Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Life is Busy....

So busy that it seems I never have time to blog or at least I don't make the time to blog much. I try so hard not to put pressure on myself as no one is making me keep up with this blog. This blog is for one person and that person is ME. If others have made their way to this blog to read, great. Otherwise, this is my attempt to chronicle events in our life. A very weak attempt of late! :-)

There has been lots going on for sure. We made it through the holidays and with the end of the Christmas season, Tim began a marathon of travel. Have I ever mentioned that I hate how much he travels? Hate is a strong word, but I am certain that it is accurate in this case. I just miss him at night when he is gone. I am trying very hard not to nag him because I know it is not his choice. I am VERY thankful that he has a job and know that I am a fool to complain. He did take a few days in January and took me skiing in Vail. Wow, what a great time we had! I love skiing and was amazed how fast I picked it up.

We got a puppy at Christmas and she is doing really well. I wish to high heaven I could train her with the whole potty thing but.....

She has a pacifier (our last sign of baby in our house)!

Speaking of potty training, Zach is trained. He is a definite case study in the battle of wills. He literally woke up a few weeks ago and was trained. Yes, you read that correctly. He had like no accidents with tee tee. He woke up and put underwear on and that was pretty much it. It has been UNBELIEVALBLE! He is growing up and I can't say that I am too sad. I have been in the throws of diapers for 6 1/2 years and so I am ok with everyone being potty trained!

just some potty time entertainment alla Zach!

We leave for Spring Break this Saturday and I am pretty pumped! Our surprise trip to Disney this summer was a wet disaster so instead of heading back to Mexico....we decided to take advantage of a down economy and buy 4 days and get 3 free at Disney World! I think Tim and I love it as much as our kids and we are ALL very excited! It is fun to see each of them experience it at different stages but I am looking forward to Zach this time. I think he will GET IT this time around!

School is trudging along and I am ready for summer. It has been a tough year as far as our schedule is concerned and I am exhausted!!! Everyone is doing well is their classes but I am just ready to be at home with NO schedule for a while.

So...there you have it. An update on the Stephens family....phew...I feel better now! :-)

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Christmas Time....

I LOVE Christmas time! From Thanksgiving until New Years, I am in my element. This year the kickoff to the holiday season was extra special as we spent Thanksgiving in New Jersey with my sister and her family. Since we were all the way in NJ, we went to the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade and that was the icing on the cake for our family. Many of you, my friends, thought we were NUTS to drag little kids to the parade but we have NO regrets and I would do it again in a heartbeat!

Grace with her cousins Claire and Abby


Sarah and me

I also love the updates that we receive by way of Christmas cards and letters. All of the letters that we receive each year have prompted me to write a letter each year for our family. I was looking back at our old letters and cards recently and it is really neat to see our progression in my letters. I am happy I began this tradition and it will be something cool to give our kids one day.

I am THRILLED we are done with school for 2 weeks. This is not a new feeling for me...when I taught school, it was also a huge relief to get out for "winter" break. As many of you, we are anxiously awaiting the arrival of Santa and the energy in our house is truly fun anticipating the end of this week. More Christmas news to come after the BIG day. Merry Christmas everyone!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Fall 2008

It has been a very busy fall at our house. Between soccer games, practice, homework and life I feel like we have gone through a season of being insanely busy. Thankfully, things are starting to settle down. One more week of soccer and then we are going to lay low this winter with no organized activities except the things we do through school. There is something to be said for relishing these times when the kids are still young. Our really busy days are ahead and there is no sense in rushing toward the chaos that is surely to come when all 3 kids are involved in 3 different activities, etc.

The fall festival at the kids school in October proved to be a fun time for us. The kids got to participate in a scarecrow contest with their classes (mostly Grace), rode ponies and ate a lot of junk...etc.
Halloween was a fun night at our house. I tried to make it festive and with a little help from the October issue of Southern Living feel like I accomplished my intended goal. We ate "mummy dogs" for dinner and had "ghost" cakes for dessert. We trick or treated in our new neighborhood and then we headed to our old neighborhood where there are TONS of kids and a sense of familiarity. Our kids enjoyed trick or treating but it was so cool when they were like....We are done! I know a lot of kids that could go forever but not my 3. Once it was dark, Zach was very concerned that is was 9:00 and past his bedtime. I have no clue where the 9:00 came from but he was convinced it was that late and I had forgotten about bedtime. I guess he doesn't realize that his bedtime is much earlier than 9:00!

Thursday, October 2, 2008


Zach is really struggling with naps these days. It is almost 100% a direct result of our schedule during the week that impacts Zach not getting a nap. However, I have been trying to make time in the afternoons for Zach to nap. Well, he pretty much refuses to get in his bed and take a real nap. So his naps occur in really random places at really random times. Today was no exception and I will let the pictures do the telling...

he was watching Drew play a game on the computer...

it was not enough to keep this tired boy awkake...

after lunch...it was all he could take!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Clean Hair

I went grocery shopping on Sunday and picked up some kid's shampoo. We ran out of Drew's favorite flavor so I remembered to buy more. No big deal...I unloaded groceries and I began to bake cookies. Tim and the kids were in and out of the kitchen and at some point Tim asked me where was Zach. I thought for a second...I don't know where he is but wherever he is, he is awfully quiet. Quiet, if you have kids...specifically 3 kids, does not always indicate something good is going on. Tim went to get bathroom trash and I quickly heard "I thought I smelled something really sweet..." There sat Zach under our bar washing his dry hair with the new shampoo. AAGGHHH. I wasn't exactly ready to bathe him but unless I wanted him to look like a greaser, a bath was our only solution. He thought he was pretty clever and here are the pictures that make this a pretty funny situation. I admit it...I laughed uncontrollably over this...trying to be a little more laid back than normal. At any rate, we all got a good laugh over Mr. Zach!

Are you serious???
So dang cute...even with shampoo in dry hair!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

The things children say...

I am often amazed when I am "busy" at the things my kids say to each other. Lately, my favorite time is when the boys are in the car together without Grace...their conversation is priceless. I picked the 2 of them up one day last week and once we were all settled Drew pulled out his uneaten snack from his schoolbag. "We had a birthday party mommy so I didn't eat my goldfish..." Thus begins the conversation between Drew and Zach..."Drewboo (Zach's pet name for Drew and mine too...)you not eat your goldfish today?" "No Zach, we had a birthday today so we had a special snack." "Oh, Drewboo have special snack today???" "Yes, Zach...it was a special cookie." "Oh, Zachie (what Zach calls himself) likes cookies." "It was good but now we can share my goldfish." "We eat Drewboo's goldfish in the car?" "Yes Zach, I will share with you." This continued on the entire ride home. Drew indeed shared his goldfish and they chatted with one another until we got home. It is not always this pleasant, especially in the car but on this particular day it was.

On the other hand, I also hear my kids talking to one another in ways I would prefer them not to. Occasionally, Grace will speak to the boys as if she is their mother and she is mimicking me. She has never said anything inappropriate, but sometimes her tone is not how I would prefer. I realize that she takes in all that I say and how I say things so it is mine and Tim's job to model the way we want our children to act. This task scares me as I am often not who I want my kids to become. I try hard but I often fail. The other day Drew was being utterly ridiculous about something and I said "that is just plain stupid" and there was a hush amongst the kids and they all began to tell me stupid is a bad word. They are learning but I hope to lead them by example, not just by telling them how they should act, what they should say, etc.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Kidney Stones and Labor

What is the difference between these 2 painful events? In labor, you can get an epidural the minute you can no longer bear the pain. Now, I am proud to say that I did not receive an epidural with any of my kids until I was like 5 or 6 cm dilated. In fact, Tim thought it was a waste of money for 2 of my deliveries as I had the epidural less than 2 hours before my babies were born. Anyway, I got the epidural when I could no longer tolerate the contractions rocking my body. With kidney stones, you only receive drugs once the doctor is pretty sure he/she knows what is wrong with you. I had the unfortunate privilege to experience this last Monday night...

I had had back pain for a few days but I have 3 kids so no big deal. By Monday night, I could not get comfortable in bed. I tossed and turned, got up, layed back down...I was miserable. I finally dozed off for about 30 minutes to be awkened by what seriously felt like back labor. I was in agony. I could hardly catch my breath. I woke Tim up and we began to assess the situation. After about an hour, I finally decided I needed drugs and we didn't have anything strong enough at home so we headed to Piedmont Hospital. It was a quick process and lucky for me, I passed the stone before they finally shot me up with narcotics. It was misery. I wish this on no one.

I had a procedure done yesterday and there is still one more stone to come but hopefully my narcotics in the medicine cabinet will be my saving grace. We shall see....