Thursday, March 31, 2011
Posted by Christy at 7:58 AM
Sunday, March 27, 2011
The girls enjoyed watching for the boys coming down the hill snowboarding. The boys were the only ones who could snowboard. Kevin cant with his hip and the boys are now using all my gear and I did not feel the urge to spend $700 to buy new gear for the last snow fall of the year-- so the boys were it-- with all their friends!
Posted by Christy at 9:16 PM
Wednesday, March 23, 2011
Now on a serious note. About 2 weeks ago I decided to go to the dermatologist to get a skin check. I am a freckled fair skinned person who has grown up in the sun worshipping southern California. There was one spot on my shoulder that just looked like a typical freckle but it was darker than my other freckles and it looked like it might be growing larger. When I saw the dermatologist she thought it was nothing but since it bugged me she shaved it off but thought it was nothing to worry about. Well, on Monday I got the call that the pathology report had come back and the small freckle was in fact a malignant melanoma-- skin cancer-- the worst type that kills people in my age range. In fact, melanoma is the #1 cancer killer of people between ages 21 to 45. At first I thought-- doesn't everyone get skin cancer? But upon talking to my doctor friends (Laila and Laura) I realized how serious it is. I was told story after story of people my age and a lot younger that had a little mole or freckle and it ended up being melanoma and it had spread to their lymph nodes and many of these people died. When I realized how serious this was, I started freaking out a bit. My mom who is my primary care doctors nurse was able to get the pathology report which scared me even more since it said that the melanoma was growing downward which is not good. I was pretty scared at first but spoke with the dermatologist the next morning and found out that we caught the melanoma very early and it is only stage 1 at this point. She needs me to come in Monday to get the rest of it out because they did not have clear margins (they didn't get it all) on the biopsy. So they are going to have to dig out the rest of the melanoma and send it to the lab and make sure they got it all. The DR. feels very confident that they will get it all but I will have one heck of a scar on my back which I could care less about. Anyway, what this makes me realize is that we all need to be aware of this and get checked often. I will now have to be checked every 3 months forever to make sure I don't have any new melanoma's. If you have not been checked or are scared to get checked, please go and do so. If I would not have gone in with this freckle or would have waited another year, it could have spread to my vital organs or lymph system and I might be looking at a very different prognosis. It is very important to get checked and if you are suspicious of ANYTHING, have them biopsy it.
Melanoma Fact Sheet Home Media Melanoma Fact Sheet
Q. What is melanoma?
A. Melanoma, the most serious form of skin cancer, is characterized by the uncontrolled growth of pigment-producing cells. Melanomas might appear on the skin suddenly, but they also can develop on an existing mole. The overall number of melanoma cases continues to rise.
Q. Is melanoma a serious disease?
A. Approximately 75 percent of all skin cancer deaths are from melanoma.1 Advanced melanoma spreads to lymph nodes and internal organs and may result in death. One American dies from melanoma almost every hour.1 Melanoma is the most common form of cancer for young adults 25-29 years old and the second most common cancer in adolescents and young adults 15-29 years old.2 If detected and treated before it reaches the lymph nodes, melanoma patients have a 98 percent five-year survival rate.1 Five-year survival rates for regional- (lymph nodes) and distant- (other organs/lymph nodes) stage melanomas are 62 percent and 15 percent, respectively.1
Q. How many people will develop melanoma this year?
A. It is estimated that there will be 114,900 new cases of melanoma diagnosed in the United States in 2010 — 46,770 noninvasive (in situ) and 68,130 invasive. In 2010, about 38,870 men and 29,260 women will be diagnosed with invasive melanoma.1
In addition, 8,700 people are expected to die from melanoma — 5,670 men and 3,030 women.1
Q. What causes melanoma?
A. Excessive exposure to the ultraviolet radiation of the sun is the most important preventable cause of all skin cancers, including melanoma. People who live close to the equator where the sunlight is more intense are more likely to develop melanoma than those in other regions. Not all melanomas are exclusively sun-related — other possible influences include genetic factors and immune system deficiencies.
Q. Who gets melanoma?
A. Melanoma can strike anyone. Caucasians are more likely to be diagnosed with melanoma than other races. However, even among Caucasians, certain individuals are at higher risk than others.1 For example:
◦You have a substantially increased risk of developing melanoma if you have greater than 50 moles, large moles, or atypical (unusual) moles.
◦Your risk is increased if a blood relative (e.g., your parents, children, siblings, cousins, aunts, uncles) has had melanoma.
◦If you are a Caucasian who has fair skin, your risk is higher than a Caucasian who has olive skin.
◦Redheads and blondes have a higher risk of developing melanoma. Blue or green eyes also increase your risk of developing melanoma.
◦Your chances increase significantly if you've already had a previous melanoma, but also increase if you have had either basal cell carcinoma or squamous cell carcinoma, the more common forms of skin cancer.5-7
◦Your risk for melanoma might also be increased if you have had other previous cancers, such as breast or thyroid cancer.8-11
Q. What are atypical moles?
A. Most people have moles (also known as nevi). Atypical moles are unusual moles that are generally larger than normal moles, are variable in color, often have irregular borders and might occur in far greater number than regular moles. Atypical moles occur most often on the upper back, torso, lower legs, head and neck. It is important to recognize that atypical moles are not limited to any specific body area — they can occur anywhere. The presence of atypical moles is an important clinical risk factor for melanoma developing in a mole or on apparently normal skin.
A. Recognition of changes in the skin is the best way to detect early melanoma. They most frequently appear on the upper back, torso, lower legs, head and neck.3 In females 15-29 years old, the torso is the most common location for developing melanoma, which might be due to high-risk tanning behaviors.3 If you have a changing mole, a new mole, or a mole that is different, see a dermatologist as soon as possible.
If you notice a mole on your skin, you should follow the simple ABCDE rule, which outlines the warning signs of melanoma:
◦Asymmetry: One half does not match the other half.
◦Border irregularity: The edges are ragged, notched, or blurred.
◦Color: The pigmentation is not uniform. Different shades of tan, brown, or black are often present. Dashes of red, white, and blue can add to the mottled appearance.
◦Diameter: Melanomas usually are greater than 6mm in diameter when diagnosed, but they can be smaller.
◦Evolving: A mole or skin lesion looks different from the rest or is changing in size, shape, or color.
The American Academy of Dermatology urges everyone to examine their skin regularly. This means looking over your entire body including your back, your scalp, your palms, your soles and between your toes. If you notice a mole that is different from others, or that changes, itches, or bleeds even if it is smaller than 6mm, you should make an appointment to see a dermatologist as soon as possible.
Q. Can melanoma be cured?
A. When detected in its earliest stages, melanoma is highly curable. The average five-year survival rate for individuals whose melanoma is detected and treated before it spreads to the lymph nodes is 98 percent.1
Early detection is essential; there is a direct correlation between the thickness of the melanoma and survival rate. Dermatologists recommend a regular self-examination of the skin to detect changes in its appearance. Additionally, patients with risk factors should have a complete skin examination by a dermatologist annually. Anyone with a changing, suspicious or unusual mole or blemish should be examined as soon as possible. Individuals with a history of melanoma should have a full-body exam at least annually and perform monthly self-exams for new and changing moles.12
Q. Can melanoma be prevented?
A. Sun exposure is the most preventable risk factor for all skin cancers, including melanoma.1,13 You can have fun in the sun and decrease your risk of skin cancer. Here's how to Be Sun Smart®:
◦Generously apply a broad-spectrum, water-resistant sunscreen with a Sun Protection Factor (SPF) of at least 30 to all exposed skin. "Broad-spectrum" provides protection from both ultraviolet A (UVA) and ultraviolet B (UVB) rays. Reapply approximately every two hours, even on cloudy days, and after swimming or sweating.
◦Wear protective clothing, such as a long-sleeved shirt, pants, a wide-brimmed hat, and sunglasses, where possible.
◦Seek shade when appropriate. Remember that the sun's rays are strongest between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. If your shadow is shorter than you are, seek shade.
◦Protect children from sun exposure by playing in the shade, wearing protective clothing, and applying sunscreen.
◦Use extra caution near water, snow, and sand because they reflect the damaging rays of the sun, which can increase your chance of sunburn.
◦Get vitamin D safely through a healthy diet that may include vitamin supplements. Don't seek the sun.6
◦Avoid tanning beds. Ultraviolet light from the sun and tanning beds can cause skin cancer and wrinkling. If you want to look like you've been in the sun, consider using a sunless self-tanning product, but continue to use sunscreen with it.
◦Check your birthday suit on your birthday. If you notice anything changing, growing, or bleeding on your skin, see a dermatologist. Skin cancer is very treatable when caught early.
Posted by Christy at 10:23 AM
Saturday, March 19, 2011
I am posting some video from our orphanage visit because there is a family considering one of the boys that was in Finley's little group. He is precious and I am so excited he is up for adoption!! Since video is too big to email, I cant think of any other way to have them look at the video besides putting it on my blog so I will be putting a bunch of video on my blog over the next day or so.
Photo Sharing - Video Sharing - Photo Printing
Posted by Christy at 3:34 PM
Wednesday, March 16, 2011
Does anyone know how to add a picture of Finley to my header. I would also like to change the kids pictures to more recent pictures. Anyone know how?
This picture is from my friend Kim's house this weekend. She was moving and our Sunday School Class helped move her all day after church on Sunday. The girls enjoyed themselves playing with all the boxes. This is a sweater they were getting rid of and the girls decided to put it on. They were so proud of themselves-- too cute!!!!
I love how they are holding hands!!
Posted by Christy at 8:29 AM
Monday, March 14, 2011
First off-- yes ouch is the first thought that comes to mind as well. Finley had a little conflict with her nose and the headboard of our bed-- she didn't win. Poor baby-- she was jumping on our bed and did one too many bounces and her face hit square on the headboard right at the bridge of the nose. It started pouring blood and she was screaming but it soon stopped and she was fine but I knew she was going to have one heck of a bruise and sure enough, I was right. This happened on Thursday night and this picture was taken this morning-- swelling down a lot but really black and blue- poor thing. Luckily, it has not hurt her much at all and I have just given her a bit of motrin here and there. To all you that asks, no I did not take her to the doctor because if it was broken, they would do nothing and would have just said give her motrin-- therefore we chose not to take her in-- remember she is out 4th-- been there done that :) Anyway, she seems fine and is her old happy self :)
On Thursday night the Rock and Worship show came to the Citizens Arena in our area for a show. It was amazing and had groups like MercyMe and Jars of Clay and The Afters and many others that were awesome!!!! We took the kids and while the girls fell asleep, the boys loved it. We went with a few other families from our boys school and the kids had an amazing time worshiping and singing along with some of their favorite Christian bands. That is one thing I love about the boys going to a Christian school is that they freely worship with their friends with no inhibitions. It is a beautiful thing to see!!!!
Horrible picture but this was MercyMe lead singer. I was unbelievably impressed with this band. Not only are they one of our favorites but they were so evangelical and have an amazing heart for the Lord. They also sang I CAN ONLY IMAGINE- which is an all time favorite!!!
Again, it was an awesome night. Friday morning they were exhausted from the late night (we didn't get home till after midnight) but it was well worth it. They need these experiences with their Christian friends to not only grow their faith but to create lasting memories. My parents use to take us to "Christian Rock" concerts when I was young and I remember them so well-- I want to do the same with the kids.
Posted by Christy at 11:04 AM
Wednesday, March 9, 2011
Sunday was my 39th birthday. After church my parents had a little party for me at our favorite little pizza place. It was a lot of fun. This Friday night, we are having a big dinner out at a really awesome restaurant. Totally looking forward to that. No kids-- except Finley of course.
Posted by Christy at 7:24 AM
Monday, March 7, 2011
Not much going on here right now with the exception of me starting back to work tomorrow-- just my normal 2 days a week so it is not too bad. I have not taken many new pictures for a while so I will soon, but here are some of the pictures that have been lingering around that I never posted.
Posted by Christy at 10:00 AM
Friday, March 4, 2011
Cass and mom getting in on the action
Here they come!
We started getting Finley ready for school on Wednesday this week. We are going through a time where we go with her to school for the day and help out in the class where we come and go so she gets use to us being in and out. She has done really well and keeps an eye out to make sure I am there but when I do leave the room for a bit, she seems to be ok. She cried once when they were walking down to the playground but got over it quickly. She really seems to thrive in the preschool environment.
Posted by Christy at 8:09 AM