Family Pictures

Caleb, Aaron, Elisheva, Jacob and Jennifer

Jennifer has migrated our family picture albums to this new website:
Check there for all of our most recent pictures. Also, check out the most-most recent pictures on Facebook.

Jacob Edgar Stevens

Born Wednesday, September 26 at 1 am at Mt. Auburn Hospital in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Jacob weighed in at 8 pounds 1 ounce, and measured 21" long.

Jacob is named after Jennifer's maternal grandfather, whose middle name was Edgar.

Being a third kid, we neglected to post his picture here until he was 19 months old and running around and climbing. Oops.

Elisheva Noa Stevens (Ellie)

Born Saturday, May 24th, 2008 at 5:28 pm at Mt. Auburn Hospital in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Ellie weighed in at 7 pounds 15 ounces, and measured 21" long.

After spending her first week as "Baby Girl Stevens," Ellie was named on her eighth day, at a Kabbalat Bat ceremony at our house.

Ellie is named after our dear cousin Elizabeth Stern Thompson (Elisheva bat Miriam v'Menachem), who passed away in November 2007 after a courageous battle with cancer. Liz was a wonderful friend, cousin, wife, and mother. When we moved to Boston in 2000, Liz and Evan made us feel immediately at home. Liz taught us about family and was a wonderful role model of parenting. We love her and miss her, and we have chosen to honor her memory in the name of our daughter.

The name Noa is a name that came independently to both Jennifer and me. It is considered a modern Israeli name (meaning "movement"), but has a biblical origin in the story of Zelophehad (parshat Pinchas, Numbers 26:33). The five daughters of Zelophehad lived during the Exodus of the Israelites from Egypt, and raised before Moses the case of a woman's right and obligation to inherit property in the absence of a male heir in the family. This set the precedent for women's inheritance rights in the Jewish tradition.

Caleb Stanley Stevens

Born Friday, March 24th, 2006 at 11:55 AM at Mt. Auburn Hospital in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Caleb weighed in at 8 pounds 15 ounces, and measured 21" long.

After spending his first week as "Baby Boy Stevens," Caleb was named on his eighth day, at the Jewish ceremony of Brit Milah.

I know many of you were frustrated that we weren't revealing the name until the bris, but we felt it important and appropriate to rely on tradition in this matter since the giving of a name is such a significant ritual.

How did we come to Caleb? First, it is a name we both like and agree on. Second, we wanted a name which was the same in both Hebrew ("Ka-lev") and English. And most importantly, we wanted a name with a good story.

The story is told in the book of Numbers (ch. 13-14): Moses sends out 12 spies (one each from the 12 Israelite tribes) to scout out the land of Israel. When they return, 10 of the spies lie about what they've seen, creating a rebellion against Moses. Only two spies, Caleb and Joshua, tell the truth. For their honestly and faithfulness, Caleb and Joshua are the only 2 men, over the age of 20, who live to enter the land of Israel; all of the others are punished for their lies, and perish in the 40 years of wandering in the desert.

We believe the name Caleb has a strong meaning, associated with honesty, loyalty, and faithfulness. We hope our son will live up to these wonderful values.

A Jewish tradition we wanted to continue is that of giving names from the family, in honor of loved ones no longer with us. Stanley Stevens (1916-2000) was Aaron's grandfather. When Aaron and Jennifer visited Grandpa Stanley and Grandma Perry in 1999, the elder Stanley told us that he had always tried to "parent casually." Grandpa Stanley passed away in March of 2000, and Caleb was born during the week of his yartzeit. We hope to follow his parenting style, and we choose to honor his memory in the middle name of our son.
Updated 5/6/2014