Welcome to our web site. For more information about Stephie's art, please also check out artbystephie.com.
For Matt's writing projects, please go to storiesbymatt.net. Enjoy your visit here!

12/31/03: Happy New Year everyone! I hope 2004 will be a better year all around than 2003 turned out to be.

12/25/03: MERRY CHRISTMAS! Hope everyone's having a great day, celebrating the holiday of their choosing. We're spending the day on the couch watching movies. Considering the kind of month we've been having so far, we figure we deserve it.

12/04/03: Great News! Stephie's out of the hospital and resting comfortably at my parents' house. We figure that she will be there about a week or so to recuperate under their watchful eye, then I'll be bringing her home. Life seems to be getting back to normal (finally!) Thanks again to everyone for their support.

Also, today is the ten-year anniversary of two big events, one good memory and one bad. Ten years ago today, Frank Zappa passed away, but also ten years ago today, we adopted Cheyenne!

12/02/03: Stephanie's out of ICU as of Sunday morning, and should be done with the oxygen mask today. That means she should be coming home tomorrow morning! Thanks to everyone who has been praying for her and wishing her well. If you'd like to e-mail her any well-wishes, because she still has quite a bit of recovering to do, just click the 'Contact Us' link in the column on the left and send an e-mail. I will make sure that she gets it.

11/29/03: Surgery went well on Monday, but there were a few complications during recovery, and Stephie has been in intensive care since Tuesday night. The doctor said today that she could probably move to a regular room, but he doesn't like to move people out of ICU over the weekend. He also said that if she keeps progressing like she has, she should be coming home in a couple days.

11/23/03: It's been raining cats-and-dogs all day, they are predicting snow flurries for tomorrow, and Stephie is going into the hospital for a bit of surgery on Monday.

Yep, it's gonna be a great week.

11/05/03: It's been a couple weeks since I last updated this site, primarily because I have been working on building my new PC, which is a late graduation present to myself. I'm also thinking about changes to the layout of the site. I'm happy with the way it looks, but I think that I might be able to make it easier to maintain. I also should probably read the manual for the stupid digital camera so that I can add more pictures of Stephanie's art to her page.

And I have to admit that I don't understand the usage of the term "shout out" when one wants to single out someone for greetings or for special recognition, and I frankly am not interested enough to look up the etymology of the term, but since a co-worker gave me a "shout out" on his site, I feel compelled to respond in kind. So here's a "shout out" to Bill. And one to Jassen while I'm at it.

10/16/03: Click here to see Stephanie in the window of the LaGrange Art League, creating art!

09/23/03: Welcome to Autumn! I put up some new pictures of Kisu playing with her new best buddy Siggy! Click here to see the madness!

Also, Dave Wieczorek, our dog trainer, finally has his web site up and running. The site is www.WetNoseOBT.net. Check him out for all your dog training needs. We can't recommend him enough.

09/17/03: The scientific results from the big banana project are in, and I have added them to the page with the pictures. Check them out!

09/14/03: Stephanie helped her friend Diane with her display at the Kathy and Judy Science Fair at Hoffman Estates High School yesterday. Click here for pictures.

09/01/03: Happy Labor Day, and Happy Belated Birthday to Mom and ME! We had perfect weather Saturday, but Sunday and Monday were gray, rainy and cold. Ah, Summer in Chicago!

One of the bad things about having a birthday at the end of August is that you don't want to look forward to your birthday, because that means that summer is over. While it's good that the weather will turn cooler, and the new TV season is about to start, as a kid it always meant it was back-to-school time. Not for me this year, though!

    Mom called yesterday, so we could wish her a Happy Birthday on her actual birthday (we were there to celebrate the day before) and she said that she had a surprise waiting for her when she and Dad got home from church. There was a bag, tied closed with a knot, in front of the house, next to the front door. She figured someone must have dropped it off while they were at church, so she brought it into the house.
    She opened the bag and found a present, all right! Turns out it was a poopie bag from Saturday. Stephanie had taken Kisu out before we left, and didn't want to walk around to the back of the house in the dark, so she left the bag in front, but forgot to tell anyone about it. Mom said "Boy! Were they surprised!" I just told her that it was a present from Kisu! Good thing they have such a great sense of humor.

08/21/03: Ah, the dog days of summer! Too hot out to do much of anything.

But since viruses are on the top of the news lately, I forced myself out of my heat-related supor to write up my the story of Stephanie's Computer Virus.

08/14/03: Hello, there! I have been trying to add things weekly to this page, but I had some trouble since last week. I'm looking for a sound file on my work and home computers that is related to a funny work story, but I can't seem to find it. And I'm trying to take more pictures of Stephie's artwork, but something in the colors she uses, or in the capabilities of the camera, is screwing up the colors on the pictures, to the point that she doesn't want me to post the pictures. And I don't blame her.
So I haven't forgotten about this page; I'm just a little slow. I should have something by the weekend.

07/31/03: I added a counter at the bottom of this page, so I can see if anyone besides Stephie and I ever look at this page!

And I also put up the contents of my Grandpa's wallet.

07/25/03: So a couple days ago, Stephanie tells me that Kisu has a new "trick": she likes to bite the leash. When Stephanie takes her in the yard to play, she has Kisu on the retractable leash. That way, if Kisu goes into her "turbo dog" mode and starts running in circles, Stephanie can just hold on and let Kisu tire herself out (which actually hasn't happened yet.) She says that when she's running around, she somehow gets the cotton webbing part in her teeth. I'm not exactly sure how, because that's never happened when I have her out. The only time I've seen her bite at the leash is when she's pulling to go after a squirrel. She'll look back and try to bite the leash to let her go, but she's never actually nipped it. I did see them in the yard yesterday, and Kisu was gnawing on the leash. I went out and told her to stop. I distinctly remember saying "If you break this leash, it's coming out of your allowance!"
    Today, since I'm taking a "mental health" vacation day and the weather is beautiful, I figure that we'll take a nice long walk. Kisu's never been to "the Lost World," which is what we call the area of Brookfield north of the commuter tracks. (You have to go through a tunnel under the commuter tracks and across the train lot to get there. Hence, "the Lost World.") So we get the sunglasses, bottle of water, bag and poopie papers and we're off.
    We head towards Ogden Ave, the nearest busy street and one that we have to cross, and Kisu's pulling hard; she's so excited to be on the big adventure. Just before we get to Ogden, she stops to sniff something on the wall. I use this distraction to catch up to her and pass her by. I get about 10 feet past her, and call her. Like usual, she runs to me, and past me, and I call her name and press the thumb brake on the retractable leash to get her to stop, because the traffic is whizzing by on Ogden. The line goes taut, and the cotton webbing snaps.
    I look down at the limp leash on the ground, and look up as Kisu, who must have paused at the sudden lack of tension, starts to head toward Ogden. I run after her and shout "Kisu, Stop!" and all those evenings of obedience classes paid off in an instant when she stops, sits down and looks at me with what looks like a big grin on her face. I grab her collar, give her a big hug, and we go home to get the leather leash and continue our walk.
    Oh, and the "Lost World" was quite nice this afternoon, but Kisu still doesn't like to drink from the water bottle. We'll have to work on that.

Tonight is Poi Dog Pondering at Ridge Fest. And today is week 2 of the "Silent Summer" film festival put on by The Silent Film Society of Chicago. Tonight's feature is "Cabinet of Dr. Caligari", but I think we'll stick with Poi Dog. Next week, however, is the big "Lost World" extravaganza with full orchestra. Check their web site for more information. Stephie and I plan to be there.

07/17/03: We put up the first batch of Stephanie's art today. We're still struggling with the settings on the digital camera, so some of the pictures look a little dark. The next batch should look better.

We were able to make it down to Summerdance last Thursday to see Oliver Mtukudzi, and we had a great time. The music was great, the dancing was fun, and the location can't be beat, since it's right in Grant Park. You owe it to yourself to click here to check the schedule and try to make it down before the end of August. Hint: Thursday night is always World Music night.

Oh, and don't tell anyone, but Poi Dog Pondering is playing at Ridge Fest in Chicago Ridge next Friday, July 25. I say not to tell anyone because I want to make sure that we can get in, because Poi Dog Pondering puts on one of the most exciting stage shows that I've ever seen! The energy coming from the musicians is just unbelievable, and the music defies you to stay in your seat! When we saw them at RibFest in Naperville last year, just about everyone was up and dancing, and that's on a tummy full of ribs! Definitely recommended, as is their latest CD.

07/08/03: Hope everyone had a happy and safe Fourth of July weekend. It was pretty low-key for us, with the weather and all, but I did get going on my latest project: building a replacement for our aging, noisy MP3 jukebox. Details coming soon!

There are a couple fun things coming up in the next couple weeks that you might not know about, even if you live in the Chicago area. The 7th annual Chicago Summerdance has been going on since mid-June and will run until the end of August in Grant Park. It looks like a lot of fun, with dance lessons followed by a live concert, and it's FREE! There has been, and will be, all kinds of different bands to see, from swing bands to mambo and salsa, with ballroom dancing every Sunday. Not that I'm a big dancer, but this Thursday, July 10, they will be teaching something called African Expressions followed by a concert by a new favorite of mine: Oliver Mtukudzi. If it rains, he's playing HotHouse on Sunday. I hope to see him at least once, and I highly recommend his CDs.

Also coming up soon is The Silent Summer, the annual silent film festival sponsored by The Silent Film Society of Chicago. If you've never seen a silent movie before, or even if you have, you owe it to yourself to try to get to the Gateway Theatre on Lawrence one Friday between July 18 and August 22 to see one on the big screen. It's a real treat. Special Note: on Friday August 1st, they will be showing "The Lost World" (by Arthur Conan-Doyle, not Michael Crichton) with a 30-piece orchestra accompanying the live organist. Don't miss it!

Hope to have Stephanie's art up next weekend. Even though I'm out of school, there's still not enough hours in the day!

06/29/03: Happy Birthday, Ricky! That's him in the picture from a couple years ago with me and Cheyenne. He's the one in the hat. Don't ask about the weird point on the top of my head! Anyway, we hope you had a great day, and have a terrific summer, because before you know it, it's High School time!

Also, I set up the menu on the left as a JavaScript file, so that when I add more pages to the site (like Stephanie's pictures hopefully this week) I won't have to go in and edit each and every html file in the entire site. Maybe I should look into a program to automate this instead of hand-editing the files. Hmmm...

06/25/03: Happy Anniversary, Mom & Dad! Don't know what I would do without you. (Well, actually I wouldn't be here without you.) Hope you are out having fun.

Also, our friend Diane was on the radio last week! If you have Real Audio installed, you can listen to her do her frog imitation by clicking here.

06/17/03: Just back from the first day of Intermediate Dog Training class, and I figure I should put up some pictures of Kisu. If you got the adoption announcement via e-mail, you may have seen these before, although there are a couple new ones.

06/15/03: Happy Father's Day to all the Dads out there, regardless if their "kids" have two legs or four. A special Happy Father's Day to our Dad, the best Dad in the world! We're gonna give that new grill a workout today!

06/14/03: Welcome to the first draft of our web site. This site has grown out of my final project for a web design class that I took at Elmhurst College. I was so happy with the way it turned out that I wanted to share it with the world (or at least with any relatives and friends who have computers). My sister-in-law Laura was kind enough to let me store the site temporarily on her server, but I wanted to make it a little more permanent, and expand on it, so I talked to a co-worker who recommended Parcom as an inexpensive and reliable hosting company.

I waited until Graduation was over and finally decided on a name for the site. I know that .com is supposed to be for companies, but most everyone knows web sites as .com so that's what I went with. I sat down at work (on Friday the 13th) and signed up for this site. I filled out the form on Parcom's site, entered in my credit card information, put in my site name ('mattandstephanie.com') and submitted it. The form came back with none of my information, but had my order number, and prompted me to register the domain. In the meantime, my phone rang, a co-worker asked me a question, and I was otherwise distracted for a minute. I filled out the domain form, entered in my credit card information, put in my site name ('stephanieandmatt.com') and submitted it.

Shortly after that, I received an e-mail from Parcom. It said
"You requested that Parcom register the domain name: stephanieandmatt.com (and approved the request). You requested that Parcom HOST the domain name: mattandstephanie.com Which is the correct combination for hosting and domain registration?"
They must think I'm an idiot. I replied back that they should just use stephanieandmatt.com, since I already approved it. (I later told Stephanie what happened, and she said she liked mattandstephanie.com better. Maybe I'll register that as well and point it to the same site. If I can't keep it straight, it's likely others will have the same problem.

Anyway, enjoy Cheyenne's Pages, and check back later for more stuff. I plan to put some of Stephanie's award-winning art here, as well as pictures of Kisu, and anything else that I think that you may find interesting.

By the way, the pictures on Cheyenne's Pages are randomly selected when the page loads (except for three spots), so you may see different pictures every time the page loads. Refresh often!

Thanks for looking.

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