Stephens Family

Stephens Family

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Ellie's 12th Month: 5.20.14 - 6.20.14

Could my baby girl really be a one year old?

We would meet her in just a few short weeks!

Link to her birth slide show:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vL9iWEq4VtQ

BIRTH DAY!

Fav newborn pics!

Yes, it is so!  And, what a year she has given us!  So much joy!  How I love you my sweet girl!  I've loved you for a thousand years and I will love you for a thousand more!

God is good.  He has given me all I ever hoped for in you, your brother and your daddy!  Praise Him!

A few favorites from the 1 year photo shoot we did with Ellie:







Ellie's 1st Birthday Party!

We had so much fun celebrating our baby girl at our home!  Xoxo!  Cutest one year old baby girl I've ever seen! :)










Ellie's Likes:
Talking to Sammie while eating in the high chair
Her version of jumping
Dancing (bouncing to the beat)
The park – especially climbing and the slide
The Cozy Coupe
Crawl tag with brother
Trampoline play
Sandbox play
Nursing (as always)
Being tickled
Iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii'm gonna get you!
Peek-a-boo!  (Eli just says peek-boo, but she gets it!)
Climbing anything
Other babies!
Being outside
Chewing most anything – including rocks and woodchips when mama isn’t looking!  Uh oh!
Bath time with brother
Playing with mommies hair
Rock on her rocking elephant

Ellie's Dislikes:
Mommy leaving her with almost anyone besides daddy and grandma
Setting her down
Teething – its been rough cutting those two front teeth this month
Eli taking her toys away!

Ellie's 12 Month Milestones:
5% for weight
70% for height
Steady walker

Sleep:
Getting better with repeated sleep training.  But no where near perfect!

Breast Feeding:
Hooray for making to a year!  Its been such a different experience than with Eli who was such a chubby little thing.  Oh how she loves to cuddle up for some mama's milk!

Eli and Ellie: A Comparison

At this age they both:

Love baths.
Love to chew on everything.
Love  the park
Did NOT want mommy to leave them
Getting into Sammie's food

They are different:

Eli's 12 month stats: 84% in Height and 24 in Weight
Ellie likes cars and trucks but Eli REALLY liked them at 1 year old.

Here is a link to Eli's 12th month post:


What I've learned...

THE DAYS ARE LONG BUT THE YEARS ARE SHORT!

Time drags when (not at all meant to complain but it is the truth for my life, anyway)...
your baby is colicky
your baby needs constant attention or always needs to be held and you feel like you can't get anything accomplished
you are sleep deprived
you have a two year old and all the craziness that comes with two years old
you are a stay at home mother of two young ones
your hubby works late a good portion of the time

BUT,

This year has truly flown by!  I can't believe my baby is one!  I do sometimes wish I could freeze time but I am so incredibly thankful for this first year with Ell Bell and am excited for what the future holds for her!  Dream BIG baby girl!!!  Mama will ALWAYS be here to cheer you on!

I am Extremely Blessed because...

my little miracle baby is a ONE year old!  So humbled that our God is allowing me to be her mother!  

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Ellie's 11th Month: 4.20.14 - 5.20.14

Is my sweet pea going to be one year soon?  Yes, oh my, yes!  Lord, help this mama!

***The rest of this post (besides the 3 sentences above) was written 5 months after the end of her 11th month!  Thank goodness I have some notes from my instagram photos and other tid-bits I've saved here and there!

11 months of sweetness from  this girl!  I dreaded her turning one and I know I cherished the last couple of months before her birthday.  I don't why know why but for some reason I felt like her turning one meant that she no longer was a "baby."  (She is now my rambunctious 16 month old but still very much my baby).  Looking back at these pictures makes my heart melt!  Love you sweet girl!

Monthly sticker pictures!  She is all grown up!


Weekly pics! Week 47 we were in sunny CA!

Ellie's 1st Easter!
What a cute little sis she is!
Checking out grandma and grandpa's chickens, 1st Mother's Day with Ellie and hanging with brother at the desk!
Ellie inside Sequoia National Park

Sequoia Selfie!


Ellie with Mike's parents - her Oma and her Opa
Ellie with her great-grandparents "Oma O and Opa O"
Ellie, Eli and their cousins Taylor and Connor


We stopped in San Francisco on our way home from visiting Mike's family. We had fun on the Pier!  
Ellie's first time seeing the Pacific Ocean!!
Ellie's Likes:

Talking to Sammie while eating in the high chair
Clapping
Jumping – right foot, then left
Dancing (bouncing to the beat)
The park – especially climbing and the slide
The Cozy Coupe
Crawl tag with brother
Trampoline
Sandbox play
Nursing as always!
Being held close
Toys 
Having someone blow on her tummy
Being thrown up in the air
How big is Ellie?  Soooooooooooooooooooo Big!
Being tickled
Iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii'm gonna get you!
Peek-a-boo!  (Eli just says peek-boo, but she gets it!)
Climbing anything
Other babies!
Being outside
Chewing most anything – including rocks and woodchips when mama isn’t looking!  Uh oh!
Climbing up our flight of stairs
Bath time with brother

Ellie's Dislikes:
Mommy leaving her
Setting her down
Teething – its been rough cutting those two front teeth this month

Ellie's 11 Month Milestones:
Climbing playground equipment waaaay too big for her and sliding down slides head first – she is fearless!
Standing by herself really well
5 steps in a row!
Celebratory clapping!

Sleep:
Waking almost every hour. L

Breast Feeding:
Same as last month:
Nurses 5-6 times at night.  Snacks all day.  :)  

Eli and Ellie: A Comparison


At this age they both:

Love baths.
Love to chew on everything.
Love to be outside
Did NOT want mommy to leave them
Like to feed themselves

They are different:

Eli liked to read, Ellie will sit for a minute or two but wants to get up pretty quickly and move on to the next activity!

Eli was chubbier! 

Eli snuggled with Elmo, Ellie is beginning to like baby dolls.

Eli got the Roseola virus at 11 months and was more prone to viruses than his younger sis.  I’m sure her time will come!


Here is a link to Eli's 11th month post:


What I've learned...

This too shall pass.  Ellie is finally warming up to short car rides and doesn’t every time we put her in her car seat. (Still isn’t 100% fond of it at 16 months)

I am Extremely Blessed because...

We traveled to CA this month to see Mike’s family!  The kids had a blast with their grandparents, uncles, aunt and cousins!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Its been six months.

Its been six months.

Six, six whole months.

182.5 days...

Since I last blogged about my babes.

...

I remember when I posted weekly updates during Eli's pregnancy and a co-worker told me that there was no way I would be able to do that with my second child. I also remember thinking, yes, yes I will. Now I realize that my co-worker was just trying to help me lower my expectation.  They had been there.  They had done the second child thing.  They knew it was hard.  I hadn't even done the first child thing. I had no idea.

In the beginning when Ellie was born, I tried hard to keep up with blogging -- mostly for me, more than any audience and, lets be honest even Eli and Ellie.  Sure, I hope they will look at it someday but I know that it means more to me than anyone else. Documenting their little lives made me feel good about myself. Something I could start and finish.  Something that meant something. Something I needed as a stay-at-home-mom; I used to be able to get creative in my teaching and my esteem would soar when I knew my students liked a lesson and were learning.  Don't get me wrong, Eli and Ellie fill up my love tank in a thousand different ways but this blog has given me a sense of accomplishment.

Six months without posting here -- in my special space -- gives me anxiety and makes me kind of sad.  Each month that has passed my heart would skip a beat I would think I need to post, I need to post soon.  Surely I can get to the computer tomorrow, or maybe early next week?  I'll do two monthly posts this month. Three. Four. Five. Oh no, its time for Eli's 3 year post. Another month has gone by?? How is this so??

Six.  

I guess life happened.  My crazy, hectic life.  Not the life I imagined it would be before it really happened.  The house sparkling clean, healthy dinners happily made, perfectly mannered tantrum-less kids (who can read by the time they are three because I have all the time in the world to teach them), working out smoking-hot mama of two kind of life.  Ya, not that life.  Ha!  It goes more like this: toy-littered and laundry piled high house, on-the-go thank you Chick-fil-a dinners, fit throwing and I want it NOW kids (who are the sweetest beings on earth, but still), its time to buy the next size up in the jeans department and if its a good day I blow dry my hair, change out of sweats and roll some mascara on my lashes mama of two kind of life.


So, six months what can I count for you?

2 crazy road trips to see friends.
2 fun kid birthday parties.
1 beautiful baby blessing.
1 TN family reunion
1 doggy death :(
1 30th birthday -- eek!!

And a million different memories topped with hugs and kisses from the two most precious gifts God has ever given me.

That's my life.  Sometimes I wish I could just take a few hours here or there to blog.  And, I could. Really  I could.  I just don't.  I see the mess in the kitchen.  I see the laundry creeping its way into the hall.  I see little faces that need to be wiped.  More than that I hear Eli pleading with me to play super heroes with him, "Mom you be Iron Man and me be Spider Man."  I hear the yearn in Ellie's cries telling me to come explore the world with her.  These mama ears are hard to mute and most of the time they listen.  And after we play and we explore I try (try is the key word) to clean up the house and make dinner and pray that Mike gets home soon.

And the truth is, when the day is done I am just too tired to blog (or, at least it feels that way).

But today both my kids took considerable naps at the SAME time.  That hasn't happened for hmmm... maybe six months?  :)

Oh, I spoke too soon #2 is crying. g2g!

Xo,

Ali

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Ellie's 10th month: 3.20.14 - 4.20.14


My oh my! 10 months already!  Oh, sweet, sweet Ellie!  How I wish I could keep you a sweet cuddly baby forever!  You are my sunshine when it rains!

Monthly Sticker Pictures!  Just when I thought you couldn't get any cuter?!?!
Weekly pics -- less than 10 weeks until she is one!  Oh this girl has my heart!!


Rubber Ducky You're the One!


Playing and eating!

Eating, drinking and playing!

Loving the warmer weather!

First time in a ball pit --- she loved it!

I'm growing up!
Ellie's Likes:

Saying Ahhhh and pressing the back of her hand on and off her mouth to make a broken up sound
Banana, black beans and chicken!
The park
Sneaking away to climb the stairs!
Nursing as always!
Being worn -- especially in the Ergo lately
Being held close
Chewing on ANYTHING and EVERYTHING!
Toys 
Watching Eli and Sammie and any other dog she might see
Looking in the mirror
Having someone blow on her tummy
Being thrown up in the air
How big is Ellie?  Soooooooooooooooooooo Big!
Dance parties in the living room
Being tickled
Iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii'm gonna get you!
Peek-a-boo!  (Eli just says peek-boo, but she gets it!)
Pulling up
Climbing anything
Other babies!
Being outside
Climbing up our flight of stairs
Bath time with brother

Ellie's Dislikes:
Car seat -- hit or miss now
Mommy leaving her
Setting her down
Banging head on something -- wall, floor, doorway, toy, etc

Ellie's 10 Month Milestones:
Cruising quickly
Saying hi
Wave
Standing by herself
1st Step!!

Sleep:
Two words:
Not. Good.


Breast Feeding:
Nurses 5-6 times at night.  Snacks all day.  :)  

Eli and Ellie: A Comparison


At this age they both:


Love baths.
Love to chew on everything.
Love to be outside
Did NOT want mommy to leave them
Using the walker -- (although, Eli was a pro!)
Like to feed themselves

They are different:

Eli was sleeping THROUGH THE NIGHT!!!  Oh, how I wish!!

Eli was doing more and I think this is b/c he got ALL of the attention!  He used a spoon and could sign more!  I have hardly begun sign language with Ellie.  :(

Eli was much, much chubbier! 

Eli liked to eat "foods" more.

Here is a link to Eli's 10th month post:

http://mikeandaliplusone.blogspot.com/2012_08_01_archive.html

What I've learned...

Having children in a warmer climate must just be easier -- kids are happier outside!  Shall we move?

I am Extremely Blessed because...

My other BFF got to meet sweet Ellie this month!


Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Ellie's 8th Month: 1.20.14 - 2.20.14

Ellie, Ellie how I adore you!  You had a rough start to the month with lots of crying and fussiness and and even rougher end to the month with a cruddy cold!  But, we sure loved all the extra snuggles!  You are so fun and love to be tickled, watch Sammie, chew on a vibrating tooth brush, follow big brother around and especially hang out with your Mama!  I'm surprised you tried (and liked) some foods this month!  You went from a beginner crawler to expert in zero to 60!  You are pulling up constantly and want to be in a stand 24/7!  You make my world 1,000 times brighter!  I love you to the moon and back!


Can't believe you are 8 months old already sweet girl!  Muah!!!!

Week by week, you keep getting sweeter! 


I love the picture of her in her leopard print dress!  She sure has crazy hair and she sure loves her brother!

First pair of jeans!  Chewing on toes and pulling up!

Admiring the snow, eating broccoli, spending time with grandma = good week!

Ellie's 1st Valentine's Day! XOXOXO  

Isn't she just the cutest thing in the world?!?  Lots of fun outside this week!  Can't wait for spring!


Ellie's Likes:

Bath time with brother
Nursing, although she wont stay latched for very long -- there is too much to see and do!
Being worn -- she is actually getting used to the Ergo this month!
Being whistled to, sung to, and talked to, blown at, funny faces, etc

Chewing on ANYTHING and EVERYTHING!
Toys 

Tags/ribbon
Watching Eli and Sammie and any other dog she might see
Looking in the mirror
Having someone blow on her tummy
Being thrown up in the air
How big is Ellie?  Soooooooooooooooooooo Big!
Watching mama flip her hair
Dance parties in the living room
Being tickled
Iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii'm gonna get you!
Peek-a-boo!  (Eli just says peek-boo, but she gets it!)
Pulling up
Climbing
Other babies!

Ellie's Dislikes:

Car seat -- hit or miss now
Mommy leaving her
Setting her down
Banging head on something -- wall, floor, doorway, toy, etc

Ellie's 8 Month Milestones:

Crawling
Pulling up
Sitting on knees

Sleep:
We started sleep training this month because she was up every hour and didn't want to go back in her crib.  Thank heavens she was much easier to "train" than her older brother was.  We got her to do a 3 hour stretch and then she got sick...  Of course!!!!


Breast Feeding:
Eats well at night.  Snacks all day.  :)  Starting to try some "real" food too!

Eli and Ellie: A Comparison




At this age they both:
Love baths.
Love to chew on everything.
Were in the process of sleep training
Did NOT want mommy to leave them!
Crawled and pulled up!  Eli crawled right at 7 months and Ellie at about 7.5; they pulled up around the same time though!

They are different:

Ellie has longer hair -- although they both sport the "mohawk".

Eli was much, much chubbier! 

Eli liked to eat "foods" more.

Here is a link to Eli's 8th month post:

http://mikeandaliplusone.blogspot.com/2012_06_01_archive.html


What I've learned...

Sleep training isn't fun but either is getting up every hour to comfort your baby back to sleep.  It is worth it in the end.  At least for our family!

I am Extremely Blessed because...

Ellie is no longer waking every hour!  Yippee!