Friday, March 28, 2008

Dylan Turns 2 (and, yes, I know this was 2 mos ago!)

Alrighty...since I somehow have misplaced my camera with all my Easter pics on it I figured I'd grace you with the long overdue presence of Dylan's 2nd B-day pics. I realize this was almost 2 mos ago, but I felt slightly bad earlier this week posting Hailey's b-day pics when I never even posted Dylan's. Granted I need to give myself some grace cuz at the time of his aging to the wee age of 2 I was huddled over the toilet...so w/o furter ado here is Dylan on 1-30-08...my big 2 year old...who now to me at almost 26 mos looks so much more manly and mature and handsome!
Here he is talking to Nina in FL on the phone...she and Pops call on every b-day/holiday to talk to the kids...it's always a day-brightener. I think Dylan is even kissing Nina here :) He is a honey!
The easiest cake I've ever made (nothing spectacular, I know). Daddy picked it out of the new cake book my mom bought me (I love those books, mom! The purse one I made for Hailey's b-day came out of the other new book you gave me!) Anyway...daddy's loves ships and pirates and this was our rendition of a "pirate ship/sailboat" :) Dylan loved it :) And considering I couldn't be in the kitchen much at this point in my pregnancy...I was so glad it was soooo easy!
Dylan checking out his boat...of course he had to touch it :)
Big Sis Shelba reading Dylan a book before his b-day nap :)
And giving him a little b-day smooch....they really are great buds :)
My sweet big 2 year old! :) He has eyes to die for...at least I wish had some as nice at these! :)
Trying to figure out how to hold up two fingers...it's a tough thing for a two year old to do! One was so much easier!
Biggest sis and b-day boy
Dylan's Fav. meal and his b-day choice of food...pizza! Love that pizza face! :)
The big sisters surprised us all with a big b-day parade for their brother...I think it was entitled "Have a ball!" :) They danced all over and had it all choreographed...that's our performing/dancing girls for you! :)
Here they all are dancing away...
Shelby doing her part of the dance/parade :)
Dylan with some of his gifts :)
Shelby with Dylan's new Dino bowl...she thought she was so funny using it as a hat (as you can see!)
Hamming it up again with the b-day hats
Time for cake...he looks interested...but will he eat it???
naw...he'd rather cry....
and beg for a cookie (thankfully our neighbor had just given us these yummy v-day cookies and that was Dylan's b-day treat instead) :)
Mommy and her sweet boy
The whole Steg party gang...and below is daddy and his boy...my two fav. men :)

Another "Shelby Funny" :)

Well, Shelby (unknowingly) made another "funny" last night. I'm not sure how it all came about but I had just changed into some more comfortable clothes (to be more specific, a tank top and my comfy sleep pants)...when Kev says to me "wow, you're getting big"...ok, so those weren't his exact words and actually I think he said something more politically correct like "well, the baby's getting bigger" as he was staring at my protruding belly. To which I responded..."yeah, either that or I'M getting big...or fat...or big and fat!" :) Not really joking...cuz after eating pizza for the first time in 2 mos I felt larger than life last night :)

Well, I guess Shelby was listening in on that conversation and she pointed at my belly and said something like "that's getting bigger and so is that" (and by the other "that" she was now pointing at my chest)...yes, lovely, I know :) So apparently she thinks I'm having more than one baby...or that I'm definitely getting bigger in more than my belly area :) Teehee :) It's always lovely when your kids make a point to tell you things you hadn't really noticed...it's not like I don't feel huge already...but to have my 3 year old thinking I'm growing babies in my boobs...well, that would be one crazy miracle! :) Ok...so that's my Friday humor. Kev and I just about died laughing when she said this (and she was serious as she pointed to my "other baby(s)" :)) I guess we might have to have another talk about exactly where our baby is growing....oh joy! :)

Congrats, Ann & Family! :)

Well, I'm so happy and excited today for my wonderful and dear friend, Ann. She and her hubby welcomed their second child and first son, Luke Allen, into the world via c-section at 8:09a.m! And read it and weep people...the boy was a whopping 10lbs, 7oz (21iches)! Cripes! I'm so glad my nursing buddy didn't have to push that out! Can you believe it...a boy bigger than Dylan?! :) But, she knew he was gonna be a big one and goodness sakes...it's a good thing she didn't go til her due date next week...he could have been 11lbs! But, I'm so excited for Ann and Josh and just so thrilled that delivery went well this time around (their first delivery with their daughter was rough and she was in the NICU/NIM area for awhile...not to mention Ann was sick when she got home...not the ideal start to motherhood). So, I was praying for my dear friend this morning when I woke up. Knowing she was getting prepped for surgery and praying all would go smoothly this time around. I was thrilled to get a phonecall at lunch time from a tired Ann that indeed all did go well and the new boy is healthy and eating well! So, congrats to the new mommy of two! I can't wait to see pics of sweet little Luke and watch him grow up to be a big b-ball star like his daddy :) I guess he looks nothing like, Emma, whom I'm sure will be a doting and wonderful big sis! :)

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Baby Update :)

Well, I should have just labeled this post "TOO MUCH SUBWAY!", cuz that's pretty much my thoughts on today's OB appt :) Yep, you guessed it...no more issues with losing weight! I gained (gulp), 9 flippin' pounds in 5 weeks! :) Ok, in my porker defense I first of all want to say that scale that I used today was at least 3lbs off! :) So, obviously I have my appetite back and obviously I need to cut back on the subs! Say it ain't so! :) Ok, but seriously I lost a lot last time and even before I knew I was pg I had lost weight so for 16 weeks I've really only gained 5lbs. When I look at it that way I feel better. And the doc didn't lecture me or anything...she just said she was "glad I wasn't losing anymore weight" :) Probably her way of saying "you pig you!" :)

So, aside from my plumpiness, the baby and I are doing great!!! Babe's heartrate was mid-140's. Which as I told you before means a whole lot of nothing to me! But, to those of you who like to guess baby gender and who believe in that old wive's tale...your guess would probably be a boy from a HR of 140. But, I must tell you that Dylan's was high (160's) as were both the girls so don't go betting big money on another boy for us.

Not much else to tell about this boring old OB appt (and believe me, I like it when they are boring appts cuz it usually means baby is doing GREAT! :)). We did opt out of the genetic screening--the AFP testing and the u/s to look for spinal/trisomy issues (nuchal translucency). We have never done any of this testing in the past and since I'm still only in my early 30's we didn't feel it was necessary. If there does happen to be any genetic or spinal issues with this baby we will deal with those at birth and will love him/her just the same. I'm one that has heard of too many false positives as far as the AFP bloodwork so I would never want to needlessly worry and have things turn out fine. So, that was our decision on that and we'll just keep praying for a healthy baby come September.

I am excited to say that we now have our big u/s scheduled for Tuesday, April 22....YAY! :) I can't wait to sneak a peek at this baby!!! And for those of your bursting to know what "it" is :) Well, I'm leaning toward "not knowing"...but have not decided fully yet (sorry, mom!...and sorry you won't be here to help with the kids that day...I couldn't wait 2 more weeks til you were here). So, that will be a fun day for us. Dylan will get to see his new bro and sis and I'm sure that will excite him to no end (yeah right!) But, he was great today (as I hope he will be then)...we just need to remember to bring his squishy blue ball cuz it sure kept him (and the other waiting room toddlers) busy today!

So, that's the lowdown on Baby Stegs #4. All is good and I truly just have to pinch myself lately. Cuz now that I'm feeling better and have my appetite back it is really setting in that we are gonna be a family of 6 and what a true blessing that is. It's surreal to me that I am pregnant again and I am so very much in love with this new baby and can't wait to meet him/her. And in all honestly I can't believe how fast time has gone by. I kinda had to laugh that we were already scheduling our ultrasound. These last 16 weeks have just flown by (ok, so I can say that more easily now that I'm not upchucking everything...)...but still...time has gone by so fast and soon enough we'll be holding our final baby in our arms. How bittersweet that will be.

But, all that to say that I'm getting excited. The kids are feeling the same way. Hailey likes to tell everyone that we are having "another child" and she's taken to rubbing my belly a lot (I'm not a belly rubber so this isn't entirely comfortable for me :))....but I know she's excited for our new baby. She still wants a boy. Shelby still very vehemently wants a girl (though she has decided that if it's a boy that his name should be Drosselmeyer :) Gosh...can you imagine that name with our last name?! Cripes! Nice and German though!) And her comment a few weeks ago when asked if she'd love another brother was "NO WAY!". She is very indignant about that...she wants no part of more boys in our home. So, we'll see who wins the gender war. Like I've said in the past. I just feel we have a whole lifetime to know this baby that I don't feel it's important to know the gender. That's not to say it's not a fun thing to know...but I kinda like the aspect of the delivery room surprise...it gives me one more reason to push :) So, that's that....but I'll keep you posted on our final decision to "know the gender". For now that's all I got...

Monday, March 24, 2008

Hailey's B-day Recap...

Here's a picture-recap of Hailey's big St. Pat's 8th B-day last week! Above is her at school with her yummy double layer choc. chip cookie cake from Sam's (this is her fav. cake...and mine too)...I was bummed we had hardly any leftovers! :( But she and her classmates enjoyed it!
Here's my big 8-year-old...gosh, it's hard to believe I am the mom of a girl this old...and beautiful! :)
My girls...Shelby gave Hailey a Webkinz kitty...it's the mommy to the same lil' Kinz she has...Big sis was very excited! :)
Me and my girl all decked out in our St. Pat's attire :)
My silly girls at dinner at Applebee's (the restaurant choice for the b-day girl)...brother Dylan was snoozing on mommy and daddy's lap...he was still wiped out from the wedding weekend :)
The crazy b-day girl with her b-day dessert. These "shot" desserts are so yummy and nice and small too...we got the caramel/apple/cinnamon one. It was daddy's choice...the b-day girl said she wasn't hungry (but wanted chocolate...can't blame her!) :) It was still yummy!
The 8-year-old with her cake...not my best creation, but when you puke three times while making it what can you expect (fyi...it's a purse :))
Blowing out the candles...
My sweet girl...all smiles with her balloons...

Me and my buddy up late that night...he's not sleepy, but mommy is!
And guess what...our family grew last Monday! We surprised Hailey with a trip to our new pet store...and we gained two new fish in good ol' Phillip's old tank (may he RIP). Hailey didn't want another beta...I think another one would have reminded her of fishy Phil....so she picked out some platy's. She got a red one and a yellow one...very cute!

Here's Hailey with her two new fishy friends outside Petco...and below is Yellowstone (the yellow platy) and Firestone (the red/orange platy)...I'm not sure how the names came about, but we drove by a Firestone tire place so I think that's how one got his name....she decided one is a boy and one is a girl! So, we are now fish owners again...yay! :) This bowl was their home for the first 12 hours...then they found refuge in the old tank complete with a nice, new plant that Hailey picked out! :)
So, that pretty much sums up the big day. Many huge thanks to all of you who posted comments on her b-day and who sent cards, e-cards, gifts and love and hugs. She loved everything and loved all your thoughtfulness. You guys are wonderful! :) The big American Girl Spa Party is set for Saturday, April 5 and we'll have like 10 girls at our home ready for pampering. It should be "fun"! :) Hailey can't wait!

B-day Shout-out to Jill!

Well, I could be wrong on this, but if I am I'm still close on the date...but I do believe today is my awesome-super-cool neighbor friend, Jill's, b-day!! And I wanted to give her a little shout-out from across the street to let her know I'm thinking of her and to tell her what a wonderful friend I think she is.

Gosh, I think the first time I met dear Jill and her sweet family was way back in May of '02. We had just moved into our new home and were so excited to finally be homeowners again after Kev having been unemployed for a year or so...and we were so stoked to have found a new home too! And then lo and behold we got a bonus to all that joy...some awesome new neighbors that came right over with a potted flower just for us. I thought that was the nicest and kindest thing. And we've been friends ever since. It's truly been a joy being neighbors with Jill. We keep an eye out for each other's safety :) and in the last couple years we've just become really good friends...we've been walking buddies and church friends and our kids love to play in each other's yards...and, well, it's just been a blessing to have such wonderful friends so close in proximity.

And goodness knows I admire Jill to the core. She is truly one of the funniest people I know. She has this wonderful humor about her and it shows in her writing and her comments (I'm sure you've noticed the funny comments she leave me on my blog...she is one of my greatest blog supporters :)). But, aside from her humor is this wonderful, good-hearted and selfless Christian lady...she truly is an inspiration to me. I've had some sad days lately and Jill seems to know my heart and she's there to cheer me up. I appreciate that so much in her. Not to mention she is just a gifted person in so many ways. She has taken on our large group of tween girls at our church and she is helping to arm them with so much Godly knowledge to take with them as they reach teen/adulthood and beyond. She has become a great leader and I'm sure that is something she never thought she would be to such a large group of girls (and their moms)...but you are, my friend! :) So, here's to Jill today. Happy Birthday, my Friend! You are a true and wonderful friend and I cherish you so much. Hope you have a lovely day with your family and your two new girls (she adopted two sweet "puppies" from MI this weekend...you go girl!) Enjoy that expanding household of yours!

Belated B-day wishes! :)

Ok...I had to post a few pics from the past...I love these ones from Ann's wedding...she looked beautiful and Hailey looked so little then! (she was 4)
Above is me and Ann at her wedding (duh!)...and then I just had to post the pic below cuz "whoa baby"...we are larger than life compared to this lovely skinny picture above! :) I am 6-7 mos pg with Dylan and Ann is about 9 mos pg with Emma :) (in face, she gave birth like a week after this picture...I imagine you are looking like this again today, Ann! :) :))

Well, I wanted to take a moment today to re-wish my super-awesome friend (one of my best!), Ann, a very Happy (belated) B-day. I know I mentioned her briefly last Monday in the midst of our crazy 8th B-day/St. Paddy's Day celebration, but I wanted to give her her own post cuz truly...she is one of my dearest and bestest friends and I luv her to death! :) And I always seem to overlook highlighting her on her b-day cuz it just happens to fall on Hailey's b-day...or I guess I should say Hailey's b-day falls on her b-day...but you get the drift. I don't want to ignore my wonderful friend!

So, here's to you, Ann. I can't even remember the first time we met, but I know it was in nursing school and I know you came along right when I needed a friend. I felt so blessed to get to know you and you were (and still are) one of the friendliest gals I know. I love that spirit about you and that honesty and just that genuine unconditional friendship and love that you exude. I am so thankful God placed us in the same nursing class together cuz you were such a support to me. I remember when I found out I was pg with #1 and you were right there to help me along as I grew big and pg in my last year of college. And you were right there on the phone to my hospital room when I gave girth to Hailey on your b-day (I have you on our videotape talking to Kev on the phone :)). And you were there to help me when I was toting Hailey all around to nursing classes. And you've been there ever since....

I remember all our shopping days out and those times you would long for that perfect life companion...and then just like it seemed that he came along and wisked you off your feet. I remember your beautiful wedding like it was yesterday...Hailey and I were so honored to be in it and we were so happy for you guys. And then we blinked and little Emma was born and we blinked again and you were/are pregnant with #2. And now this Friday you'll give birth to your little guy and I can't wait to hear the news and see his sweet face. God has really worked some awesome miracles in your life and I'm so happy for you, friend! My one regret is that I just wish we didn't live so far apart, cuz I miss you!!!

But, you are a true friend...a great friend and I'm so thankful for you in my life. I can't wait til we get to hang out again (whenever that may be??) and I hope this year of your life is filled with many great and wonderful things cuz you deserve that! Happy Belated B-day, Friend...and good luck on Friday with delivery/surgery and recovery. Can't wait to talk to you! :)

Sunday, March 23, 2008

"Hoppy Easter!" :)


Easter Blessings from our family to yours! Have a great day! :)

Friday, March 21, 2008

Terrible Twos...help! :(

Well, as some of you might have noticed, we now have a 2-year-old on our hands yet again. And I must admit we finally realized this week that not only is the little man 2...but he can be down right terrible these days! Maybe that's harsh, but then again maybe not. You have not seen the horrible antics that have ensued lately. Where oh where did our sweet, laid-back baby boy go...and will he return?! Goodness I'm going crazy today. I won't even tell you all the trouble we've had with Easter candy and the mysterious disappearing acts that have occurred with it....but let's just say we've caught the culprit numerous times with his red hot hands in the bags of loot and his mouth full of chocolate and jelly beans. Not to mention he's so darn quiet when he's mischevious...why can't criminals be loud?!

Ok...so all joking aside...today he was into the sweets again (and yes, they are high up on the counter, but he's a climber and and can get them....and, yes, I know they need to be moved higher then...duh!)...ok, but cut me some slack I'm big and slow and pg now so I'm not on my toes like normal. So the thief was drawn to the sugar again and like I've done all week he got a smack on the hand and a firm "NO!" Well, that action/word combo is too much for our boy apparently cuz he threw the biggest, hugest fit you've ever seen...you know the flailing on the ground screaming and waving the hands. Then he got up and starting lunging at Shelby and I and trying to hit us (we weren't even doing/saying anything to him...we were eating a snack)...then he does his new attention-getter...he runs across the floor and throws himself to the ground (like a belly flop without the water). It looks painful to me but he must think it works for him cuz he did it over and over again. Oh me oh my. What in the world has possessed our sweet angelic little Dylan. I'll tell you what and it's name is "2". We have officially hit the terrible twos and I'm not liking it one bit. Hailey never had them and Shelby had it late (3)...but I guess I'd rather him have it now than when the baby comes. Please Lord let this pass by Sept! Help!? Any suggestions from the peanut gallery? The slaps seem to make him angry and hostile, so I'm not thinking that's a good idea?! Anyone with sons out there (or rough and tough girls) let me know! :)

Thursday, March 20, 2008

The Big Georgia wedding Recap! :)

The happy couple...the new Mr and Mrs. G! And below are my three cuties eating a snack in the garden (we couldn't eat inside the house at this time...strict rules...weird). But, aren't my babies cute all in height order and shining away in the sun :)
Above is part of the wedding party...not sure why the groomsmen weren't in the picture, but this was one of the few pics that Dylan actually posed for! :)

Our handsome/beautiful family of five (or six if you consider my baby bump with Baby Stegs inside :))
Me and my bro and little guy before the wedding...this is the only pic I have of Lil D with his boutineer (sp?) on...he tore it off after this (rascal!) :)
My pretty Hailey girl...she looked like a princess :)
Me and my girls at the salon after getting our hair and make-up done :) Boy, do I need some flowers to cover up my bump :)
The sweet Junior Bridesmaids...Hailey and Kalyn :)
The Shelbys...twin flower girls :)
Me and my handsome man :) I think this is a great pic of us :) (and thanks to my big bouquet for hiding my big ol' belly!) And below is the much-requested pic of me and my bro and my old friends Geoff and Colin (brothers, who make me and my bro look like dwarfs :)). I have more where this came from, but it'll have to wait til the album is posted...and, yes, there is a childhood story behind this pic :)
Well, this recap won't be as monumental as most of my "important day" remembrances, but I wanted to take a few minutes to post a few pics (and, yes, I have MANY more where this came from, but I'll have Kev add them to an online album and will post that when he has time to do that...which may not be til April). And a warning to those out there (ehem, Geoff :)) who expect me to be better at blog spacing....well, that is going out the door today...I'm too tired to think about proper English skills...please forgive me! :)

All this to say that first of all I am burned out...my exhaustion has reached an all-time high this week probably due to the crazy traveling schedule of last weekend and all the busy activities. But, I am just worn down both mentally and physically and it has been a rough week for me. Add onto that all the Easter activities this weekend and I am just ready to cry. I know that's a crappy attitude, but since I'm "with child", I'm just gonna blame it on hormones and go with that. But, I really didn't get on the ol' blog today to moan and groan about me...I came on to do a memorable Macon wedding recap...so w/o further ado....

Ok...so, I must begin this post by saying Candy and Jeff's wedding was one of the most beautiful I've ever been to. It was simply just a lovely ordeal. Candy (and, yes, I'm giving her most of the credit :))...she did an amazing job planning everything and her taste in flowers, site location, food creativity, etc, etc...well, it was all top-notch. She is one classy gal and it showed most definitely in the gorgeous wedding she chose. Everything was just perfect. I'm sure there were little things that went wrong that only she would know, but truly...the day was just one wonderful memory after another. Now I won't go as far as to say it was relaxing, cuz for us with 3 kids there ages 7 and under and 4 of us in the wedding and me being big and pregnant...well, it was honestly a very exhausting event for us...but we are not complaining...we were so thankful and honored to be a part of this special day and to be a part of the beautiful wedding party. But, we were plum tuckered out the entire time (as I'm sure Jeff and Candy were too...I'm sure they are sitting on the beaches of St. Lucia now just putting their feet up and drinking some nice fruity drinks...can you tell I'm jealous?! :))

Ok...so the wedding was picture perfect. And the first blessing of the whole weekend was that everyone who had been sick was well (or at least was not puking and looked semi-well :)). Thank you, Lord! Shelby did indeed puke for half the car ride down to GA that Thursday to that was "fun"...but when it all came down to wedding day she was well and so was everyone else. YAY! Not to mention I had very little nausea the entire trip...crazy, but true! Of course on our return trip the sickness crept back in and on Hailey's b-day I puked three times while making her cake...go figure....but needless to say I was thankful to feel good in GA cuz that made things a lot easier on us all (fyi: the Subway was only a couple miles away...that helped too...phew!)

We arrived in good ol' downtown Macon VERY late on Thurs. night...we had a flat tire as we were leaving Bloomy so needless to say it was after lunchtime before we hit the road and about midnight when we arrived at our hotel. Just the beginning of the craziness.

Friday was mostly spent just having fun...All the girls (minus me) got manis and pedis done at a nice nail place. That ended up being a whole day affair much to the bride's dismay, but all the girls came out of their with lovely manicured hands and feet :) Even the little girls got pampered. What a treat...thanks, Candy! I wish I could have stood the nail smell for more than 5 minutes...my nails were in bad need of attention, but baby nausea wouldn't allow that so I painted my own nails...blah! :(

Dylan got his hair cut at a girly salon near the nail place and all the kids REALLY enjoyed playing at this cool indoor playplace called Monkey Joes. Dylan went nuts in there jumping on all the blow-up toys...he threw a big ol' tantrum when he had to leave. I think this was our one day where we squeezed in a 1 hour nap and then it was off to the Hay House for the rehearsal (which was short and sweet and went well aside from Dylan refusing to walk down the aisle and instead throwing a tantrum and running off like a crazy man in hysterics)...and then off to the Mexican Restaurant for the rehearsal dinner. I thought for sure I'd need to carry a sub along to eat that night, but the food there was actually very good (and non-spicey) and I think that was the first real "non-subway" meal I'd had in a long time. It was a good time and thanks to my parents for hosting that event. The kids had a great time at the restaurant and enjoyed the special gifts from the bride and groom. Dylan got some big old eggs with Dora matchbox cars in them and the girls got Barbies with red dresses on (to match their dresses for the wedding...leave it up to Candy to find something cute like that!)...I got an awesome digital picture key chain. I love it...I've been wanting one and as soon as I unpack (shame on me, I should be doing that now!)...I will load it up with pics. We cut out early from the dinner and headed back to the hotel with our crazy, exhausted kids...I heard a rumor that some of the younger crowd went out drinking and partying that night....boy, I remember those days....they are long gone for us old folgies with kids! :) And then...just like that it was.........

Wedding Day!!! And what a day that was...at least for us girls. We got pampered and primped and pampered some more all day long...it was such a treat...thanks, Candy! :) The bride had rented out an entire beautiful salon just for us, her wedding party (and the moms). It was so special. The place was beautiful...a huge white house...it looked like a mansion and inside it had been all redone and was now a salon. We spent most of the day there just relaxing and getting our hair and make-up done and chatting and laughing. They even served us champagne and snacks (yes, I opted for water)...but was just so special. Candy outdid herself with it all and we should have been the one pampering her on her special day. Gotta love that new sister-in-law of mine! :) So, it was a fun afternoon. We were there from like 10:30-3ish and somehow the time just flew by. The girls did great having their hair and make-up done. They truly felt like princesses. I somehow ended up with my hair down in curls...I'm not quite sure how that happened. I told the sylist what I wanted (up-do) and she kept getting phonecalls about something and I got the feeling she was rushed...and when she was done curling my hair she just put a few bobby pins in it and left. I didn't really know what to say and I didn't want to complain, but I'd grown my hair out for 6 mos cuz I wanted it up for the wedding. But, the day wasn't about me so I didn't complain and I decided not to mess with it myself...it looked ok...it was just the first time I'd not worn my hair up for a wedding. Hailey didn't get the style she wanted either...in fact it turns out we both wanted what the bride got, so maybe the hairdressers knew that and didn't want us to copy her...so we got "different do's" :) It was ok...not a big deal. We all looked nice in the end...

I have to say the girls (our two and Candy's two nieces) looked adorable/beautiful in their dresses. They really did look so sweet and played the part of junior bridesmaids and flower girls to perfection. And I did heave a huge sigh of relief when I zipped up my dress with ease...phew! It definitely was a tight squeeze and my "bump" was visable, but most people probably just thought I'd eaten a few too many subs :) Luckily my bouquet was nice and big so that hid the pooch most of the time. So, it was a fun day at the salon/spa. We really enjoyed ourselves and enjoyed watching everyone get their hair/make-up done. Then Candy surprised us with a limo ride to the wedding site. That was a real treat and the girls LOVED that! :)

So, we finally arrived at the Hay House where the wedding and reception were. This big old plantation style Georgia mansion was beautiful. It was perfect for a wedding and a romantic setting for pictures. Just lovely. Not at all child-friendly so Kev spent his entire day/evening chasing after Dylan to make sure he didn't break/touch/spill anything anywhere. And I had a heck of a time keeping Dylan out of rooms that he was not supposed to go in...there was a time where I lost him and he was in a "restricted area" hiding behind an antique bed. Ugh....can you see why we are exhausted!? So, that was tough...but since we had 3 of the 6 little kids there it was a friendly place for most who attended the wedding. Picture time before the wedding went great...it was a warm day so there were no temp complaints...well, that's not true...it was hot and I know the bride was very hot having to be upstairs most of the time...but at least it wasn't cold, snowy, too rainy, etc.

Finally 6:30 hit and down the aisle we went. Dylan ended up walking with me. He threw his nice white ring pillow and instead carried candy down the aisle...but he did make it down the aisle and then into daddy's arms and back down the aisle and out of sight and ear-sound :) Phew...I was worried he wouldn't make it down the aisle cuz he wouldn't take pics before the wedding and he pulled his flower boutineer right off it's stem. He is a scoundrel lately if you hadn't guessed that! :) But, honestly, what can you expect from a 2 year old boy ring bearer? He did what a boy his age could...

Anyway...but the ceremony was short and sweet and nice (Kev said it was only 10 minutes?)...nothing fancy...just the vows and the necessary words and that was that. And now my brother is married and I have a new sister-in-law! YAY! The bride and groom were whisked off for more pics right away (they hadn't seen each other before the wedding). Most of the 100 or so guests got to move on to food and drinks, but the wedding party had to have the necessary pics taken outside before darkness hit. That wouldn't have been so bad but us girls hadn't eaten much all day so I admit I was a little dizzy due to lack of intake. Luckily Kev had gotten us some Mc. D's earlier so we quickly scarfed that down. I think we finally got inside to eat around 9? Ok, it seemed that late, but maybe it wasn't. By then most of the food was gone, but what we had was good (yummy choc. fondue and chicken on a stick among other things). All the other normal wedding stuff went well...the wedding cakes were so cute...a bride and groom one that actually looked like a bride and groom (one vanilla and one choc) and very good too! The DJ was great and all the dancing was so much fun. I was still dizzy from the crazy day so I just watched...but I must say our kids really took to the dancing. Dylan was a maniac on the floor. He danced all through the night and never ran out of steam and he had pretty good beat in his step too. It was very cute. Thankfully the dancing kept him busy and also the "Hay House ladies" who were guarding the stairway kept him VERY entertained (or maybe it was the other way around)...he would sit with them for hours and make them laugh and they taught him how to cross his legs...they loved him and vice versa. Our boy is definitely a ladies man! :) But, the night was great. Hailey also got her groove on and really got into all the line dances and shaking her stuff. She has rythym that neither Kev and I have! :) It was a good time...good to see old friends and family and good to see all the happiness for the new Mr and Mrs. Gritz. It was a mighty memorable event.

I know there were a lot more memories and special things that happened, but I truly just think some things are better left to pictures so you'll have to wait til those are posted to find out the rest. But, believe me when I say it was a beautiful wedding. Candy went all out with flowers...the red and white roses and all the bouquets everywhere...I've never seen that many flowers...it was breath-taking and stunning. And the fun candy bar they had set out...the kids (and adults like me who love candy)...well, we so enjoyed that...very unique. And there were just lots of little touches like that to make the day so special (like the special jewelry Candy had made for all us girls) You could just tell how much heart and soul, time, money and energy went into it all.

It was a beautiful wedding and I know it will be just the beginning of a beautiful marriage for my bro and Candy :) I'm so very happy for them both. They are perfect for each other. Hard to believe my brother is a husband, but I couldn't be more happy with his choice of a wife. Candy and Jeff...we love you! Hope you are enjoying your honeymoon!!!