December 2014 & January 2015

Now that Coleman’s 2nd grade year is in full swing, and now that he finally figured out what he had to do to get the good citizenship award at school, he has developed a brighter outlook on life. He’s a lot happier than he was in September, and that is a big relief to me, his Mom. Another new development is that he’s now a big football fan. He spends a good bit of time playing catch with his Dad in the house. I’m not a big fan of this, but I’m going to let it happen UNTIL something breaks. He’s also been playing football with a group of boys during recess, and it sounds like he’s getting better. He was very proud of a long throw he caught last week. Right before the Super Bowl came on, Coleman just “I can’t wait until the Super Bowl.” Then he cried when it was over because the Seahawks didn’t win, and Coleman lost his $10 bet when the final interception happened. Uncle Morgan gave Coleman $10 by making him do 5 push ups, which eased Coleman’s sadness. I told Coleman that if he didn’t like losing money, he shouldn’t gamble! Before he was born, I often said there was no way my boy was going to play football. I’ve since changed my tune since it makes him so happy. And there’s much less of a chance he’ll get hurt playing Meadows football.

When Coleman prepped for his class program this year, they asked him two key questions that he answered during the program. He was the only one out of two 2nd grade classes who wanted to be city manager and go to Sewanee.

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Ginny Trudeau took our family photo this year for the fourth time. She is the best photographer ever, and we are so fortunate to get to work with her.

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Coleman did the Great Santa Run in downtown Vegas for the 2nd time. His time wasn’t as good as last year’s, but that’s because I wasn’t there pushing him to keep running. He probably had more fun this year.

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He got on the scales outside of the Heart Attack Grill, a restaurant I’ve vowed that I’ll never step in. If you weigh 350 pounds or more, your burger is free. One man actually had a heart attack while he was eating there.

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Brian has taken Coleman to Lee Canyon three or four times so far this ski season.

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Watch a video of Coleman skiing.

We were thrilled when Coleman got the good citizenship award. He was the fifth kid in his class of 20 to get it.

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We went to the kid Christmas party at the Las Vegas Country Club this year. Mr. and Mrs. Claus flew in by helicopter and then took pictures with all of the kids.

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For Christmas this year, Aunt Mari bought Coleman and Gabby an artificial tree for the office. They had a great time decorating it. Spending time at the office has had a positive influence on the kids. They just recently printed labels for Gabby’s accordion file so they could organize their artwork. These are the labels they came up with: nature, sports, food, seasons, random.

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Coleman and Gabby had lots of discussions this year about Santa. Watch the video.

Coleman dressed up in his Santa suit for the third year in a row. We might have to get him the next size so he can keep up the tradition. He takes a bag of stickers and cheap toys to school in a big Santa bag to hand out.

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Coleman wrote out his New Year’s resolution at school. I’m afraid he’s not doing that great on the not yelling at his sister part.

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Coleman and Gabby got to spend time with their cousins Bill, Tracy and Eva right at the beginning of their Christmas vacation. They are deprived of being around family their own age, so it was really great (and enlightening!) to have Eva around. Gabby took over and kept Eva to herself for the first few hours, but eventually they all played together, and it was delightful. I only wish we could have spent more time together.

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We attended the Santa event at Doolittle Community Center this year. Grandma Wendy sponsored a boy that was Coleman’s age. My boss sponsored the brother.

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The Gregersens had us over for dinner for Jeremy’s birthday, and I got to spend quality time with this baby girl. She was a delight! I can’t wait for Jillian to have her baby boy and am hoping I’ll get to hold him often.

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The kids enjoy seeing the Nutcracker a little more every year. Coleman was singing Nutcracker songs out loud long days before and days after we went to the performance. What was once a bit of a chore has turned into a family tradition (minus Brian) that I really look forward to.

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We spent Christmas Eve at Spago this year. Brian’s duck wasn’t as hot as he would have liked, but other than that, it was a great experience!

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Watch the video of the kids checking out their loot on Christmas morning, 2014.

Coleman’s loot:

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Santa brought Coleman the Imperial Star Destroyer. It took him a while to put it together because we went on vacation the day after Christmas and didn’t take it with us.

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How did Santa know that Coleman lost his fitbit and needed a new one?! I guess our Elf Sparkle made sure he was aware.

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Santa also knew that the kids needed a new pencil sharpener.

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Two happy kids on Christmas morning. Watch the video of Coleman’s happy dance.

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Even boys love Olaf from Frozen! Uncle Paul bought this for Gabby.

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We spent Christmas Day with family at our house. It was pretty awesome.

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We went to San Diego the day after Christmas. The kids had been there before, but had no recollection of previous trips. Coleman hadn’t been to the San Diego Zoo since he was four months old, so he definitely didn’t remember THAT! Coleman and Gabby planned our route through the zoo.

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Once the zoo officially opened, we walked/ran all the way to see the pandas because that’s usually where the line is longest. The pandas did not disappoint.

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I spent a lot of time at the zoo when I was interning at San Diego County. My second favorite exhibit was the polar bears. Coleman is pretending to be peeking out of a seal hole in the Arctic.

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Riding a gorilla.

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A highlight of the day was the foot massage machines.

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My hand! My hand!

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Coleman begged for us to take him to the hotel gym, which we did at night when fewer people were in there. Got to brainwash them while they are young!

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The next day we rode about 10 miles around Mission Beach.

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We bought the kids the largest ice cream cones ever while waiting for a table to open up at the restaurant/bar next door.

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We surprised the kids with a trip to Legoland on our way to Newport Beach.

Loving spending time with my kids.

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“Everything is awesome! Everything is cool when you’re part of a team! Everything is awesome! When we’re living our dream!” - lyrics from The Lego Movie

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Sometimes I’d like to do this to them, for REAL.

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Coleman would like to build a White House out of Legos. I told him he’d have to be a “master builder” and figure it out himself. Lego doesn’t make kits that large.

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Daddy and I need the “force” to be with us to help us STOP BUYING LEGO SETS! Why are they so addictive?! Part of it has to do with seeing how happy they make Coleman.

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One day we’ll take Coleman to the real Hollywood Bowl.

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We stayed at the Hyatt in Newport, and Coleman was convinced at the time that he had to have a life-sized chess set. Luckily for us, he hasn’t mentioned it since we left.

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We hiked at Crystal Cove State Park.

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Brian enjoyed finding living things in the tide pools.

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We spent the afternoon in Laguna. We had lunch at Nick’s and bought a small piece of art in a local gallery.

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We spent New Year’s Eve at the house playing Uno and watching Phish play in Miami.

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Coleman turned 8 on January 9. We gave him a big boy aqua G-Force watch. He helped me pick it out but was still excited to get it on his birthday morning.

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Watch the video of Coleman opening his card from Pop and Madi.

Watch the video of Coleman opening his card from Brian and me.

We took Coleman and his friends to play laser tag after school on his birthday.

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Then we brought them to our house to have cake and RUN WILD!

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The cake that BattleBlast provided was really tasty.

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Sophia Perry bought Coleman a Wubble Bubble for his birthday, a toy the whole family enjoys.

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We had a family birthday dinner the next night. Here Coleman is with Aunt Mari. Grandma Wendy bought Coleman a suit, which he was very excited about, so he decided to wear it the entire day. What 8-year old does that?!

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Jenica, Josh, Roma and Baby Nicolina celebrated with the family as well.

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The Westermans bought Coleman this cool nature-based activity book that we’ll take on our next camping trip.

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