Wednesday, December 30, 2009

2009... Good Memories!

As we finish up the last day of 2009, I wanted to glance back and the INCREDIBLE memories from this year.
The Zehnder/Olson family had some exciting times and wonderful blessings...

Ry-Guy made his entrance on April 29, 2009...

Our Family

First ride home in the car

and now... TA- DAH! Our happy little "Mister"

Tracy and Tim TIE THE KNOT!

a special shower for a special sister... read about that here...

and then the BIG day- with a beautiful bride, handsome groom and INCREDIBLE memories! I am so excited to have Tim as a brother-in-law... he makes my sis SO happy! They are not only in love, but absolutely PERFECT for each other.

Family picture time

Mr. and Mrs. Lesher
(for more pictures see Tracy-girl's page here)

We finished out the year with (drum roll here)
dun dun dun dun dun dun dun......


We had a photo booth, fun decorations, an incredible slideshow, good food and best of all... GREAT COMPANY to celebrate "Fireman Mike's" 36 (yes, that's right, 36) years of service for the Elk Grove Fire Department. I am so proud to have him as my dad... I beamed all evening with the comments people made about his time with the department. Although he is happy to be retired (and enjoys spending time with his sidekick Ry-Guy) I think he will always have a piece of him that misses being a part of the firefighter family. It wouldn't be fair to mention Dad with out special recognition for Mom and her hard work to support Dad, our family and run the house. God smiled the day he gave me Mike and Kathy for my parents!

Don't worry, you're not seeing double... we had a life size cut out of "Fireman Mike"

So many "artifacts" helped with decorations

As I remember back on the good memories, I must pause for a moment and remember those who have had their world turned upside down this year... diseases discovered, loss of a loved one, financial struggles... the list goes on an on. I pray for each of my friends, family and ANYONE with painful memories from this past year- may you find many blessings and peace in your hearts during the NEW year, 2010.

What will 2010 have in store for us???
I don't know, but definitely have my HOPES and WISHES!

wink, wink~fingers crossed....

What are your hopes for 2010??

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas to YOU and your family!
(and Happy Birthday to Jesus!)

May today bring you exciting moments and happy memories.

A picture of Ry-guy with Santa (his GREAT GRANDPA!)
I have the same photo of me with Santa (Grandpa). I will try and dig it up so I can post it!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

I got lost, but now I am found!

After several months I have decided to catch up! Maybe I will try a few shorter blogs and see if I can get a little more information up. We are very excited for our first Christmas with Ry-guy. He won't remember anything we get for him, but we will take lots of pictures. He loves ribbon, wrapping paper and lights.

More than anything, I feel so incredibly blessed to spend these holidays with my family- my healthy family. My heart aches for all those who have lost someone close to them- this is an empty time. May memories comfort those of you remembering lost loved ones these next few days and weeks.

This photo of Ry-guy and Gracie makes me laugh every time... after many attempts to have them look the same way at the same time... we get them to do it... but with their eyes closed!

He LOVES ribbon and wrapping paper!

One word... BLESSED.

What are you most excited about this holiday season?

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Thankful Thursday!

Has it really been a month since my last post?  YES IT HAS!

I started back to work on July 29th and between being a wife, mom and counselor, I have managed to keep VERY busy!  
Good timing today because I can do THANKFUL THURSDAYS!  Here are the things I am thankful for this week...

1.  My healthy and beautiful Ry-guy (I think this is always going to be #1)

2.  My hubby J-Lo... he takes such good care of me!
3.  My job and
4. the people I work with- I know I have said it before, but I am so blessed!
5.  My dad- he really is the best ever... he watches Ry-guy for us when Jason and I are both working... he is the best "Pops" ever!  
6. My beautiful Bride sis Tracy... just a few more days!! Can't wait to stand beside her!
7.  Juju... she motivated me to run last night even though I wasn't feeling like it :-)
8. My health and the health of my family
9.  White Chocolate Mochas- it is a splurge, but I enjoy them SO MUCH

(I am bummed that this is all underlined, but can't figure out how to take it off!!!!) OH well!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Thankful Thursdays

Yeah! I am actually making "Thankful Thursdays" on THURSDAY! 
(Imagine that!)

1.  My happy, healthy and sleeping through the night son Ry-guy
2.  My incredible babysitter -my Dad (he's the best!)
3.  J-Lo- he sends me messages throughout the day while he is at work and they make me feel so special.
4.  My job.  I started back to work this week- I won't lie, it was hard but in this economy I am glad I not only have a job, but one I love.
5.  The people I work with- they help make the job so wonderful.
6. My sisters- I feel so lucky to have them to talk to about anything.
7. My mom- she is so sweet... she went shopping yesterday and found a dress for me to wear to 
8. my cousin Anna's wedding this weekend (I can't wait, she will be incredible!)
9. My health
10. Sore muscles- it means I had time to workout and my muscles are getting toned! 

Sunday, July 26, 2009

A Beautiful Day for a Beautiful Bride

When you love someone as much as I love my sisters you want to do everything you can to make them feel special as often as you can.  God has blessed me with the most amazing family and given me two of the best friends a girl could ask for... my sisters.  Yesterday was a time to celebrate my sister and bride-to-be TRACY!!!

Stylish Bride

With the wedding just a little over a month away, Juju and I decided to make sure we help celebrate with Tracy "in style".  We threw her a shower with the theme being shoes and asked each of the guests to wear their favorite pair of shoes.  It was a fitting theme because one of the most special pieces of Tracy's day will be the incredible shoes TL surprised her with just a few months ago (read about it here).  Not only are they her DREAM shoes, TL bought them for her (he thinks of those things all on his own- yes he is a KEEPER!) and they are from her favorite movie, Sex and the City.   

Our Shoes 
(notice my mom's? read about them here)

We found just about everything SHOE related that we possibly could.  We did black and white colors (to coordinate with the wedding of course) and everything looked so cute! We even used her special shoes as a decoration. 

Shoe cookies for all of the guests-Tracy's was special just for her and BLUE of course!

Probably the best part of all was seeing my sister so happy.  She brings joy to the lives of EVERYONE who knows her.  She is always thoughtful, writing random and uplifting notes or putting together packages for a special time.  She thinks of everyone else first- I think she gets that from my mom.  I was so excited that so many wonderful people were able to come and celebrate Tracy with us.  I think it says a lot about a person's kindness and character when they have so many friends from all of the different pieces of their life.  She had friends from high school (and their moms!), college, work and family.  I hope everyone had as much fun as Juju and I did!

Some of the girls in the wedding- three of them drove all the way up from down SOUTH!

I love my sister Tracy more than she will ever know and I was so excited to have a day to celebrate the upcoming wedding with her! Thanks to all of our special guests! 

Love you Tracy Jean!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Just Keep Swimming!

My swim necessities (plus a pool of course!)

I consider myself a relatively healthy person. I try to eat well (minus the candy I LOVE!) and enjoy exercising on a regular basis.  I have run three marathons (I think those days are over!) and several half marathons.  I am thinking about doing the Cowtown Half Marathon in October-- if I am ready.  In the meantime, with recovering from a c-section & the 100 degree heat, I have really enjoyed the low impact activity of swimming.  I have been participating, thanks to my friends Paula and Darcy, in the triathlon training class at the gym and am going to give the triathlon world a try-- Go team VAG! (Very Athletic Girls-I didn't think up the name, my labor and delivery nurse friends did-creative eh?).  This class has really given me different ways of getting a good workout in the pool.  Plus, the people in the class are so friendly and supportive.  

The best part about swimming is the muscle toning and cardiovascular workout you get all with one activity.  It does not require expensive supplies, as long as you have access to a pool.  It gives me an opportunity to think and have some "alone time" too.  My most recent purchases were a new swim cap and a few new swimsuits.  I heard about the website and ordered my new suits from there.  I LOVE THEM.  They fit perfectly, were VERY reasonably priced and were exactly what I wanted.  They have an option of doing a "grab bag" which basically means that you pick the size and they give you any print of suit that they have.  It is fun and they are less expensive too!  

With the countdown to TL & Tracy's wedding (I CANNOT WAIT!) I am up for anything to get myself back into shape and stand beside her on this amazing day.  

What kinds of physical activities do you do?  Do you LOVE sugar as much as I do?

Hope your week is going great!

Friday, July 17, 2009

Friday Favorites...

So my sister Tracy does "Thankful Thursdays" on her blog.  I was chatting with her last night and decided it is something I would like to do, but it was too late for me to start last night (Ry-guy was sleeping and I try to get as much sleep while he is sleeping as I can).  So for this week, I am doing Favorite Friday! Here are a "few of my favorite things" (Feel free to sing to yourself as you say it)
1. My Son- this will be on all my "favorite things" posts so I will be specific for each one... this week, his BLUE eyes.


2.  Laying in bed and listening to the rain- too bad it is 103 degrees here today.

3.  When J-Lo makes me dinner- I'll be honest- he does ALL the cooking... I am a lucky girl!

4. My family- they rock, every single one of them! I need to do a post on these amazing people. Read about my dad specifically in one of my earlier blogs.

5. Corn on the cob... I swear I could eat 100 ears of it! 

6. New shoes- they make any outfit feel cuter...

7. Doing laundry- nope, I don't need my head examined, I really do love it!  It could be my AWESOME washer and dryer too... 

8. White Mochas- I like them from anywhere, but It's A Grind's are the best!

9. Hawaii- so many good memories there.

10. A hot bath with candles lit around the tub.

What are some of your favorite things?  Do we share any favorite things?
Happy Friday everyone! 

Wednesday, July 8, 2009


I have been the proud owner of two cars in the 12 years I have been driving.  First a Ford Escort (loved that little car) and now a Volkswagen Jetta.  I love my car and don't feel the need to have a new one anytime soon.  J-Lo has a Ford F 150 pick-up truck (which I really enjoy driving!) and had a Ford Ranger when we met (he LOVES Ford automobiles).  From time to time we like to talk about the next car we will buy.  Depending on my mood that day or a new car I have seen recently, my choice changes.  Because J-Lo loves Fords, he thinks that I should get a Ford Taurus or Crown Victoria.  Both of them are very nice cars, but not something I am interested in (mainly because they aren't much different than the car I have now and they are also something I would picture myself driving when I am maybe a little older).   My mom thinks it is funny that he wants me to drive one of these cars and we all joke about it all the time.  When we were in Monterey I found this car and had to take a picture of it.  I think in a perfect world, this is probably the car J-Lo would want me to have....

Nice wheels, but I was thinking more along the lines of a car like this...

What do you think??? 

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Family Vacation Fun!

We took our first overnight trip with little Ry-Guy this last week.  It was beautiful weather in Monterey & Carmel- not 108 degrees like it was at home.  Ry-guy is an excellent traveller, although I must say that we have to bring everything short of the kitchen sink for the little guy!  I say better to have it and not need it than need it and not have it.  

Family photo- maybe next time minus the sun!

The entire family was able to make the trip.   Everyone enjoyed each other's company and Ry-guy was able to hang out with some of his favorite people.  We hiked on the rocks and looked in the tide pools.  You should have seen Tracy, Julie and me... we were like little kids when we found all of the starfish and sea anemones.  Mom and I walked on the beach up and back and saw a ton of dolphins... I so enjoy their company and feel so fortunate to have each of them in my life.  

Ry-guy snoozing with Auntie Juju  

Our favorite men making breakfast

J-Lo and I also shared our anniversary in Monterey.  It was perfect because it is one of our favorite places.  We went to the Chart House for dinner and when we got our bill, the waitress said Ry-guy had taken care of the bill with a gift card.  Can you believe it? A two month old paid our bill!  I think he might have been helped out by some special grandparents I know... 

J-Lo and I on our anniversary

Family vacations are some of the best memories I have and I enjoy continuing to make them with our new additions to the family!

My favorite girls!

Monday, June 29, 2009

The Doctor's Office

Ry-guy is two months old today.  I can't believe how quickly the time passes.  We took him to his doctor appointment this morning and the doctor said he healthy!  Although I had no doubt he is doing well, it is always nice to hear it from someone who went to school for so long to learn about babies! :-)  The unfortunate part about the two month appointment is that it included his first round of shots.  I was so glad J-Lo was with me.  He held little man while they poked him.  I think it was more traumatic for me than it was for him.  After giving him the three pokes he cried a little-we gave him his pacifier- and he was ready for a nap.  God was smiling down on me the day he made my son... I am SO LUCKY!  The doctor said he might be fussy, but so far, we are all good.  (The little bit of Tylenol we gave him before his appointment might have helped us out too!)  

I am glad my Ry-guy is healthy because that has not been the case for me.  For any of the breast feeding mom's out there, be sure to get any signs of mastitis checked out right away.  I write about this in attempt to get more awareness out there of this  infection.  

I believe my case started a little over two weeks ago.  I was at the doctor already for my last check up and the doctor saw the redness on my breast.  She did not seem concerned so I wasn't.  A few days later I called the advice nurse because it wasn't getting better and there was a large lump.  The common question is always "do you have a fever?"  In my case, the answer was no.  When I told the nurse about the lump and the BRIGHT RED spot, she got me an appointment the next day.  I went to the appointment, received the antibiotic and continued with the usual suggestions for treatment- warm compresses, rest and nursing as much as possible.  After a few more days, my symptoms were the same, if not worse.  I have always thought that antibiotics should work within 24-48 hours... not happening.  I called the advice nurse again.  This advice nurse that I spoke with was not concerned and said to call back if things got worse... 

A few days later the doctor that delivered Ry-guy called to check in... she asked how I was (she probably wishes she hadn't!) and I told her the story.  She got me an appointment for an ultrasound THAT DAY to have it checked out.  WHEW... finally, someone else who was thinking this huge lump and red sore were not a good thing... When I got to the appointment, I regretted immediately that I didn't bring someone with me.  The whole process was pretty scary- after they did an ultrasound, they did an aspiration (drained) the now LARGE abscess.  It was pretty painful (in my opinion) and I was bummed that I had let this go so far.  The nurse (she was so sweet) assured me there was nothing I did to have this happen... it just does.  

So after the aspiration, my doctor called again and had me come to see her to check on the spot... after seeing me she wanted me to see a surgeon to see about possible removal of the lump... AAAHHHH... was all I could think.  Two appointments (with a rather good looking surgeon) later, we discovered that the antibiotics were beginning to work and surgery wasn't necessary- for now.  WHEW.  After a roller coaster of emotions I can only hope it continues to get better!  

Any new mom's out there, make sure to take care of yourselves.  I was so happy it was me and not Ry-guy with the issue, but I should have taken better care of getting into the doctor when the antibiotic wasn't working.  

He is getting SO BIG!  2 months and 12 pounds! (couldn't be the chubby cheeks?)

Sunday, June 21, 2009

A First Father's Day

Happy Father's Day to my AMAZING Husband and Dad!

My sister beat me to talking about how wonderful my dad is... Tracy has a gift of writing her feelings and in this case, the way she feels about our dad is exactly the way I do.  He is a role model for each of his daughters and so many others.  From sewing dresses to teaching us how to waterski... we have learned so much from my dad and have many memories we will treasure for a lifetime. 

In addition to his role as our dad, my dad has a new "hat" he wears with love and pride... Grandpa! One of Ry-guy's favorite places to be is sleeping on "Pop's" chest. Pops loves to give Ry-guy baths and they enjoy spending time together.  I can't help but smile each time I watch my dad interact with little "Ry-guy".  I am sure this will be something I blog about again very soon...

My STUD barefootin' dad

So proud to walk down the isle with him...

Proud "Pops"

Fortunately, I have another incredible dad to talk about this Father's day... J-Lo.  Ry-guy has already discovered, in his 7 weeks of life, what an wonderful dad he has (Gracie reminds Ry-guy just in case he forgets). Watching J-lo and how much he loves our son is something I can't get enough of... I just know the two of them are going to be best friends as Ry-guy gets older and they do all their activities together.   When we were in the hospital after Ry-guy was born, I didn't change one diaper... J-Lo changed them EVERY TIME!  (Don't worry, I do change them from time-to-time now.)

J-Lo with our son and "doghter" 
Truly the LOVES of my life

One last thing I must mention are the people in my life that don't have their dad's here to share this day with.  I am thinking of you and I hope that memories of your dad make you smile today.

Ok friends, this is my first official "solo" (meaning without Tracy's help) blog... let me know how I did! 
From Me to You... :-)

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Allow Me To Introduce Myself

     I talked myself out of the iphone - it took me a long time to decide I didn't need one with being at a computer all day at work and having fast internet at home.  Not to mention, having a new little guy means no trips to uncharted territory (no need for GPS).  Maybe i'll get one someday, but not now.  So no iphone means I allowed my sister Tracy to convince me... it's time to start a blog.  
     From me to you... i'll share my experiences - all of them from being a new mom, a wife of almost two years, and a high school counselor.  I live a blessed life, and I am hoping to meet other new moms, find fun ideas and share exciting times with my little Ry guy.  
My Little Ry Guy
My husband - lets call him "J-Lo"