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Tackles & Tutus: Introduction

By: Stephanie Ryan

My Story Blog #1 Tackles & Tutus

Wow! I have always dreamed of writing a blog that would actually be published – and here I am, pinch me! Let me introduce myself; My name is Stephanie and I wear many hats. I am a wife, teacher, cook, housekeeper, secretary, party planner, boo-boo kisser, scary monster exterminator, and mother of 5, yup 5…. F.I.V.E. 5 – awesome kids!

Gasp!!! I can usually predict the facial expression that is to come after that statement is made. Partially closed eyes, tight bite down on your teeth, confused, concerned eyebrows – It’s the typical reaction I get on a daily basis which is usually followed by an array of comments/ questions that I never have a quick response for. Quick-whit a trait which I’m lacking.

“No, I’m not crazy………no judging!”

“Yes, they all were planned………..Well, the two for one was a bit of a surprise!”

“Yes, there is one set of twins………. two for one!”

“Yes, my husband is a great help……… Seriously, he really is! We are a great team.”

And the most popular question,”do you have a tv?” Yes! This one gets me every time – it’s usually jokingly asked by someone that, grew up in a large family of 7-10 children, in a home with one bathroom. It’s usually followed by many additional questions about what my home looks like, how many children share a bedroom- and the final comment, “I just don’t know how you do it!”

I do! And here I am!

The stories people share when they see me out with all of the kids alone in public crack me up! There are times I have to prepare my family in the parking lot of the grocery store to not make eye contact, we need milk, just milk. It will take 5 minutes. You guessed it- the eye contact from my middle guy begins – it’s ALWAYS him. It begins with his adorable glance over and arms flailing while yelling “HELLO!” to every person we pass. Then, 2 hours later I have a lunch date planned with Gladys from the produce section (what was I even doing in the produce section!?!?) followed by a playdate with her grandchildren because her daughter has twins too, so naturally my twins and her twins must meet! We exchange phone numbers and as I load the kids back in the car just to realize I forgot the MILK! These are the kinds of things you can’t make up! A call to my husband, and as always he comes to the rescue stopping on the way home, usually followed by a statement like “didn’t you just go to the store with the kids?” Yes, yes I did, long story! You can only imagine my experiences when shopping in bulk at BJ’s Wholesale- 2 carts filled with purchases- all the kids in tow, each cart with one baby and an older child dangling from the side hitching a ride- it really is quite comical!

In all seriousness, I am blessed beyond measure. I will never grow old and lonely, just old! I will have a lot (more) gray hair, but I have that already! Hair dye glazes my roots every 4-6 weeks, blogs are written truthfully, right?

I do shower daily, get dressed, and even do my hair & makeup.. often. I’m still a person, much like many of you, can you believe it?!  I don’t get lost in my home trapped by mountains of laundry, toys and dirty bottles/ dishes as you all may imagine. Although, it does feel like that at times.  Mostly it’s an organized, fun place to be!

Every blog I have read has a catchy name. With four boys and one girl being my inspiration – that’s where I came up my own blog name, Tackles & Tutus. There is a lot of love running through our home daily. Although at times I feel like we’re hosting the WWE Smackdown Tag Team Championship.

I most recently took this photo of my daughter in a Tutu laid out on my kitchen floor holding on a hockey stick with one of her older brothers.

My oldest Jack is 6 years old, born the day before Superstorm Sandy (that’s a blog story in itself), then came Parker 4 years old,  followed by Brandon 3 years old, and last but not least-  Luca & Gabriella – just turned 1!

Time flies and I enjoy every moment, at least I try. Every day is far from perfect – I have learned to let go of some of the things that I used to obsess over – like having a picture perfect home 24/7. While my house is always clean, there are always toys around, a double pack and play /changing table/ bouncer/ exersaucer/ walker in my family room, my laundry room cabinets are filled with a months worth of formula x2 at times with boxes piled high when the cabinets are filled. My basement is partially a toy room/workshop – ha, who is my husband kidding, his workshop has shelves of baby clothes and you guessed it, TOYS that are exploding out of the play room side!

You can imagine the excitement I had when I was asked to start blogging! The topics that spun through my head, too many to even count! There are so many stories to share – of love, hardship, illness, loss, chaos, fun, excitement and joy – nothing ever perfect, but at times perfect in my eyes.  I am so thrilled to share this all with you along the way! The love between a mother and her children is forever – amist all the hustle and bustle- I’m excited to have you all to join me on this journey!