Reese’s Record Swim

Yesterday, before Excel swim practice, I timed Reese in a 25-yard freestyle sprint.

Her time: 23:04 seconds.  That’s her PR — by over four seconds.

Practice may not make “perfect,” but it sure seems to be making “better.”

Another year, another night out at Sand Point for Christmas pics:

IMG_2799 IMG_2801 IMG_2807 (1) Santa 2014_Fotor222

Yesterday the Jenkins fam ventured north to the Greenwood Violin Studio for the kids’ violin recital.  It was Reese’s second recital, Finn’s first.

They’re both still plucking, but the bow can’t be far off.

Thanksgiving 2014

Another year, another Thanksgiving.

And another five pounds.

I contributed a pearl onion dish to the outstanding Thanksgiving buffet.

I contributed a pearl onion dish to the outstanding Thanksgiving buffet.


The kids table.

The kids table.

The adult table ...

The adult table …

Not sure about Finn's style choice here.

Not sure about Finn’s style choice here.


The Joffe fam.

The Joffe fam.

This year’s edition was particularly memorable.  The food was off the charts — regrettably I only snapped photos of my onions.  And the Seahawks played the hated 49ers at 5:30, right after we ate.  Final score: Seahawks 19, 49ers 3.

Big, BIG win.

This morning Finn and I ventured over to the park for our second-ever Laurelhurst Turkey Trot.

The bad news was that Reese decided not to join us.

The good news is that Finn set a new 5k PR — 32:05.

He just turned six two months ago.

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We’re not foodies, which is why you’ll have to look long and hard on the pages of this blog for any reference to restaurants other than IHOP.   But last night we dined with friends at a place called Osteria Rigoletto that was so good it merits a mention here.  That’s not completely true: while the beef tenderloin entree was the best restaurant meal I’ve had in recent memory, the service left something to be desired.

I’m really just looking for a reason to post these photos:


A few recent golf trips warranted me adding four new courses to my top 25, including the great Pine Needles in The Sandhills region of North Carolina.

A few recent golf trips warranted me adding four new courses to my top 25, including the great Pine Needles in The Sandhills region of North Carolina.

In the past month I’ve played some seriously sweet golf courses — first in Eastern Washington at David McClay Kidd’s excellent new Gamble Sands; this past week in The Sandhills region of North Carolina.  A few changes to my Whipping It Out list are warranted:

  1. Cruden Bay (Cruden Bay, Scotland). If there’s a more fun course on the planet I’d love to know what it is.
  2. North Berwick (West)(North Berwick, Scotland). Back nine is the most enjoyable nine holes I’ve ever played.
  3. Prestwick (Prestwick, Scotland.) Very eccentric and about as historic as it gets.
  4. Royal Dornoch (Dornoch, Scotland.). Other-worldly.
  5. Muirfield (East Lothian, Scotland) Probably the strongest course I’ve ever played.
  6. Turnberry (Ayshire, Scotland.) Has the beauty and course quality, but lacks Cruden Bay and North Berwick’s fun factor.
  7. Bandon Dunes (Bandon, OR). Probably not as great as its Pacific Dunes sibling, but considerably more enjoyable.
  8. St. Andrews (Old)(St. Andrews, Scotland.) Makes my top ten because it is the Old Course, but truth be told its true greatness escaped me.
  9. NEW Tobacco Road (Sanford, NC).  As visually stimulating as any course I can remember, I consider it the Prestwick of the South.
  10. Chambers Bay (Tacoma, WA). Too bad I can only afford to play it once a year max.
  11. Los Angeles CC (North) (Los Angeles, CA). Played LACC in November 2013 for the first time since 1993. (More.) Every bit as great as I remembered.
  12. Pacific Dunes (Bandon, OR). The best course I’d ever played until I went to Scotland.
  13. NEW Gamble Sands (Brewster, WA).  Voted Best New Course of 2014 by Golf Digest.
  14. Pinehurst No. 2 (Pinehurst, NC).   Only course I’ve ever played that didn’t have rough.
  15. Royal Aberdeen (Aberdeen, Scotland.) Not as memorable as many of the other Scottish courses, but I remember it enough to know it was outstanding.
  16. NEW Pine Needles (Southern Pines, NC).  Site of three U.S. Women’s Opens and the perfect and prototypical Southern pine-filled course.
  17. The Valley Club at Montecito. (Montecito, CA.)  Course is very good, but the upper-crust vibe is unlike anything I’ve ever seen. (More.)
  18. NEW The Dormie Club (West End, NC).  Right up there with Muirfield in the “big boy” golf course category.
  19. Royal Oaks CC (Vancouver, WA). Put the Oaks near a major East Coast city and it’s a top 100 in the U.S. for sure.
  20. Musashigaoka (near Tokyo, Japan). Click here to see pics of me, Sharkey and Norman there in ’04.
  21. Bel Air (Los Angeles, CA).  Played it for the first time since the 1990’s on our November LA trip.  (More.)  Liked it more than I remembered.
  22. Victoria CC (Victoria, BC). Holes 7-10 are among the best stretch around.
  23. Bandon Trails (Bandon, OR). Would be 4-5 places higher on this list but for the fun factor.
  24. Old MacDonald (Bandon, OR). Top 100 in the world, I’m sure Old Mac will wear on me in the years ahead.
  25. Predator Ridge (Predator)(Kelowna, BC). Oft-times host of the Canadian Skins Game, Predator would have a much greater reputation but for its location.

Knocked off the list: Kingsbarns (Kingsbarns, Scotland); Gold Mountain (Olympic)(Bremerton, WA); Lancaster CC (Lancaster, PA); and Bandon Crossings (Bandon, OR).


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