We redefine traditional values for retirement, enjoying a more active, free spirited attitude that craves “experiences” and not stuff.
May 25, 2017
Our Boomer Life……a life worth living.
We are of a certain age, a social generation inclined to wander. We are the boomer generation. We redefine traditional values for retirement, enjoying a more active, free spirited attitude that craves ” experiences” and not stuff.
Today, in our sixties, we commit to living for the adventure, open to what life gives us and letting go. Letting go of stress, worry, deadlines and dead ends. The goal is to enjoy life and share our passion for the game of golf and the lessons it can teach us.
Golf has inspired us. Playing in Phoenix with Angelina ( she was very new to the game) we remembered to never lose touch with the joy of hitting one great shot.Walking uphill into sunset at the “wicked six” we are grateful for such beautiful course conditions they can both challenge you and take your breath away. If you want to play quality golf courses and stay in the best places for a fraction of what you would expect to pay, follow us as we discover the offers and promotions that can reward a traveller who understands what they want.
We want to share it all with you as we celebrate stories of friendship, travel and our commitment to the game of golf.
This weekend was the Waste Management Phoenix Open in Arizona. Due to the travel restrictions, we are watching with minus 38 degrees and our fireplace is on in northern Saskatchewan. It has been labelled the “Greatest Show on Grass” and rightly so. Usually this tournament will attract more than one million fans and of course the rowdy par 3 hole #16 is daunting to any player as the fans show disapproval loudly and often.
125 Men enter, 1 Man leaves
I remember when times were very different and we had been invited to experience a day at this iconic golf course in Scottsdale Arizona during the Waste Management Phoenix Open. Lyle and I picked up our tournament package and found purple wrists bands that gave us access to the VIP hospitality at The Bay Club on the 17th fairway. We had parking passes and a luxury coach access to take us directly to our express entrance. There was a first class premium experience from the moment we arrived on site with hot lattes for breakfast. We arranged ourselves on plush furniture , the music was playing softly in the background and we sat in the front row, watching players arrive to play this drivable par 4 with water close to the green. All the celebrities and stars of the game were playing . The challenge on this hole was the choice to drive the ball the distance and earn an opportunity to card an eagle or risk your ball flying into the water hazard. Risk or reward.
We were able to witness one of golfs great lessons on that day. Gary Woodland , the defending champion was walking the course with a young AZ State High School golfer when he asked her if she would like to play the 16th hole with him. Amy was ready to play and grabbed her club. She was fearless. She hit her tee shot into a bunker and as she walked up the fairway, she planned the next shot. Happy and excited she was heard to be saying to herself, “I ve got this” with conviction and quickly hit the shot up to the green where she then parred the hole . Gary Woodland was impressed with her shot but more impressed with her attitude, Amy was the inspiration for Woodland to go on and win the tournament.
Amy has Down’s syndrome which may have caused some physical or mental developmental delays, yet she has qualified to play two high school championships and Special Olympics events. She has been an inspiration to a lot of golfers since that day in February 2018. Amy believes in what she has been taught, the mechanics of the game, but also the philosophy of staying in the moment. It has been said that we only have one shot, our next shot and yes, we have got this one if we can just believe. Amy believes in Amy and its not complicated. She loves the game.
This year, the drivable par four 17th hole held lots of drama as the eagle chance was a chip in that set up Brooks Koepka for the win on Sunday. Recently, Brooks has been recovering from injury and working hard to make the cut at tournaments but he believes in himself. With this win, he showed us all it is focus and faith, just one glorious shot at a time.
Golf can be a lonely difficult game but it can also be a joyful, dramatic, perfect moment if you play one shot at a time. I remember the message posted over the entrance as we arrived at the tournament in Scottsdale, 125 will enter and only one man leaves the winner, yet, when I remember this tournament it will always be Amy who played one hole – who also won that day and reminded us all why we love this game . Gary Woodland ended up the champion on that Sunday with a minus 18 score. He won with inspiration and a lesson in joy and belief and friendship that he may never forget and every fan who loves the game will never forget the determined, confident joyful girl who lead him to his destiny.
I love Palm Springs for many reasons but especially for the quality of the golf courses. Almost as soon as we started to travel and play a lot of golf, we found the legendary course at Bermuda Dunes Golf Course and became members.
There is a lot of history that trails these beautiful twenty seven holes of traditional golf in the desert. The Bob Hope Classic was played here almost fifty times. Many celebrities and professionals enjoyed a golf game at Bermuda Dunes. Becoming a member allows you to play unlimited golf and enjoy the time spent with other members.
We met Alan and Jickey just by chance, as all of the morning members circled in their carts, ready to start the day. Lyle shouted hello as the beautiful pearl white custom golf cart cruised slowly by and came to a stop. Alan tossed us a grin and invited us to play. Game on.
That season we played a lot of golf together and as the snow crept over the mountain tops around us and the season changed to winter, we made plans to celebrate Christmas together. Of course we wanted to play some golf and Lyle had just the solution. Even though the clubhouse would be closed for Christmas day, we were given permission to play. Since we did not own a golf cart, we would have to walk the course. Lyle suggested we plan a short game, a monkey match, where each player chooses only one club from their bag to play every shot from driving to putting. Four couples were invited to the match and the game was on.
Everyone decided to walk, carrying only the one club they had chosen for the day. I chose a club that would give me some reasonable distance from the tee box of the par 4 holes but would also be forgiving enough to chip and putt. I chose my four hybrid. Lyle carried his six iron – still long on the drive, he played that club like a wedge around the greens.
It was a special day, colder than most in the desert. The sun shone very brightly and the grass was perfect. There was not another person playing anywhere on the course on this Christmas Day. The best part of the game was the walk between each shot with our friends. We spoke about long ago holiday traditions and golf game memories, including our most treasured club and why we chose the one club for this match up. We watched every shot from every player across skill level, ability and attitude. Our lesson on this magical day was accepting the results from the only club you were able to use. It was a glorious day, a humbling game.
My golf game always reveals a lesson and this Monkey Match Christmas game was no different. No matter our age or ability, we all have something to share. When you are open to friendship and connect with others, there is so much joy!
The true gift of the season was right there – walking the course, making memories, one club at a time.
Yesterday, I played a round of golf I will always remember.
I am a true amateur, joining this game late in life. My passion is obvious while I learn to be a better player, watching the best in the game I become a mimic. I have always been an athlete of sorts, playing organized sports and training for physical strength but never playing golf. My grandparents loved this sport and I remember joining them on Sundays in front of the television as the tournament kept them both locked in for the afternoon, discussing players ability and the outcome. This was my introduction to golf.
Celebrating the year I turned fifty, I bought a set of golf clubs and went searching for my passion. It was a desire to play, spend time outside in nature and honor my grandparents. Since then, I have traveled and played golf in some of the most beautiful courses in North America and Mexico. #100daysofgolftrip
What makes a round of golf so special? There is a peace in that moment when you take in your surroundings, smile and breathe deeply and and truly see your shot in your minds eye. Everything slows down, harmony and balance can create birdie chances.
On this special day, I was driving long and straight into the rising sun. My three wood was kind to me. My wedge shots were accurate and landed very close to the flag. I had many birdie chances. I accept that I am good enough, to use a very good golf ball that matches up with my Taylormade clubs and really improves my game. My spouse is my coach and although it is not always easy to listen, I accept his advice to square up my club face with a strong grip and get turned through the swing. The lessons sometimes sound like criticism to me – I need to accept it and let it make me a better player. Sometimes I resist being told all the secrets,I just want to play my own way but as my game creeps closer to the forest edge and out of bounds, I need to pause and remember by accepting the lessons I can play the best game of my life.
Kevin Na is a PGA golf professional who had a fierce, very public debate with his caddie at the 2018 Fort Worth Invitational tournament. After observing the results of players ahead of Na on the course, his caddie strongly advised against a particular shot going into the green on #9( Na’s final hole of the day). They argued loudly, Na played the shot he wanted anyway and holed out. He eventually went on to win the tournament with one of the best rounds of his career. Success.
Golf can be tough and frustrating and also peaceful and so smooth. Listen to the lessons and celebrate one great shot. By doing my very best in each moment of the game, it is leading to my next best moment and a game to remember.
We had been travelling for more than 160 days when we arrived in Orlando, Florida early in April. Although we play a lot of golf, this was our first time in the sunshine state. In the black beauty, we turned from International drive onto World Gateway Drive and soon pulled past the grand entrance to The Orlando World Center Marriott Hotel. Here we found Hawks Landing Golf Club.
It was a busy friendly start from the well stocked pro shop. Hot coffee and big smiles greeted us at check in. There was a promise of a great day of golf as we passed grand trees bursting with magnolia flowers and hawks flying over our heads. There are 220 acres with a stunning convention center and hotel and Hawks Landing borders this resort on three sides. Looking into the distance a towering white outline reminds us just how close we are to the rest of Orlando,but all is forgotten inside the entrance to this beautiful golf course. Here, the course is lined with hundreds of palm trees and defended by water and sandy white bunkers. There are wooden bridges that link many of the fairways to beautiful lush greens. Cranes are pacing many of the water hazards just fishing and the sky is brilliant and blue
Hawks Landing Golf Club was designed by Robert Cupp Jr and built in 1986. This 18 hole championship course undertook a redesign in 1998 and the result is a very tough slope rating. There is more than 6600 yards on this par 72 challenge and you will find water hazards on 15 of the 18 holes so pack some extra golf balls. This layout is first class and the course has been rated 4 star by Golf Digest.
If you are interested in a virtual tour of the course , download the Hawks Landing app (hawkslandinggolf) where you can book tee times, see the local weather and find special offers. You may find golf getaway pkgs at http://www.mariott.com. We can suggest if you are planning to stay a few days, choose a golf package to attend clinics or classes at the Jack Nicklaus Academy of golf right on the property.
Hawks Landing Golf Club was a very convenient location with
great value for a quality golf course. We really appreciated the friendly service with lots of extra touches, like the basket of apples available at the turn. This gem blends challenging golf with the scenic natural beauty of Florida and it took our breath away as the sun started to set. It was an afternoon game to remember.
Just outside of Orlando, Florida is home to dozens of theme parks. None is more famous or popular than Walt Disney World. Early one morning we drive under the majestic banner that welcomes all guests into the park. We will not be taking the ride to Space Mountain or the Tower of Terror, instead we continue past hotels and shuttles and find our way at the gate to a very special early morning golf game.
Minnie Mouse drives a custom SUV. We know because she drove right by us. This polka dot surprise is adorable and part of the tradition inside the resort. The traffic is well managed as many guests load onto strategic perimeter shuttles that speed them towards the magic kingdom. Our drive up to the clubhouse is beautiful and peaceful. The entrance welcomes guests to linger at ponds and under majestic trees. The friendly line up of marshals, bag boys and pro staff greet us outside.
The dew on the grass is heavy as we fill up our coffee and take the cart to the first tee box. This misty morning makes it feel like a day dream but as the sun rises high, in the heart of the morning we find this Magnolia Course is where we will find magic today. There are wide fairways and a lush green forest but the hazards are abundant on this championship tour style course. The designers even playfully drop a Mickey Mouse bunker on a par three signature hole.
At one time, the PGA tour played this course. Memories from epic games played long ago are stamped onto to bronze plates waiting beside the tee boxes. Professional golfers, celebrities and sports figures created history on this graceful challenging beauty. Tiger Woods played this course as a young man of twenty and became the youngest champion in the history of the Classic tournament in 1996.
We suggest you pick a early morning tee time offer that includes a light bite for breakfast and nine holes if that is all time will allow. Early morning dew sweepers will truly see the magnificent course in all of its morning glory.
Today, The Magnolia Course is a golf surprise…offering a Disney experience to every traveller. What would you expect to find???
So good to be home! The snow geese are flying north and the first robins of springtime have finally arrived at the lake. The prairie sky is so blue and the springtime winds will push the ice from the lake and the temperatures will rise very soon. Today we are golfing with colorful down filled jackets and gloves, walking this course. The grass is dormant and still brown. Leaves from the fall are curled and brown, crispy patches of danger if your ball rolls too far to the side of the fairway. We are challenging ourselves again, to play one shot at a time, to improve no matter the weather or course conditions. There is a lesson if we are listening.
We left in the fall, for an epic adventure and a challenge to play 100 days of golf. Even if golf is not your interest, we hope that our travels, the photographs and the stories of friendship and all of the lessons we have learned along the way will inspire you to live your life fully.
We loaded the black beauty, our rugged Jeep Sahara Unlimited and set off on a journey of 10,000 miles. The agenda was not very clear..to golf 100 days..search for peace , find our tribe and to enjoy every precious moment. Lyle and I both love the game of golf. As we play in nature we celebrate staying in the moment. There is no perfection in golf, we just get mindful and share one shot at a time.
Golf has strengthened our relationship. We play with respect and trust and a lot of fun. He makes the game seem easy with talent and grace. I have listened to coaching advice and learned to see the shot and believe I can hit it. Together we are better. The adventure ahead is grand and exciting and tough all at the same time. This is a road trip that will cover 16 states and Mexico.
This was a journey of a lifetime. We played the best managed golf courses in the most beautiful places. We stayed in Villas and hotel rooms in cities scattered across the southern states and Mexico. Every day we would reflect on the friends we had made and their stories and the valuable lessons they showed us. The weather was a story all by itself. There was drama with storms and tornadoes and extreme heat and then snow in the most unlikely desert regions. We are looking forward to sharing it all with you.
Today we are home. The black beauty sits quietly in the driveway and we rest and reflect on it all. So thankful to be home, in the beautiful northern forest near our lake. It reinforces the message, no matter how far you travel and all the wonders you may see, truly there is no place like home.
Our Boomer Life Top five favourite Golf Courses in San Diego
There are more than 600 public courses to play scattered throughout California. So much golf. This area is loaded and we have played many. If you are looking to travel to the San Diego area, our top picks suggest challenging unique courses to suit your game and your budget.
Aviara – The Park Hyatt Resort, Golf Club and Spa offers this beautiful 18 hole golf course that runs along the pacific ocean coastline in Carlsbad California. This Arnold Palmer course has been home of the LPGA KIA classic and rated 5 star. ***** Golf digest has rated them one of the best in America. The lush flowers and waterfalls will distract you on this very difficult course but the memories you make will last a lifetime. http://www.golfaviara.com
Maderas – This course makes our list every year.We can play and replay this course and never get tired of it.The clubhouse is bright and welcoming first thing in the morning. This Troon team is professional and deliver a great golf experience. The diverse landscape will take your breath away where each hole is very unique with long rolling fairways. Maderas has been a top rated course in California since 2000. “Every hole will bring its own reward.” http://www.maderasgolf.com #withmytrooncard
Steele Canyon – this course was recommended by a stranger.THANK YOU. “It was a wonderful day of golf.” It is in Jamul, south of the typical inland empire but what a beautiful surprise, it has 5 star views. There are 27 holes designed by Gary Player. First is the Canyon course with some dramatic elevations. The Ranch course winds through a working ranch and the Vineyard course stretches along the valley floor. Gary always adds unique south African trees to the landscape. http://www.steelecanyon.com
The Journey at Pechanga –Golfweek ranking The Journey #25th Best Public Course in California. We discovered this 5 star “thrilling”golf experience in the Temecula wine country. The Pechanga Resort and casino is wholly owned by the Pechanga Band and opened in 2002. In 2015 , a $285 million dollar expansion was started which adds to this AAA Four Diamond award winner. There are mountain holes 300 feet above the valley and you will drive more than 7 miles of cart paths and wooden bridges to” play golf on another level”. http://www.pechanga.com
La Costa Golf Resort & Spa is in the Omni Resort group. There are legendary stories from the beginning of the resort being built as a retreat for the family. Legendary players have all played here. There are two courses, the Champions Course and the Legends Course which must contribute to the great pace of play. The course winds through condo developments and homes but does not detract from your game. Elevated greens and water come into play. Locals love this course, it has so much history and character. There is a stay and play offer which may be very interesting. http://www.lacostaresort.com
All of these courses are playable and they will thrill you and challenge you, just play from the right tees and enjoy.
It has an unsuspecting turn down a dusty narrow road that seems to lead to the pacific ocean. Suddenly a gateway, built of stone and iron, appears behind rows of palm trees, flowers and paved road. The staff are friendly but wary. The dog Cabo waits for further instructions. We pass after a warm welcome, back at last to some of the most premiere golf in the world. There is a masterful course that was designed by Davis Love 3rd called the Dunes Course, and rightly so. This course travels along the natural sandy landscape that edges the bright blue sparkling waters of the pacific ocean. The second course to be completed was El Cardonal, designed by Tiger Woods. It is built on the hill side and overlooks the Dune course with peeks at the ocean and bountiful bunkers and greens that challenge even the best golfers.
We started watching this course and condo development about four years ago and we were lucky enough to play these private courses over the years. Multi million dollar homes are sprinkled along the Dunes course facing out to the sea. A brand new beach club and sleek modern condos and suites are being built directly on the beach with a marvellous pool and spa.The quiet peace of our luxury villa points to the pacific ocean. There are fresh breezes and spectacular sunsets here every day. You can hear the wind in the palm trees and the whales are jumping and splashing just inside our view. What you will not find is lots of traffic, noise and stress. This is a remote quiet retreat, mostly focussed on the golfer north of Cabo San Lucas.
The Dunes course has been rated #36 for golf courses in the world in 2017. It starts with the practice range, a great supply of taylormade golf balls with Diamante logo are staged neatly to the side of each secluded practice enclave. Music is playing to encourage tempo and positive vibes. There are superior bags of rental clubs available if needed. Try a smoothie or breakfast sandwich with fruit before you start for the first tee.
What a Caddie Knows…..
The caddies are waiting on the range. They oversee the clubs and skills of various guests and wait for the opportunity to join in the game today. My first experience with a caddie was at this course, I was intimidated and fearful that my game may not measure up to such specialists. We had a joyful day with a graceful, hardworking and very talented and knowledgeable young man that shared our passion for golf. If you ever get an opportunity to hire a caddie for a first time game on a very special course, just do it! They help with club selection, targets to aim at as well as key putting strategies and finding your wayward golf ball.
What Kind of Player are you?
The Dunes Course -7022 yards
I love this beach course, it plays to the natural landscape with sandy dunes and waste bunkers , gorgeous green rolling fairways and the most challenging greens. The views to the ocean will leave you breathless. The hospitality on the course is superior. Golf professionals greet you and take you to the first tee box, snacks and beverages are available throughout the game at stone casitas with shutters and tile. Its more like coming home to fresh made soup, burritos, sliders and margaritas. When the day comes to a close on hole eighteen there will be a golf pro waiting for you, holding the flagstick and sharing the excitement of the final putts, ensuring your satisfaction and thanking you for joining them at the course.
El Cardonal Course- 7363 yards
This course, designed by Tiger Woods is unsuspecting at first look. Running along the hillside this course encouraging smart club choices over canyons and wash. The fairways are long and rolling. The distance plays longer than it looks. The greens are very difficult to read and great fun to play. (the caddie comes in handy for a read…) The clubhouse has a welcoming view to the ocean but jumping whales and cruise ships can be a distraction. Bougainvillea edges the rocky walls down to the wide open practice area. The cactus stand tall in the sun , it can be very hot and the ocean breezes may come into play. Grab a smoothie to start the round , you will meet many friendly golfers and club professionals at the first tee and the friendly staff will once again meet you on the 18th green to celebrate your best day in paradise.
The Oasis – Short Course Par 3 – 1124 yards
Put on your walking shoes and carry your clubs around this short 12 hole par 3 course. It is a different experience playing only 41 to 143 yards on some holes. It reminds all of us just how simply golf began, one shot at a time.
There will be more opportunities to access this exclusive area in the future as the Nobu and Hard rock Café hotels are currently under construction within the Diamante property. http://www.hardrockhotels.com
Diamante is a one of the most unique and unforgettable golf experiences in Latin America. The dramatic and challenging venue is built on the sand and next to the sea and rightly earns it 2017 rise to No. 36 on Golf Magazine’s Top 100 Courses in the world.
If you want to know more about this beautiful destination, please contact us.
We have wandered the mountains and between both oceans. The golf course has been our home. We rise at the first hint of sunrise and pour a cup of coffee and we pause. Thankful.
Our life is a gift today and every day. We focus on nature when we spend time at the course. Sometimes it is a great distraction to see every miracle. The shape of the clouds, the coyote that looks golden in the sunrise, the mountain rocks and water bring us to balance. We can spend time outside in nature and meet great people with a shared passion for golf. They inspire us to play more, with joy and to be thankful for our health and mobility. And then we swing.
It is not the score, its the game. The competition is within your last drive or putt or even your last game. Unsuspecting greens can steal away your par. An early morning tee time always helps us get in the moment. Face the sun and take in the positive energy – check your grip and breathe. Sometimes we look up for the wind, sometimes we choose a target that may not be the flag but we all see a shot. We have the potential to play that one shot well, just give yourself a chance.
Tonight Lyle and I will celebrate our adventures so far and the dreams that are to come. We will dance in the new year with laughter and gratitude that we can live this big life.
We celebrate our friendship with you and our wish for you is to live the life you have always imagined. On this New Year’s eve look to your dream, see it and believe it. You can be whatever you imagine.
Celebrate this Happy New Year and as the clock strikes midnight….
“………we’ll take a cup o’ kindness yet…….for times gone by” .
Arizona is home to millions of Americans and Phoenix is the capital city. It is a sprawling multicity known as the Valley of the sun.
The traffic chaos is a small price to pay to experience this desert beauty. There are craggy uncertain mountains in the distance under the Phoenix sun. The sky is mauve and pink and blue. Colorful hot air balloons rise high from the desert floor to overlook the threaded highways.
This is where the strangers gather to heal. A collection of men and women full of stories, pain, loss and living. Some of us come here to play. Perhaps we are meant to meet and help others find their way back to the sun.
At the stunning Westin Kierland we golfed with Drew and Karen. Karen only played a couple of holes because she is “broken” with knee and back problems that limit her mobility. Terry walked most of the course because he cannot sit in the cart with bad back issues when we played at We Ko Pa and Sunridge Canyon. At the Boulders south course we played with Mark an ex NFL football player and Don a retiree in his 70’s that continues to strive to get better with his game. Golf reveals the person, connects us and does not limit us. Life may not always be joyful but we can carry on.
Under the dark evening sky, poolside, we watch the jet fighters playfully dart from the mountain tops. Our tribe is here, under this full moon we meet for the first time. Terri and Dan share unspeakable loss in their family and have come to the desert to mourn and perhaps heal. How do you cope with a loss this big? They show us by wrapping their arms around someone you love and holding them up for a while. Lyle and I listen. We can offer compassionate hugs and comfort . We can all become friends.
There is a lot of research and discussion on how people can live to be healthy and active and alive towards 100 years old. Studies have shown that more than exercise and diet it is the social connection that are made daily that impact our life span. Lyle and I look forward to re connecting with Virginia, 102 years old and her son Fred, every winter on the beaches of Mexico. She continues to work as a real estate agent and winters on the kite surfing beaches of Los Barallies. There are many others in their eighties and nineties that are travelling, golfing and working. They are all an inspiration to us and a confirmation that family connections but also friendship and human contact are critical to the joyful long life that we look for.
The story is told that for every new arm on the cactus 100 years has passed. Maybe we gather here in the desert to grow stronger – like the cactus. Just like the towering Palm trees we are sent here to learn how to bend and maybe like the desert wild grasses, we will learn to let go and it will blow free in the wind. For sure we can grow free and live longer,more vibrant and colorful like the desert wildflowers if we choose, simply by making friends and staying in touch.
Today we believe life is an adventure. We take our attitude with us, grateful and joyful to meet many new friends and we renew our strength. We will make it a day worth living.