Wednesday, December 26, 2012

An Ellsworth Christmas

Our little family was blessed to have a wonderful Christmas yesterday.

Here is our Christmas tree.  For some reason I particularly liked the lights on this year.

I wanted to make sure we captured Cadance's expression when we came down the stairs.  I know it's not much, but we could tell she knew something was going on.

Growing up, my siblings and I took an official picture every year with out stockings.  We are continuing the tradition.  Here it is

I told her to touch her stocking.  One finger.  

After a fabulous breakfast of sausage bread and fruit salad we got on those gifts! I'm still a little surprised at how good Cadance is at this stuff.  I loved how she turned her stocking upside down.  It's apparently the best method for removing gifts.

And here she is looking at the photo album I gave her.  I filled it with family members pictures and then we added basically every other 4x6 photo we had in the house that wasn't already in an album.  She loved it.

Steve opening the clapper light system.  I know it's kind of an old person thing, but if you understood the electrical system of our house, you would understand just how amazing this makes our life now.

And just so you can get in on the action, I took a video of Cadance opening a gift.

After all the presents were unwrapped we took Cadance upstairs to show her her final gift.  She walked right up to it, exclaimed, "table!" and then sat down and went to work.  It's so nice having a table for her upstairs. And I love that it's blue.

We spent the morning painting with watercolors. (courtesy of Santa)

And then we decorated the easiest gingerbread house known to man.  It quickly turned into the ugliest gingerbread house, but that's okay.  It was also the most frustrating thing in the world for Cadance.  Decorating with candy is not an easy task for a toddler.

After a fantastic ham dinner we took a tacky lights tour around Richmond.  Definitely a tradition.  These people are intense.  They have websites.  They can register to become an official tacky lights house.  Get excited.  But, some of my favorite decorations weren't from the tacky houses, like this little gem of a snowman.

He actually freezes.  And then this was the most hilarious one.

It was set up next to this house.  This house was the ultimate.  Visitors from 93 countries.  Over 600 homemade decorations.  170,000+ lights.  Ummm...yes, that's amazing.  This picture only captures about a third of what they put up.

I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas and good luck this coming year!  Now onto Texas for our vacation.  We head to the airport in 2.5 hours.  Better start packing!

Friday, December 7, 2012

Some Thoughts for the Week

On Monday Cadance and I walked into a grocery store to pick up a few things.  There was an employee also walking in.  He greeted us by saying, "have fun!"  "Yes," I thought, "I will have fun."  Seriously, if every grocery store was built around the premise that shopping should be fun and we all went grocery shopping thinking that it will be fun, how great would life be? Really great.

Yesterday afternoon Cadance and I went into the backyard to collect sticks to turn into wands.  We made a ribbon wand.  She only liked it for about 10 seconds, but that's a different story.  In this story, Cadance successfully blew the white billowy stuff from a dandelion for the first time.  I'm not sure why I felt like this moment was noteworthy, but she looked at it and said, "broken."  I guess I was the only one excited about white billows being blown in the wind.

Last night Steve told me one of the most amazing things ever.  He said that when he gets really bored dictating for hours he starts to use a Texas accent.  How amazing is that?  I love it!

Hope everyone is having a wonderful holiday season!

Friday, November 23, 2012


It's amazing that so much fun could happen in under 48 hours, but it did.  Steve's brother, his wife, and their two girls come down from PA for the Thanksgiving holiday.  This was kind of a momentous event because all three girls could play together for the first time.  And boy did they play together.  

The first greatest moment was ring around the rosie.  I've never seen Cadance play it with someone besides me.  She loved it.  Mabel kept sitting down early, not really sure what was going on.

Here are the girls watching Charlie Brown on Wednesday.  Coralee was very impressed that they were sharing a couch.  

Thanksgiving morning started off right with pumpkin coffee cake.  I know the dinner is the main event, but I have this crazy need to have delicious pastries Thanksgiving morning.  

Dressing the turkey

Should I reveal what they were doing?  Either way it was brother time

The dads took the girls to the park, which they loved.


Slide time

Some cousin love.  Isn't Cadance's hair insane
Here is the dinner round up.  We ate well.

The turkey.  Isn't she a beauty.  We were super excited.  

Rolls, stuffing, and potatoes cooking

Rolls, brussel sprouts, and stuffing waiting to fill out bellies

jello salad, green beans, cranberry sauce, and turkey.  Steve carved the turkey.  I have this crazy fear about doing it.  Maybe it just seems like a husband thing

Very proud of the dinner

Here's the gang, ready to eat

Cadance loved the food.  Especially the "sparking juice" we had.   Too  bad it gave her a crazy bad stomach ache

The clean up crew.  Got to love it.  

We finished the evening with pumpkin and pecan pie and some game.

Friday, in order to exhaust the girls before heading up to PA we went to Maymont Park to take a light walk.

Cadance heading into the Italian Garden

Some of the few flowers in bloom.  Super pretty.
The light walk turned into an adventure as we wound our way down the steps of the Italian garden into the bamboo thickets of the Japanese Garden.  

Cadance walking down the steps without any help.  She was very reluctant.  

Annie and Cadance running to the bridge.

There was this cool rock seat.

This tree was the most amazing yellow color.  I know you can't tell in the picture, but it far made up for all the bare ones around it.

The walk ended in three exhausted little girls who were in need to food.  Thank you Pizza Hut buffet.  Mabel was particularly ecstatic about mass amounts of food being brought to her.

It was a great couple of days.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Stew Festival

Last Saturday we ventured into downtown Richmond for our first "Richmond" event, the annual Brunswick stew festival.  Apparently brunswick is a type of stew.

The festival was held at the 17th street market.  We've heard they have a farmer's market every weekend and host lots of events, so it was exciting to finally go to one.

We had a really good time sampling all the different stews, especially since it was about 50 degrees outside

Just to give you an idea about how serious this is, most entries cook their stew in something beastly like this

After eating lots of stew we headed back to the doughnut food truck.  We're really glad we did

Cadance was also there, but was very happy sitting in her stroller looking around, listening to music, and eating saltine crackers.  She definitely missed out on some good food, although the doughnut got her pretty excited.  Yea! for Richmond!

Saturday, November 3, 2012

The ABC's

Just in case anyone hasn't said, "oh my gosh, she is growing up so fast!" in a long time

Friday, October 19, 2012

Pumpkin Patch

Today our church play group went to the pumpkin patch.  Ever since we picked apples Cadance talks about "picking apples," so  I was excited for her to "pick pumpkins."

My attempt at getting a picture next to the white fence, hay, and cornstock

On the hayride to the pumpkin field

Tromping through the pumpkin field

Our small pumpkins look surprisingly big in her arms

We were literally in the field where they grew

Cadance felt right at home and walked all over the place looking at pumpkins

The view from the pumpkin patch.  

Looking at the chickens

And the peacok

Another super fun Richmond adventure!