Monday, April 18, 2011

Holidays and Snow Days

Here is the catch-up of all the end of the year holidays last year. There was a lot, so it is kind of long, but still fun, of course, so enjoy!
Last year she was a little chick...
 ...So this year I thought it only fitting that the costume I happened to borrow was a chicken costume... my little chick is all grown up! Sniff!
She stole that pumpkin from our friends we went with

She had on her Wee Squeak shoes I won that squeak with each step. It made the costume that much more fun, and everyone was commenting on it. Pretty cute, I must say!

Elenore and Mommy! Yes, I have become a boring adult who does not dress up anymore... partly due to the lack of the great costume trunks of my childhood home... I am just spoiled now.
We went to the business trick-or-treat in Lexington with the Davises. Tommy is Peter Pan (very fitting!) and Jack is a Lion. Such darling boys!
Visiting Tommy and Jack's daddy. No, that is not a costume, he was on duty that day.

Later at the church for the chili cook-off (where my white chili won a prize 4th year in a row!) and truck-or-treat, playing with friends

What cuties!

While waiting for Daddy to come pick us up, we took off the costume and discovered a piano!

She thought it was the coolest thing ever, and was actually "playing" it, not banging. I have a future musician on my hands, that is for sure! Hurray!

I love this one, and it reminds me of my baby pics.

After Halloween, and our pumpkin is still not carved... she was desperate to go outside, so Daddy wrapped her up and took her out. It was very cold, though he of course has no coat on, the goose.
Amongst out many blessings that year was getting to be back in VA with the Anderson's again, and ... drum roll please... another baby is on the way!!!
And our pumpkin became the centerpiece at the Thanksgiving table!
Technically not her first Thanksgiving as the bib reports, but the first one she could eat anything... didn't really do much of that though anyway. Oh well. The napkin ring was more interesting

The after-dinner stroll up to walk around campus and check out the fish pond
We are a happy family!

Christmas: Decorating the tree!

Ooo, lights!
Helping Grammy
But I want to wear some tinsel too!
Checking out the decorations and smelling the tree with Bryndy
Bringing out the angel

Need Brady's help to put up the angel

And the rest of this post is going to have to be continued later when I can get my silly card reader to work and get the other pictures loaded onto my computer for editing...

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Autumn in Virginia!

Is there anything more beautiful than Autumn in the Shenandoah Valley? I think it can only be heaven. I don't have great pictures to prove that, but here are some of us enjoying it anyway.

Her outfit from Grandma

Yes, that is our stroller way back there, I was just running to try and keep up with her

Taking her new coat and hat I won for a test run

On the porch of Main Hall on SVU campus, checking out the autumn displays

Doing leaf rubbings with our friends the Davises... or just eating crayons...
Daddy trying out the Ergobaby carrier I won on our walk to the park. So cozy!

This girl loves her some swings!

It is even more fun with Daddy!

If you could only hear the squeals of laughter that go with these...

Look at that face!

Mountain Days

Mountain Days is one of those special things about small towns like Buena Vista that I just love and look forward to all year. It is part of the fall festivities, and everyone just walks downtown and enjoys all the local vendor's displays, old cars, fun food vendors, and the fun games and things for kids like old water pumps, cider grinders, and old tractors. Here are some pics of our adventures this year.  

Bumping into our friends the Coopers on the walk to downtown
Exploring the bucket of water that the older kids were pumping water into rather vigorously and getting her all wet.

You can see her wet hair here as she attempts to drive the big tractor

Getting the hang of things...

This shot was the only one that captured her smile, but it was totally blown out so I put it in B&W and it looks nifty

checking out all the old cars with daddy, and some random old guy walking past....

introducing snow cones!

her first taste... cherry was the only flavor she could have. Good on the taste buds, bad on the dress...

Yummy! And cold!!!

We let her taste Daddy's too... a little orange flavor won't kill her... I hope.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Catching Up #4: Return to Virginia!

With Jonathan entering OCS for the Army in February, and training in Georgia, we wanted to have me be close but somewhere I had good support (we didn't know then that he would not be able to visit us, nor we him). Going back to Buena Vista, VA came immediately to mind. I was tremendously excited at the prospect, as I had not expected to be able to return there for a long time, and certainly not to live. But we did not see how we could financially move there until right before he would leave, so sometime in January.

We started calling some of our friends to find out about rent options, etc. We called our good friends the Anderson's with whom we have previously lived, and who had just recently moved back to VA themselves from Idaho. They offered to let us stay with them rent free until we found a place. We both felt like this was our chance to get out there, and decided to go as soon as we could. We couldn't afford a moving truck, so we packed up all our stuff we didn't need for the next few months to store in my brother-is-law's house until we could get it, packed up our car until there was barely enough room for our bodies, and drove across the country with little Elenore once again, heading back to the homeland.

We made it back to BV by the end of September, and as things worked out, ended up staying with the Anderson's instead of looking for another place to rent and it has been great for our whole family. Elenore especially loves them all to pieces and it will be a huge blessing not to be alone while Jonathan is in training. Here are the first pics of Elenore with her favorites in the family (the girls).
I think she likes Bryndy more than Mommy...
And Grammy is fabulous too!

Onyx the black lab who is beyond patient...  Elenore is panting here.
The beginning of her love for dogs...

Here are a bunch of pictures of our first adventures back in BV VA! As there are a lot, I will probably split some of them up into separate posts.

Boxerwood Gardens
(first with the Davises and then a return trip later on our own)
Walking to the fall festival

looking at the big dogs

playing in the water

Jack and Elenore... not too sure about each other
Elenore and her Daddy with the cool bird

Below is our return trip. This place is really a wonderful spot, and trying to conserve the natural beauty and provide fun learning for kids too!
Our return trip to the Playtrail!

going through the willow tunnel with daddy

trying out the bench in the tunnel with Daddy

are we to teh end yet?

eating wood...

giving it to mommy... with the "but aren't I cute when I'm naughty?" look

finding leaves...

learning how to make mud!

Another "I'm so cute" pose

fountains and fish!

fish fascination

going home on Daddy's shoulders