Fall/Winter 2015

It’s been four months since my last post, and a lot has happened since then. Coleman started third grade at The Meadows with Cindy Hebert as his teacher. We expected that it would be a more difficult year for him, and we were right. Third grade students are expected to read more books (51 books gets them the top reading prize), give 12 speeches to their classmates and do more research projects. Coleman made straight As in his first quarter, and we think he’s likely to maintain his straight A average at the end of the second quarter.

Against my better judgment, I signed Coleman up for group violin after school on Fridays. He lasted about a month. I thought he would make friends, but I realized that there is nothing more sacred than getting some free time on Friday afternoons. Here he is at his one performance for the pancake breakfast.


Brian had a Yardi conference at Disneyland, so there was no question that we’d tag along. It was Gigi and Paul’s first trip. While there were great moments for me personally, I am hoping to not go back for many, many years. It was crowded beyond belief, and it was close to 100 degrees in October.


Gigi and Coleman at the Small World ride, which is one of my favorites because it’s such a throw back. Also, the air conditioning was killer.


We reenacted our 2012 tour through Toontown. It blows my mind how much things change in three years.

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Peanut butter!


Group shot at a Toontown fountain.


We killed time on the merry-go-round at California Adventure.



This is how I felt on our last day there. (Shoot me!)


We went to a pre-football game party at The Meadows the next weekend. One thing that has definitely changed in Coleman’s life since the summer is that he is obsessed with football. A decade ago I said that no son of mine would ever play tackle football. I think I’m going to have to eat those words. I can’t insist that he not do something he really loves.


Here he is at one of his flag football games.


Coleman took a great photo during our family photo session with Ginny Trudeau this year.


Coleman was Elvis on his second Halloween. He was coming down with a cold, and we trick or treated too early in Wendy and Richard’s neighborhood, so it was kind of a let down. We had a do-over this Halloween, and it went much better. I think it helped that his Daddy rented a costume so he could be Elvis too, or as Coleman called him, “Fat Elvis.”

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They played wrap a mummy game at Coleman’s school Halloween party.


Coleman wrapped up his best friend Evan. The giggling was contagious.


Coleman visited the office after school, and Mari photoshopped Gizmo into the picture. Three Elvi.


Getting his moves ready for trick or treating.


Aunt Mari visited with Coleman and Gabby at Grandma Wendy’s while Brian and I attended a Trey Anastasio concert at Brooklyn Bowl.


Coleman and Gizmo dressed alike.


Elvis and Scarlett - both Southern, talented and good looking, but one is definitely goofier than the other.


We took the kids to Spago to eat on my very last gift certificate of the $1100 I won at the Nathan Adelson Hospice Luncheon last May. Right before Sharon Jenkins called my name, I looked at my mom, and said “This is the one I really want to win,” and boy, did I feel lucky! After dinner we walked the Strip and saw the Bellagio fountains. While the kids had seen it several times before, it felt like the first time all over again.


School pictures were actually very good this year - the best they’ve ever been.


Kelly Maxwell and Susan Perry invited us to spend a weekend with their friends in Zion. I believe it was 14 adults and 16 kids. I adapted much better to the kids going wild than Brian did.


We convinced Coleman to take a hike with us through a canyon. Gabby could not be convinced to leave all of her new playmates behind.


A rare picture of Coleman with me because I have to ask for this to happen.


Coleman’s favorite part about the hike was breaking ice sheets. The crunching noise was really cool.


Coleman and Brian in a beautiful canyon.


There was a treehouse on the property.


Coleman didn’t know many of the kids, but he did know Eli Shulman.


We did one last short hike on the way back to Vegas.


We hiked Calico Basin on a weekend with Paul and Bryn a.k.a. Pooch.


The kids actually had a good time and only whined when we climbed a long hill.


Our Thanksgiving was one of the best we’ve had yet, and we got a group photo, which was a first.


Our Christmas season began the weekend after Thanksgiving by decorating two trees. Here’s a video of Coleman putting the topper on for the first time.

Jaime gave us another gingerbread house from Solvang. While they make incredible decorations, we’ve decided that they are also very tasty.


We took a festive photo before leaving for the Santa Run.


Coleman did his third Santa run this year. He always complains about getting there early, but if we hadn’t gotten there early, we wouldn’t have seen Wayne Newton or the Jabbawockeez.


Coleman attended his second rodeo.


This rodeo might be my last because I am so allergic to all of the dust (?) in the arena. I sneezed repeatedly, and my nose ran severely for most of the event.


Coleman was very festive in his Santa suit bottoms and Bears hat that Brian got from his Secret Santa at the office, lifting weights that Gigi got him for an early Christmas present. He’s been wearing the Santa suit since kindergarten; that’s four years, folks. I think I got my money’s worth!


Grandma and Grandpa sponsored the December 20 Nutcracker performance. The kids were extremely well behaved. I am so pleased that they actually love going to the Nutcracker.


Coleman and Gabby were honored with the task of giving out flowers at the end of the performance.


They were very speedy about it and were probably on stage less than 30 seconds.


A blur.


Brian took them to Eagle Point on their first week of winter break. The first day was a bit rough, but I hear the second day went much better. I was smart enough to avoid this trip altogether.


It went so well that Brian officially lost his mind and let the kids ride a ski lift by themselves. What was he thinking?!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


I’m certain that this trip was great birth control for Uncle Morgan. Even Morgan admitted that Brian was Super Dad (not his words) for skiing with two kids, being responsible for all of their gear and did I mention safety?


Christmas dinner was spent at Andiron in Downtown Summerlin. Brian and I are so fortunate, especially since we host Thanksgiving, for Wendy and Richard to take us out to Christmas dinner. Coleman got to spend a moment with Baby Ezra.


Coleman and Gabby opened their gifts from Pop and Madi on Christmas morning - money, Legos and clocks!


Coleman was excited about the football cards that Brian gave him. I think the kid has more stats in his head than most 8-year old football fans.


The whole family, including Randall, came over for Christmas breakfast.


Coleman and Gabby love their Aunt Mari.


They also really love their Uncle Paul and were happy to have him living with us. He is now in Denver, and it feels like something is missing.


We took a trip to L.A. after Christmas and had the good fortune to spend some time with Wendy and Richard. They invited all four of us to New Year’s Eve dinner at Baltaire.


We had a fabulous 3-hour dinner. Coleman was content spending time with us at the table while his sister ran off to hang out with the jazz band in the bar.


Coleman has a lot to learn from his grandpa. I’ve been encouraging him to ask questions.


We did two long bike rides along the beach. On the first day we let the kids have some time to play.


We had the pleasure of visiting Randall at his art deco apartment building, the Mauretania, which was built by the Tin Man. JFK lived there too during the Democratic National Convention.


Randall suggested we go see the Rose Parade floats the day after the parade, and it was a fantastic idea.


I’m the only one in the family who has seen the real Mount Rushmore.


The best part about going with Randall was that he knew what was used to decorate every aspect of each float.



And that’s four months in the life of an 8-year old Las Vegan. Not too shabby.

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