Thanksgiving Weekend

We had an awesome Thanksgiving. It's actually been more like a whole week of festivities rather than just a weekend, actually.

Wednesday afternoon was our first appointment at the doctor to see our new little "Cantaloupe." It was pretty exciting to confirm that there was actually something IN there (I'd been afraid I'd be like Terri Schuester, if you get my Glee reference) and that he/she was growing on schedule. Everything looked great, and the doctor was pleased. We got to spend Wednesday evening just hanging out with Cole's parents, grandparents, and younger brother. All we did was sit around and play cards, but we had the best time.

We spent the big day itself with Cole's family. It was the first time we'd ever had Thanksgiving at his parents' house since we've been married, so it was fun to have a new experience. Dinner was FABULOUS, and I ate more than I probably should have. I was in charge of making the pies, and I ended up making WAY too many. I made two apple, two pumpkin, a coconut cream, and a chocolate buttercream. They turned out AMAZING, if I do say so myself. :)

Friday I actually had to work, but Cole hit the stores bright and early to get a few awesome deals. He actually got threatened by a lady over a $4 mini food processor!

Saturday was my brother's open house. He's leaving on his mission soon, so I helped my mom set up a GINORMOUS spread for friends and ward members to come give their well-wishes. We also listened to the all-important BYU-Utah game, and we were not disappointed by the outcome. Go Cougars!

Sunday was Nathan's farewell talk. He did an excellent job. My entire family provided the musical number, and we even mostly held it together (we're a HUGE bunch of criers). We had family over for lunch yesterday, and then crashed hard for a few hours.

Now, we have a couple of days to get back to "real life"--that is, until Wednesday. We have a fresh batch of family togetherness planned for Wednesday and Thursday, since Nathan leaves for Africa on Thursday morning.

We do have a bit of exciting news from the weekend: we're buying a house! Through a set of miracles, we've had our offer accepted on a cute split-level in West Valley that is just perfect for our growing family. We're meeting with our lender tomorrow, and if all goes as planned, we'll close before the end of the year. We honestly weren't sure if this would ever happen for us, so this is a huge blessing.

So, this year, we're thankful for many things. We're thankful for our healthy, happy two-year-old and for our "Cantaloupe" on the way; we're thankful for families who accept and love us unconditionally; we're thankful for the opportunity to buy a house; we're thankful for stable jobs; we're thankful for the gospel of Jesus Christ and for the many young men and women who are spreading it forth throughout the world; and we're thankful for each other and the prospect of etnernity.

We hope everyone else had a wonderful Thanksgiving!


Have You Heard About This?

I came across this news article the other day, and I was EXTREMELY alarmed:

In case you don't want to read the whole article, it basically says:
--Most women in their 40s should not routinely get mammograms.
--Women 50 to 74 should get a mammogram every other year until they turn 75, after which the risks and benefits are unknown.
--The value of breast exams by doctors is unknown.
--Breast self-exams are of no value.

These guidelines were proposed by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, a government entity designed to "evaluate the benefits of individual services based on age, gender, and risk factors for disease; make recommendations about which preventive services should be incorporated routinely into primary medical care and for which populations; and identify a research agenda for clinical preventive care," according to their website. Now, I'm sure this task force is typically good at what they do (since they are considered experts in their respective fields), but if you look at a list of their members, there isn't a single oncologist on the panel.

There are several reasons why I take issue with this recommendation. Three years ago, at the age of 46, my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. She went in for a routine, yearly mammogram, and the technician saw basically a blip. It turned out to be a cancerous tumor, and although it was very small (1 cm or less), it was an extremely invasive form of the disease. Because it was caught so early, she was able to avoid having chemotherapy. If she had waited 4 years until she was 50 to begin getting mammograms, who knows how far the disease would have progressed.
Even more serious, I know of many other women who were diagnosed with breast cancer in their 30s or early 40s and DID receive extensive treatment. Without doctor exams or self-exams, I doubt these women would have even detected a problem until it was nearly too late.

Since my mother's diagnosis, we've attended the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure every year in May. They have a survivor's parade, and it is shocking how many recent survivors are in their 20s or even in their teens. Would these women have survived if they followed the current guidelines?

It is my understanding that seeking thorough preventive care is instrumental in reducing the future medical costs of an individual. Yes, yearly mammograms starting at age 40 may result in more "false alarms and unneeded biopsies," but wouldn't you rather be safe than sorry? I would. For me, the risk of a missed or late diagnosis is too great.


As Promised...



For All You Ladies Out There...

I want to hear your opinions on this, because it's something I've heard a lot about lately...
When is a good time to announce a pregnancy?

For those of you who have been pregnant, at what point in your pregnancies did you start to share the good news? How did you decide whom to tell? What were your motivations for going public at that particular time?
For those of you planning on being pregnant in the future, at what point in your (future) pregnancy do you anticipate you'll make the big announcement?
I know the answers will differ with each woman, but I'm interested to see if there will be a consensus.


No More Knives!

My blogging hiatuses...hiati...er, dry spells are becoming more and more frequent of late. This is not to say that our lives are boring. On the contrary, we have many new and exciting things happening, but all will be revealed in due course...

Anyway, the biggest news I have is that I cut the tip of my thumb off...almost literally. While making dinner on Friday night, my handy-dandy Alaskan knife slipped while I was slicing onions. I cursed (yes, I admit it), ran to the sink, and subsequently passed out. Cole had to carry me to the couch (which prompted him to observe that he didn't realize how much I weighed--the punk), where I sat, in shock, while he ran to our friendly neighborhood Walgreen's for the tools to fix me up. After some rubbing alcohol (owie!), hydrogen peroxide, liquid bandage goo, and about 3 yards of gauze I was in working order again. I didn't include a picture because, well, it would make most anyone queasy, and needless to say, I'm banned from using the Alaska knife for at least 50 years.

In other news, Kyle is my hilarious two-year-old. Yesterday I was tickling him, and he started yelling at me in protest. It took me about a minute to decipher what he was saying, but when I figured it out, I couldn't decide whether to be horrified, angry, or amused. "Amused" won out, and I laughed until I cried.

Yes, my two-year-old shouted, "I KILL YOU!" I still have no idea where he picked that up, because it's not really a common catchphrase at our house.

Halloween was pretty fun. Kyle actually knew what was going on this year, so his excitement was so much fun to watch! He wasn't so good with saying, "trick or treat," but he was a pro at picking his candy and saying "thank you." He also ran from house to house shouting, "Go! Go! Go!" Halloween is definitely more fun when you have kids.

I promise to post a picture of Kyle in his costume, because he was just too adorable for the world not to see. I had a dumb moment and left our camera in the car, so I'll have to pinch a few from my parents. Since you're all "buzz"ing with excitement, I swear it won't take a "lightyear" to get them posted. ;)

Did you get it? Kyle was "Buzz Lightyear" for Halloween! I know, I'm so clever...
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