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Sunday, May 31, 2009

Memorial Day weekend

Friday, May 22nd was our ten year wedding anniversary. We originally had planned on going to Cabo San Lucas but with the economy and Al’s Durango needing a new engine that just wasn’t possible. Of course the swine flu didn’t help either. So instead we decided to take a last minute road trip minus kids over Memorial Day weekend.
We headed to Seattle very early on Friday. We shopped in Bellevue and then headed downtown to the Pike’s Marketplace. Then we went to the Mariners game. They played San Francisco and Randy Johnson was pitching. It was great to see him pitch and to see Ken Griffey Jr, and, of course, Ichiro. The game went 12 innings and the Mariners won!

Next morning we had brunch with Alvin’s cousin that he hasn’t seen in over 15 years. Then we tried to head to Forks, Washington but the bridge off the sound was closed and so going around was a pain and traffic was awful. We finally just headed to Ocean Shores and checked into our hotel with an ocean view. It was about 4:30 so we hopped back in the car and took the two hour drive up the coast to Forks.

By the time we got there many things were closed but I had fun getting Twilight items for the kids, driving around and getting my picture taken with Bella’s truck. Al thinks I am a goof for wanting to go there but it was actually since idea since we were close by and he knows the kids and I are huge Twilight fans.

Sunday we spent in Ocean Shores. We walked along several different beaches and checked out the area shops. Al kicked my butt at mini-golf and air hockey. That night we dressed up and took the shuttle to the Quinault Beach Resort and Casino. We had a romantic dinner while watching the sunset over the beach and ocean and then gambled for a bit.

It was a wonderful time with the love of my life!!!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Going going going!

Sorry I have been MIA. Things have been very busy with wrapping up soccer season, working at the YMCA at night, reviewing breast cancer grants for my trip to DC in a few weeks, and of course getting out of town over the long weekend!

Friday was our 10 year anniversary so hubby and I took off on a new adventure. We went to Seattle, Forks and Ocean Shores Washington. We had a great time. I will blog about the trip and post pictures soon.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

10 Breast cancer myths (from

Myth 1: If breast cancer runs in your family, it automatically means that you’re going to get it, too.

Fact: Getting breast cancer is not a certainty, even if you have one of the significant risk factors, like a strong family history or a known breast cancer gene abnormality. For example, of women with a BRCA1 or BRCA2 inherited genetic abnormality, 40 to 80 percent will develop breast cancer over their lifetime; 20 to 60 percent won't. All other breast cancer risk factors are associated with a much, much lower probability of being diagnosed with breast cancer.

Myth 2: Only your mother's family history of breast cancer can affect your risk.

Fact: A history of breast cancer in your mother's OR your father's family equally influence your risk. That's because half of your genes come from your mother, half from your father. But a man with a breast-cancer gene abnormality is less likely to develop breast cancer than a woman with a similar gene. So, if you want to learn more about your father's family history, you have to look mainly at the women on your father's side, not just the men.

Myth 3: Breast cancer skips generations.

Fact: Genes that could increase the risk for breast cancer can go from one generation to the next, without skipping a generation. If your mother or father has a breast-cancer gene abnormality, you have a 50 percent risk of getting the gene and a 50 percent chance of not getting it. If you don’t get the gene, then you can’t pass it to your children.

Myth 4: Since I have no family history of breast cancer, I can’t get it.

Fact: Breast cancer is extremely rare in girls. Every adult woman has some risk of breast cancer. About 80 percent of women who get breast cancer have no known family history of the disease. Besides being a woman, growing older—just the wear and tear of living—is the biggest single risk factor for breast cancer. For those women who do have a family history of breast cancer, your risk may be elevated a little, a lot, or not at all. If you are concerned, discuss your family history with your physician or a genetic counselor. You may be worrying needlessly.

Myth 5: There is nothing you can do to reduce the risk of getting breast cancer. If it is going to happen, it will happen.

Fact: There are many things you can do to reduce the risk of getting breast cancer: keep to a healthy weight, exercise 3 to 4 hours a week, don't smoke, limit alcohol use to 5 or fewer drinks per week, eat 5 to 9 fruits and vegetables a day; limit your consumption of red meat, fried foods, and blackened grilled foods; and buy organic and hormone-free foods whenever possible.

Myth 6: Mammograms help prevent breast cancer.

Fact: Mammograms can save lives but they do not prevent breast cancer. They help detect breast cancer in its earliest stages when it’s most treatable, thereby improving your chance of surviving breast cancer by 30 percent or more.

Myth 7: Big breasts have a higher risk of breast cancer.

Fact: Breast size has no significant impact on the risk of developing breast cancer.

Myth 8: You can catch breast cancer from your mom when she was pregnant with you or through her breast milk.

Fact: Absolutely not. Breast cancer is not transmitted during pregnancy or breast milk.

Myth 9: Cell phones, antiperspirants, and tanning cause breast cancer.

Fact: There is no evidence that these factors increase the risk of breast cancer. Tanning in the sun or in salons does increase the risk of skin cancer. It’s important to use sunscreen, limit time in the sun, and avoid tanning salons to reduce your risk of skin cancer.

Myth 10: A breast cancer diagnosis is an automatic death sentence.

Fact: Most women survive breast cancer and can live long lives. Even women who are living with breast cancer can live a long time. Plus new promising treatment breakthroughs are becoming available each day, so there are many reasons to be hopeful about the future.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Race for the Cure 2009

The Boise Race for the Cure was this past weekend. As always it is an emotionally charged event. Even before my diagnosis I would walk this race with friends and family in honor of my family members who have battled breast cancer. Today I walk it with more friends and my husband, children and parents by my side. (Although we did get separated during the walk with 15,000 other people!) It was a lovely morning with a bit of a chill in the air. The kids and I got there early and volunteered at the Fuze booth. It is a great feeling to be helping out but we certainly didn't want to miss the race itself.

I saw many survivor friends that I have met over the years and several of my new friends from the YMCA programs. Life is precious so celebrate everyday!
My mom has all the group pictures on her camera but here are some shots from my camera.

Trinity and her friend Otilia

My loving family (Trin is hiding in the stroller)
The boys -- Dakota and Geoffrey

Some of my biggest supporters! Patti and Cami

More wonderful friends -- Felice and Dee

Friday, May 8, 2009

Test results

I had my quarterly blood work and my annual chest x-ray this week. Everything looks great! I "aced" my tests! :-) So another 4 months until I go back to check blood again.

Last night was the Race for the Cure survivor dinner. It was a very nice evening. It is always filled with mixed emotions for me. So happy to be a survivor and celebrate that. I love visiting with the others and seeing how far we have come since last year etc. But then it is emotional when you think about the women who lost the battle and have missed out on seeing their children get married or meeting their grandchildren. I feel motivated to push even harder to create awareness, help other survivors, and demand they find a cure.

I come home from this wonderful event feeling spent but it is so worth it because it is a huge part of who I am now.

Monday, May 4, 2009

They say size doesn't matter...

I have been on a kick the last few days noticing differences in sizes of people. Height, weight, breast size. Our society likes females small in height and weight but large in the breast. I am the opposite of that. For the most part I am okay with that but it still gets to me some times. Being a trainer who works with other trainers who are petite (and many with implants) I find myself feeling like the ugly duckling.

I am trying to change that thought process and work on the weight issue. It is difficult on Tamoxifen though. My sister (love ya Jill) is trying to lose weight but her starting "fat" weight is my goal weight. I have other friends who are currently dropping weight like a bad habit and I am stuck in the same clothes and the same spot on the scale.

I love being tall and I wouldn't want to change that. And I would rather have "safe" implants that are smaller than my bigger real cancerous breasts. But I can't wear a shirt everywhere I go that says Cancer treatment and steroids helped make me fat and my breasts may be small but they won't kill me!

Good thing I have a great sense of humor and I am "charming". :-)

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Crazy week!

Sorry I have been AWOL! My schedule spiraled out of control for the last week. I was supposed to teach at BSU a few weeks ago until we realized it was Easter weekend. So we moved it to the 25th and 26th. No problem, until my son flipped his bike and broke his right arm on Saturday. Once class was over for the day I met up with him and hubby at the hospital. Geoffrey needed surgery to place two pins in his arm since it wouldn't stay back in place. He went into surgery around 6:00 that night and we left the hospital around 2:00 that morning and I had to be back at BSU to teach at 8:30. G did a great job with the surgery and the pain. It was hard on me to see him hurting and being exhausted made me that much more sensitive about it. I thought now that snowboarding season was done I wouldn't have to worry about him getting injured. Leave it to him to prove me wrong!
After class on Sunday, I dashed home to pack up stuff for G to stay with my parents and packed myself and headed to Twin Falls to co-instruct a course for three days. Got home Wednesday evening and went straight to soccer practice. Thursday brought the annual chest x-ray (I will get the results next Wednesday), an appearance on the news at noon for the YMCA cancer survivorship programs, and getting Geoffrey back home and settled in. Whew!

Also this past week, my husband nominated me to be an honorary bat girl for the Seattle Mariners. I think voting is still open. Check out his sweet story by clicking on the link and looking for my "nickname" of Heck Ya They're Fake.
I will keep you posted on the results of my check up next week and the contest.