Friday, April 30, 2010

There's No Turning Back...

Today, we registered our sweet, baby boy for Kindergarten!

When I had Dylan, Kindergarten seemed SO far away. It amazes me how quickly the years flew by.

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The registration was quick and painless. I did feel a pang in my heart as I sat back, and watched him go to each assessment station. He just seemed so grown up.

He got some materials to prepare for the school year. A coloring book about school bus safety and crayons, and a little book written from a Kindergartener's point of view, which introduces the school and the personnel.

Dylan is so excited to go to Kindergarten! It's me that's going to have a problem. Every day he goes to preschool, he asks if he can skip class that day and just go to the big school. I know he's going to love it!

And just like that, we are the parents of a soon-to-be Kindergartener!

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It was a great night for T-Ball! It felt like a summer night.

His game on Monday was canceled, due to rain, so this was his second game. We had some gorgeous, 80+ degree weather today, so it was much more enjoyable than Opening Day!

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While Dylan was practicing before the game, Lexie and I played at the playground.

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Her smile makes me melt!

Dylan played well tonight! He had some great hits, and ran "super-duper-fast" as he likes to say!

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I am so proud of my big boy!

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On the short drive home, we spotted a lot of deer and geese. The kids always get so excited when they see deer! It was a beautiful night, so we played outside until it got dark.

We had such a busy day that the kids begged to go to bed tonight!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Bottoms Up!

Lexie had the distinct privilege of accompanying me to my yearly doctor visit this morning.

When I say doctor, I mean THAT doctor.

I typically rely on my sister to watch the kids, but my nephew has been really sick, and even though she offered, I didn't want to burden her. Plus, I didn't want Lexie to get sick.

She got quite an education today.

My awesome doctor (no, really, he is...he took great care of me when I was dealing with preterm labor) said that he could, ahem, block the view from Lexie. It was a quick, easy visit, and I thought I was in the clear.

The doctor opened the door to leave the room, and Lexie gave me the look.

A look very similar to this one:


She oh so sweetly declared, "Mommy, I saw your buuu-utttt."

Dear Lord.

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While Lexie was taking a nap today, and Dylan was playing a bit of Wii, I curled up on the couch with my book. I ended up dozing off while I was reading.

I woke up, and both of my calf muscles were clenched up. It felt like those awful leg cramps I would get while I was pregnant. I tried to stretch them out, but they wouldn't stop cramping. The right one finally eased, but the left one was hurting so bad, that it felt like my leg was burning.

I have no idea what happened, but I ended up pulling a leg muscle for the first time ever. While I was sleeping. Now, I've got a limp to prove it. And a taped up finger to go along with it. Here's hoping that I don't hurt myself tomorrow!

I swear, the stupidest stuff happens to me. I run over 10 miles a week, and never get hurt, but I manged to pull a muscle in my sleep.

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Last summer, I posted about how I can't kill spiders. I save each and every one that comes into my house. I am the Spider Saver.

Little spiders are okay with me. The bigger they are in size, the more they freak me out.

Like the one that was just a few inches away from me the other night. That baby was bigger than a quarter, and I couldn't move away, due to the fact that I was sitting on the toilet at the time. I bargained with it. If it stayed still and didn't touch me, I promised that I would not kill it, and would take it outside. If it touched me, all bets were off.

I have never peed so quickly in my life.

True to my word, I captured the spider in a little cup, and rain through the house screaming ('cause that's the way to do it), and flung it outside.

Today, the kids discovered a tiny spider that crawled in from our sunporch. Dylan immediately captured it and put it in his bug container. They had a blast watching it.

And hugging it. *shudder*


I finally convinced them to let it go, and hug something a bit cuter.


And this little man? He's going to be a registered Kindergartener, as of Friday.


Stop growing up so fast, buddy!

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Now that I've thoroughly embarrassed myself....

Bottoms Up!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The Fine Art of Fainting

I am a fainter.

I fainted today, as a matter of fact.

I was around 8 years old the first time I remember fainting. I had just gotten dental work done, and as my dad was paying the bill, I passed out.

I fainted at doctors appointments. I fainted while getting blood drawn. I fainted after falling off my horse, and injuring my ankle. I fainted after my horse stepped on my hand...when I came to I was looking up at his belly. I fainted (cue teenage nightmare) in the middle of a crowded school hallway. I fainted when my dad chopped the tip of his finger off....he had to find another ride to the hospital. I fainted after I got the epidural. I fainted when Dylan got a head wound...blood...blood was everywhere....I called for help, and then passed out on the bathroom floor, with him in my arms. I nearly fainted on the drive to the ER, when he cut his forehead open....couldn't even watch as they stitched him up. I fainted today.

Yep, I'm a fainter. It's very inconvenient (especially when you have an accident prone child). And very embarrassing.

Today, I was helping Lexie clean her room. I happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. I'm glad I was there, though, and not one of my kids! Lexie's door on her dresser has been loose. (I know, I know, I should have seen this coming.) Today, it fell off. Right on the tip of my finger. As my finger was crushed between the door and the hardwood floor, I felt excruciating pain explode in my hand. I heard a crunch. And then, the world began to darken.

I managed to crawl into my bedroom, and climb into bed before I passed out. As I came to, seconds later, Lexie ran into my room, yelling, "Mommy, mommy, is your hand hurt?" When she saw me on the bed, with my eyes closed, she put her hand on her hips, and sternly said, "Mommy, it is not time to go back to sleep!" Leave it to Lexie to bring some humor into the situation!

It took me a while to completely come out of it, and I had the fainting side effects all day-the dull headache and nausea.

Yes, very inconvenient. The fainting and the injured finger.

The tip of my finger immediately swelled, and began to bruise. At first, I thought I broke it, but I think I just chipped the bone. Luckily, it hit right above the top joint of my ring finger. I taped it up, and went about my business. It has been throbbing all day! I have a previously scheduled appointment tomorrow, and will ask the doctor to take a look at it while I'm there.

Hopefully, I don't faint.

Just for the record.......it took forever to type this. ;)

Monday, April 26, 2010

Food Fight

Grant and I do well dealing with Lexie's bizarre eating issues, but every so often we reach our breaking point, and end up having an argument about it.

We reached that breaking point on Thursday night, during dinner. We began blaming each other (which is ridiculous) and ended up angry, and barely speaking.

I have adjusted to the fact that she has issues, and I just deal with it. Then, reality hits, and I realize that her eating habits aren't even remotely normal. Especially when it causes an argument between my husband and I.

Especially when my husband suggests the fact that she may need therapy.

Especially when I agree with him.

It was recommended that we wait until Lexie is 4 before we take any additional steps. The doctor is hoping that she is just extremely (emphasis on extremely) picky, and will come around. If she doesn't improve in the next 10 months, we will have to search out a food therapist.

I really hope it doesn't come to that.

For now, we just keep offering. Once in a blue moon she will try something (once, though never again). We got her to eat a piece of baked potato for the first time on Saturday...after we loaded it with butter. After 3 bites, she was done, and I highly doubt she'll eat it the next time we have baked potatoes. We made a huge deal out of it, as we typically do, and rewarded her for trying a new food.

It bothers me so much that I have one child that is an extremely healthy eater, and another that refuses to eat almost everything. I did everything I was supposed to with Lexie, just as I did with Dylan, and I'm puzzled as to what set her down this path of eating issues.

I can honestly say I never expected to have a 3 year old with a feeding disorder.

On all other counts, she is perfectly normal. She is incredibly smart and funny. She talks constantly. She has a great imagination. She is carefree and energetic. She is loving and cuddly.

She is a typical 3 year old.

The 3's aren't easy! Every time I turn my back, she gets into something.

Her latest endeavor was rubbing Lubriderm all over herself...which included her shirt sleeves. When I found her, she was covered in a thick, white paste (as was the floor), and she happily explained that her "egg-zema" was itchy. (I was able to laugh about this AFTER the messy cleanup!)

To me, she is perfect. She is always making me laugh. I have to contain myself from hugging her too much. I love her to pieces.

I just wish her eating habits would improve! I want to stop worrying about her nutrition and her health. I just want her to eat normally.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Go Tigers!!!

Today was opening day for baseball! It was most definitely a day to remember.

We had to be at the field at 8:15. That is super early for my kids. They are usually still sleeping at that time! It was a cold morning, and it began drizzling when we got to the field.

Opening Day went on as planned. The teams lined up and paraded up to the field for the opening ceremony.

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Since it was raining, they suggested skipping the 45 minute practice, and beginning the game immediately. That would have gone over well, except the team we were supposed to play went home until game time! So the kids did practice, and by the time the game started, everybody was cold and wet.

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The game was so much fun to watch, though! In the first few minutes, there was a 3 kid pile up on the pitchers mound. All of the laughing made the weather more bearable! It was so much fun to watch Dylan play, and he had a great time, despite the shivering and blue lips. My poor, skinny boy doesn't have an ounce of body fat on him, but he hung in there!

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I think it helped that Papa, Mawnaw, and PapPap braved the weather to cheer him on!

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Dylan was so proud of himself after the game, and exited the field with a huge smile on his face (and ice cold fingers).

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Did I mention that my husband is a huge Detroit Tigers fan, so he is thrilled that Dylan is a Tiger? Grant proudly wore his Tigers shirt and hat!

Dylan celebrated his first game by having some pizza with a few of his teammates, then we headed home for a few minutes to warm up and change out of our wet clothes, before returning to the field for team pictures.

Despite the cold and the rain, the first game was a success!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Awards




I received the Sunshine Award from Dayngr at Dayngrous Discourse. Thank you, Dayngr!

(Actually, this award jogged a memory. I do believe Katrina, at Sevin Family, gave me this award a few months ago. If so, thank you, Katrina, and I'm sorry I forgot about it!)


I'm going to pass the award on to:

1. The Neff Family. Ginger is definitely a ray of sunshine!
2. Kaci at Ellyphant. Kaci is so sweet!
3. Erin at The Schuler Family. Love her and her blog!




I received the Happy 101 award from Shannon at Webbisodes. I just recently found Shannon's blog and I'm so happy I did! Thanks for the award, Shannon!

Here are the rules:

1. Copy and paste the award on your blog.
2. List who gave the award to you and use a link to her blog (or hyperlink).
3. List 10 things that make you happy.
4. Pass the award on to other bloggers and visit their blog to let them know about the award.

Here are the 10 things that make me happy:

1. My loved ones. They mean the world to me. I have been blessed with a (huge) wonderful family, and wonderful friends.

2. My kids. I never knew I could love somebody THIS much.

3. A warm, sunny day. The beautiful weather makes everything seem better!

4. A good book! I am always reading at least one book and magazine at any given time.

5. Hiking with my family. Nothing beats the time spent with them outdoors.

6. The beach! I haven't been to the (real) beach since I was pregnant with Dylan. I'm due for a trip!

7. Taking pictures. I am always attempting to get the perfect picture, and it's a great feeling when I do!

8. Shopping. I love me some shopping!

9. Going for a run when I have a ton of energy, because it's easy, and I feel so strong!

10. A good song, good TV show, good movie, or good musical. There's nothing like great entertainment!

It was hard to narrow it down to 10, and I feel as if I'm missing something! ;)


I'm giving this award to:

1. Ashley at Sweet Serendipity. She's Grant's cousin, and oh so sweet!
2. Sara at Domestically Challenged. She cracks me up!
3. Annie at Our Little Family. A sweet blogger that I just discovered!

And now, I'm off to bed...Opening Day for T-Ball starts early. As in, 8:15 AM. *groan*

Thursday, April 22, 2010

The Path of Destruction

It was one of those days.

I was busting my rear cleaning the house, while the kids were playing in their rooms. I could hear them both, and assumed everything was peachy.

Then I saw this:

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I'd like to say this was a first time incident. But it's not. This happens at least once a week. Lexie is my messy child.

She leaves a path of destruction wherever she goes.

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Note the fact that Dylan just has two toys out. He is not a messy child. He willingly cleans up after himself.

Lexie and I had a talk as I was cleaning up the remainder of the mess tonight. I'm going to make some new clean-up rules for her to follow. I'm hoping it works. (Any tips would be greatly appreciated!)

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Dylan had his last T-Ball practice tonight. Saturday is Opening Day!

He has improved so much since his first practice. It's hard for the little ones to get the hang of the rules of the game, but he is, and he loves it!

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Tonight, Lexie discovered the playground and huge sandbox at the park Dylan plays in. She was thrilled, and kept announcing that she was at the beach! (Oh, how I wish we really were!)

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She was so cute running around in the sand that it made up for the huge mess she made and the food battle we had at dinner. One thing about Lexie: she manages to have fun wherever she goes!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

6 Signs I'm Losing It

I'm losing it. Really. I am.

I have a fabulous long-term memory. I can look at any object in my house-a toy, an item of clothing, a book-and know exactly who it was from, or where and when it was bought. It's my special (needless) skill. I can remember birthdays and special dates and school events and practices.

Everything else? Losing it.

Here's proof:

1. This weekend, I lost my car for the first time ever. I was all alone, running errands. When I walked out of Target, I stopped in my tracks, and realized that I had no idea where my car was. The panic (and mortification) set in. I refused to call more attention to myself by hitting the panic button and following the sounds, so I quietly walked up and down several aisles of cars until I found mine.

2. I saw a cute sports sign that I thought would look great in Dylan's room, so I bought it. I came home to find out that I had already bought the same sign a few weeks earlier!

3. I lose my keys in my purse all. the. time. Today, I searched for them before I left a store, only to find that they were...............................................sitting on the counter, next to my purse, the entire time I was searching.

4. I bought myself two shirts, went home, and realized that I forgot to use the gift card that I had intended to use to buy them.

5. I paid $50 for a pair of capris today. $50 for a pair of short pants. Enough said. (Okay, not done yet...at least they were paid for with a gift card.)

6. After all the blowout incidents that Lexie had during her issues last year, I should have known better than to stop taking a change of clothes with me. I just slacked off, considering that she's been fully potty trained since she was 2 1/2. Today, Lexie had a blowout of epic proportions at the park. Blowout+portapotty+no wipes+no sink+ no change of clothes=MAJOR problem. Solution? Put her in a diaper borrowed from my best friend's 10 month old until we got home! A change of clothes and wipes have been placed in the car. Lesson learned.





I'm going to blame this on insomnia. Sleeplessness makes sane people do crazy things.

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday

She takes my breath away.

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I love her more than words can say.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Nearing the End

It seems like just yesterday, I was fretting over the fact that Dylan was starting Pre-K. The past 8 months have flown by, and as of today, Dylan only has a month left of school.

Let me just preface this by saying that I'm overly emotional. I was always emotional, but my pregnancy with Lexie pushed me over the edge. It must have been all that estrogen coursing through my body. Now, I cry at anything and everything.

I am sad that Dylan's year in Pre-K is almost over. Truth is, it was a fantastic first year of school for him. I couldn't have planned it to go more perfectly. He attends a wonderful school and has an amazing teacher. To say that I wish she could teach him for the next 13 years, would be an understatement! Dylan and his teacher have been known to greet each other at drop-off with a hug and kisses on the cheek.

This year was such a change for us. It was the first time I was really away from Dylan, 3 times a week. It ended up going so well. Dylan had no problems adjusting to school, and I couldn't be any happier with his school and teachers. Next year is going to be an even bigger change, a much more strict and impersonal one. I can honestly say I'm going to miss the extra days with my son, and our fun afternoons at the park.

I now understand why this school fills up quickly. I fully plan to be at registration an hour early next year, just to get a spot for Lexie! I really hope that she ends up in the same school, with the same teacher!

It's been a great year for Dylan and I'm sad to see it come to an end. The real reason? I'm sad to see him move on, because it means he's growing up way too quickly!

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On a happier, less sentimental note, we had a great day. It was sunny and warming up from our cold weekend. We spent time at the park, and Dylan had a good T-Ball practice.

And my kids? They made me smile all day, even through this awful nausea (and no, I am not pregnant!) I've had today. (Oh, stomach virus, please spare me!)

A Father/Son moment:

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Playing soccer with The Bean (and attempting to pictures). Gotta love her "emo" hair:

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A practice game (clueless and comical are two words that come to mind):

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Taking a breather:

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Mr. Freaky Fingers (and some seriously scratched trim):

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Life is good.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

The Party Circuit

As the days go by, it is becoming increasingly obvious to me that Dylan has a better social life than I do.

The sad thing is, I'm not kidding.

I was under the false assumption that we attended a lot of birthday parties. The fact that I have so many nieces and nephews and quite a few good friends with kids, puts us at a party at least once or twice a month.

And then Dylan started school.

He is a very well liked kid, and gets invited to all of his classmate's birthday parties. I always ask him if he wants to go and he always says yes. Because it is his first year in school, I think it's important that he attends as many parties and playdates as he can, to make friends, and get used to having a social life that I don't plan.

He has had a blast at all the parties he has attended. They have all been drop-off parties. At the first one of the year, I stayed with him. I had never left him at a party before, and I just felt as if I couldn't do it. I noticed that I was the only mom who had stayed, so at the next party, I cut him loose, and walked out the door. It was difficult! I did worry, but he did just fine without me. It does get easier, though, and it helps that I trust many of his classmate's moms.

Today was a first for us. Dylan was invited to a classmate's party, and it turned out to be an almost all girl party. He has quite a reputation with the girls in his class. They all love him! I honestly think that it's the fact that he's the only boy in the class with a younger sister, and he treats the girls the same way he treats Lexie. Dylan had no qualms about joining in the party, and luckily, another little boy was there. When I arrived to pick him up, I really wished I had my camera with me. Dylan was sitting on the floor, surrounded by girls, watching the birthday girl open gifts. He had his arm around one of his classmates, and was rubbing her back. I have a feeling he's going to make girls swoon when he's older. I'm not sure if that's a good thing or a bad thing.

The parties in Dylan's class appear to be coming to an end. School will be over in a month, and we will get a break from the party circuit. Well, other than those parties for family and close friends. I think next year, we're going to have to pick and choose which parties to attend. It is too time-consuming and too expensive!

The party circuit has ended, but we're moving on to something else...many weeks worth of T-Ball games!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

One Year Down

It has been a little over a year since my dad was diagnosed with cancer. It was one of the worst days of my life. The news hit me like a ton of bricks.

Luckily, the doctors were able to remove the tumor in his bladder, and no new tumors have grown back. Right now, it's all about maintenance.

Since the tumor was removed, my dad has had to have a course of treatment every few months. During each course of treatment, he has to see his doctor once a week, for 3 weeks, and the doctor injects something into his bladder each week. He feels like he has the flu for several days following a treatment.

He has been receiving treatment for a year, and has 4 more years to go before he's in the clear. Each time he goes in for his first appointment during a new course of treatment, I end up worrying all day, worrying that another tumor has grown.

The doctor warned my dad that the after effects will get worse with each treatment. He had a treatment yesterday, and he wasn't feeling too well. I hate that. I hate that he has to go through this. I hate the fact that I constantly worry about him.

I try to focus on the fact that he is still here with us. It could have been so much worse. He is going through treatment to make sure the tumors don't come back.

It doesn't get any easier, though.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Takin' It Easy

I didn't lie. I stayed home all day long. This is the first time I've done this in....uh....a few months? It was wonderful!

It was a warm, sunny day, so the kidlets and I spent several hours outside. It was so nice to spend some quality time with them! I even got a chance to read a few chapters of my new book, while the kids played. There is just something so relaxing about reading a book under the warm sun.

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Grant didn't get home until later, so I let the kids pick what they wanted for dinner. Pizza and Ice Cream Cake. I indulged them, and Lexie was filthy by the time she finished! After a bath and a cartoon, they headed off to bed.

I love quiet days at home, with my family. I love them even more when it's beautiful outside!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Park, Playdate, Practice...Check!

I have had three crazy busy days in a row, and I am so relieved that they came to an end. A brief end, but an end. I'm so tired, and yet, here I sit at the computer. Computer detox, anyone? Okay, moving on.

My plan for tomorrow is to do nothing. Okay, so that's not entirely true. Enjoying the 80 degree weather outside with my kids, cleaning the house, balancing checkbooks, and putting away laundry is in the works, but I'm not going anywhere! I am not. leaving. this. house. (Dear kids, please do not injure yourselves and require a trip to the ER, because I really don't want to go anywhere.)

Our day started off with an 8 AM trip to WalMart to pick out Dylan's snack for school. It was his last snack day of his Pre-K career (I'm tearing up) and he wanted to pick out something special. Something special to the tune of $16, but his class really enjoyed his snack.

Confession time: I took my kids shopping in their pajamas. Anybody that knows me is probably gasping in shock right now. I almost...almost...fit in at WalMart...aka The Alternate Universe.

Mental note: those people that go grocery shopping in the early morning are really onto something. The store was practically empty. I could actually move. And hear myself think!

After Dylan ran a few laps with his friends and girlfriend of the week (oh yeah, he's a ladies man) after school, we met my best friend and her boys at the park. The kids burned off some energy, and Jocie and I got to talk.

Sibling love.

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Lexie loves running around with her BFF!

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This squeezable little man gets me every time. Oh, that smile and those baby blues!

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After almost 2 hours, the kids were getting tired and grumpy, so it was time to head out to our next location.

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Lexie took a little nap as we drove over to my sister's house. She and Dylan love visiting my sister and playing with their cousins! It was nice to talk to my sister as the kids played. We don't get nearly as much time to visit as we once used to. Suddenly, both of our schedules are much busier.

Tonight began our era of rushed dinners and running off to practices. I have never had to cook and eat this quickly before! Hello, convenience foods!

It was Dylan's second T-Ball practice, and he's getting the hang of the game. Dylan is a power hitter, but not very interested in the outfield aspect of the game. He's used to being pitched to, instead of hitting off the T-Ball stand, but he's handling it well. He is really enjoying it, though, and that is what matters!

My boy melts my heart on a daily basis. He was sitting on the bench, waiting to hit, and I lifted the camera to snap a picture of him. He looked over at me, smiled, and blew me a kiss. I love my little man more than words can say.

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As soon as we got home, it was already time for a bath, and shortly after, bed. This new baseball schedule is going to take some getting used to!

Joining the Party-Ultimate Blog Party 2010


I'm so excited to join in the fun of the 2010 Ultimate Blog Party, hosted by 5 Minutes For Mom. A friend of mine suggested that I join in, so here I am. As always, late to the party!

I'm Stefanie, a just-turned-30-year-old, stay at home mom of two wonderful kids.

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My husband, Grant, and I will celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary this year!

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Dylan is 5 and Alexandria (Lexie) is 3. They are the loves of my life!

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Dylan is in Pre-K and will be attending Kindergarten in the fall. He loves Star Wars, Indiana Jones, frogs, and T-Ball. He is the sweetest, most loving, most compassionate little boy. He was my little blessing, born a month early, and completely healthy!

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Lexie is my sassy little spitfire. She is smart as a whip, full of attitude, talks non-stop, and has a great sense of humor. She is a fashion diva and is all girl. She loves reading, animals, and dressing up.

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We live in Western Pennsylvania with our kids, a Great Dane, a chihuahua, 2 cats, a fish, and 2 hermit crabs. We also own a horse, who lives at a boarding stable. I got him when I was 12, and spent years riding, training, and showing. My daughter now enjoys riding Cherokee..in a tutu!

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I am the youngest of 8 kids, and have 17 nieces and nephews and 1 great niece. Life in a family this big is busy, fun, chaotic, and dramatic. I can honestly say that there is never a dull moment!

My passions are photography, reading, running, blogging, and shopping. I love musical theater (I used to act and sing in my pre-child life), riding my horse, hanging out with my family and friends, crossword puzzles, and singing. Above all, I love being a mom. I honestly feel like I was meant to do this!

My blog is all about the daily adventures of my crazy, busy, loving family!

Welcome to my blog, and thank you for stopping by to meet my family and I!

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Here's my preference of the giveaways I would like to win:

US16-A custom made tutu for my little princess from Sweet Patootie's.
US22-Hairbows and Clippies from Ribbon RockStar Bows.
US61-A $25 e-gift certificate to Toys R Us. Gotta think of my boy! Courtesy of Frugally Fabulous Mom.