Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Jesse's New Job

So, one of the many challenges we had from getting out of the Army was for Jesse to find a job while he's in school. After many frustrating attempts at various prospects, Jesse found an opportunity with One Vision International! Jesse called John Miller (founder, Exec Director) and asked if there were any opportunities to work with him back in June, primarily with the work his organization is doing in Haiti. Low and behold John had been wanting to create a position that would eventually take over the work in Haiti since it has become so much work in the last few years. Since John had wanted to add this position, he was elated to have the chance to hire Jesse and jumped right on it. After a long process of going through the board and creating the position, Jesse was hired and started last week. He just returned from a 4 day trip to Haiti to network and see what progress has been made and what needs are there. This is a job that will go hand in hand with his research in graduate school, so the opportunity is a win-win. I am so proud of my husband for seeking out this opportunity and finding a job PERFECT for him! If you want to check out this organization and the work they are doing, go to We have supported this non-profit for a long time - John was in our small group at church before we even went into the Army. Check it out and if you are interested in getting involved, let us know!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

10 Months Old!

Well, another month has passed and Ellie has changed and grown even more! Our little girl is so stinkin' cute and makes us laugh all the time. Some of ther new accomplishments are:

1. She is down to 3 bottles a day and more on a normal eating time schedule with us. It's nice to eat meals together at the table now.

2. She was 19lbs 8 oz last week at the doctors office. Getting closed to that 20lb mark!

3. She has ANOTHER tooth! One of her bottom teeth next to the 2 middle ones have cut through. Everyone keeps telling us how crazy it is that she has so many teeth already!

4. She can walk with her walker a few steps on her own (scroll down to see past blog entry for video of this).

5. She converses with me back and forth with her sounds. I'm trying to teach her some sounds and words and she will "answer" me with one she knows.

6. She is pulling herself up and standing holding on to EVERYTHING!

7. She's been going through a phase of "I want Mommy" the last few weeks but it hasn't been too bad.

8. She is eating finger foods like cheese cubes, toast pieces, cheerios, and avacado. She also loves to drink ice cold water from a cup like a normal adult.

9. She is much more fun to take to the store now that she can sit up well in her seat cover!

10. She can crawl much better up on her knees and hands, especially when she is on carpet.

Ellie is a beautiful baby girl and we fall in love with her more and more each day. In my mother's words, "She is such a good baby!" I love watching her around our family and recognizing people. Hope you have enjoyed the update!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Why I LOVE Fall

Here is the view from my driveway, at the front of our subdivision. This is why I LOVE Fall!

Date Day

Thanks to our generous friends, The Mason's, we were able to plan a date day baby free. It was great timing for us. Jesse's mom watched Ellie all day (THANK YOU) to give us the time to devote to each other. We went on a hike to House Mountain (off Rutledge Pike) and had an amazing time. The view was awesome and the weather was perfect! Here is a little video from our view at the top of the ridge:

We went to lunch at Horn of Plenty (a little country store up the road from our house) and had the usual amazing catfish and southern sides. We showered and got ready for our evening. Then, we went to visit Becca and Steve to meet their new little boy, Thad (Ellie isn't allowed to go so it was perfect timing). We rented a movie and watched part of it before going to the Melting Pot for dinner. We had this French themed 4 course dinner with a cheese fondue, salad, lots of different meats and then an AWESOME white chocolate creme brulee fondue. It was an amazing treat to go there and to have a day to devote to each other. We had great discussion, lots of laughts, and we even did our usual strategizing of the future! I love my husband more and more and I am so happy to have had such great quality time with him. Thanks to the Sr Cragwall's for babysitting and the Mason's for the date $$!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Braggin' on My Baby Girl

Check out what she can do now after only a few days of having this toy! :)

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Duck Duck Goose Consignment Supporter

It's all Becca's fault (my bff). She sent me to this twice a year consignment sale called Duck Duck Goose ( and it was AWESOME! I got Ellie a few clothes and staples for the winter for super cheap, like a good winter coat and fleece and some pants and sleepers, but more importantly, I got her some big girl toys that she has needed. She is getting bored with the toys she has so it was time to get her some that encouraged standing and playing, since that's pretty much all she wants to do now. So, here are her 3 new toys that she is really enjoying! I will definitely be returning to this sale when it happens again in March!

Hosting Company

My brother and his wife flew down yesterday to visit us (an excuse to see Ellie). We took Ellie out to the Island Home Airport to see them fly in and pick them up.
We went to Horn of Plenty (a little country store down from our house) for a southern lunch and then spent the rest of the day at our house watching football, catching up, eating and relaxing. I love it when Ellie gets to spend time with my family since they aren't around on a regular basis. Ellie really likes Jonathan and Jennifer - she was super smiley and definitely was showing off her new skills to them. We are so glad that we didn't have to wait until Christmas to see them!

Pumpkin Patch

I have always heard of the pumpkin patches in the area and this year, we decided to venture out to one for a change of scenery and see what they are all about. So, after recommendations from friends and neighbors, we went to Maple Lane Farms in Greenback, TN ( to do a hayride and pick out our own pumpkin. We got there just in time for the last hayride out to the patch for the night on Friday (thankfully) and got to see the farm in great Fall weather! Ellie got to see cows for the first time and she also discovered hay! The mountains were beautiful as a backdrop to this place. We got to the patch and we had fun picking out the perfect "Cragwall Family" pumpkin. Ellie had a blast touching the pumpkins and observing the other families picking out their own. We put her on a blanket in the patch and she just wanted to touch the pumpkins around her the entire time. We rode back in to the farm and then enjoyed some BBQ for dinner while Ellie sat on the ground and ate her puffs. There was plenty going on to keep her attention long enough for us to eat! Overall, it was a great trip and we plan to make it a tradition for our family. Yay for Fall!!


Lilypie Third Birthday tickers