Todd Family Blog

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Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Brad Stevens and the Butler Bulldogs

Back to Meagan, here!

We could not be more excited for Brad (Stevens, that is) and our Butler Bulldogs (now ranked #16)! In a beautifully played game this past weekend they defeated Texas Tech and Bobby Knight (unreal!) to win the Great Alaska Shootout. As Brad Todd mentioned below, this makes for their second Thanksgiving tournament win in a row! And to see our childhood friend, Brad (in his 6th game as head coach, nonetheless), so assuredly taking on the winningest college basketball coach in history made us about as proud as we could be. Not to mention the fact that Butler is my alma mater, my sister's alma mater and where my Mom taught for 27 years! Talk about worlds colliding; it was truly an amazing game to watch.

But you know what the best thing was? As we drove home from Vegas Sunday night Brad Todd got a call from Brad Stevens right after his return from Alaska. All Brad Stevens would ask about was how OUR Thanksgiving was! Brad Todd had to interrupt him to get him to talk about his experience at the tournament, what Bobby Knight said to him, how Anchorage was, etc! He couldn't be a more humble guy, that's for sure.

Below is the blurb from, which was very complimentary, a bit of an article from the Anchorage Daily News with some good Knight quotes and a link to a great article covering the entire championship game. Brad also has a radio show today at 6 p.m. (Indiana time) at this address:

And for those of you lucky enough to live close to the fabulous Hinkle Fieldhouse - get to a game! We must live vicariously through you.

More to come very soon of our Thanksgiving in Lake Las Vegas. I just had to post this congrats asap.

Team of the Week: Butler Bulldogs

by Andy Katz

Last week: wins over Michigan (79-65), Virginia Tech (84-78) and Texas Tech (81-71)

Better find out where Butler is going to be next Thanksgiving and pencil in the Bulldogs for the Team of the Week honors. A year ago, Butler won the NIT Season Tip-Off in New York, and this season, it was the Great Alaska Shootout. Boyish-looking Brad Stevens beat Michigan's John Beilein in the first game and then Virginia Tech's Seth Greenberg. And then he only had to take out college basketball' s all-time winningest coach, Texas Tech's Bob Knight, in the final. Butler, with the return of Mike Green and A.J. Graves, is a legit Sweet 16 contender again and the clear favorite in the Horizon League. No one should be surprised by Butler's title in Alaska, which will keep this team in the national discussion all season long.

Mid-major top 10

1. Butler
2. Southern Illinois
3. George Mason
4. BYU
5. Xavier
6. Miami (Ohio)
7. Saint Mary's
8. Saint Joseph's
9. Western Kentucky
10. New Orleans
And from the Anchorage Daily News:

Butler’s senior-dominated team made it to the NCAA’s Sweet 16 last year and is 8-1 in the past nine games against BCS conference schools. As Butler moves up, it’s making fans -- including opposing coaches.

“If I were just a fan,” Knight said on Saturday, “I’d love watching them play.”

Who wouldn’t?

Butler buried 47 three-point shots in its three Shootout games - eclipsing the previous tournament record by 13.

“That is a really, really well-coached team,” Knight said.
Check this out for more quotes from Brad, Knight and a recap of the game:

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Butler vs. Texas Tech

This is Brad (believe it or not) making my first post on our blog.  We are currently near Las Vegas at the Lake Las Vegas resort for the long Thanksgiving weekend.  We are having a great time, but have also decided that there is absolutely nothing that beats a home-cooked meal with family at Thanksgiving.

We want to send all possible good wishes to the Butler Bulldogs men's basketball team and specifically our good friend, Head Coach Brad Stevens, as they face the Texas Tech Red Raiders and Head Coach Bobby Knight in the Championship Game of the Great Alaska Shootout tonight.  This goes beyond the good friend facing off against one of our childhood heroes.  The good news is that while this kept me laying awake in bed last night, I am nearly certain that Brad is taking it completely in stride.  I hope he enjoys the experience and I have no doubt that he's got a great gameplan in his head that he is laying out for the team.

The game will be tonight at 12:30 AM EST (9:30 PM for those of us on the left coast) carried live on ESPN2.  Should Butler win, it will be their second straight preseason tournament championship.  Go Dawgs!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Colts Weekend 2007

This morning the last of our guests, Chad and Kate, left after what turned out to be quite the weekend celebration. I actually got a little teary as I drove away from the airport! We feel so blessed to have such wonderful friends who traveled all the way across the country to spend a weekend with us. Thank you so much to all of you who came out.

We figured that since everyone was coming such a distance we better show them a good time! There was A LOT of homemade food (including Sharon's famous Rum Cake, Bonnie's famous Christmas Casserole, Meagan's marinated olives and Sweet Potato Soufflé, and Brad's Pumpkin Pie. Mmmmmm!) and some excellent drink options. Brad realized his dream of having a keg of San Diego's own Red Trolley Ale on our porch. We also introduced everyone to the Bellin's wonderful Tom and Jerry recipe - Christmas in a Cup! That recipe was passed out a lot. Thanks, Bellins!

Then, of course, there was the Colts game. That heartbreaking (HEARTBREAKING!) loss to the Chargers. Ugh! However, no one could say it wasn't exciting until the very, very end. I just about had a heart attack. I also have the sweetest husband who gave me the best ticket in the bunch. (We manned the computers months ago to buy up as many of the single seats left in the sold-out stadium that we could. So, none of us got to sit together, but there were some excellent seats in the bunch.) Brad, Jenny, Chad, Kate (and, after half-time, Nate) and I were all in the Club Level, but Brad gave me the seat right on the 50 yard line. Awwww. Now that's love. And also probably the very best seat I will ever have for a pro football game. I did take a moment to soak that up!

Even though the Colts lost, I did relish being able to commiserate with my fellow Colts fans that evening and the next day. We rehashed the game, went over the "what if's" and consoled each other with high hopes for the rest of the season (or at least the playoffs). This is a luxury Brad and I never experience out here in the land of Charger/49er/Raider fans!

So, below are some favorite pictures from the weekend. And for those of you who were able to come out for the fun - send me your pictures, too! I'll be sure to post some of them in the blog, as well!

We planned so many drinks that I had to make a list. There was no way I could remember them all to tell everyone!

To accompany the alcohol we also got to use the pretty champagne glasses and martini glasses that rarely see the light of day. So fun to get to use all those wedding presents!

Literally five minutes after Nate arrived, fresh from his redeye, he had a Red Trolley in one hand and a Tom and Jerry in the other. By the way, I absolutely love that Nate sports a Freeney jersey. That seems right for some reason.

Breakfast is served! The party started at 9:00 a.m. and went through appetizers and lunch until the cabs came at 4:00 p.m.! Bonnie's Christmas Casserole was a hit and made Brad and me feel like it was Christmas morning.

Brad and Jen posing proudly by the beloved keg o' Red Trolley, one of Brad's "Top Five" beers.

Chad, Nate and Jen look on as Brad experiments making a Nuts and Berries martini. (And uses our shaker for the first time in four years! Finally!)

A proud moment: Kate, Chad's fiancé, who is from Australia, put on her first Colts' jersey (Brad's Harbaugh jersey). She is officially initiated. Note Chad beaming with pride to the right.

Lunchtime. Chad had been waiting with bated breath for one of Brad's grilled brats, boiled first in Red Trolley, naturally. (I can't believe I forgot to take a picture of Brad hard at work at the grill! He did a great job.)

There was a lot of relaxing, munching on snacks, chatting and watching football to get in the mood for the game.

The whole group (minus Jen) right before the cabs came to cart us away to the game. As well as our Indy friends, two of Jenny's singing friends and some friends of Chad's joined us. Certainly the more the merrier!

Jenny and me in front of the stadium.

Walking proudly through the tailgaters into the stadium. There were A LOT of Colts fans there!

The view of the Colts' first possession from my excellent and primo seat in the stadium.

After returning from the game and having dessert, Nate decided that one more beer and one more brat was needed before turning in for the night. Nate was the trooper of the weekend. He flew in Sunday morning after a redeye and was the last to go to bed Sunday night. Quite impressive!

All of us gathered for a farewell and birthday brunch for Jenny Monday morning at a favorite neighborhood spot.
Happy Birthday to Jen, Brad and Marry, who are all celebrating November birthdays!
Around the table clockwise - Me, Nate, Jenny, Mike, Mary, Brad, Chad and Kate

Thursday, November 8, 2007

A Visit from Blair and Gina

Last night we had so much fun catching up with Meagan's fellow Butler Alpha Phi, Gina, and her husband, Blair (a former Butler baseball player). Blair is now a pastor, and the two of them are in town for a Christian outreach conference. I think the last time I saw Gina was when I sang for her wedding seven years ago! She's just as sweet as I remember, and we're so glad they could spend the evening with us. Stangely enough, we also discovered that Brad and Blair share the same birthday tomorrow (Nov. 9)! Happy 3-1 to you both!

Just another cute pic - Cal and Gracie received some fun new squeaker toys after I returned from Florida. Gracie obviously loves hers!

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Meagan Goes to Florida

So, I (Meagan, as opposed to Brad who actually never authors these posts), just returned from singing a recital on a concert series in Florida with my Mom. It is great fun whenever we get to sing together, and it went really well! I am quite mad at myself for not taking more pictures while I was there, but I did get a couple. My favorite part of my Florida visits is eating at our favorite spots and then bragging about it to Brad! As you will see, I started off my trip at Cracker Barrel, which we lack out here in SD. Along with lots of other good food, we had a lovely day shopping in St. Augustine, which is near where Mom and Dad live. If you've never been there, I highly recommend it for a fun vacation. It's America's oldest continuous city and has a small, European feel with many great shops and restaurants.

Meanwhile, Brad had a great "guy" weekend. He rented movies he knew I wouldn't want to watch (Transformers anyone?), ate late-night Papa John's and even went to an SDSU football game. He almost left at half-time, but then SDSU rallied from being down 21-0 to beat Wyoming. Not bad for a $5 ticket.

Looking ahead, Brad and I are extremely excited for this weekend. Our friends Chad, Kate, Mike, Mary, Nate and my sister Jenny are all coming out for the Chargers/Colts game. We managed to get a handful of single seats in the sold-out Qualcom stadium. It promises to be quite the party! Definitely stay tuned for pictures of that event.

And as for the Colts game this past Sunday (Ugh! I forgot how it feels to lose!), I can only refer you to our good friend Tyler Smith's blog. I couldn't sum it up any better. Visit:
He also happens to be an excellent writer. Below I have a couple pictures describing how we root the Colts on out here in CA.

After arriving in Florida at 6:30 a.m. (3:30 a.m. CA time!) we headed straight to Cracker Barrel for provisions.

While I didn't manage to take pictures of our other outings, I did manage a couple of my cat Gershwin, who has been my parents' cat for about five years now. (Brad is VERY allergic.) Gershwin is extremely happy in his Florida home and constantly rolls over to show me his massive, white belly. (He's lost a bit of weight though - down to 17.5 from 20 lbs.)

When the Colts aren't on TV or in town, we like to go to JT's Pub to watch the games. Not only is it a nice place to catch the game, but also the people watching is priceless.