Our time in Richmond with Jim and Pam and their new baby Alexa was awesome. We did a fair amount of hanging out, quite a bit of cooking and some roaming about the city. We also watched a few movies including but not limited to Small Soldiers, It's a Wonderful Life, Christmas Vacation and that other holiday favorite, Mortal Kombat. Alexa is an adorable baby, and she received a hearty amount of attention during the visit, much to the chagrin of Shiloh, Jim and Pam's huskie, who is now number two on the attention ladder.
Saturday was absolutely beautiful outside (60 degrees), Sunday was rainy at first and then the rain turned into snow, Monday was friggin cold, and Tuesday was once again beautiful. After careful consideration, we decided to choose the blistering cold of Monday to take a hike on Belle Isle (the site of an old Civil War prison) and wander around an area of Richmond called Carytown. The footbridge to Belle Isle over the James River was crazy cold, and we saw no one on the island except for an insane jogger and some weird guy smoking a cigarette on one of the trails. We also saw a beaver, though the little bugger was too quick for my camera.
Jim and Pam were so hospitable, especially considering they were preparing for both sets of parents to show up at their house during the same week. On Tuesday, we took some more Let's Go advice and stopped at a Liberian restaurant in Richmond (damn good) and got home just as Jim's parents arrived from Georgia. We hung out and chatted for a while, then Sam and I hit the road to begin our journey to Strongsville (Cleveland) to visit Sam's nephew and fam. We stopped for dinner in Charlottesville, ended up hanging out a little longer than expected and made it only another hour down the road to lovely, historic Harrisonburg, VA and crashing in a Super 8. It seems that every city or highway or hill in Virginia has "historic" placed in front of it to convince the passerby to stop and have a look, but I'm not really sure why Harrisonburg deserves this distinction.