Wednesday, December 22, 2010


Merry Christmas everybody! We're excited about Trace's 4th and Fisher's 1st Christmas this weekend. Trace has been asking for a blue skateboard for a few weeks now, and Fisher hasn't really asked for anything :) so he'll be surprised with whatever the big guy brings him.

This will be our first Christmas staying home, so we're excited about that too. While we enjoy going to Grand Isle and spending the holiday with the family, with the kids, it has gotten more and more difficult to pack up the house and go out of town for Christmas. We can't wait for the boys to wake up at home Christmas morning to see what Santa brought and to be able to hang out at the house all day and play with their new toys.

Enjoy the holidays and we hope everyone has a merry Christmas and a happy New Year!

Here are a few pictures of the Ballards getting ready for Christmas:

A few weeks ago, we beat the rush and went to the mall for the boys to sit on Santa. It went great, there was no fussing and no wait.

Trace drawing Santa a picture of what he wants:

Mailing his Christmas list:

Checking to see if he's been naughty or nice:

Explaining to Santa exactly what he wants:

Trace and Fisher with the big guy:

Counting down to Christmas:
Opening one of his Advent calendar gifts:

Topping the tree:
Making a Gingerbread house:

Each year for Christmas, our church participates in Advent Conspiracy, which reminds people to worship fully, spend less, give more and love all. One of the ways we gave back was for all the little ones at church to help make cookies to bring to a local fire station. Last weekend, we visited the fire station and delivered the goodies. The fire fighters got some sweet treats and the kids got to play fire fighter for the day:

Friday, December 10, 2010

silly 2010

Retro Flakes American Lung Association Holiday 5x7 folded card
Turn your holiday photos into holiday cards with Shutterfly.
View the entire collection of cards.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Christmas Cards

Every year in November, it's become a tradition that we take family pictures for a Christmas Card. In past years, we've gone all out; and as you can imagine, it gets pretty expensive (the photographer, the pictures, the cards, the outfits, the haircuts, the all just begins to add up). However, this year we're on a tight budget now that I stay home. I've also become "Budget Nazi" and had all but given up on the idea that we would do a card this year. But I think Ernie could see that this made me sad, so he put his foot down and said, "We're doing them." He said it didn't matter if we had them made and only send out 10 cards, but we should still send them out because (and this is what got me), "It's Fisher's 1st Christmas." And so, the search began for a photographer. Imagine my excitement when I found that our good friend and photgrapher Christi Santangelo (you can find her on FB @ Santangelo Photography) was having a Christmas Special and conducting mini sessions that included 25 cards! I later found another great deal from Shutterfly that included 50 free cards if I write a blog about Christmas Cards, hence me writing this blog! ;) This whole experience of staying home/cutting back on our budget has definately been a challenge, but it's also helped me to become more creative in doing the things we love without going overboard with our spending. :)

Oh, and did I mention how much I love Shutterfly!? ;) Here's some of our Christmas Cards from years past that we've done with them:

Monday, November 15, 2010

Friday, October 29, 2010

LSU Website

Those kids on the LSU homepage sure do look familiar:

You can check out the story at or clicking here.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

First Haircut

Last week was haircut day for the Ballard family. Everyone one of us got a trim, even Fisher. I was hesitant to get Fisher's haircut, but he really needed it. He probably needed a haircut the day he was born, and his side burn curls had now gotten out of control. He did great and didn't fuss once. He even received a first haircut certificate.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Look Out Ace of Cakes

At the end of August, Maw, Pap and Rhi Rhi came up and we celebrated Pap's birthday and Pap got the best birthday cake ever b/c it was made by none other than Trace (with a little help from mom).

Here's Trace testing out the batter to make sure it's just right:

Also, making sure that the icing and sprinkles go well together:

Adding a little color:
Finally, the masterpiece is ready:

Everyone enjoyed Pap's surprise party:

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

A Summer in Pictures (Part II)

Onto Part II of the Ballard summer in pictures. If you missed Part I, you can check it out here.

During the summer, Fisher started to eat his veggies. We've had some ups and downs with getting him to get the hang of eating "food," but he's getting better. Peas and carrots are working out better than sweet potatoes and squash did.

While Fisher was learning to eat, Trace has been improving in the potty training area. I'll save you some pictures, but let's just say he loves to show off.

Ashley and Trace took a "mommy and me day out" and visited Pottery Works for a little painting (check out the great picture of mommy that Trace took):

One of the cool things we found out about was kid's movies at the Grand Cinema during the week. It was $4 for a movie, popcorn and a drink. Too bad we only learned about this toward the end of the summer.

As I mentioned in the previous post, the Ballards became members of Baton Rouge Zoo this summer. Even though it was almost unbearably hot, we made it to the zoo a few times:

This summer our church held a Wee Kids Camp for the kids too young to go away for camp. The kids learned Bible stories, a memory verse and did some arts & crafts, and the week ended with a pool party:

One of the highlights of the summer was going to the Lawrence family adoption party. Not only did we get to celebrate with a great family and friends, there was a water slide. It was tough to get Trace on the slide at first, but then it was tough to get him off of it:

One of Trace's favorite places to visit in Baton Rouge is the mall. Here are a few pics from various trips there.

Trace loves to ride the carousel, especially Mike the Tiger:
Enjoying some samples at Menchies:

Riding in a spaceship:When Maw Maw and Rhi Rhi came up one weekend, they brought Trace to Build a Bear at the mall, and he left with a Mike the Tiger dressed as Woody from Toy Story ... and a red car for him or Fisher :) to ride in:
Trace loved cutting grass with Pap in Thibodaux. He liked it so much, he didn't want to get off the lawn mower, even after falling asleep a couple times:

Time to roller skate:

Trace enjoyed going to Uncle Josh's house to watch the Saints first preseason game. Here's Josh telling Trace all the reasons to root against Tom Brady:

Just say "I want free flip flop cookie" at Cookies by Design, and low and behold, you get one:

Checking out the annual Baton Rouge Balloon Fest:

Trace went through Little Gym this summer and recently started Chopsticks (beginning karate) classes. He did Little Gym last summer too, and he's like an old pro now:

We'll leave with with a few shots of the Ballard boys in action:

Last, but not least, of course Maw Maw and Rhi Rhi bought Fisher some blue jeans diapers: