Kiss Me Lately

I created this blog outside of my personal family blog because I wanted to start separating family life and work life.  Often both come together in such a way that they are symbiotic and with out one the other wouldn’t be complete, but I consider them two separate pursuits and living things.  I am a mom one minute and a creator the next. Depends what is going on and how much time I have in between “jobs”.

Such is the life of an Open Life.

Any who, the point of the above is that I don’t feel like I can continue sharing my art without first sharing my other two beautiful kids.

Logan and Tatum.

I have shared with you my first, Jack.  How he colors my life in so many ways, I know wanted to share with you the complete story.  My three kids are my LOVES. They are my heart.

Dream #3


I remember when I was a little girl I remember little babies liked me very much.  They would gravitate to me in public and I to them.  I remember babysitting my cousins and having a special bond with them.  I love kids.  I’ve worked with kids a lot, from fitness to dance to acting.  I relate to them well and have somewhere in the back of my mind the desire to open a school.  I am very fulfilled when I see a child learning and having fun.

I also remember sitting on Long Island, NY with a very good friend of mines father, who at the time was some what of a mentor for me, talking to me, my hubby and our friend about our “acting careers while eating pasta and drinking wine

He looked at me and said, and you know Steph, ” you have to consider that “one day” you will probably want to have kids.


One day.

Well what I didn’t realize was that when I agreed it was an idea.

Of course I wanted to have kids.  I couldn’t really imagine not having kids.  I wanted a family.

I certainly wanted to experience the joy every parent talks about–kids can sometimes  be a challenge BUT worth every bit of effort.

After meeting Matt and getting married we both knew in our hearts we were going to have a family.

An acting career became very trivial and uninteresting.  We wanted to think about something besides ourselves.

Having kids has made me who I am today as a person and very much as an artist.

I would have never picked up a camera.  I would have never picked up a paint brush.  I would have never been still enough to realize that I had other things inside me besides “performing”.

I LOVE acting and always will.

I LOVE my kids more.  I LOVE my life with them.  They color me in ways I would have never imagined.

After Jack was born we had two years with him, and knew we wanted him to have a sibling.

We went for it and nine months later came LOGAN SCOTT LANE.

Oh Logan.  What a beautiful soul.

He is the rock in my life.

He is my keystone.

Strength is given to me each time I look into his eyes and see his amazingly happy smile.

He is one of the happiest 5 year olds I have ever seen.

He loves to laugh and make others laugh, he is my Chevy Chase.

 I look to him when I need to find my center.

I look to him when I need to get a grip and get some perspective.

When I need to find the LIGHT in my life and LAUGH.

It’s only life after all.

We started calling him “Logan Horse” when he was 4 months old.  Why?

Who knows.

 It seemed to fit.

Horses are strong.

He lifts the spirits of anyone who come close to him.

I think he always will.

He is amazing, beautiful, funny and simply my LOGAN HORSE.

Guess Matt and I were having SO much fun we decided to have another!

 We were not planning on it so soon.

I swear the day we talked about possibly having a third I must have gotten pregnant.

We moved back to Tennessee from Los Angeles and found out two weeks in that we were having another “burritos”.

We were surprise to say the least, but at the same time very excited about creating the triangle we always dreamed of.  There would be two siblings now for Jack.

To help if he ever needed some help other than himself.

We decided to wait to find out the sex.

We knew the first two times and knowing this was the last we wanted to give it a shot.

It was really hard.


Of course we wanted a girl.


Blue and trucks and hammers laid everywhere.

Pink would be nice.

A change.



We waited and waited.

We went in to the hospital and had to wait 24 hours more.

And then….

it was….




Little Ms. Pink

My lucky charm.

What a surprise.

I always wanted wanted  to have a little girl to tell my secrets to.  I always wanted a little girl to have tea parties and play with and put into dance.  A little girl who was like me.  Not like me.  All at the same time.

She makes feel safe.  She makes me open my eyes and look at all the beauty around me.  She helps me realize everyday that life is beautiful.

She is such a free spirit.  She is very much a little girl that will go somewhere, some place, some how.  I hope she tells me all her secrets.  Most of all I hope we are best of friends.

She makes me want to be a better woman and better person everyday I look in her eyes and see where beauty sleeps.

She carries my heart with her everyday.

My little lucky charm, how lucky I am.

Oh my babies.

Not “babies” anymore.



I am full.

I am happy.

I remember when I was pregnant for those long years.  One on top of the other.  Jack was born in 04, Logan in 06, and Tatum in 07.  It seemed I would never return to “normal”.

But I did and I am but I never “returned”.  I was forever changed.  I was forever altered.

I went to a therapist for a while to talk about my altered life and how I wasn’t sure where “I” had gone.

I have had some hard times trying to integrate my old self with my new self.

 I told her that I was so disappointed in myself because I hadn’t “created” anything in years.

I stopped acting. I had stopped writing, which I did A LOT, I also stopped dancing and working out, I stopped almost anything “artistic and creative”.

She looked at me with wide truthful eyes and said, “my dear you HAVE been CREATING, you have been CREATING LIFE.

I was stunned.

It hit me like a meter out of the sky.

It was true.

I was too busy, very busy indeed.  I was ” CREATING” 3 beautiful children that will FOREVER color my world with happy light.

Nothing else could or ever would compare.

I couldn’t create anything else.

 I was full.

After those years.  I picked up my first drawing pencil and starting drawing and sketching and painting.  I didn’t know I could draw unil then.  I would have never picked up a camera if it wasn’t for them.  I am more artistic and productive in the arts than I have been in 15 years.

I am who I am today because of them.


To fly and be.

They are part of my  skin now.

My spectrum.

My dream.

I have always known them.

I will never forget them.

Because of them

I am


I read this the other day. It is one of the MOST BEAUTIFUL and TRUTHFUL things I have ever read regarding being a parent to a child.

I am humbled.

I am truly scared.

I am at peace when I read this.

I don’t know why, but it makes me feel like everything will be O.K.

“Your children are not your children.

they are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.

they come through you but not from you,

and though they are with you,  yet they belong not to you.

You may give them your love,  but not your thoughts.

For they have their own thoughts.

You may house their bodies but not their souls,  for their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,

which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.

You  may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you.

For life goes not backward, but tarries with yesterday.”

-Kahlil Gibran-

What truth lies in these words and what beauty it is to have the opportunity to know this truth.

I am grateful.  I am full.

I am living the dream.


Author: openlifestudio

I am a self taught photographer and mixed media artist with a degree from the North Carolina School of the Arts in classical theatre performance. Stage was my first love and brought me into the world art while photography is what made me want to stay. I am married to superman, and am the mother of three little super-ducks. I studied creative writing at the Univeristy of Tn and classical drama at the NC School of the Arts, and a Masters in Education with concentration of inclusion and curriculum. I've liived in NYC and LA for the past decade and moved back to TN for some home cooking and back yard fun . I spend most of my days getting little ones through life and playing in my studio. I sell my work through different venues and am really happy where I find myself these days. I love to drink a bottle of wine (with my hubby) coupled with extra cheddar blast goldfish! Having kids has changed my life, the arts has shaped my life, and my soulmate continues everyday to walk through my life beside me. What else could a country city girl like me need.

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