Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Best Christmas Ever!

Dear Amelia -
That Christmas was one for the record books and its not even done yet! Christmas Eve we went to Great Uncle Johnny's house to get together with the Stephens'. We played the dice game....well everyone else played the dice game because I was the only person who didn't roll ANY doubles. Sad.
Christmas morning, I woke you up and said "Santa came to our house last night" you said "No, Santa Work"...but he really did come!
Your favorite gift was the blowdryer...
You got lots of clothes, a new winter jacket and a broom from Santa. Mr Stephens, Lydia and the boys sent you some CASH MONEY which I think we will put to dancing class or gymnastics or something.

Round 3 of Christmas was Glamma and Cookies. You opened your presents (You Baby Can read DVD and lots of puzzles and books!) and then took a nap.
The Grades' all showed up around 1 and we had a great day.

Sunday morning, we went home so you could nap...then we headed down to Cannon Falls where Kiki had rented an adorable cabin.
We had so much fun hanging with everyone!

Tonight, Papa Jim is coming over to celebrate Christmas and then we are DONE! Phew!


Thursday, December 23, 2010

Talkin up a storm

Dear Amelia -
You have been talking like crazy lately. Here are some of your favorite things to say:
  • Baby
  • Dank To (Thank you)
  • Here you go (all strung together like one word)
  • Wotty (Potty)
  • 'Gians (Backyardigans...your favorite show)
You also love to sing the ABC's. Sometimes you don't get very far..."ABCD ABCD ABCD WITH ME!"

Every morning, you come with me in the bathroom and get ready. Sometimes you put on make up, sometimes you brush your teeth, sometimes you brush your hair...

Today and tomorrow, we are going to hang out at home since you don't have daycare and I have the day off.
Christmas Eve we head to your Great Uncle Johnny's for the evening with the Stephens'
Santa comes while you are sleeping so we will wake up and open presents from the big guy.
At 10am, we are going to Glamma and Cookie's to open gifts with them and Awesome Uncle Aldo.
At 1230pm, the rest of the Grade come for a day/night full of fun!
We will miss Billy, Pam and Jaxy very much and it will be very weird without them!
On the 26th, Grandma Kiki rented a cabin in Cannon Falls so we will spend Sunday night there. Mommy has to work Monday so I will wake up early and head to work. You and Daddy will spend the day there and meet me at home when I get home from work.

Fun weekend! We will be sure to have tons of pictures on Monday or Tuesday's blog!


Saturday, December 18, 2010

Santa and 2 year appt

Dear Amelia -
On Monday, we spent the day together. We got your hair cut, did some shopping and went to see Santa. You were so well behaved. You told Santa what you wanted for Christmas. You were such a good girl this year that I'm sure you will get everything you asked for.
Last Thursday, you had your 2 year appointment. We were over a month late, better late than never!

Here are the stats from your 18 month appt:

Weight: 26 pounds 3 ounces - 70%
Length: 33.75 - 75%
Head: 19.5" - 98% :)

Your 2 year appt:
Weight: 27 pounds 3 ounces - 55%
Length: 35" 75%
Head: 19.5" - 97%

Once again, you pasted your autism screening with flying colors!

We don't need to go back to the doc until you are THREE!

This weekend, we are going to wrap presents and do a little shopping. Tonight, we are going over to Sarah and Justins for a Hanukah party and tomorrow we are celebrating Christmas with the Dirks!


Monday, December 13, 2010

2010 Blizzard!

Dear Amelia -
We had a weekend of fun plans but Mother Nature had another idea. A huge snow storm, 5th biggest in Minneapolis history.
Saturday morning, Daddy was called off work (woo hoo!) We had the PD Holiday party at noon on Saturday. If Daddy hadn't been home, we wouldn't have gone. The roads were awful, not to mention not being able to get out of the driveway. The visibility was the worst part of driving. We made it safe and sound.
Santa made it to the party too. He even brought you "Scout" the leapfrog Dog.

After the party, we took you home to take a nap. Saturday night, we were suppose to go see Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat but it was all the way in St Paul so we decided to not make the trek out there...it ended up
being canceled anyway. So we just hung out at Glamma and Cookies for the night.
On Saturday night, we found out the Vikings game that we had tickets to was moved to Monday night. Until this happened...
Sunday morning we woke up to news that the Metrodome roof caved in.

(Top picture is how it normally looks, bottom picture is caved in)

After we hung out for a bit, we decided to go home. We scored a snow blower from Glamma and Cookie so Daddy was excited to go home to tackle the snow.
Here is a picture of the front of our house.

Today, Daddy has to work as it is their busiest week of the year so you and I are home together today.


Tree Shopping!

Dear Amelia -
Last week we went to our favorite little Christmas tree parking lot in Knollwood to find another perfect tree for a reasonable price. It was cold but you were a very good girl and a great helper.

After we picked out our tree, we went home and you helped put the decorations up. All of the ornaments might have been all in the same spot but you were having a fun time!


Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Like Totally 80's

Dear Amelia -
This is my first blog as a THIRTY year old. I woke up that morning feeling old. Like, really old.
I wasn't as excited for my birthday as I was for my BIRTHDAY PARTY. I talked about it non stop for the last month, not to mention last 5 years. We had a great time!

Daddy and Alex went as "Miami Vice"

I went as an eighties rocker chick. Kia did my hair and I spoiled myself and got my make up done at Mac.
Almost everyone dressed up, which was a requirement and it was totally rad to see everyone.

Next up: 40th 90's party!


Thursday, December 2, 2010

Courtney Anne Dirks

Dear Amelia Alixandra Dirks:

Today is your Mommy’s 30th birthday…which I cannot believe. Seriously…where did the time go?

Your Mommy seemed to be pretty content in my tummy so it took a couple of trips to the hospital before she decided to grace us with her presence. Since she was two-weeks overdue so the first trip to the hospital was to be induced (or as your great Aunt Katie told Great-Grandpa Grade…I was going to the hospital to be seduced…funny) and it did not work but the second trip was the charm. After almost 30 hours of labor she made her entrance…and life was never the same.

She was born on 12/2/1980 at 9:51 pm at Eitel Hospital in Minneapolis. It was a very small hospital near Loring Park (that closed in 1985) and she was the only baby born that day so we got lots of attention. The nurse said as soon as she was born that she looked just like the Gerber Baby…and she did. She had big brown eyes and a little bit of brown hair (she has beautiful hair now…but was 3 years old before she had “real” hair) and perfect little rosebud lips.

The doctor that delivered her was this crazy Russian guy by the name of Dr. Yankelvich. She weighed 7 pounds 11.5 ounces and was 20 ¾ inches long. I do not recall the exact circumference of her noggin…but when she was born Dr. Yankelvich asked, in a very thick Russian accent, “if big head-skis run in our family”. The answer was YES.

We named her Courtney Anne Stephens. I loved the name Courtney from the time I was in high school and knew if I ever had a baby girl that was what I was going to name her. Her middle name is after your Great Aunt Anner. If she had been a boy we would have named “him” Sam. In those days we did not know what our babies were going to be until the moment the doctor told us.

From that day forward my life changed…in the best way possible. Being a Mommy is the most amazing and rewarding experience ever. Your Mommy made it easy…she was so good natured and easy-going…well until high school anyway. She was loved by so many people…her Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles and lots of family friends.

So here I am, barely over 30 myself, watching my baby be a Mommy. I could not be any more proud of her and being a Mommy is very natural for her. You know this already because she is your Mommy.

Your Mommy is a great wife, daughter, sister, niece and granddaughter too. Your Daddy is a wonderful Daddy and is just perfect for your Mommy. They are great friends and wonderful parents. Papa Jim and Grandma Kiki did a wonderful job raising him and he is an important part of our family along with Billy, Pam, Jaxi, Alex, Tore and of course Cookie. Your Mommy and Uncle Billy have a very special relationship and bond that I hope some day you will have with a sibling. (Hint intended…)

I was lucky enough to be in the delivery room when you were born and fell in love with you the moment you were born. You light up my life and I love you with all my heart. I cannot even imagine life without you. I have been blessed in so many ways…and in the words of Flossy…I am one lucky old broad.

Love Always,

Glamma (aka Amma)

Wednesday, December 1, 2010


Dear Amelia -
Another successful Holiday weekend. We had a nice time with the Colehours on Thanksgiving. On Saturday, it was Awesome Uncle Aldo's birthday so while you stayed home with She-she, we went to Dave and Busters to play some games.
Sunday, the Vikings actually won which made everyone happy!

Yesterday was Mr Stephens' 55th birthday. He told us not to call him but we did anyway.

Speaking of birthdays, my 30th birthday is tomorrow. Yikes, thats old. The big 80's party is on Saturday!


Wednesday, November 24, 2010


Dear Amelia -
Tomorrow is Thanksgiving, my favorite holiday.

If you could talk, you would say you are thankful for the following:
Your Grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, Elmo, Backyardgains ('gins as you call them,) your baby and blankie and eggos. Oh and don't forget your Daddy, Mommy and Norman.
Our plans for tomorrow are to go over to Glamma and Cookie's for Colehour Thanksgiving. Should be a fun time!


Wednesday, November 17, 2010


Dear Amelia -
Sorry for being a bad blogger. I've included a video to make up for it!

This weekend, we got our first snow fall. It was a lot of snow over a short period of time but HEY, we live in Minnesota so we should be use to it. Plus, now I can listen to Christmas music...without the snow, it was just weird.

I took you outside and you hated it...
On the way to daycare/work, I could hear you singing in the backseat. I finally figured out you were singing the ABC's. My favorite part is when you try to sing "LMNOP" and your mouth goes crazy. I think its your favorite part to sing!

Today our Jaxy turns 2!!!! Glamma gets to go visit him today, we are jealous.


Monday, November 8, 2010

My sleep number is 35

Dear Amelia -
After Kelly Clarkson ditched me at the State Fair last year, I wasn't sure she'd ever make it up to me. WELL SHE DID! A FREE show at the MOA! Kellee and I headed down to watch her. She still rocks :)
While I was at Kelly Clarkson, you were busy climbing out of your pack n play at Glamma and Cookies and opening the door. Fun! Its beginning!

Glamma and Cookie gave us the Select Comfort - Sleep Number bed that was in the guest bed room at their house. Its like HEAVEN! Daddy and I use to sleep on a full size bed because we couldn't get a queen down the stairs but since the mattress is air in a Sleep Number bed, we have a QUEEN! My sleep number is 35, Daddy's is 70. Perfect!
You and Daddy trying out the new bed.


Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Bye bye "sassy"

Dear Amelia -
For your 2nd birthday, we decided we needed to take your paci away. I don't want you to be one of those kids at Target that are 4 with a pacifier in your mouth....no way, not my kid.

Your last night with your "sassy"

It ended up being a genius move on our part taking it away on the same day as your birthday. You were so tired that you went right to sleep. You didn't ask for it at all. Sunday you asked for it but we ignored you. You have been paci free for a few days now and I think it might be a success!! Of course everyone has some advice to give about taking it away but we didn't need any of that!


Monday, November 1, 2010


Dear Amelia -
You woke up on your 2nd birthday to some heart shaped pancakes made by Daddy.
Your party started at noon. We had 15 people and it was very fun.
We had this cupcake cake made at Target...cute huh?
and yummy...
After sloppy joes, cake and presents...it was time to play!
You loved your big day!


Saturday, October 30, 2010


Dear Amelia -
2 years ago you were just hours old. Now you are over 17,520 hours. Somedays it feels like you've been around for ever and other times I can't believe that you are already two. When people say time flies, they aren't kidding....get it? KIDding. HA!

Your last day of being 1 was a busy day. You were growing right before my eyes. Putting on make up and being your sassy self.

We had a lot of errands to run and some last minute shopping to do before your party!
Here's what the 2 year old Amelia looks like.
We love you to pieces pretty girl!

More about your party and pictures to come!!


Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Jackson's first school picture

Dear Amelia -
Jaxy is adorable!
I love his little smirk and shrugged shoulders.


Monday, October 25, 2010


Dear Amelia -
Your last weekend of being 1 was fun. Friday, you stayed home with Daddy while I went over to Kelly's for a girls night.

Saturday we ran some errands then got ready for Awesome Uncle Aldo's football game in St Paul. You and Owen enjoyed walking around instead of watching the game.
We had a sleepover at Glamma and Cookie's Saturday night.
Glamma got you your first "comfy cozie". We decided to be funny and put a sweat band on you. You hated it.
In the afternoon, you took a 3.5 hour nap while I went to celebrate Kellee's birthday!

You started picking up on the fact that I call Daddy "Hunny" all the time. I must whine a lot when I say it...


Monday, October 18, 2010


Dear Amelia -
It was one of the last nice weekends in Minnesota. We got out to enjoy the weather while we could!
Friday after work/daycare, we took a little walk to the park.
The slide was a little scary! This picture makes me lol.
Saturday morning at 830 I got a call from Glamma wondering when you were coming over. I dropped you off around 930 and I went home to start organizing.

Daddy got home around 230 and we ran some errands before our date night.

We saw the movie Jackass 3D (we even wore 3D glasses.) It was hilarious. Your daddy makes everything even funnier with his laugh. After the movie, we went to dinner then back home.

Sunday, we went to Target and picked out your adorable Halloween costume along with a $5 costume for Norman. We picked you up at 10am and went to a little pumpkin patch by our house.
At first, you were a little scared of the pumpkins but then you warmed up to them. You kept calling it an "APPLE"
You were very proud of your Apple.

Our day was finished with a VIKINGS WIN! YIPPIE!


Friday, October 15, 2010

We love GLEE

Dear Amelia -
With your birthday being 2 weeks away, we have to get the house organized for your birthday party. Its going to be much smaller than your 1st birthday but just as fun! You are going over to Glamma and Cookie in the morning for the day and a sleepover. Daddy and I are going to see a movie.

Sunday, we are going to go to a pumpkin patch and watch football!

Mommy's favorite show is becoming your favorite show. You love to sing and dance, sometimes even copying their dance moves.


Monday, October 11, 2010


Dear Amelia -
The Vikings play the Jets tonight. Its the first game that Randy Moss will play back in a Vikings jersey! I can't wait for the game.
We had a fun weekend. While I went out with the girls downtown (pictures to come,) you went with Daddy to Kiki's for dinner. You had a sleepover. You were home bright and early (830am.) Daddy was so nice and let me take 2 naps because I didn't get much sleep the night before. He's the best.

Almost game time!


Friday, October 8, 2010

Because we belonggg together!

Dear Amelia -
Every morning on our way to work. We listen to Kelly Clarkson and dance! Here's proof:

If I do not promptly dance, you say "DANCE MOMMY!"

This weekend, I'm celebrating collectively with my girlfriends for our 30th birthdays! You are going to hang with Daddy while I stay in a hotel downtown! Fun


Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Happy Camper!

Dear Amelia -
Your first camping trip was a SUCCESS! You went down with Glamma and Cookie Friday. We met you for tailgating Saturday! We met Ben's girlfriend for the first time. You loved her. Her name is Angela but you called her "Ala" and said her name any chance you could get!
Awesome Uncle Aldo has grown a mustache. It looks disgusting. :) Hopefully he'll shave it soon!

Here are some more pictures from camping.
This one is my new fav....

Today is Norman's 5th birthday! Happy birthday Nerm!

Also, on another exciting note...Randy Moss is back with the Vikings. Its all people have been talking about all day! Verrrry exciting to have him back!


Monday, October 4, 2010

I love NY

Dear Amelia -
My trip to NYC went a little like this...
Our flight was delayed 3 hours so we were late for the reading. A “reading” is when the actors act and sing the play without moving much. They just stand and read from a book that has their script in it. Whoopi wasn’t there but Sam from Lost was. He was SO nice and I got my picture taken with him. Unfortunately, that was my only famous encounter.

After the reading was over, I walked to the restaurant where I had made reservations for in a private room. Hurley’s is an Irish bar where all of the people who work there are from Ireland. Great food but even better d├ęcor.

After dinner, I went to check into my hotel room at the Westin (in Times Square.) I walked in and realized that I had stayed there before. I’ve only been to NYC once before that so that was kind of crazy. It wasn’t a Westin last time I was there tho. After I checked in, I decided to go find you an "I (heart) NY" tshirt for you. I didn’t have to go far...found one right away. Then back to the room to go nini’s.

It was such a fun trip! I want to go back!


PS - Wednesday I'll post the super cute pictures from camping this weekend.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

New car and NYC

Dear Amelia -
I've been slackin on the bloggin. Its been a busy week. Since we've been down to one car, Glamma has been carpooling with us to work. We've slept at their house 2 nights in a row. Tonight is your only night at home because tomorrow you are sleeping over there because Mommy is headed to New York City on Friday! Mommy's boss is producing a play on Broadway and they have their first "reading" Friday and he invited me to go! I can't wait. Nicol and Kellee will be jealous to know that he told me he's going to introduce me to some dude from the TV show Lost. I don't watch the show but I already think its cool! Whoopi Goldberg is also a producer so I'm hoping she'll be there too so I can meet her! I leave Friday morning and come back Saturday morning! I'll take tons of pictures. We are staying in Times Square. Yay!

Friday night, you are headed down to Winona for your first camping trip! Cookie rented a 30' motorhome! After Daddy gets home from work Saturday, we will drive down to meet you. We'll watch Awesome Uncle Aldo's football game then head back to the campsite!

Here is a video of you from last weekend dancing. I'm not sure where you learned this awesome dance move but I love it!

Here's a picture of you celebrating a Vikings VICTORY!

We picked up our new 2 door Honda civic today! WOO HOO! It'll be nice to have 2 cars again!


Saturday, September 25, 2010

Dear Amelia -
Daddy received an email from Uncle Doodie the other day that I would like to share with you...

"It was fun having dinner with the Dirks the other night. I also just wanted to let you and Courtney know you two are really great parents. You are raising Amelia to be an outstanding daughter. Even though she was a little pill at times last night at dinner, you two handled it beautifully. Anyway, I am a proud uncle doodie. Can't wait for Sunday."

Wasn't that nice of him? You were a pill the night that he is talking about but we still love you :)

This weekend is going to be low key. Daddy is working right now, when he gets home we are going to go to Target. Tonight I'm going out to dinner with Ashley, Brooke and Courtney K to hear all about Brooke and Greg's engagement! Tomorrow is all about FOOTBALL! Go Vikes!


Tuesday, September 21, 2010

RIP ViVi the Volvo

Dear Amelia -
Daddy went to the Vikings game with Justin on Sunday. They had so much fun. Justin is a co-owner of this wonderful Vikings Motorhome!

Too bad the Vikings lost. They still had a great time.

Well, remember how I said my car died on Saturday morning...she's gone for good. It will cost $3000 to fix and she's not even worth that much. Last night we dropped you off at Meghan and Lyndsey's while we went car shopping. You had so much fun, I think you even have a crush on Lynds' boyfriend Jeremy.

We didn't have any luck finding a car in our price range (lots outside of it)