Monday, September 19, 2011

The Greatest Show on Earth!

The circus came to town just in time for Scot's birthday this year!
We were a little concerned about how Larkin would like it, so we talked it up all week.
The day of the circus, I don't know who was more excited ... Scot, or Larkin!

Just look at their faces!

Larkin loved the circus! She was entranced by the costumes and lights and music and loved every moment of the night!

Happy Birthday Scot!
Thanks for letting us tag along for such a magical adventure!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

A Perfect Day

Do you know those perfect days? ... the days when everything goes perfectly? ... Yeah, I don't either most of the time, which is why this day is worth pausing to note.
There was nothing all that amazing about the day, but in it's normal unfolding it just turned out perfectly!

We started out by grocery shopping. I made Larkin a shopping list with pictures of milk and eggs and some of the fruit and other food we needed ...

As you can see, she was busy writing on her list while I cruised around the store filling the basket with our goodies. As I would pull something off the shelf I would say, "Okay, we got the olives, cross olives off your list." and she would scribble with her pen on her list. It was the best shopping trip we've had in months!
We spent some time in the afternoon walking over to the park and collecting leaves and swinging and collecting more leaves.
When we got home had dinner and a family home evening on listening. We talked about using our ears to listen and made a silly listening hat with giant ears ...

We played "Mommy Says" and sang "Do as I'm Doing" and had brownies and ice cream for a treat.
Then it was into the bath tub and scriptures and prayers and bed time ...

Doesn't that sound like a perfectly ordinary day. It was. But everyone was happy and as we moved through the day together I was grateful for so many perfectly simple happy moments.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Ernesto's Mexican Food

This is the first post of many to come where I will feature restaurants in the Sacramento area that we try and either like, or dislike. I always love a referral for a yummy meal, so if you have a favorite place you think we should try, let me know. I love hole-in-the-wall places that surprise and delight. I love local favorites with a loyal following. I love up-and-coming restaurants with the power to exceed expectations ... I just love good food!

First on my list: Ernesto's Mexican Food at 1901 16th Street in Sacramento. Mexican food is always a crowd pleaser at our house and Ernesto's came through on so many levels. My favorite part about Ernesto's came right as we walked in the door ...
#1 the hostess gave Larkin some little dinosaur toys to play with instead of crayons and a lame placemat maze! If you have ever taken a toddler to a restaurant, you know the power of a simple kid-friendly gesture like this one! Larkin was entertained the entire time we were there with those little guys and even got to take them home with her when we were finished!

{You will have to excuse the lame photos. I had to use my phone to take these since the battery on my good camera was plugged into the charger at home ... yep I walked out the door with a camera minus the battery. Genius!}

Ernesto's had lot's going for it besides the kid-friendly toys.
#2 It was super easy to find. Two turns off the freeway and we were there. I suggest bringing change for metered street parking, but there was plenty of street parking, even on a Saturday evening.
#3 Our food came quickly {as in lightning fast}, and my glass was almost always full.
#4 The food was reasonably priced and the portions were not huge, but large enough to fill me up and then some.
On the FOOD: I ordered chicken enchiladas with a tomatillo sauce {pictured below after a few bites}. The green sauce was a little acidic, but overall the flavors worked well together. Scot ordered a combo plate with carnitas and enchiladas with red sauce. He was a little disappointed in his red sauce as well, but inhaled his carnitas, so it must have been yummy.

On the Ambiance: Ernesto's is on the smaller side, but has a fun atmosphere with paper flags hung from the ceiling, a little outdoor patio for dining and a bar with a big screen for watching the game if that's your thing. The music was modern and quite enough that we could talk over it comfortably {Don't get me wrong, the restaurant was noisy, but it was packed with people who chatted happily, and I kind of like that pleasant background noise- it helped to cover up my daughter's torrential dinosaur roars and screeches!}.
Scot and I both agreed that Enresto's is officially on our list for dining out when friends or family come to town!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Labor Day Time Warp

Labor Day weekend was a little bit of a bust at our house. I was deathly ill {that's an exaggeration} and Scot and Larkin had to fend for themselves most of the weekend. Finally on Monday I made myself get out of bed so we could say we did SOMETHING fun for the holiday.
We decided on Gold Rush Days in Old Town Sacramento.

It was so fun! They have people dressed in period costumes who play instruments in the street, act out gun fights and fires, and sell root beer among other goodies ... such fun! I had never been before, and I have to say ... this is a must next year!

This picture's for you Grandpa Rice!
We watched firefighters put out a fire in one of the buildings in Old Town. Of course the fire wasn't real, but I was reminded of how grateful I am for all those who labor to keep us safe and free!

Larkin loved any and all music at Gold Rush Days! She sat and listened to this man play his hurdy gurdy forever. He was very sweet singing "Old Suzanna" and "Yankee Doodle" completely off key!

We had to sit a few times for different musical concerts ... Larkin insisted, and I was grateful for the break. This girl loves to clap and sing along to almost any song!
Sometimes I love to look at the world through her eyes. She is so fascinated by life. I read somewhere recently that wisdom is the result of wonder. If that is true, it should be no surprise that our children give us a run for our money!

Happy Labor Day!
May we each take a moment to wonder at the many freedoms and pleasures we enjoy!

First Day of School

Larkin was so excited to start school this year! She loves everything about school, and I love to hear all about her adventures while she plays and learns with her friends and teachers!
She is in the same classroom as last year, but she has two new teachers who are AMAZING!

{this is what 6am looks like at our house ... Larkin woke up and hour and a half early because she just couldn't wait to get to school!}

Here's to a new year of learning and growing!