view of the marketplace, thus more efficiency in your return on investment (ROI).  You are also eliminating numerous reps from different mediums calling on you, and of course every one of them will tell you their product is the best in the market.

You hire an advertising agency to free up time.  Most small businesses don't have a marketing department.  You are gaining expertise and someone who has close ties with research, tools, and knowledge in the industry that many small business don't have.

When you hire an agency you are putting your marketing and advertising in the hands of someone who really cares.  A big portion of their business is built on referrals, and doing the best they can for your business is the ultimate goal.

Monday, February 13, 2017

This is Sun Valley

It has to be one of my favorite spots in the continental United States.  It has everything the outdoors person would want, and beauty second to none.

This is Sun Valley, Idaho.

My trip this last weekend was a last minute one, a time to do some homework before the Great Wives Ski Trip coming up on February 24th, and a chance to spend some quality time with me.  It's needed sometimes you know.  Unfortunately for me history was made, Bald Mountain was closed two days in a row because of avalanche danger, the first time in over 25 years.  We made up for it with two great days of skiing on Saturday and Sunday, you would never know it poured down rain two days in a row, this is the beauty of Sun Valley.  It's hard to find a resort anywhere that does a better job of grooming their slopes.

Ketchum is more of a dinner town, unless you want to shop for expensive items, one of the draws to Sun Valley for the high affluent one.   There's plenty of great restaurants to choose from, Ketchum Grill, The Pioneer Saloon, and Michel's Christiania Rest, I had the pleasure of enjoying fine dining at all of them.  I enjoyed some live music at the newest addition to Ketchum, The Limelight Hotel, a spectacular modern beauty situated in the middle of town with an Aspen flare.  It brought some controversy to the town when it was being built, but as my friend John said, "it brings us a city we didn't have".
Live music at the Limelight

I had a chance to catch up with John from the good ol' days, he is a great ambassador for the town and the mountain.  38 years in Ketchum can accumulate a lot of good history. We told a few old stories too.  Some not worth sharing.
The Lookout with John
 It was awesome to catch up with my cousin Susie, who lives in nearby Bellevue.  We shared some cocktails at legendary Whiskey Jack's, she even brought her friend who has settled in nicely in Hailey from Wenatchee, WA.
Susie and Me
 We capped off our visit with a nice day of skiing on Saturday, and lunch at the legendary Roundhouse, situated halfway up the mountain from the River Run Gondola.  I felt like a local on Sunday morning with my friend Steve.  We skied hard from 9am until 11.  That's all you need on this mountain.  It's about as good as it gets.

It's Monday morning and my legs are sore.

This is Sun Valley.