Friday, June 27, 2008


So here is a picture of Chloe Faith. She was born 11:25 PT June 23 at 1lb 2oz and 12 inches long. So far she has been doing as well as can be expected. It is common for extreme preemies to have bleeding either in the brain or abdomen due to the ventilator and pressure changes, but thus far, she has neither which is great. She is starting to breath a little on her own, but is still on a ventilator. They have also started to give her oral food to supplement her IV nutrition. She has a long road ahead, but thank God thus far things are going ok. Bridget is recovering from the c-section and will resume chemo in 2 weeks. Please continue to hold this family up in your prayers.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008


If you have about 8 minutes of time, check out this really cool U-Tube video.

Monday, June 23, 2008


So I've been thinking about some great insprirational, platitudinal words for this milestone, but the wind just got taken out of my sail. Another smaller person needs attention on this birthday. In just 2 hours (approximately 9pm Pacific Time), a little baby will celebrate birth, but not in the normal, joyous fashion. My cousin Steve's wife Bridget is going to have an emergency c-section to deliver their 26-27 week gestation baby. There is approximately 50% viability at this age, but life-long complications are common for those who do survive.

Even if you're not the praying source, consider it for this family. They have been through so much pain and difficult decisions since her cancer diagnosis several weeks ago. They have done it with amazing grace and joy even amidst all this tragedy. It just seems unfair that one more thing has to be so difficult. Pray for miracles! God is the one who knit this little baby together, He surely can sustain it. Pray for peace in this storm.

It's amazing how this story has traveled across the country and touched so many. They are holding a benefit concert in Boston this weekend. Curt Schilling (Boston Red Sox pitcher) heard about Bridget and called her and left a message letting her know he was praying for her. Another friend has started collecting stories and pictures for Bridget's child(ren) as Bridget was stressing about not having made any keepsake item for them. So many are wrapping them in love.

So this birthday post wasn't what I'd have planned, but maybe it's more inspirational than any thoughts I may have had. Maybe it will inspire a few more people to pray - myself included. As my Uncle has said in numerous update e-mails about Bridget, their family's hope is that through all this prayer not only will miracles happen for their family, but also for each individual that prays as they seek God and communicate with him on an intimate basis. Changed hearts and lives. Please pass this message along to anyone and everyone.

I think you know what my wish was as I blew out those 30 candles.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Ode to My Hubby

So this ode is fitting since it was just Father's Day this weekend - wait a minute, he's my husband, not my dad, oh well.
I love my husband. Most wives in good standing probably feel this way. By in large, I think I did pretty well in marrying Steve. He's a good guy, works hard, has fun, is a good dad, etc. But the weekend before this past, the man really outdid himself. I honestly didn't know he had it in him, but now that I do, he's in trouble because I'll hold him to a higher standard:)
So it all began with my mom telling me she was taking me on a surprise birthday weekend. Steve consented to handling the kids for a night by himself. Mom took me to Chicago where we did plenty of damage shopping, getting made-up at Macy's, great dinner, and then followed it up with a Broadway performance of "Wicked." For any of you who like musicals, this was a GREAT show! Very entertaining and fun! We ended with a nightcap at the hotel and settled in for a quiet night with no babies crying or kids squeezing in bed...ahhhh. Unfortunately, we had to kind of rush home because mom had a graduation open house to attend...or so she claimed.
As we pulled up our dirt road, I noticed a large red, yellow, and blue inflatable in our yard. Then as we got closer, I could make out the white peaks of a large tent. I was still a little dense, and not until we pulled in the driveway and all our friends yelled "SURPRISE!" did I realize just how badly I'd been duped.
So yes, my dear hubby threw me a 30th birthday fiesta, nice. But oh no, this was no simple affair. He threw a surprise annual pig roast party! Some of you may have attended one of our fabulous events, I think we've had 6 of them so far. The planning is a full time job, let me tell you, because I am usually the one on our side of things handling this stuff. But Steve did it all: invitations, tent, bouncy for the kids, tables, chairs, clean house, mow lawn, 2 kegs (one even was Oberon - we're stepping up in life), drinks, munchies, major decorations, the pig (which is a major undertaking in and of itself), fireworks, and entertainment (past parties have included square dancing, a whiffle ball tournament and bonfires). The dear boy took a whirlwind trip down to Indiana on Friday just to get the fireworks since I was so bummed last year that we didn't have them. But my ultimate surprise was the entertainment - Dueling Pianos!!!! Howl at the Moon style! I could never in my wildest imagination think he would do all this, let alone be able to keep everything from me. My good friend from vet school is engaged to a guy who is professional "piano dueler" (I made up that title), so Steve contacted him a while ago to see if it was possible to do a remote location show. Sure enough, they had keyboards set into fake baby grand pianos and they were jammin away! Most people at the party were unfamiliar with this format of entertainment, but they quickly caught on and soon it was a rockin party! It's hard to convey the scope of the whole thing, but it was amazing!
So, thank you, Steve. I know I've told you like 10,000 times how much I love you, but I never could imagine that love would continue getting bigger and bigger. The piano players wished they were married to Steve, and I know that I am very lucky to be. There are days I want to kick you in the shins, don't get me wrong, but for the most part you are more than I ever dreamed a husband could be. Thank you for being my best friend. Thank you for sticking by me when I'm less than nice. Thank you for our family and the great times we have together. Thank you for loving me so much that you would want to throw me the biggest and bestest 30th birthday party ever! I love you.
P.S. If any of you party-goers have any pics from this event, I'd love copies. As it was a surprise, I didn't have my camera poised and ready. Then I'll post them
P.P.S. Ok, so we had so much fun the first time around, we're doing it again! Mark your calendars for August 23, 2008. More info to come.

Monday, June 2, 2008


There are some moments in life when you just wish you could sit back and hit replay over and over because you know it's how life's supposed to be. It's when I need to take the time to say "Thanks God, for all the amazing blessings in my life. Thanks also for the trial which make the blessings that much sweeter." Below is a pictoral of some of those blessings.

This is a picture of Gabby and Rylee with Gabby's best friend Isabelle (middle) and her sister Allison(left). Isabelle has been such a blessing for Gabby- her happiness and increase in confidence this year are unbelievable. Good friends are to be treasured.

This picture was taken at the local hunt club - as in horses chasing foxes. I volunteered at an event there this weekend for the pony club, and it was just beautiful out. Also, my two oldest children have never behaved as well as they did during the event! I left them over on a hill about 200 yards away from my vet box and told them to stay there....AND THEY DID for like 45 minutes! Gabby is really getting into the horse stuff. She ended up staying with me for the entire 4 hours. We both got great tans and loved watching these amazing creatures perform at their best.

Ok, so I'm pretty sure the above two photos aren't going to scar my children later in life:) This was a post-soccer bath for everyone, and it felt amazing! You'd figure with a baseball dad and a basketball mom we'd be playing one of those sports, but we are now a soccer fam. When Steve comes home every night, the first question from the girls is, "Dad, can we play soccer?" This is truly a whole family deal - even C.J. gets in the action thanks to an awesome baby carrier! Rylee is learning to be a cherry picker, Gabby's known for kicking in the shins, I've landed on my butt several times already (on a day I didn't have C.J. strapped in, so I was going all out), and Steve's the master trickster. So at the time of this writing Steve's teams are beating mine 3-1 in the series, but mind you I have a 20 lb handicap. It's great to have fun as a family! Thanks God!

So do you think he might be his daddy's boy? The three toys above: football, baseball, and TV remote all make for a good time. I can already hear the wrestling matches between the two of them for the remote. It may get ugly!

And finally, we are so thankful for the arrival of spring and summer. This winter got a little long and depressing, but now the flowers are blooming and life is green. The lake is warming up, so soon you'll be seeing swimming pictures. Actually, the crazy girls both did go swimming Memorial weekend in 62F water - that's COLD! This is a little bouquet I made from some early summer blooms for Gabby's teacher. Once the garden's in full bloom, I'll have to post pictures. I don't think this will be a strong year of gardening as I don't want to make a lot of additions only to have to leave them behind when we move (if ever). But I have quite a few perrenials that give a nice show.