Saturday, December 29, 2012

Our Fifth and Final Child is a...

BOY! :)

I am sorry it took us so long to post that, but Kev had trouble putting photos up and doing blogger on his i-phone in the hospital. We were very unprepared this time around and had no laptop with us and only a half charged i-phone :)  We weren't expecting to go into labor the morning after Christmas (a week and a half early!) during a blizzard.  It was a crazy sequence of events that I will share soon once I get more rest....but for now just know we are thrilled beyond measure to have another little boy and a brother for Dylan....we love our sweet, mellow, handsome....

Logan Thomas :)

More info and pics to come....after this mama gets more rest (we just got home from the hospital today and are all wiped out!) :)  Thanks for all the love and support.....

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Our mysterious baby Stegs #5 has joined our family but we'll be keeping the details close until the kids get to meet our newest family member. 

Born Thursday Dec 27 at 12:25am,
Weighing in at 8 lbs 9 oz and 22 inches tall.

Baby and Mommy are healthy.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

December Baby?!

Well, it seems MY plans for a January baby are not meant to be....woke up around 5am to what I thought was pee running down my leg and since then have come to the reality that my water broke.  We are off to the hospital.....soooooo NOT ready for this (you should see our disaster of a house and nothing packed for the hospital and NO names and we're in the middle of an IN blizzard)   Like it's been from Day One...this baby has its own plans to make our live a little crazier...even starting at labor :)  More info to come......

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas from our family (of almost 7!) to yours :)  Hope it was a blessed holiday for all.  I am just thankful it's almost midnight and I am still "with child".  For some reason I had a fear I'd have this baby on Christmas, so I am glad the day is almost over and hopefully this babe will stay put til after my b-day!  I am sorta sentimental though knowing this will be the last Christmas I will ever be pregnant.  As much as I don't love most of the symptoms of pregnancy, I know what a miracle and blessing it is to be able to carry life inside me and I am grateful to God for letting me do this 5 times.  And soon enough it'll be 2013 and we'll be holding this sweet baby in our arms and be a complete lil' Steg family...can't wait!

Thursday, December 13, 2012

As BIG as a...

...Christmas tree!

That's me....I have officially reached "Christmas tree" size :)  I think I actually make our tree look small and it's not that small!  Anyway...this was me a few weeks ago after Thanksgiving so I think it's safe to say I'll be "Santa" size by the 25th which is less than 2 weeks away!  I am bigger than I've ever been with my other babies, though the doc told this week told me when she measured me, "well, at least you won't have a big baby"...what?!  She obviously hasn't seen my other 10lb babies!  I will be shocked if this baby is anything under 9lbs.  I feel like I swallowed a basketball! 

Anyway...things are going good otherwise.  I am completely overwhelmed with the holidays and trying to get ready for baby at the same time.  Just a little too much for this mama who likes to do it all.  I look forward to Dec. 26 when I can put the Christmas stuff away and focus only on baby!  Prayers would be appreciated on a couple issues...1.  I am anemic.  This is not a huge deal in itself, but probably why I have been so exhausted lately...and the iron pills are making me sick and keeping me up more than normal at night. And if you know me, I need my sleep or I am grumpy!  2.  I have group B strep.  I had a big ol' infection a month ago and it showed in my urine so they said it was pretty bad if it was there.  Me/the baby will get IV antibiotics during labor.  Just pray that takes care of it.  All I want is a healthy baby in January!  Happy Holidays to all :)

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

One Month from today...

...I am due to have my 5th (and final!) baby!

Where has the time gone?  And what in the world and I doing blogging about it when I am no way ready for a baby in 4 weeks!  My mind is spinning and I can't believe I'll be a mama of 5 in such a short time.  If you could just send extra prayers my way in the coming weeks, I'd really appreciate it.  I am not getting much sleep (this baby likes to literally run in my belly all night long) and I am having contractions often enough to be uncomfortable and I feel grumpier than the grinch lately :)...and I really, really want this baby to stay put til at least January 4 when my mom is here and settled!

Friday, November 30, 2012

Nutcracker Weekend!

Hard to believe, but another Nutcracker performance weekend is upon us.  It's been very low-key for Hays this year just b/c she's doing one of the same parts as last year (Trepak/Russian) and she's only in half the performances.  I'm excited to see her dance tonight and tomorrow (well, I won't actually see her tonight, but I'm still excited she'll be dancing b/c she loves to be on stage and performa).  If anyone is interested in watching her, the live feed should be up and running as usual....

Performances are 8pm tonight and tomorrow (with her in it) and I think she's on around 9:30, but not sure...could be slightly before or after.  Good luck, my Sweet Hays!  I am so proud of you always...not only for your God-given dance ability, but just the way you have carried yourself especially over the last 2 years of ups and downs :)

(fyi, this is last year's Trepak pic....same costume, but she looks a year older...I don't have a pic of her yet, but hope to get one tonight :))

Thursday, November 22, 2012

A Day of Thankfulness!

Hope you all are having a blessed Thanksgiving Day!  It's been a "different" one for us (Shelb still in recovery, Kev getting called into to work to rebuild some servers), but still a wonderful one full of blessings.  So much to be thankful for over this last year....

Who-da thunk last Thanksgiving that I'd be sitting here with a big belly counting down the 6 weeks til I give birth to our 5th and final baby...not me! :)  7 months ago I was prego and didn't even know it.  6 months ago we saw our sweet baby on ultrasound but didn't know if we'd ever get to meet him/her due to complications.  3 months ago we were devastated to hear our baby might be stillborn or only live a short time after birth.  A couple weeks after that we were praising the Lord that our sweet baby looked completely healthy.  It has been quite a journey these last 7 months...a spiritual one, a growing one.  And more than anything today I am grateful for my healthy family, my wonderfully supportive husband, my 4 out-of-utero healthy, vibrant children and my 1 in-utero lil' mystery baby that is kicking and squirming inside me enjoying Thanksgiving leftovers as we speak :)  I don't think I have ever been so thankful on a Thanksgiving as I am today.  And to add to that my Shelby girl is doing so much better after a day full of post-op vomiting yesterday.  Life just seems too good to complain about anything (like my husband working all night) and I am cherishing my blessings today.  God is truly good and He has blessed me more than I deserve.  Hope you too are wallowing in the blessings He's given you!  Happy Thanksgiving from our family of 6 1/2 to yours! :)

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Shelb's Surgery Success!

Hi All,

Just wanted to update everyone on our sweet Shelby. She had her big "Thanksgiving" T&A (Tonsillectomy and Adenoidectomy) this morning.  She was a trooper as usual!  Went into the surgery center a little before 7am and a couple hours later she was in recovery (though only 30 minutes of this was actual surgery).  All went as planned and she is now at home sitting as comfortably as she can :)  The doc said everything went as planned, but that her left tonsil had an abscess forming.  I don't think he remembered she had had some toothbrush trauma a week before b/c when I mentioned the "accident" he didn't seem to know what I was talking about.  I guess this was pretty much a routine T&A to him, which is fine with me...routine is better than emergency surgery!  Anyway....recovery was a little rough on our girl though and I don't think she was expecting to feel as cruddy as she's feeling.  She seemed almost fearful and very confused when we first walked into the recovery room.  She didn't know where she was, what she had had done (she kept asking if her tonsils were out or not?), then she just wanted to hug Kev and I over and over again, and then she was asking for pictures of her new throat (aka, she wanted proof that those suckers were gone...can't blame her there! :)) was interesting to see her coming out of anesthesia.  She couldn't relax.  Her eyes would roll back in her head and we'd think she'd sleep and then she'd sit up really fast and look around with wide/scared eyes.  Poor girl.  Anyway...after an hour she seemed more lucid and then as a trade-off she started to vomit (I had a feeling this would happen...she has a weak stomach like her mama :)). First time wasn't so bad...she hit the basin only. Next time was right before discharge at noon and that pretty much hit Kev and I both (projectile).  Poor thing.  But, she felt better after and then was just ravenous to eat....she kept asking when she could leave; when she could eat.  I wasn't sure they'd let us leave on time due to her vomitfest b/c they came in and changed her whole outfit and bed...but sure enough shortly after noon we were outta there!  YAY! She didn't do well getting to the van though...she had to sit down in the grass for a bit, but shortly after that we were on our way home. And she's been sitting comfortable watching tv ever since.  She's still begging for food like popcorn and crunchy stuff that she can't have, but has thankfully kept a bunch of ramen noodles down as well as a small milkshake.  She looks miserable though and you can't get the poor girl to smile for anything, but hopefully after a good night's sleep tonight we can still celebrate a nice Thanksgiving with Kev's family (and Shelb can eat her coveted meal of mashed potatoes :)).  We'll see... 

Thanks to all who have been thinking of her and sending prayers and hugs her way and lots of well wishes.  Even her sweet siblings made her a big banner while she was in surgery's so cute...made of turkey hands :)  We are so blessed by wonderful friends and family who support her/us. 

Monday, November 12, 2012

Shelby's Scare :(

Well, our sweet Shelb made her debut run to the ER early this morning :(  And what a crazy sequence of events it was...

Have you ever had your mom or dad tell you not to run with something in your mouth?  I've never actually seen an injury occur from this, but after last night, I can see how wise those words are...

Around 9pm, Shelby and Hailey were fooling around.  They should have been in bed, but I had asked Shelby to brush her teeth again b/c her breath was less than stellar after her first brushing attempt.  Kev and I were in our bathroom taking a 32 wk prego pic of me.  We came out to Shelby in her bed hysterical.  We had no idea what happened...and honestly I'm still not sure of the whole story. But, both girls were playing around and Shelby still had her toothbrush in her mouth and somehow Shelby fell and the toothbrush punctured part of her mouth. At first we had no idea where...but later it was very apparent (her tonsils).  We got her out of her bed as the blood started pouring from her mouth.  There was so much and it was so thick that it was choking her.  She was scared more than anything, I think, b/c she couldn't breathe and the bleeding would not stop (from her mouth and nose) and there was blood all over the bathroom counter/sink.  We made our 1st call to Poppy Stegs.  He's our go-to-doctor after hours and we are soooo thankful for him and his wisdom.  He recommended we go to the ER, but in the course of the conversation of about 10 minutes, the bleeding finally stopped and we had her shower and get the blood off and rinse out her mouth/nose good.  It didn't seem as emergent at that point and I am not one who really flips out about injury.  It was still hard to tell at this point where the injury was in her throat, but she just knew it hurt. The issue now was swelling and infection.  We made the choice to let her go to bed around 10pm and Kev just slept on her bottom bunk in case there was some airway/breathing issues.  About midnight she woke up in a panic...she couldn't swallow well or breathe well and a quick look at her throat showed it almost completely closed up.  The poor girl has large tonsils to be begin with, but usually there is a lil' space between them...this time there was not.  I could tell she was scared and I was too...I tried to lay on the bottom bunk and get some rest, but all I could think about was her not breathing in the next few hours.  We made the wise choice to go off to the ER (Kev and Shelb).  And I am so glad they did.  I couldn't sleep a wink so I got on the computer and did research on it....always a bad idea.  I guess that kind of injury can be very dangerous b/c it's so close to the carotid artery and b/c of the risk of infection and swelling.  I'm not sure of exact sequence of events at the hospital, but they called an ENT right away to consult over the phone and he said we must see one today for sure.  They were worried her tonsils had abscesses on them from the injury, which I guess is an emergent situation.  But, thankfully they gave her some steroids, antibiotics and some heavy pain meds and she was soooo happy when she got home that she went right to bed (making note to tell us to tell Hailey she was "ok"...Hays had cried herself to sleep blaming herself over this whole ordeal, which she was not at fault for!) long story short, but we got her right into the ENT today who said thankfully her tonsils didn't have abscesses (or she would have needed emergency surgery right then), but that she did have very enlarged tonsils and adenoids and that both needed to come out pronto!  Praise the Lord!  We have honestly been trying to get someone to do this for years, but the ped's office always "poo-poos" it.  Our poor girl has snored like a wildabeast since she was little and the doc think she's probably had sleep apnea that long too. No wonder she never likes to sleep!  So good came out of a bad situation and next Wed. our sweet girl will get her tonsils and adenoids out.  Yes, "great" timing with Thanksgiving the next day, but she's actually excited b/c all she'll have to eat on Turkey Day is mashed potatoes and milk shakes--her fav! :)  So, that's our lil' jaunt of excitement for the week.  Not that we needed any...I feel our lives have been crazier than ever lately! :(  But, it did put it all in perspective and reassure me that our family and our health is more important than my cluttered house which has put me into a frenzy lately.  So, for now I am grateful for my healthy girl and that her throat is on the mend. She did have a rough day at school with a very sore throat (her words were "worst day EVER!"), but hopefully things just get better from here on out and she is breathing easier next week w/o those nasty enlarged tonsils.  And I am just so grateful things weren't worse.  Lesson learned:  Don't run/play around with anything in your mouth! 

Monday, November 5, 2012

2 more months to go!

I just realized I have only 2 months to go til this sweet mystery baby is born!  Cannot wait!  Time has truly flown by these past few months now that I've been feeling better and we know the baby is been healthy.  I cannot be more thankful during this month of thankfulness!  Above is our newest and probably final u/s pic of our baby in-utero (taken almost 2 wks ago).  Brain cysts are thankfully gone and the baby was about 3lbs, 6oz.  He/she's head is huge (was measuring a month ahead), so that will be "fun" for me to deliver, but not abnormal for our kiddos to have those nice, round faces :)  Isn't he/she so sweet all cuddled up inside me with that little hand by its face. It does look like he/she has a wart/mole on its :)  And below our sweet baby pic, is me about a week ago with our "baby" idea of one of the siblings.  I loved it :)  More updates to come...

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween!

Happy Pumpkin Day from our family of 6 1/2 to yours! :)  Hope you all are having a wonderful day and a nice warm trick-or-treat night (ours will be a chilly one and this big prego is hoping the kids are quick getting their treat so this mama can put her feet up in the warm house :))

Friday, September 21, 2012

My Baby Girl is 4!

How can it be that 4 years have passed since I gave birth to this beautiful little girl?  I can't even begin to tell you how's she's blessed my life and that of our family.  She makes us laugh every day with her spunky personality and the crazy things she says and the way she over animates with her hands....but there is one thing that's for sure... I love this little Ashley Claire to the depths of my heart and I am so grateful God sent her to our family 4 year ago.  She is one-of-a-kind and I can't wait to see how she grows this year especially when it comes to being a big sis :)  Mommy loves you so VERY much, Ash! :)

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Our New Family Portrait :)

Ok, I couldn't help but laugh when this came home from school this week with Dylan (who's in 1st/2nd gr).  Check it out and smile along with me.  I love it!  Though I am now looking at my arms in the mirror more...maybe I've not only grown in the belly lately?  Though I think I will chose to just think he thinks I'm extra strong :)  I love this boy of mine and he's going to be a great big brother again!

Friday, August 17, 2012

Answered Prayers!

I still have tears in my eyes (happy ones!) and am almost unable to fully process my thankfulness and relief....

Our baby seems to be completely healthy!!!!

After a week and a half of waiting and much patience (which was truly only given to me by God :)), our AFP (Alpha-Fetoprotein) test (aka the Triple Test) results came back today and the results were negative.  For those that don't understand this test (like myself).  It's a blood test that looks for increased risk for certain abnormalities...Down Syndrome, Spina Bifida, Neural Tube Defects and in our case Trisomy 18 (which was a concern for our baby due to the brain cysts found on u/s last week and was the only reason we had this blood test taken in the first place, b/c I have always refused it in my other pregnancies).  My specific results show a 1 in 1,400 chance of Down Sydrome, a 1 in 5600 chance of Spina Bifida and there was no number associated with Trisomy 18 but instead it read that our sweet baby was not at increased risk for this chromosomal abnormality.  PRAISE THE LORD!!!!

 I feel like for the first time in this pregnancy I am able to really breathe a sigh of relief, relax and enjoy this baby growing and moving inside me---this lil' miracle.  That I can now connect to this last child of mine for the first time.  I realize it's my own fault for not doing this before 19 weeks, but I am one who often has a protective barrier up and I just couldn't let myself get attached when I had a 50/50 chance of miscarriage before last week and then when I didn't know if my baby would even be born alive or live past 2 years.

But, that being said, I have to say that I have truly had the most peaceful and faithful walk the last 12 days as I waited, and I know that is only a God-thing.  And I know that so many of you played a part in that with all the prayers you have lifted up on our family/baby's behalf.  I have felt so wrapped in love and peace in a way I've never felt before in uncertain circumstances.  I cannot thank you all enough for that b/c I needed it more than you will ever know and I needed to lean on Him like I've never had to do before.  God has truly been working on my heart in so many ways and this baby has truly been a journey of faith for me, which I think I needed.

Thank you all for your love and support, and especially prayers during our time of need.  God is truly good and a worker of miracles and I've always been in awe of the miracle of a baby forming and growing, but I am even more in awe today as I look upon our healthy baby and can finally picture his/her sweet little body in my arms in about 20 weeks :)  We are halfway to meeting you, sweet Mystery Baby Stegs #5 :)  Now your mama can have a wonderful weekend with a happy and grateful heart! :)   

Monday, August 6, 2012


Hi, My Sweet Friends,

I have a mind full of prayers today, but I think I have to sort them out in my own head before I jot them on "paper".  But, if you could just say a big prayer for our family and our baby today, I would really appreciate it. We had our 18 week (anatomical u/s) this afternoon and while almost all of it looked good, I could tell right away when the u/s tech was looking at the brain that something was amiss.  Our baby has choroid plexus cysts (CPC's) in both sides of the brain.  While this in itself is not a big concern (as they will most likely disappear), at this point in the development it is a "marker" or sign of Trisomy 18 (a chromosomal disorder where most babies are stillborn or only live a couple years).  We were told we were at low risk for this just b/c there were no other markers on our u/s that indicated abnormality, but at the same time it is concerning.  We had previously declined the AFP blood test which looks for chromosomal abnormalities, but we reconsidered that today with the doctor's urging and had that done after the u/s.  We hopefully will get the results by week's end or early next week. This will only tell us if we have more "markers" for concern. We are praying we don't.  But, for now we would just welcome prayers.  I think most of you can tell by my lack of blogging about this pregnancy that I have really struggled with this baby.  Not only physically, but mentally. From day one of finding out about this baby, I didn't know if I'd get to meet him/her due to my subchorionic cyst (which has resolved, by the way)...but with that came a 50/50 chance of miscarriage.  I have felt myself just being really disconnected with this was my way of protecting myself in case I never got to see that sweet face.  I was praying with all my heart that this u/s would give me peace.  That I could finally relax and envision that baby face in my mind.  But, I still feel I can't do that.  It is my own fault that I am robbing myself of this final pregnancy joy and I realize that and also my own fault that I not letting God give me peace.  I would just covet any prayers for my heart and my sweet baby's health.  I know this God's way of saying "trust me"...and I don't do that nearly as often as I should.  He just might force me to this time :) 

Thanks, my wonderful friends and family for letting me share my heart today....I think I am in the midst of a great faith-growing that I hope/pray ends in good news and happy new year.

In other news...we did NOT find out gender and the u/s tech was not able to tape our u/s so I could review it at home for guessing purposes.  The heart rate was 148 though which is much lower than it was for all my girls....I can't really remember what Dylan's heartrate was....and also, I would love prayers for my heart...I have had some arrhythmias and they are doing an EKG and most likely putting me on a heart monitor too.  Never a dull moment :)  On a side note, isn't that the cutest 3D pic of our baby above...he/she had hands right up by the face and was moving all around :)

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Destined for Craziness :)

No, your eyes are not deceiving you.....

We are indeed expecting Baby #5! :)  The news has been slow to leak out this time for numerous reasons (shock, extreme nausea, etc), but mainly b/c I have had some complications that put the baby in harm's way.  So far our little sweetie is sticking in there and doing well and we are praying with all our hearts that we get to meet him/her around January 5th :)  More details to come when I am not hunched over the toilet as much and when our crazy whirlwind trip to NYC-FL is over :)  Yikes, 5 kids....we are obviously not meant to lead a non-chaotic life! 

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Happy Easter!

Happy Resurrection Day from our family to yours :) Hope it's a blessed one!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Sleeping Beauty Debut!

Hello Dedicated (not-giving-up-on-me) Blog's is something I just had to announce....

Hailey will be in the college production (ballet) of Sleeping Beauty this weekend! :) This is very exciting as it's not "normal" for pre-college kids to be asked to perform in a college ballet (aside from Nutcracker), so we are eagerly anticipating watching her dance in this big production. The performances are this Friday, March 23rd at 8pm and Saturday, March 24th at 8pm. She will be in two dances--The Garland Waltz (right at the beginning of Act 1 of the performance near 8:30pm) a light green/yellowish dress dancing with a handful of other girls with flower garlands in their hands (see photo attached). And then on Sat. night she will debut as Little Red Riding Hood (I think you know what she would look like, but a photo is attached). It's a very big part for her as she will be dancing on pointe and with a college major--the wolf (a pas de deux). This dance occurs in the 3rd Act about 3/4 of the way through right after the Blue Birds (it could be as late 10:15pm). She will also be in the finale. There is no pressure to watch her :)...but if anyone is home either of these two evenings there is always the option of watching the live feed from the comforts of home....(she will do the one role Garland Waltz on Friday night and both roles on Sat. night, just to clarify)

We are so excited for Hailey and this awesome opportunity. She will be featured in the playbill for her Red Riding Hood role so that's semi-exciting too! :)

Thanks for always supporting her in her dance career...we are so proud of her!

I do hope to get back to blogging in April! Don't hold your breath, of course :) And hopefully I'll finish (aka start!) posting about our awesome Spring Break last week in FL/Disney with my fam AND the b-day wishes to my big 12 year old!

Update on Friday night....her Garland Waltz dance is around 8:52pm and the Riding Hood dance will be at about 10:15ish. She did great on opening night! So proud of my beautiful ballerina!

Monday, January 30, 2012

My Little Man is 6!

Today the handsomest little man I know turns the big SIX! As with all my kids' b-days, I really cannot believe so many years have gone by so quickly. I still remember this day (above) like it was yesterday...we had no idea we were having a little boy (I just assumed we'd be content with all girls)....but the good Lord had other plans :) He blessed us with the most handsome son/brother on that cold January 30, 2006. Even his sisters were smitten right away....since then they aren't quite so enamored , but still love him for the crazy brother he is :)
He just melted my heart with his sweet little boy face...(4 days old)
...and his little rolls....(6 months old)

...and those BIG blue eyes (1st b-day)
....and his crazy hair...(sorry about the "mushroom" cut, buddy :))...2nd b-day...

...his goofy grins... (3rd b-day)
...his always happy face... :) :) :) :) (4th b-day)
...he somehow just grew at lightning speed into this cute little boy... (5th b-day)
And here we are at 6 today....a big Kindergartner...whose first words to me this morning where "this is the BEST day's a school day, it's my birthday-day, and it's a present day!"....three of his favs packed in one day....that's really all he needs for a great b-day! I love you, my handsome man. I always dreamed of having a son, but never dreamed I'd have one as wonderful, handsome, smart, happy and funny as you :) You make me laugh and smile every day. I hope you never lose that deep joy in your heart. Happy Birthday, Dylan James!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

NY, here she comes!

I know I don't blog much anymore, but this bit of news is definitely blog-worthy! We just found out today that Hailey made it into the 5-week summer course at SAB (School of American Ballet) in NY! I am still shaking and trying to wipe the happy tears off my face :) Most of you probably don't know much about SAB since you aren't in the world of ballet, but it is the top ballet school in the country (in my humble opinion :)) and extremely hard to get into (only about 200 make it out of 3000 who audition). She had her audition last weekend in Indy (and was the youngest at age 11) and I think her words afterwards were, "I messed up a few times, but not to the point that I think I failed". Haha...such humble and honest words from our ballerina. AND...not only did she get into the program, but she was blessed with a wonderful scholarship package. AMAZING! We are so proud of her and so grateful for this gift God has given her. I cannot wait to see her face later on today when she gets the news. She will be on cloud nine! Finally some good ballet news after a disappointing end-of-2012! So, NY...get ready....our beautiful ballerina will be gracing you with her presence soon! Now I need to start preparing myself to have her out of my sight for FIVE whole weeks. Lord, help me! But, I am so excited for my girl and this amazing opportunity to travel and better learn the art of ballet she loves so much...and especially to learn the art of Balanchine ballet, which I know she will love dancing. Congrats, Hays!!!!