Live from Augusta National ...gift shop

Guess who showed up on my caller ID Wednesday morning? Augusta National.

Yes, my husband was calling from the Masters -- as in golf championship -- to tell me he’d spent more than $300 at the gift shop. (He had to use special AT&T phones at the course because you can't carry cell phones onto the grounds, and if you know anything about Augusta National you know you follow the rules.)

Now, I wasn’t terribly shocked, because we’d already been told that everything at the gift shop is expensive. It’s only open one week a year, during the tournament, and the rest of the time golf shoppers are at the mercy of eBay.

Besides, most of it was gifts for other people. And he bought me something -- not a $24 golf marker, contrary to popular belief.

The trip was a big event in our family. My husband was thrilled to be at golf’s holy shrine, and my son got to go along courtesy of his wonderfully generous uncle. This was his first plane trip, too.

His little sister wrote him a letter about a half-hour after he left town and wanted to mail it to Augusta. I explained he'd be back home before it arrived, so we read it to him over the phone.

It was very sweet, and ended with a P.S.: "Have a nice day. And don't forget to do that homework!" (She has inherited some of my tendencies, as my husband frequently points out.)

My son is missing two days of school because of the trip, but his teacher and principal were very understanding. Apparently they are golf fans, too.

“The Masters? I’ve always wanted to go to the Masters,” his teacher said.

My husband called Wednesday night, on the way back to the hotel, to tell me all about it. My son got a Masters hat, Masters binoculars and best of all, several (no one would say how many) colas. There are no brand names at Augusta.

The highlight of his perfect day? When Phil Mickelson's daughter handed him one of Lefty's golf balls.

I'm a bit jealous, but not too much. With the boys out of town, I got a Girls Night Out with my 6-year-old. A trip to the park, several board games and precious one-on-one time over dinner at Rainbow Garden (potstickers and mushu chicken,  something the plainatarians in our family would never eat).

Pretty much a perfect day.

AP photo: Phil Mickelson looks at his children -- from left, Amanda, Evan and Sophia -- before teeing off at the third hole of the Masters par-3 tournament Wednesday.

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