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Another recital in the books! Addie danced hard this year and pushed herself way outside of her comfort zone. She did a leaps and turns class which had mostly competition team students. Addie was the youngest and easily the least experienced in the class. She spent a month in tears every week, and just when I was about to let her quit, something flipped and she loved the challenge. She also didn’t want to do another combo class, and instead chose to do tap. Her teacher is the owner of the studio and an amazingly talented tapper. Addie had a great time and really improved this year. Their routine was very challenging. They did great and had so much fun performing. But Addie said her favorite part of the recital was dancing on stage during the finale with her friend Elle.

It’s been so fun to see her progression from age 3 to now. Isn’t she the cutest?

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Waaaay behind on this old blog…sorry! A couple weeks ago, this darling had her final day of kindergarten. What a journey she’s had in just one short school year. She entered kinder reading basic words and is now at a 3rd grade level. And while we knew her reading was amazing, her teacher was blown away with her growth in math, too. What?! She scored 99th percentile on the end of year MAPS testing in both areas. Who is this brilliant little soul? We couldn’t be more proud of her growth this year in academics and socially.

Her last week of school was filled with awards ceremonies, field day, and class play. Lots of fun memories. She chose to be a story teller in the play, which meant she had to memorize lines throughout the entire thing. She was pretty stressed about it but practiced multiple times every night and, of course, nailed every line when the day came.

At awards night, she received the general class excellence award, which her teacher described as the valedictorian of the class. The Friday before, she also got an award for reading 30 books in Spanish. The best part, she’s such an eager little learner.

The day before the final day of school, they had all-school field day at the park. Her class took a group hike (she and her buddy William lead the pack), had face painting, ate lunch, and played water games until mom ruined the party and made us go home before getting too much sun. Then the last day of school was pretty much just a freebie. Addie was in tears. She had such a good year and was so sad to leave her friends and amazing teacher.

This girl! My goodness, we couldn’t have been more blessed when God gave us this amazing daughter! We so love this beauty!

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We took a quick trip to EDH last weekend. The kids played from the minute they woke up until way past bedtime each night. They had a blast with Haylee racing cars, playing with bubbles, digging for rocks, and tackling each other, then gave a riveting musical performance. A great way to spend a sunny three-day weekend.

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What a week for this littlest love. Monday, he finally put it together and started crawling. It was the tiniest little caterpillar crawl and by today, he’s all over the place! He had another PT session where he finally rolled from back to tummy, but now that he can push up to sit, he has no need to learn to roll from tummy to back. He’s so close! And yes, he’s slept in his crib in his own room all week!!! Huge wins for this boy! We’re so proud!

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Politics

Early voting starts one week from today in Nevada. I know I’m not the only one who can’t wait until this election is over. I’m so tired of the candidate bashing filling my Facebook feed and coming across my TV all day long. Having a daughter who picks up on everything and asks a million questions, I’m particularly annoyed this year with so much hate. When did we become a country where it’s acceptable to trash-talk every one and criticize every action? 

Love or hate the current administration, Michelle Obama is right on point in her recent speech (I invite you to watch it here https://youtu.be/r7e3QKKOp50 if you haven’t seen it already). I would hope that we can all agree that the words spoken by Donald Trump are not acceptable by any standard, especially by someone who hopes to be president. I don’t want my daughter or my sons to grow up thinking this is an appropriate way to speak of women. I’ve read countless excuses as to why this shouldn’t matter. This was NOT a one-off comment made 11 years ago; it is very telling of his character and his view of women. It’s irrelevant that Bill Clinton has also treated women poorly; also not acceptable, but ultimately, he’s not running for president. Also irrelevant, the fact that the Obamas are friends with famous people who write inappropriate song lyrics; those people are also not trying to be elected our next Commander in Chief. 

I’m especially disappointed at the level of disrespect being thrown at both candidates. I don’t know about you but I haven’t seen so much name-calling since middle school. Since when is is ok to treat people so poorly? Why does social media give anyone the right to bully others? And why is such childish behavior so widely accepted? Let’s focus on the facts instead of spewing hate at “Crooked Hillary” or “deplorable” Trump supporters. I’d rather hear actual intelligent discussion about why someone should hold the highest office in our country. 

For the record, I’m voting for Hillary. I agree with her position on many issues that are important to me, stricter gun regulations, the environment, marriage equality, a woman’s right to choose, healthcare, and higher minimum wage, to name a few. I also strongly believe that it’s time for a woman to be president and she’s actually qualified for the job.

I will not vote for Trump because he disrespects women, has racist agendas, has multiple failed business ventures, has screwed many people out of money in those ventures, is hot-tempered and openly mocks many people (I’m especially disgusted by his treatment of that disabled reporter). Not to mention, he is not at all qualified for the job. This is not the type of person I want to represent our country. Nor do I want my children being influenced by his words or actions for the next four years. 

I justified my vote without any name-calling. It’s possible!

If you genuinely support Trump and what he stands for, I will not judge you. I honestly don’t understand but if you have a reason greater than “never Hillary, ” I respect that. If you’re not sure which candidate represents your values (with all the mudslinging it can be hard to even know what the issues are anymore), I encourage you to take this survey https://www.isidewith.com/political-quiz. It was dead-on for me. 

All that being said, if our democratic process does elect Trump to be our next president, I will accept that outcome and not name-call or otherwise degrade him or those who voted for him. I pray that if Hillary is elected, the same would be true, because regardless of the outcome, we are still one nation facing the world together. Stop the hate. Be kind. Let’s make this a safe country for our children and let’s raise them to be accepting and inclusive.  Until then, I look forward to a utopian day when I don’t have to read hurtful comments online about people, whether political or not.

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Holden Week 24

I pretty much covered everything in the million posts I wrote earlier this week. So today, just some pics from week 24. Next week, we’re back to our normal routine!

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Another fun-filled holiday season is behind us. Addie diligently counted down the days until Christmas. She was so excited this year, though her list to Santa was pretty mild. Very specific, a pink unicorn with blue eyes, a magical stage, a magical mermaid that glows in the water. Nothing too over the top! We braved the snow on Christmas Eve for delicious steak and lobster with the family before heading to church. Beckett snoozed through the entire service. Coen was intrigued by all the singing at first, but soon found a pencil that entertained him for the rest of the time. Then we rushed home to snuggle in bed so Santa could fill our house with presents.

   

  

  
Christmas morning was spent opening stockings and presents, eating yummy pumpkin French toast and playing with tons of new toys. Coen finally has his own cars to crash around. Beckett got lots of new clothes and his awesome car but we’ve been covered in snow since Christmas Eve so haven’t had the chance to drive it around just yet. Addie got all the things on her wish list plus a life-size Elsa doll who has become another sibling in our house. Elsa joined us for Christmas dinner at Aunt Trisha and Ed’s then hung around for our road trip to EDH the next day. It’s a little creepy! 

   
   
   
   
   

    
 
We spent the next three days in EDH visiting family, opening more presents. Jimmy took the week after Christmas off so aside from some doctor and therapy appointments, we just hung out at home for a few days before launching into a busy January. A pretty great way to close out an amazing year!

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