Thursday, May 31, 2007

Flip Flops are BAD! :(

All bruised and battered, but still smiling :)

Ok, so I won't let you wait in suspense any longer...here is Shelby's new "makeover" :( We have sworn off flip-flops for the time being as we think they were the scoundrels that caused this unfortunate turn of events. It actually ended up looking worse after these pictures were taken...when it started to swell...her nose was (dare I say) double its size until today and now it looks like she got into a lovely cat fight with all the scratches due to the award winning face plant (thank you concrete!) :) So, our poor Shelby has a "lovely" looking makeover for the time-being...I think this was her worst fall yet. Sorry to our neighbor Jill who was left to watch her while I was at the car getting goldfish for a snack. If I'd been more prepared in the first place and had all the snacks in the stroller at Hailey's tennis practice this might have never happened. Oh well...we moms can't beat ourselves up over everything. For now Shelby is looking so perty with her scuffed up face and everyone we meet stares as us like we whip our child or let her get into cat fights :( And I am doing my best to keep flip-flops off her (darn those cheapy shoes that she loves so much...they just weren't made for running)! Poor Shelby girl (good thing we had her 3-year pictures taken that morning before her rendevous with the pavement!) :)

B-day Wishes to my "Old" Bud here in Bloomy :)

This is one of the only pics I could find of Heather in my thousands of pics...I KNOW I have some of me and her and some other better ones, but for the life of me I can't find them! Ugh! Anyway...this is my awesome bud who came to visit us the day Dylan was born (as you can see she's holding him)...and Emily (left) and Abby (below) are there too!
And how could I not post a pic of Kev and his best bud, Dave (Heather's hubby) :) Awww...what cute best buds! :) And below are best (crazy) buds Shelby and Ethan :) They are too darn cute together and I hope they get married some day! :)

Well, I couldn't let today go by without sending a big b-day shout-out to my good ol' super awesome buddy here in Bloomy...HEATHER! Ok, so I honestly don't think she even reads my blog anymore, but in case she does I didn't want her to think I was ignoring her! :) So, this one's for you, ol' Buddy ol' Pal! Happy 32nd (I hope your age wasn't a secret, cuz it isn't anymore :) Ha!) :)


Anyway...most of you don't know Heather cuz she's one of my "newer" friends, but she's this super awesome person that is one of those people that even though I've only known her a little over 2 years we have this bond like we've been friends forever. I guess we share a lot in common....we have wonderful hubbies (who by the way are best buds too and both like computers :))....and we both have 3 kids (2 girls followed by 1 boy)...we both are paranoid about certain things (yes, I admit I get paranoid about things :))...and we both just enjoy each other's company. Granted, she's much funnier than me and I certainly think she's a better person than me...but more than anything she's just a GREAT friend. I love her to death and I'm so glad God put us together in a small church group 2 years ago. Our families just love each other and love hanging out as often as we can. Her Ethan is one of Shelby's best buds and her Emily is one of Hailey's good friends too (and we love Abby too who is best buds with Kev's cousin here in Bloomy)...and her hubby Dave is just super awesome as well. Anyway.......so I didn't mean to give our lives' stories, but I just wanted to honor my awesome bud, Heather, today on her b-day! I love ya', my friend! :)

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Race Day Party Recap

Here's the Danville group...what a bunch of beautiful families! :)
The girls being a little antisocial (or maybe they were just hungry...who knows :)) I know Hailey was happy thanks to Kathy who french-braided her hair (Thanks, Kathy! She's still talking about how "mommy needs to learn to do that"!) :)
Fun with bubbles...
I just thought this shot was so cute...and so poetic of the "country life" of Danville...nothing like an ol' fence to climb on...I have no clue what they were all looking at (you can see Hailey is the third one from the left...Shelby and Dylan were elsewhere...that little guy climbing the fence on the left was close to Dylan's age...just not as lazy as Dylan obviously :))
Shelby with her Dora umbrella and chair right as it was starting to pour!
Dylan trying to eat the oats/barley...or whatever weed was growing here :)
Time for kickball (look at Hailey posed to run in the background!) And below is Ella, Charity and Shelby...too cute!


Just a brief post today as it is Hailey's last day in the 1st grade and I need to run to school soon to see her get an attendance and citizenship award. Kinda strange to think my baby is gonna be in 2nd grade soon...before I know it she'll be in high school and college and all grown up with a family of her own...why does time go by so fast?! So, the official summer vacation start tomorrow and from now until August my posts will probably be brief and few. But, I'll do my best.

Today I just wanted to post a few "race day party pics" from our annual shindig in Danville (on Sunday). It was a great time as usual. Even a couple downpours of rain didn't stop us from having some down-home fun! Most of Kev's old buddies were there with their growing families. We actually got an entire group shot this year (see above) of all the old Danville friends (plus the wives/husbands and kids who weren't fellow Danville-ers :)). It's always fun to see how everyone's kids have grown over the year and catch up on old times. We were thankful the weather was cooperative (for the most part)...it only poured twice, I think, (which was a damper on the Indy 500 :)...but thankfully we were able to be outside most of the time (which is VERY important for all the crazy-energied kids). Hailey made a new friend (I'm not even sure of her name or age, but she looked to be about the same age as Hailey)...and they both just ran around together all afternoon. Shelby kinda hung out with her buds, Charity and Ella (who were very cute, by the way, Ella (2 yrs) seemed very taken by Charity (almost 5 yrs)..see pic above :))...and Dylan...he pretty much clung to my leg all day (wish that boy would be more fond of walking!) But, it was a good time...good to see old friends, great food (I think the kids ate a whole pan of Brownies and cookies between them and we realized later that Hailey never even ate a real dinner...we're such great parents! :))...even the entertainment was great (watching the kids play was our amusement for the day...usually we join in a game of volleyball or some exciting sport, but that never even happened this year...I guess we were too busy with our little ones or maybe too lazy since we're all getting old...ha! :)). It was a great party as usual! Thanks to Bill and Joan for all the hospitality! We look forward to your party every year!

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Memorial Day Memories...

This is the joy I will always remember in my grandma's face...the joy she found in my children...in our whole family....this is the last time I saw her...I still remember her coming in her back room while I was nursing Dylan and saying something to me...I don't remember the words she used, but I think I knew she was saying goodbye...I love you, Grandma.
This is Memorial Day last year at the park where we were when my mom called...grandma would have wanted the smiles to go on so I tried to do that in her honor :)
Memorial Day this year....our sweet Shelby girl all smiles playing outside! Our sweet Dylan on "Race Day" (Sunday)...vroom, vroom little guy! And Daddy Kev and his "babies" on Memorial Day :)

Well, today marks the date that one year ago my wonderful and sweet grandma passed away. I still remember that heart-wrenching phonecall. It was Memorial Day and our little family of five was playing joyfully in a little park by our house when Kev's cell phone rang. It's not unusual for my mom to call us on a holiday (or every day :))...so I didn't think much of it. But, by the look on Kev's face as he talked to her briefly I could tell something was very wrong. At that point in time my grandpa G was in the hospital fighting his leukemia so I actually assumed it was news about him. But, through tears of sadness my mom broke the news to me that it was my grandma who had suddenly passed away that fateful morning. I was so very, very sad....I still remember almost dropping the phone in the park and not even knowing what to feel. I knew she was at peace now (which she had not been for some time on this earth as she battled Alzheimer's and other ailments as she was shuffled from home to hospital to rehab)...so my heart was happy for the peace she was now feeling in her new home in heaven...but at the same time I was selfishly beside myself with grief that I would never hear her beautiful happy voice on the other end of my phone or watch her enjoy my kids in the park or just enjoy her wonderful conversations. She was a lady like no other...she touched my life and the life of my family like no other....she loved and cared so very much...and a piece her I carry in my heart every day. Yesterday and today have been a bit hard for me. Not because I want her back here on earth...because I know how much she was suffering in the end...but because I just miss her presence in my life. But, I know we will be reunited one day and I know she is sitting up in heaven now with my grandpa by her side gazing down on me and keeping watch over my family. This brings me peace every day.


Every Memorial Day will bring back memories of that day a year ago where I lost a grandmother...a wonderful light in my life....


I actually tried to just go about my life today like it was an ordinary day...and I was doing pretty good too. I woke up thinking about my grandma and all the memories we had and all the happy times....I traveled to Indianpolis to get Dylan and Shelby's pictures taken...I was still doing good just going about my ordinary day. And then it happened...out of the blue a lady who looked just like my grandma...who even walked/shuffled along just like her...almost bumped right into me at Penney's...I just about lost it...I jumped on the elevator to compose myself and hold back the tears...it was very eery...to have that happen on the anniversay of her death. Still I get chills thinking about it. But, it reminded me yet again how I know she is watching over me....


So, it's been a happy/sad day...I know my mom can attest to that as she too has been going through those emotions as she goes through my grandparents cards/paperwork and dearest treasures. It's never an easy road losing a loved one....the grief comes in waves and it's always hard on days like today. I know I'm not the only one struggling with loss....and I know many of you can relate...


I just wanted to post what was on my heart today....if the past year has taught me anything it's that life on this earth is brief and we need to treasure every breath of it, don't sweat the small stuff and cling tightly to our loved ones...tell them you love them every day! That's all for today, folks...I'm beat and I'm fighting a stomach bug and simply exhausted from a day of shopping/picture taking. I'll post more later in the week about our weekend adventures, about Shelby's new facial makeover (it'll make you cringe :)) and about Hailey's last day of 1st grade (tomorrow!) :) Love ya'll! And special hugs to my mom and dad today...I think they can use the extra lovin'! :)

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Vroom, Vroom :)

Here's most of our Steg gang anxiously waiting for Dad/Poppy to make his racing debut! (I don't think I've ever posted a pic of Kev's bro, Brian...he's the first guy in the picture there!)
A "lovely" self-portrait of me and my biggest girl (ewww, I think I look yucky in this picture...but it's a cute one of Hailey :))
Poppy gives a thumbs up before "suiting up" :)
All dressed in race attire and ready to go...
the big climb through the Bud car window...
And off he goes (he's the last car (red) in the picture)...I was shocked I even got him in the picture cuz they go so darn fast!
Poppy all smiles after the laps around the speedway...Shelby, on the otherhand, was not all smiles...she was hot and thirsty and napless (aka crabby :))....and then below is fellow race-car phenatic, Dylan...and his first trip to "pit lane" :)


Ok, so that's all I could come up with for a title for Race Day...but wanted to wish you all a Happy Indy 500 Day today! In honor of the big day I wanted to post a few "race-related pics"...ok, so I've never been to the Indy 500, but we were at the IMS (Indy Motor Speedway/aka Brickyard) last month for Kev's dad's big "race day", so I thought I'd simply post those pics today as a sort of "hurrah to race day" :) Hope you all have a fabulous day and get to see some of the race. I think it's only televised here after it's done (too bad)...that's sarcasm, by the way :) We are looking forward to the big Danville Race Day Party...and hoping for a dry day (it poured here yesterday and is predicted to do so again today...seems to be a race day tradition). Have a super day, everyone...and get ready to rev up those engines! :)


P.S. On a side note I'd like to wish our twin girl furballs a happy 9th! Yes, our good ol' "beasts", Sydney and Samantha, are celebrating a duo birthday today (sniffle, sniffle) :) As most of you know we adopted them almost 9 years old from a little pet shop in GR...they've been our fond feline friends ever since. So, here's to you, Syd and Sam...even though you barf hairballs and leave dingleberries everywhere we still love you and are glad you are a part of our crazy little family! :)

Friday, May 25, 2007

Happy Memorial Day Weekend! :)

Ok, so these pics are a couple weeks old (and have nothing to do with the post today), but I just realized I never posted them...so here ya' go...pics from Hailey (and Shelby's) church musical...I think the titles were "Building" (Shelby) and "Livin' Inside Out and in an Upsidedown World" (Hailey)...Hailey is the second one in on the very far right bottom row...
Too darn cute...Shelby and her Bob-the-Builder bud, Ben :)
Hailey and her good buddies from preschool (The Mallory's) :)
Shelby all smiles with Poppy Stegs :)
Hailey and her little brother...can you tell he loves her so much?!
Cousin Danielle (she was one of the lead roles) hanging with Dylan after the big show...and then Hailey and Kev's cousin Harrison...they are such good friends and we are so thankful they are fairly close in age since our kids don't have any real cousins of their own :)



Well, the long weekend is almost upon us and I am pleased to say we have have not a whole heck of lot going on! Phew! Ok, so saying that I know I'm gonna jinx myself and Kev will come home today set on doing our deck (he wants to seal it, which it needs after 3 years of being w/o it)...but I must say I was kinda just hoping for a lazy 3 days of nothing much planned, and tackling the deck would be a 3-day project knowing us. I know we all get in an itch to not waste time and get stuff done, but I think every once in awhile we need to just veg and do nothing. We'll see if my hubby agrees :)

Anyway...so with that I just wanted to post a few random things in bullet form and wish you all a Happy Memorial Day. It seems to me like 90% of the world is traveling elsewhere this weekend and I must say I am glad to not be doing that! We'll do enough traveling this summer and with gas prices up the wazoo I think that's a good enough sign to just stay put....Anyway...so w/o further ado....
  • We are making one lil' trip this weekend to Danville to celebrate Race Day...for those of you who live in a bubble it's the big ol' Indy 500 on Sunday. While you all know I'm not a race fan and I really don't even acknowledge it as a sport I will say we enjoy the annual race day party in Kev's ol' hometown...his old neighbors throw a huge bash every year on their acres of land and it's just a good time for old and young...we get to see ol' friends we haven't seen in a year and meet all the new kids who have been born each year...it really is a good time...unless it rains (which it is forcasted to do and often does)...then it's a bit muddy and not as fun (so pray for sun!). But, we are looking forward to the party and who knows...maybe Kev or I will sport our awesome volleyball moves!

  • Hailey has finally started asking questions about "stuff"...it started at Target this week when she asked "when can I wear one of THOSE things"...and she was pointing to her chest area....I said "a bra" and she said, "YES!"...like it was a dream come true to wear one. I don't even remembe my response cuz I almost got in a panic...but I think I said "Oh, not for a long time...they're no fun anyway" :) Oh my....she's only 7...please tell me girls aren't wearing bras at that age now! :( Soon she'll be asking even more questions about stuff...I'm just not ready for that :(

  • Ants have begun to over-run our home yet again...it seems to happen every spring about this time. It makes me feel like our home is dirty cuz they swarm into our kitchen like it's a feeding ground. Well, to make it worse Shelby's been freaking out about them daily...and you'll love what she says..."I'm soooooooo 'busteraated' by these ants"...(translated to she is very frustrated by them) :) It is quite a hoot to hear her say it as she scurrying aroung the kitchen picking them up with a paper towel or stepping on them (she is our bug searcher-outer)...typing it doesn't do it justice cuz she tries to sound just like me when she says it (and yes, I do say I'm frustrated by quite a few things each day :)). Ah...isn't it fun to have little ones that mimic your every word?!

  • The brother and sister are finally starting to bicker...yep, somewhere in the last two weeks Shelby and Dylan have become the typical siblings that quarrel. Now, I know that's completely normal, but I have to say since Hailey and Shelby were 4 years apart there has been very little fighting between them. So I had to laugh when Dylan started bullying Shelby and she is not one to sit back and take it...so she fights right back...now the fun begins. I must say Dylan has one quite a few of the battles...he has a really nasty throw and really good aim and he can throw a matchbox car at your face like there's no tomorrow and even I am knocked off my feet by him and his big bad boy ways. It's pretty funny and pretty painfull too I must say. It's gonna be interesting between the two of them since they are fairly close in age.

  • Well, I finally broke down yesterday and got myself some new glasses....I think the ones I'm wearing are maybe from high school?? Ok...maybe not that old, but they are definitely bigger than any of the ones they sell these days. Now most of you know I usually just wear contacts, but I must say there have been days lately where I wish I had some stylish glasses to wear instead. So, I finally gave in yesterday and got some new ones. They are probably not as "hip" as what I should have gotten, but Dylan was raising a ruckus in the place and grabbing glasses from all over...so I picked a pair and went with it. I'll have to take a picture in them when I get them back and see what you guys think. I'm really self-consious wearing glasses, but maybe this will change my outlook. I am happy to say that my eye sight hasn't gotten worse in the last 2 1/2 years...that was something to be excited about! I'm not completely blind yet :)

  • Our ol' pals from Calvin, Nate and Laura (who now live in the lovely state of CO), are expecting their second baby (in December??...is that right, Laura)...anyway they are 2 1/2 months along and we're so excited for them! Praying all goes well with the pregnancy and that big sister, Natalie (who will be 3 in December), enjoys her new sibling! Keep us posted guys and Congrats! :) Maybe we'll see you in the next few years...I have heard a rumor we will be in CO to ski in the winter of 2008??!!

  • Hats off to our big girl Shelby...she has been sleeping in her bed all week w/o the rail on it! Wow!!! And she only fell out of bed once too! Awesome girl! And on the same congratulatory note...she has gone all week just wearing panties (only using pull-ups during bedtime)...and she has had NO accidents! Can I just say how proud I am! Bravo, Shelby girl!

  • Hailey is having a "better" week this week. By that I mean...she didn't get grounded or get any of her toys taken away. Last week/weekend was bad for her. She was "ungrateful"/rude about some of her new toys (she said a very rude comment...we'll leave it at that) and because of that she got BOTH her American Girl dolls taken away for a week (yes, that was torture)...then on the same exact day as her "ungratefulness" we found her up in her room (after bedtime) popping a piece of bubble gum in her mouth (hats off to Kev who "caught her in the act")...anyway...so with that she got all treats/sweets taken away for a week as well (yes, that was also torture for our sugar-loving girl)....and then to make matters even worse this weekend she "blatently disobeyed". We were having a dinner she didn't like (chili...which is sooo yummy...Kev makes a mean (good) pot of chili)...anyway...she found out we were having that and then went and ate half a hotdog at our neighbors house. Well, I saw her out by their grill eating it and I was NOT happy...she got "no outside priveledges" for last weekend. So, it was not her best week. I am praying we nip all that stuff in the bud...I don't want her to be a disobedient, ungrateful child...and I know she's not...she is one of the best children I've known...but we all want our children to be the best they can be. Just praying for a better weekend for her, cuz when she can't go outside...we all suffer....

  • I wanted to end on a sad note...tomorrow would have been my grandpa G's 81st birthday and this is an especially hard time for my family. I remember last year at this time he was in the VA hostipal in NC fighting as hard as he could to beat his leukemia. I actually still have the message he left me a year ago on my machine...he sounded so upbeat...like nothing could get him down, not even cancer. It is still hard to know he is gone Just please say a prayer especially for my grandma this weekend and in the coming weeks. It's been hard for her to remember all that was happening a year ago....and she and my aunt Mary are visiting his grave sight up in northern FL this weekend too so that will be very emotional. Not to mention my grandma's death anniversary is also coming up next week. It's just a hard time to remember. So, hug your loved ones and enjoy every moment with them...

I love you all and I hope you have a great long weekend and a wonderful Memorial Day whether you are traveling or just being lazy in your own home. And who knows...I might have some exhilerating "water-related" pics to share next week! Cross your fingers for me and stay tuned! :)

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

My Firstborn...



Ok, so my super awesome pal that I've only met twice, Amanda, did this neat survey-like post on Mother's Day...I thought it was cute and meant to do it soon after Mother's Day, but forgot...so I'm doing it now. It's all about your firstborn...most of you might know this info, but if not here it is....


My First Baby... Here you go mommies - a different kind of survey for a change - it's all about your first born!

1. WAS YOUR FIRST PREGNANCY PLANNED? Umm, no! Let's just say Hailey wasn't in our "5 year plan" (but obviously God had other plans for our family :)).....and who knew that you could get pg while switching BC pills...go figure...obviously this "wise" old nursing student didn't :)

2. WERE YOU MARRIED AT THE TIME? Yes siree bob....but definitely not married long enough in my opinion (10 mos...and we were both pretty young...22 and 23)...not that I'm regretting that at all...it was all a complete blessing...and I've loved (almost) every minute of being a young married mommy :)

3. WHAT WERE YOUR REACTIONS? Hmmm....let's just say we were both in complete shock. I actually took a pregnacy (pee) test at work (I was working at Spectrum's South Campus in MI at the time)...I really don't even know what provoked me to take one but that I think I realized I was about a week late and thought "what the heck...taking a pregnancy test would be fun" :) So, I did...and it's funny...cuz I took it and it only had one line on it....so I threw it away...then about 30 minutes later I got this weird urge to go back and dig it out of the garbage...and sure enough there was half of a second line....HUH??? That had to be wrong...and what's with the half line anyway?? Did that mean I was "half pregnant??" I very naive back then as you can tell :) Anyway...so I took another one home to do with the FMU (first morning urine) the next day....yep, sure enough...plain as day positive! Let's just say I was "cautiously excited". Anyway...it happened to be the first day we were starting to finish our basement in our old house and Kev had all his buddies over at our house early so I didn't dare share the news or there is no way he would have even started the basement (and we NEEDED to have that done if we were gonna have a baby in a 2 bedroom house!)...anyway...I told him that night and I was crying, I think...and I think I just remember him not being able to find words to say and then saying "I guess that means we're gonna have a baby"...it was the nonchalant way he said it and the way he hugged me after that just melted my heart and I knew it was gonna be ok. But, I will say kinda what my friend Amanda said...Kev couldn't really even believe there was a baby in me til she came out....even the ultrasound kinda freaked him out...with the way the baby looked like an alien :) So, I guess he was cautiously excited too...and as excited as a guy could be. We both knew we wanted at least two kids so why not have them while we were young....

4. WAS ABORTION AN OPTION FOR YOU? No way...never!

5. HOW OLD WERE YOU? 22 (23 when she was born)

6. HOW DID YOU FIND OUT YOU WERE PREGNANT? Ok, so instead of retyping #3 I'm just gonna tell you to refer to that....I officially found at my part-time job at my Med Center customer service job...and then it was confirmed again the next morning in our bathroom...and if you know me you know I definitely DON'T trust a stick you pee on to tell you your life will be changing tremendously in 8 mos...so I had a blood test done at my Med Center and on Kev's 24th b-day (July 27) we snuck into the office and looked online to see my HCG results and found out we were truly expecting a little bundle :) Then the "all day" sickness hit home soon after and it was all downhill from there as I camped out on the couch for many months unable to function well :)

7. WHO DID YOU TELL FIRST? My mom...and she will agree with me that her response was not the normal "grandma-to-be response"....(granted we did wake her up from a nap), but when I told her she was "going to be a grandma" she blurted out, "one of your cats is pregnant??" Ha, Ha!!! Oh My...she will never live that one down?! (and BTW our cats are fixed :)) I guess she found it more believable that one of our two feline neutered companions (who have never had the pleasure of being around a male cat) were expecting...compared to the alternative that her firstborn newly married daughter who was still in nursing school was a "soon-to-be-mommy" :)...sorry for the BIG surprise, mom! :)

8. DID YOU WANT TO FIND OUT THE SEX? Nope...we (meaning I) wanted to be surprised for our first born (Kev very much dislikes surprises, but he went along for the ride to appease me :))...and we surely were surprised....we thought our SHE was a HE (even Kev's dad...a doctor...looked at our ultrasound video and thought he "saw something" and he was gonna have a grandson...I think he even brought a remote control race car to the delivery room...Sorry, Poppy Stegs....

9. DUE DATE: March 20, 2000

10. DID YOU DELIVER EARLY OR LATE? Obviously early...but I have my sneaking suspicion that I would have normally been like 2 weeks late with her cuz she was NOT ready to come out even with the induction....but she had to be delivered early due to IUGR (intrauterine growth retardation) issues and possible placenta problems...so we (meaning I) got cervical ripening on March 15, started pitocin on March 16 and after about 2 days of labor FINALLY had Hailey on St. Paddy's Day 2000 (March 17 for those that aren't Irish or don't have a calendar :))

11. DID YOU HAVE MORNING SICKNESS? Oh my goodness...I WISH I just had morning sickness...mine was all day every day for at least 5 mos (I still remember it starting on our first anniversary trip to Chicago...we got room service and I almost lost it...)...it was awful...good thing I forgot it enough to be pg a second and third time! :) I still remember sleeping with saltines by my bedside with a bucket on the floor and hardly being able to reach over and get the saltine cuz just the movement would make me more nauseous...then to make it all worse I had to start my last year of nursing classes and I also carried a bucket around with me in the car cuz the early morning rounds at the hospital made me soooooooooooo sick :( I truly don't know how I made it through nursing school being pg and having a baby....that was a miracle in itself :)

12. WHAT DID YOU CRAVE? I honestly don't remember....I vaguely remember wanting salad a lot (which is weird, cuz I really don't like salad)..and I want to say I craved peanuts too...but when you've been pg three times it's all kind of a blurr as far as cravings are concerned...maybe Kev would remember? I think he only made one run for ice cream for me back then :)

13. WHO IRRITATED YOU THE MOST? I don't believe anyone irritated me any more than they normally did before I was "with child"...but Kev might disagree :)

14. WHAT WAS YOUR FIRST CHILD'S SEX? Girl!

15. DID YOU WISH YOU HAD THE OPPOSITE SEX OF WHAT YOU WERE GETTING? No way! I always saw myself with at least one girl if not two (I got my wish!) I assumed I was getting a boy though the first time around cuz everyone predicted that and I always kinda figured boys ran on both sides of our families and I'd be the "lucky one" with only boys. I was more than thrilled to find out it was a girl!!!! Not that I don't now love my son, but you know....I always dreamed of having a daughter and doing her hair and dressing her all cutsie...yes, I know...weird :)

16. HOW MANY POUNDS DID YOU GAIN THROUGHOUT THE PREGNANCY? I honestley don't remember...I wasn't much into keeping stats back then but if I had to guess I'd say 35lbs...it came off very quickly luckily...though I will say I am thinner now after my third than I ever was. Hmmm...thank you, breast feeding! It really was the miracle "calorie burner" for me...I'd highly recommend it!

17. DID YOU HAVE A BABY SHOWER? Yes, yes, yes, yes...we were blessed by a few baby showers....4 to be exact or maybe it was 5?! Thanks to all of you who shared in them...I remember them all well!

18. WAS IT A SURPRISE OR DID YOU KNOW? Only one was a surprise...the rest we knew about! The surprise one in FL actually wasn't a complete surprise....I don't know if Sulu knows this, but I kinda figured it out at her old house in FL...I saw the baby monitor that was on my registry hiding in her room in a bag when I went over to visit her and her family...I gathered something was up then...it is VERY hard to keep secrets from me...and when we went to my mom's friends to "see her new house" I had a feeling we weren't just going to "see the new house"...all my friends/family/church friends/old teachers...were there to shower me and our baby Stegs with love...it was a great time...I'll never forget it! :) All the other showers were great too....I loved the one in IN with all Kev's family/friends and the co-ed one with Kev's ISERV buddies...that was a hoot (adults eating baby food...nothing can beat that!)...and then my post-pregnancy shower thrown by my good nursing buddies in MI (Thanks, Ann!)...people are so generous!

19. DID YOU HAVE ANY COMPLICATIONS DURING YOUR PREGNANCY? Yep, unfortunately little Baby Stegs developed IUGR with her belly measuring way smaller than her head (worst kind)...I was on restrictions toward the end of the pregnancy and had to lie down on my left side a lot (even during nursing classes...ha, ha!) :) Then I had to be induced (awful!) because they feared the placenta was cutting off blood/food supply to her...not fun...I still remember that ultrasound where we found out about the IUGR and how I sobbed after in the car and Kev was so worried he pulled over to console me...it was not a pretty sight...no one wants to hear there is something wrong with their baby...they predicted she be this puney small little 4lb baby, but she turned out to be a healthy 7lbs, 2oz...thank the Lord!

20.WHERE DID YOU GIVE BIRTH? Grand Rapids, MI (Good ol' Downtown Spectrum Health!)

21. HOW MAY HOURS WERE YOU IN LABOR? Too Freakin' Long! I dare say it was over 32 hours thanks to awful doses of pitocin and her not ready to come out! The pushing her out was the easiest part...only took like 30 minutes.

22.WHO DROVE YOU TO THE HOSPITAL? My wonderful, patient hubby :)

23.WHO WATCHED? Well, that depends...the actual birth was me (I wasn't watching...yucky yuck...I don't know how people watch their own births in mirrors...gives me the willies to think of that!)....my mom was in the room a lot, but didn't watch the actual delivery...and Kev's parents were in and out, but they didn't stay for the "birthing" either. I assume there was some nurses and a doctor too, but again...who knows...I was focusing on getting that "thing" out of me! :) Ha!

24.WAS IT NATURAL OR C-SECTION? natural (as natural as it can be with drugs involved :))

25.DID YOU TAKE MEDICINE TO EASE THE PAIN? YES! I foolishly tried some IV meds that just made my loopy and then I barfed...then I hit the good stuff with the all mighty Epidural!

26.HOW MUCH DID YOUR CHILD WEIGH? 7 lbs, 2 oz.

27.DID YOUR CHILD HAVE ANY COMPLICATIONS? Thankfully, none!

28.WHAT DID YOU NAME HIM/HER? Hailey Nicole (good thing she was a girl...the girl name was all we had and I'd be pretty bummed if I had had to name my boy Jedediah (Kev's choice for a boy) :))

29. HOW OLD IS YOUR FIRST BORN TODAY? The all mighty 7! (sigh)

Ok...so now that I wrote all that I'm a bit emotional about how old my "baby" is and how time has flown. I know it's so cliched to say, but time goes by toooooooooooo fast! I love you, sweet Hailey Nicole! Having you when I did was one of God's greatest gifts! :)

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

I don't like Afgan food :(


Well, that's the cold, hard truth....I'm not even sure if calling it "Afgan food" is correct, but let's just simply say I don't care for it...whatever it is...

Yep, last night we made an appearance at Samira...one of the many ethnic restaurants that are crammed into our downtown square here in Bloomy (those of you who have never made a visit to Bloomy...just know that it's a VERY ethnically diversified place thanks mostly to IU). I'll be honest. I don't ever even think I've seen this restaurant on the corner and I drive by there almost every week. So you know this wasn't my choice for dinner with Kev's co-workers and boss last night, but I sucked it up and tried to be open to trying new things. Anyway....let's just say I am still burping up whatever "mante" (rice/dumpling surprise) thing I ate....and it's starting to make me feel quite a bit quesy. I keep trying to mask the taste with chocolate, but it's not helping...yuck! :( I think I'll be sticking to my American cuisine from now on. I'm just a simple downhome girl that likes "normal" food. I guess now I know I shouldn't travel abroad for a long period of time...I'd probably starve :)

Anyway...so the night out on the town was ok. The food wasn't horrible, but I felt awkard not drinking the wine that everyone else was drinking (I hate wine just as much as I hate beer...and actually I very much dislike any type of liquor...I'm a virgin dacquiri kinda girl all the way :))....anyway....and I felt bad not eating all my meal (cuz everyone else seemed to wolf theirs down with rave reviews...and if you know me I rarely leave food on my plate since I don't like being wasteful)....and I felt equally as awkward not ordering dessert (again...if you know my eating habits...I could eat three main meals a day of just dessert...but somehow I didn't feel tempted by baklava or chunky milk pudding....even Kev got dessert (which is very rare...I think I can count on one hand how many times he's ordered dessert...was he brown-nosing...maybe?)....anyway....so I made it through my first "ethnic" dinner. In all honesty it wasn't that bad, but it wasn't that good either. I think I'll stick to Texas Roadhouse and Applebees (or Chilis where the above picture was taken...yummy choc. dessert!) :) But, I will say the company was humorous and Kev's boss (whom I think I met once back when we only had Hailey) is a great guy...very down to earth. It was a good time in spite of some weird food...and it was kinda nice to have a night away from the kiddos (which we never have any more...thanks, Aunt Kim and kids for helping with our kids!). Anyway...so it was an ok night and I made it through a meal that I had some big doubts about beforehand....but, I still wonder...am I the only one out there that just likes our plain ol' US of A food...maybe I am?! So be it :)


(p.s. Happy 30th B-day to my ol' elementary school BFF, Wendi...I just realized today is her big 3-0...whohoo, girl! I've actually known Wen since the day she was born 30 years ago, which is pretty crazy. I think I have a picture of me standing over her bassinet when she was a newborn and I was 4 1/2 mos old (can that be right, mom or Wen?) Anyway..Wendi lives in MN now but she's soon-to-be a FL resident again with her husband, John (a newly graduated doctor). Wendi and John are both great people and I admire them so much. So, Happy 30th, my friend! I love ya', Wen! Praying this new decade of life for you is the BEST ever!

Monday, May 21, 2007

Not so exciting weekend...

Just two pics to share today...one of the girls before their musical at church last week...love that pouty lip on Shelby (that's normal for her :))...and then our sleeping Star Wars baby below :)

Well, what can I say...it's the truth...nothing exciting to share for the weekend that just passed. Maybe it's just me, but I'm kinda bummin' that the weekend's gone and I have not much to show for it and no exciting stories or pictures either....sorry, folks :( Maybe I'm bummed cuz I had myself all jazzed up about a possible slippery slidin' day of fun and that just wasn't meant to be due to lower than tolerable temps for this wimpy FL girl. But, so be it...we had to put our exciting plans on hold...and for what might you ask??? Well, for nothin'...big fat nothin'. I had wild dreams of getting the kids bedrooms and clothes in order and about all I did was get through Shelby's stuff only to repile more stuff in Dylan and Hailey's room....well, that was pointless. So, now I like the openess of Shelby's room, but I hate the other kid's cluttered ones. I can't win. I know....I live such a wild and exciting life full of cleaning and clutter-shifting...I know you all are jealous. Anyway...so that's about all our weekend consisted of....not what most of you were hoping to hear, I'm sure. There is a glimmering ray of hope for this next Saturday....I hear it's gonna be a hot one and that might be my sign to break out the bathing suit for a debut run down the slip-n-slide! :) I'll keep you in suspense until then!

In other news, Shelby and Dylan made a duo trip to the peds doc today. No, they aren't sick, but it was "well visit day" and I figure why not double up and do them both at once...double the "fun". Well, it's funny cuz we pulled into the office driveway and Shelby blurts out "I want a shot, I want a shot!!"...HUH??? What is up with that...is she possessed? I thought she was joking or maybe just really confused on the shot process and would change her mind later? Anyway...I said "well, I don't think you get shots today, but Dylan will"....she was majorly bummed cuz that seemed disappointing to her to just watch the whole ordeal. Anyway....so the whole visit went fine...la tee da...the kids were pleasant for the most part, Shelby made us all laugh with her "eye chart guesses" and her unwilliness to raise her hand when the bell beeped in her ear...but for the most part they were angels. Both are tall and skinny little buggers....I don't get into exact numbers very much, but I think Dylan was like 26lbs and was greater than 95% for his height (33 3/4 inches....whoa!)...he and Shelby are not that far off in height. Anyway....so no concerns. Still just keeping an eye on Dylan and his eating issues (if he's not eating all table food in 3 mos then he needs to go back to therapy) and all seems well with the poop issues lately....he's as regular as anyone should be on a daily dose of Miralax :) Anyway...so my whole point to the story...it came to "shot time" and lo and behold the doc said Shelby DID get to have a Hep A shot...yay!!! She was sooooooo excited.....weird...yes, very weird...but still...I could not help, but get excited with her. So, down she laid and in went the needle....oh my...I felt so guilty cuz her little excited face with a big smile went to the horrified look of panic and pain...I really felt so badly for her. I don't really know what she expected, but obviously it was NOT that :( But, she was so brave. She tried not to cry and all she could say over and over again was "that hurt real bad, that hurt real bad". What a brave little trooper my Gracie is. She recovered fairly quickly, but I think that's the last time she'll look forward to a shot :) Luckily she got a fancy smancy purple bandaid, a mini flashlight and a Dora sticker so she was happy with that but still kinda traumatized. I guess it was worth the pain in the end for a prize and a sticker. Then Dylan had his and I think she felt even worse for him...she started crying all over and boy, did Dylan lose it. He kicked the guy nurse in the face and I laughed cuz he almost knocked the needle out of his hand and he had to restick him (poor thing) and this was all while I was holding him down (yes, our boy has the strength of a lil' sumo wrestler :)). Anyway...so that was all a little tramatic (as shot time usually is)...but we made it out in one piece :)

And ever since we've been home Shelby has been back to her normal self. She's obsessed today with telling me how it was not nice to say "crap" to Sam (our cat) the other day. I don't know why all of a sudden she is bringing that up, but she is and she won't drop it. And, yes, I did yell "crap!" to the cat a couple weeks ago when as I was trying to put him in his cage for the vets and she grabbed onto my shirt with her back claws and scratched the dickens out of my chest. I was so mad and in pain that I yelled "Crap, Sam, Crap!" really loud as he raced off up the stairs to try to get away! It was not a shiny mommy moment and obviously Shelby remembers it well and likes to rehash it for me. So, now I feel bad about that today too. I'm sure Shelby will share my "crap story" with the world...she's not shy about telling people things. Great, huh?!

Anyway...so that's enough for one day. I'm exhausted, but I bet my dear hubby is more exhausted. His big boss from Boston flew in today (which he does once a year) and I know that will make for a busy day for him. Kev's been preparing for this visit since last week...cleaning the office, finishing projects, working this weekend, and he even cut his hair yesterday for the occasion...wow, pretty impressive :) Anyway...so tonight we have dinner with the boss and all the other guys in the office (all 2 of them and their wives :)) Should be "fun" since I hear we're going to some Arabian place...if you know me, you know I pretty much don't like to stray from American food. So, we'll see how it goes :) Wish me luck :) Until next time....

Friday, May 18, 2007

Postponed...

Lil' D still practicing his walking technique...go, boy go!
Lil' Shelbers with her fav. new talking Diego backpack and Dora shades...what a cool gal she is
Hailey and her new room sign courtesy of Nina and Pops in FL :) And did you know she scaled a rock wall recently at our school carnival? Whoa...bet you didn't know we had 2 daredevils in our little Steg family!?

Ok, so I know it will greatly disappoint you all to know that I have decided to most likely postpone my debut on the slip-n-slide this weekend. Please, don't cry...I promise, I'll try to make up for it with an even better performance in the weeks to come. Now before you get on my case about chickening out let me reassure you I very much want to "strut my stuff" on that enticing piece of wet plastic....but I must say I very much need a HOT, HOT day to do it....and I don't think the weather will allow for my FL-blooded body to do that. Now let me explain a little further. All of you know my roots are based in FL and as most Floridians will atest to it's needs to be a good 80 degrees out and possibly even 90 degrees out (with a water temp of 80) for us to get near a large or small body of water and sport a bathing suit. Being a midwesterner for only a mere 5 years I still am very much sticking to my guns as far as the temp. goes. If I'm not sweating the moment I walk out the door then it's too cold for water activities. Thus....my dilemma this weekend. There was a positive forcast a few day ago of temps in the 80's, but now I look again this morning and it's only predicted to be mid-70's. Sorry, folks, that's too close to winter weather to have me sporting a suit and slipping down the slide..........sooooo....while I'm not canceling the weekend activities for sure I'm not making any promises either. So, I guess you'll just have to wait in suspense! I know, I know....how rude of me to back out of such an exciting weekend plan, but what's a FL girl supposed to do...freeze her booty off??!! I know those of you FL friends out there will stick by me on this one, right??!!

Anyway...so sorry to break that sad news to you all. That's not to say our crazy midwestern warm-blooded kids won't take the plundge again. Kids don't seem to have those temp. issues we old people have :)

Plus to add to the cooler temps and my postponement news it's been brought to my attention that I've been spotlighted on a certain friend of mine's blog (ehem, Amanda :)). So, I definitely don't want to post any semi-scary pics of me flying through the air on the slip-n-slide if new readers are reading my blog. I don't mind frightening my friends and family, but to do that to strangers is just mean, right....so that's another good reason not to tackle a new sport this weekend....thanks for being a good excuse, Amanda! For those of you who don't know my good pal Amanda...she's this super mom of four who lives in our fav. ol' stompin' grounds of MI. It's funny cuz I was reading her post about me and she's totally right...we've actually only been in the same room as one another like twice, I think...once when her hubby Jared and her came over to Kev's basement apt during our Calvin days and the other time on our wedding day. Isn't that funny?? I really do consider her a great friend though....we've had this connection for awhile with our firstborns being born only a few months apart and we both just seem to have a lot of the same values and enjoyments of motherhood. I think she's just a superb person and I wish we could actually be friends who saw each other regularly cuz I have to say I've never even met her cute kids...but I feel like I know her and her family fairly well thanks to her awesome and funny blog and her great Christmas letters and updates. And I will admit to my readers (as I did to Amanda a awhile back)....that I picked her hubby's picture out of our Calvin bod book (it's a book of photos they put out yearly at Calvin that tells names and certain info of fellow Calvin attendees)...anyway...my freshman year at Calvin me and my best friend, Lori, picked Jared's picture out of all the guys at Calvin as being a total hottie! Imagine my surprise when years later I found out he was a friend of Kev's in the computer science department...I just about died!! At that point I was madly in love with Kev so my Jared crush was long over and I believe he was already engaged to Amanda anyway...I don't remember. So I had to break the news to Amanda recently that I had a little crush on her hubby at that early point in my Calvin career...and you know if I had a little crush on him he must be a good guy, right?! :) Anyway...so I just wanted to give a shout-out to Amanda...she's so sweet to put me in the spotlight of her blog (I feel almost-famous!). I'm sorry to any new readers out there...usually I have lots of exhilerating info on puke and poop, but our household has been pretty clean and dry the last few weeks. I will say that Dylan ate his first hot dog last night and there was upchuck involved. He actually got the first piece down with no trouble...there was this perplexed look as he was chewing it for like 10 minutes, but finally he got the nerve to swallow and that was that! Success on his first official meat! He then proceeded to throw the rest of the hotdog pieces on the floor and at us sitting at the table (hmmm...is that a sign he might not like them??) Then I had to go push his buttons and force feed him a second piece...well, yep you guesseed it....that little wedge of meat came right back up along with the last piece...go figure...so I guess I can't really say he ate his first piece of meat cuz it actually ended up back on his tray....but it was down there for at least 10 seconds...that's gotta count for something, right?!

Well, that's all I got today...maybe we'll have some inspiring puke or poop to speak of later...and you'll know I'll keep you posted if we do! But, for now it's quiet in our little household and I gotta say it's kinda nice! Toodles til next week!

Thursday, May 17, 2007

A quick howdy! :)

Our little tennis "pro"...ok, so this is before she had ever played tennis....but doesn't she look like a pro!? :)
Shelby and one of her best buds, Cameron, "happily" sittin' on the bleachers watching their sisters and eating snacks galore! :)
Dylan chillin' in his stroller watching his tennis pro sister! :) And then below is Hailey and one of her best buds, Julia, after their first lesson last week

Hey Folks...this will be a quick post, but just wanted to say a quick "hola" and post a few pictures to brighten the day :) It's been a busy, busy week for some reason. I didn't think it would be going into it, but yesterday and today have been one activity after another....I don't even remember all we've done, but it's just been madness! Considering all the running around, the kids have been awesome (knock on wood!)....Shelby did have her "fits" yesterday about wearing certain clothes, eating certain foods, doing certain things etc...but as the day dragged on she shaped up and was actually super lovable last night (I wondered if someone slipped something into her drink last night at church cuz she was actually hugging and kissing those that she usually runs away from :)). And, Dylan...aside from his daily blow-out all over himself and me (yes, he's still "super" regular)...he's been a doll this week too! Anyway....so I won't go into all the activities, but I will say that the big church musical went superbly last night! Shelby did so great...I honestly don't know if she sang or did the motions (as I was standing behind the scenes helping), but I know she stood up there and smiled and that says something for our defiant and sometimes unruly 3 year old! She looked pretty darn cute in her tool attire too! And Miss Hailey did awesome in her big musical! The whole performance was great!!! Hailey even had a small part in it (she was a sheep)...so that was fun since usually the only kids with parts are the oldest kid (5th graders). Anyway...it was a great night of dancing and singing and we were so happy Kev's parents came to see it...and so thankful that Nina held Dylan the hold time (and he never made a peep...I think he was mesmerized by the lights and the big screen)...and then Poppy held Shelby most of the time too (they love the grandparents!). Anyway...so it was a very busy night for us....we didn't get home til late and the kids were wired from too many cookies. I was definitely ready to fall into bed yesterday...it was a busy night (and an equally as busy morning with Dylan and Shelby both being in eye studies at IU and then our monthly music class at the library)

Anyway...today has been much of the same running around...to church, to gymnastics, through the chaotic aisles of Walmart and soon we'll be off to tennis lessons....then I have to say I am looking forward to 3 days with hardly anything going on!!!! This weekend is going to be glorious! I hear the weather is gonna be super duper, so this might be my big debut weekend on the slip-n-slide...I bet you are all waiting in suspense to hear/see that! :) Ha! So, I'm really looking forward to having nothing on the calendar for a few days. As easy as it is to be sucked in the chaos of every day life and over doing it with activities...I am very much a homebody and I love my time just doing stuff around the house with the kids and being lazy. There is something to be said for that, I think.

Well, I'm plum out of time and my mind is too cluttered with stuff to think of anything fun to say today...sorry! Hope ya'll have a great day (and a great weekend if I don't post again this week)

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

The simply joys in life...

Oh My...could our little boy be any cuter (and whiter!) with his new bathing suit on from Nina and Pops in FL :)
Wow, Hailey...look at that Slip-N-Slid performance! You go, girl!
Our three VERY white-skinned kiddos enjoying our make-shift pool (aka sandbox) :) Look at that big ol' belly on our boy! :) Ha!
This is what cracked me up the most on Saturday...Dylan just LOVED this slip-n-slide more than anything...he would crawl back and forth under the squirting water and was just elated with laughter and smiles...it was the best thing to watch! Shelby on the other-hand would only sit on the end with the pool in it...she's usually our dare-devil, but I think the squirting water scared her! She would have nothing to do with our wacky Dora sprinkler either (which I admit made Dora look like a possessed doll that was attacking you with water :)).
My girls in the sandbox of water...they really are good friends :)
Everyone just loved to watch big sister slide over and over again...for 5 bucks this thing was a great investment!


Hola, everyone! Well, I must admit my energy level this week is at an all time low so I simply just wanted to post a few pictures of the "fun in the sun" and "fun in the water" that we (meaning the kids) had this past Saturday in the comforts of our backyard. I don't know about the rest of you moms, but I find my greatest joys through the eyes of my happy children...and this Saturday was one of those days. Who knew a simple cheap piece of plastic that squirts water (aka The Slip-N-Slide) could provide so much enjoyment for little ones (and I must say I found myself almost wanting to relive my childhood and slide on down it for a ride also...but I restrained myself for fear of the laughter of neighbors :)). Anyway...so due to my lack of energy this is all I have for today. Hope you have a little more pep in your step today than me! :(