Wednesday, January 18, 2012

East Coast road trip

After celebrating Christmas and Eleanor’s birthday in North Carolina, we loaded into my parents’ car and drove up to New Jersey. On the way we got a little reminder of how light the traffic is in New Mexico. And Uncle Jack got a little window into the complications of kiddos (he drove up with us). But all things considered, the drive went very smoothly. Our first stop was Millburn, NJ for a Christmas gathering with my extended family.

Luke and Eleanor adored playing with their cool older cousins! How sweet H, G, and J were to them. They had so much fun playing with toys and at the park.

Later that day, the whole clan arrived for a lovely get-together.

Complete with games,



and guns?

What a wonderful visit, especially having everyone meet Eleanor for the first time and catching up with relatives that we haven’t seen for a while. The previous photo displays Grandma’s fun side but this is a better one, showing how caring and thoughtful she is!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

First birthday

It’s hard to believe that Ellabelle is one already! Where did our tiny swaddled bundle go? And who’s this big girl?!

The birthday princess decided that she did NOT wish to wear a party hat. We granted her a birthday veto, but they were non-negotiable for everyone else.

Her obliging big brother blew out her candle,

Eleanor reached for her cake,

Ate, mashed,

And gave it a cheer!

Luke couldn’t wait to taste his piece.


We all delighted to celebrate our sweet Eleanor, the shining light girl! Even after a year I still can hardly believe that I’ve been given the incomparable joy and privilege of being her mother. What a treasure!

~ More bday pics here, and a one-year milestones post coming soon!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Sharing air space with Santa

Christmas Eve we awoke in a flurry of departing, having missed our alarm. Thanks to a ride from a friend, we made it to the airport just in time to check our mountain of baggage and board our flight. Our layover in Baltimore was much more leisurely, allowing for a reindeer PJs photo shoot and lunch.

Finally we reached our destination, delighted to see Nika, Papi, Auntie C, Uncle Jack and Uncle Sam. Nika’s Christmas decorations are always lovely, and this year was no exception. Christmas morning we opened stockings.

And the munchkins reprised their holiday formalwear for church.

The never-sick Nika was under the weather, so the B-team collaborated on eggs benedict for brunch.

Then we opened gifts. Here Luke takes a break to show off his belly button at Uncle Jack and Auntie C’s request.

I’m hoping this sandwich set teaches Luke to make us dinner. Smile

We were all delighted when this little princess awoke from her nap and joined us. Here she meets Frosty, the singing snowman.

It was so much fun to celebrate the Ella-belle’s first Christmas, to have Luke understand that we were celebrating Jesus’ birth, and to be with our Ferry family.

But we missed our Nielsen family, and were glad to have been able to celebrate an early Christmas with Grandma and Grandpa a few weeks earlier. I love Eleanor’s expression in this photo. This was one of the first presents opened – it didn’t take her long to gain an interest in them!

Here she opens one herself.

And this may be Luke’s most-cherished Christmas gift. Luke named him James, and Eleanor’s matching reindeer pillow was dubbed Coach J. While we were out of town, Luke reminded me daily that James was crying because he missed Luke. Next time James is coming with us!

What loved and blessed grandchildren Luke and Eleanor are. But even the lavish showers of love that they enjoy can’t compare to the lengths that our heavenly Father went to for us to be welcomed into His family. We begin the new year filled with wonder and thankfulness for His perfect gift.


Ferry Christmas pics here, Nielsen Christmas pics here.