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Thursday, December 31, 2015

so long, 2015

guys, 2015 has come to an end.  and i don't know about you, but for us, it was one hell of an awesome year.  are you ready for the onslaught of photos from the last twelve months?   it's recap time!

january started with a fun roller skating party to kick off girl scout cookie season.  it was the bean's first time on skates, and while she was really hesitant at first, she got the hang of it pretty quickly.

her mother got her skating legs back pretty fast, too.  i don't even know who had more fun out on the rink.

cookie season itself was a blast.

we had a ton of fun with the girl scouts.  also, amid some ridiculously stupid drama that blew up out of nowhere, my co-leader and i drop-kicked the third leader just before the end of the year, which made for a couple of very awkward final meetings.  heh.  but we managed to have a ton of fun during our first year of scouting:

although i'd accepted a clean eating challenge that ran at the very same time as cookie season.  while everybody else was chowing down on thin mints and tagalongs, i was eating stuff like this:

huh.  that doesn't look bad, actually - and i think there's another challenge starting in a couple of weeks.  maybe i should go for it again.  i even got the bean to enjoy smoothies and fresh squeezed juices along with me, and she started being more open to trying new things.  some are hits (salmon and sushi!) and some are misses (carrots, most other vegetables, heh).

of course, there was barre.  lots and lots of it.  which led me to finally getting to put my autograph on the 100s barre, signifying a pretty big milestone in how many classes i'd taken:

i managed to rope friends in to taking classes with me here and there, too.

i got to meet the creator of xtend barre, andrea rogers:

and later, i got to sign the 250 class poster.

the old lady was my constant companion on a bunch of my fitness excursions.

sometimes, though, i got this when i suggested something that was out of her comfort zone.

there was, of course, plenty of running.  

by the way, 2015 saw my first (and probably last) medal for taking first place in my age division in a 5K:

and since we're talking running, i suppose i'll bury this here:  so this past spring, inspired by all of my friends who had conquered the "stadium to the sea" course, i registered for l.a. marathon 2016.  i told myself that i could totally do it, that it would be awesome, that i could suck it up and get through those long, long training runs in the months and weeks leading up to the run.  i even reminded myself that i've already done that mileage once before - during the first day of the avon walk for cancer a couple of years ago.  and because this year was the 30th running of the marathon, they'd done something special a night or two before the big day - spotlights were placed at every mile, and then at night they would turn them on and you could see the whole course from up above.  we'd made the trek to griffith observatory to check it out, and it was really cool.

except now, we're roughly six-ish weeks out and i haven't done jack shit in the training department.  like, i haven't run any further than a 5K since october.  and so with that, i'm officially backing out.  i just don't think i want to risk an injury, nor do i think i can squeeze in the training miles between now and valentine's day.  so there you have it - i'm a total 26.2 failure.  bah.

anyway...believe it or not, i actually managed to talk the hub into doing a spartan race with me.  we headed up to san francisco and ran it with cousin seven and mr. lilcee.

the bean was no slouch in the exercise department, by the way.  she kicked some ass during her third soccer season:

participated in her school's obstacle course fundraiser:

did a couple of run disney kids' races:

switched to a tumbling class to tighten up her cheerleading skills:

 and even went bowling quite a few times.

dance lessons are still a go, and she participated in several recitals plus the school talent show.

 and there were a handful of piano recitals throughout the year, too.

art class continues as well, with one of her pieces displayed at a local fro-yo shop for awhile.

she participated in all of the dress-up days at school (because when you usually wear a uniform, it's super fun to bust out regular clothing whenever the opportunity arises).

and class parties!  man, there were so many of them.

there was lots of time spent with friends.

that actually goes for both of us, really.

and there was plenty of family bonding time, too.

 their first father-daughter dance.

 she learned lots of useful skills, like cooking:

 and sewing:

we attended the very first cookie con:

during which we met a few contestants from masterchef junior:

and i snapped this selfie that ended up being shown during local commercials a bunch of times.

oh, yeah!  there were cookies - tons of them.  here's a few of my favorites.

guess what else there was a lot of?  disneyland!

oh, and there was knott's berry farm too.  we stayed at their hotel a couple of times and got tucked in by snoopy himself:

 and celebrated her 8th birthday there with a handful of friends.

there was lots of travel this year.  in addition to san francisco, i got to go up to portland for a couple of days all by myself to attend a disney moms' social media conference.

of course, i made sure to hit a few important spots while i was there.

i flew to vegas solo to do my very first ragnar race with a fun team of runners, including one of my cousins and my friend interview.

we sent the bean off to the first annual "grandma camp" - a whole week in texas with her beloved grandparents without her pesky parents to watch her every move.

 in her absence, the hub and i got to spend some time in colorado springs at the broadmoor resort on a client retreat.

while there, i hit the spa:

had a hit at the oxygen bar:

 did a fun segway tour of the garden of the gods:

rode up the pike's peak railway:

and got to dress up for a fancy dinner.

we'd barely gotten ourselves unpacked before it was time to repack and head out to dallas to spend some time with the ILs and reclaim our kid.

while there, i cheated on xtend with a different barre studio:

and we went on a road trip, where we got a slice of delicious icebox pie in shreveport:

apparently, i took at least one car nap.

we booked one of these:

this is the closest i'll ever get to channing tatum.

we ate a lot of beignets.

not to worry though, we walked it all off.

we drove on a lot of bridges like this one on the way back:

and squeezed in a ride up to the top of dallas' reunion tower before heading home.

our final hoorah of the summer included the old lady's special friend and a whole lot of aloha.

we actually spent a good bit of time with her special friend this year.

oh, and this is the closest i could get to the men of "scandal."

and nick jonas.

i got to see t-swizzle in concert again, with some fun special guests:  ellen degeneres, the dixie chicks' natalie maines, and alanis morrisette.

the hub and i headed to the hollywood bowl for date night, where i finally got to live out a childhood dream:  duran duran in concert.  *sigh*

and we celebrated our tenth wan-niversary with a stay at the gorgeous terranea resort, arriving in our wedding clothes...of course.

the old lady and i celebrated "back to the future day":

and spent a lot of time together doing lots of other random things.

and sewing!  there was a lot of sewing!

there was this, too:

OMG.  there is seriously so much more i could share from this past year, but i think i've kept you long enough.  suffice it to say that we had a pretty wonderful 2015, and we're looking forward to even more shenanigans in 2016.

have a wonderful and safe new year!  see ya on the flip side!

squeezing in all the sightseeing

this was our NYC home for a whole week: it was one of only a few hotels that i could find that offered two beds in a room rather than, say, ...