RISING STARS | A day in the life of a GOLF MOM

By: Vanessa Henenne | Photos: Jill Hugo Photography

There is never a dull moment in the Henenne household! Having three boys, Caleb (12), Kyle (11) and Cuan (7), keeps us very busy, and considering they all play golf and cricket – the two shortest games on earth… NOT… really does keep us on our toes every day!

On a typical day during the week, we wake up at 6am, get dressed, eat breakfast and leave home by 7am to get everyone to school on time. All the grades still have to enter the premises at different gates, due to COVID protocols, so, we walk around and drop each one off at their designated gate.

On Mondays, Cuan (grade 1) finishes school at 1pm. He gets picked him and taken home. Caleb (grade 7) and Kyle (grade 5), finish school at 1:30pm – off we go again to collect them. Caleb plays school cricket on Mondays, so after a quick bite to eat, we are back to school. Cuan has his golf lesson at Randpark Golf Club at 2:30pm. I drop him off, head back to school, pick up Caleb at 2:45pm and get him and Kyle to the club for their Elite Academy, which starts at 3pm. After Cuan’s lesson, him and I head down to the range, where he hits a bucket of balls while we wait for his brothers.

On crazy days like these (well most days are), a visit to the clubhouse is much needed. While I catch my breath, Cuan putts on the putting green. Caleb and Kyle finish the Elite Academy at 5pm and then it’s time for all three boys to do their hour fitness session.

I head home and get dinner going, while Martin finishes off at the club. We are normally home just after 6pm. Mondays are also my “Me Day”, where I play netball – much needed alone time… LOL. Martin carries on with dinner, bath time and finally bed time. Somewhere in between all the chaos, homework does still get done. Thankfully, Tuesdays are a “calm day”, where their cricket coach comes and gives them a session at our house.

On Wednesdays, the same morning routine takes place and then we juggle between school cricket and the Elite Academy. On Thursdays, during the first and last term, is cricket for all three boys. If all homework and studies are done by Friday, the boys play 9-holes at Randpark Golf Club through the Elite Academy. Caleb and Kyle play the 9-holes on their own, but Martin still walks the course with Cuan, as he is too young to go off on his own.

Whenever the boys get a free minute, they have a putting session on their “Wellputt” mat, which made for an awesome Christmas pressie. Wellputt mats are designed to improve putting skills for all golfers. Whether you are a beginning golfer, an accomplished player, or even a professional, this cool mat offers proven putting exercises that will lower their golf scores.

Training at the Elite Academy, helps them focus on their long and short games, putting, fitness as well as teaches them etiquette and how to use the latest technology that golf has to offer.
They are busy learning how to use “Upgame” for when they are playing a round. It is a really cool golf app that records your game, shot by shot. They can enter what clubs they use and at what distance the shot requires etc. This technology helps the coaches monitor their games online and gives them the opportunity to help the kids improve their game or to make better decisions while playing.

One would like to think that weekends are for sleeping in and putting your feet up, but not in the Henenne home!

Saturdays are normally reserved for club or district cricket and Sundays are reserved for golf, If there are no golf competitions, then they will play cricket (indoor or outdoor). The boys play in the SA Kids golf tournaments, on a monthly basis. I always left this event for dad to handle, but now that Cuan has started playing, mom has had to jump on board.

During the last two SA Kids Golf tournaments, Martin went off with Cuan. Thankfully, Caleb has a really good understanding of the game and an even temperament on the course, and since he is the oldest, he is more than capable to go off on his own. I am then Kyle’s caddy. Once Martin is finished with Cuan (as his age group only plays 9 holes), he pops Cuan on a golf cart and they go caddy for Caleb. The older two boys usually tee off around 11am, so this turns out to be a whole day affair.

I really don’t know a huge amount about being a caddy, but am happy to carry the bag around and offer moral support, but they must choose their own clubs for the distance that they are at – I really can’t coach them. Caddies are not allowed onto the greens in these tournaments, so the kids must putt and get on with it on their own. I am more there for the encouragement and to make sure that they stay “on course” mentally during the game – a full-time job! We also sometimes call in Granny and Grandad to be caddies, as they are also big golfers and know the game really well.

MY TIP FOR OTHER GOLF MOMS…

Give them responsibility, not a chore, but something you trust them with, they love that. Sometimes they need to figure things out for themselves. I have succumbed to the fact that I, as a female, will never be able to make gun noises like them.
Always have time for a drink, in my case, a tequila, with your hubby!

About Simone Anderson

Simone Anderson is the owner and founder of the JUNIOR GOLFER SA magazine as well as Simone Anderson Design and Layout Solutions.