Tuesday, February 28, 2012

A Food Blog is Born!

We started a food blog. 
I guess I needed another project. 

You can find us here.
Please be patient while we are under construction. 

Consider following this blog and our food blog. It would make me so happy!

Monday, February 27, 2012

Update on Valentine's Challenge

 Our Valentine's Challenge was a success and SO MUCH FUN! We will be doing this again. 
Jackson was so funny trying to hide my present behind his back as he walked into the room.  I love seeing my kids do for others. They have a tendency (like all kids) to think only of themselves, but this provided an opportunity to think of someone else.

As you can see, Jackson got M&M's, he also got a camouflage t-shirt and it fit in the jar. Scarlett loves the M&M's, she walks over to where the jar is and holds her hand out. She can also hear that jar being opened from anywhere in the house and she comes running. We have been giving her yellow M&M's so that when she drools it doesn't mess up her clothes.

I forgot to take pictures of the rest of our jars when they were full.  Caroline got a watch and so that was easy to fit in the jar.  Ryan got a t-shirt and tootsie rolls. I received pajama pants that were super soft. Scarlett got a bath toy and baby snacks.

It is so easy to get just a little something to make someone else feel special.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Our Valentine's Dinner

Valentine's has always been hit or miss at our house. Some years we do something and some years we don't.  Since the past 6 months have been a rough transition on our family, I decided to do something fun just for them. 

They know I love them, right?


This is how the table looked when we came home from school. Ryan comes home from work 15 minutes after we get home and so we had an after school snack of lemon pie at the table together. 

 We had a great time enjoying each other. Everyone was on their best behavior. 

Our dinner was crock-pot Italian chicken, peas, and rice. 
Very wholesome and heartwarming, don't you think? 


Our Valentine's dinner was just what a girl loves. next year I may have to come up with something that speaks to the souls of the boys in my life. 

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Everybody Loves You

Look at the cute worksheet that Jackson's teacher did with her class. What a sweet reminder this will be one day for him and me.This has been a very rough transition for us. We are almost to the point of pulling him out.  Jackson is a homebody and leaving the house everyday for school that he is not enjoying is a stretch for him.

Moving stinks!

I especially like the one that says "I like your hair." Jackson has always had great hair. 

In other Jackson news.  Last week my sweet boy came home and gathered some school supplies and said he needed to take them to school. Knowing that the school's budget is depleted, I assumed that he needed the supplies for himself.

I was wrong!

Jackson was gathering supplies for himself, because he had given all of his current supplies (including the pencil box) to a new kid at school. He said that the new kid was having to borrow from the other kids and he felt bad.

Oh, how sweet. 

He constantly teaches me about compassion for others.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Happy1st Birthday!

We did not know that you were a missing link from our family. Sweet Scarlett, you are just what we needed to make us bigger and better. We love your smiles and your hugs and your stubborn streak.  We occasionally love your midnight happy hour playtime.

 Caroline and Jackson were very surprised to wake up on a Sunday morning one year ago and find out that they had a sister. They had no clue that we had left the house and Mrs Kaleena had been sleeping on their couch. You came quickly into this world. You are a force to be reckoned with. 

Can you see how much that they loved you? They had been waiting for this exact moment for 9 months. They dealt with a cranky mommy and  their space being taken over by baby gear. Today you take comfort in your "big kids" and you laugh at their attempts to amuse you.  I could not do each day without them.

You have a do-it-yourself attitude. There is nothing that you cannot do. You walked at 9 months, climbed on the couch at 10 months, and climbed out of your crib at 11 months. Thankfully, you have not repeated the climbing out of your crib thing. Scarlett, you are an eater and will try anything we put in front of you.

Your sweet brother called from Disney World today to wish you a Happy Birthday.  You had a smash cake that you wouldn't touch, but your Memaw and Grammie were here to laugh at you anyway.

Happy Birthday Scarlett!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Ribbons and Bows

Recently, I've been feeling creative. My sweet Scarlett needs a place for all those bows, headbands, and ribbons; because she will wear them one day. They had been taking up residence in a basket, but would over flow each time I went searching for a bow.

 A canvas from Michael's, on sale of course, painted in a mis-tint from Lowe's. Can it get much cheaper than that.  I even had the black ribbon that I wrapped around the lower half and stapled into place on the backside of the canvas frame. 

 I also bought a Cricut machine off of Craigslist and I am enjoying a few craft projects. I also think that that this picture is upside down. Pink vinyl for some cute pink letters. 

Here is how it looks without all the ribbons and bows added to it. The letters do stand out a little more in person, but I slightly wish that I had a brighter pink. 

Here it is with a whole bunch of bows and flowers. I made need to add another ribbon row for more bows. 

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Valentine's Challenge

I have been so encouraged by the website Lil Light O' Mine and her blog. At Christmas, my family participated in the Light 'Em Up Challenge to do for others during the holidays.We loved focusing on others and helping our big kids see that Christmas is about so much more than us. 

Lil Light O' Mine is encouraging readers to focus our attention on our loved ones this Valentine's Season. We don't do a lot of decorating for Valentine's. My small house has not recovered from all the Christmas chaos. So small gestures are just what we love for Valentine's.

Yesterday, I came up with a small challenge that has to do with these jars. I pulled out my Cricut and did some decorating.


I cut out an initial for each person in our family. I used a polka dot sticky shelf liner in my cricut. The letters will pull off easy and the colors are not so Valentine's that we can use them for other things. 

Stephens Family Valentine Challenge of 2012

We drew names and each person must buy a Valentine's present that will fit in the jar and cost $10.00 or less. I challenged each person to really think about who they are buying a present for. They need to buy something that shows how creative they are and how much they really understand the other person. 

Luckily, I drew the baby's name and the baby drew Daddy's name. I can handle those two.

So , I will report back on how well this all went.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

A Saturday of Pictures

Up bright and early on a Saturday morning
Wear a headband for Mama, please!

Loved that she was taller than the mini
Enjoying her Starbucks!
This weekend I get to spend some time with just my girls. We have had so much fun. 

My oldest needed this time with her Mama. She is so good at helping me. She got ready and asked if we could go anywhere? Off to the shopping center to do some window shopping. We oohed and aahed our way through Charming Charlie and spent some time in other stores before parking ourselves in the Barnes & Noble to look through books. 

My baby girl will be one soon. She is getting so big. Scarlett has been walking for 2 months, eats everything that you put in front of her, will not touch milk, and loves her family. She will go to each and every one of us for love and comfort or when she's hurt or scared. I love that she trust not only me and her daddy, but she equally trust and loves her brother and sister.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Monkey Wrench

I have been working on a blog post explaining that we were now homeschoolers of a certain little boy. My husband threw a monkey wrench into that idea. He has a job interview about 3 hours from here and we could be packing it all up and moving again. So, until we know for sure, everyone is staying put right where they are.

Slowing down to catch our breath is just fine. And a move would be fine by me as well. The stress, not so much!

How about some pictures instead.