FHE-our "Festive Halloween Evening"

We had our annual pre-Halloween FHE...

S had been waiting for this moment since we got our pumpkins!

It's always great when Dad shows you how to NOT play with the knives?!

Look at that face!! (And the pumpkin's not bad either!)

The pumpkin probably weighed more than K!

Dad helping make the sketch, a reality...

Always trying to gross out the crowd!

Pumpkin carving takes a talented hand...

E's pumpkin bread was the highlight of the evening...


Finishing touches to the "purrfect" pumpkin!


THIS is why you cover your table with garbage bags for easy clean-up!

Don't forget to roast the pumpkin seeds!!

Lighting our porch...

See...they're not that scary!

We had so much fun!!


Secret Wish

Many (many) years ago...I was "one of those girls," who dedicated 2-3 days a week to ballet...I was in the "advanced" class, with all the long and lean ballerinas and their pink pointe shoes...I used to fantasize about the day I would be like them...I used to dream about when my boobs would shrink and disappear (I was filling a nice B-cup very, VERY early!) and some of my curvy areas would melt away...Yes, there were the "weigh-ins," where you tried your hardest not to look at the teacher as you stepped onto the scale...BUT...I LOVED it (the ballet, not the weigh-ins)!! To this day one of my guilty pleasures is the movie "Center Stage," because it whisks me away to yesterday!

In Jr. High and High School, it was less ballet, and more JAZZ (look out Paula Abdul!) It wasn't until I was taking a Jazz class at BYU, that the instructor (who DID choreograph for Paula!) asked me if I had studied Ballet? The reason? My extension was obvious, and my instantly pointed toes were sure give aways of past training. I hadn't really thought about it, but at that moment, I MISSED ballet!

Then you get married...you work and finish school...work...have a kid...work...have a kid...become a SAHM...infertility...4 years...have a kid...and somewhere between being a wife, mom, "Sista!" in your church callings, and friend, you slowly lose parts of a former life...a former "you?"

So...A couple of weeks ago I signed up for a Pilates class at the facility where my daughter takes dance...I LOVE it!! Last week, I went early and noticed they had an Adult Ballet class going on the hour before my Pilates class...Instinctively, I knew what I would do...

After talking to the instructor, who is also my Pilates instructor, I was on a high! I found out that since I have background in the fundamentals, and since adult training can be different than that of your adolescents, that I might be able to find myself in POINTE SHOES in the near future!!!

Last week I timidly went to the "dance store?" I was instantly mesmorized by leotards, skirts, ballet slippers, pointe shoes, leg warmers, and everything "ballet!" Now, I was LESS mesmorized by myself in those items in the dressing room...but none the less, still very excited and elated to begin this journey!

So...In a little over an hour...I will go to my first class, followed by my always-a-delight Pilates class...

The Nutcracker will be even better this year!!


Not seeing it...

The debate was last night...

One part I was very focused on was the health-care portion...

I am a diabetic...

My husband is self-employed...

We are "covered" (if you can call it that!) by insurance...

We pay $1600 A MONTH six months out of the year for my medical needs/supplies (I have a prescription ceiling in my coverage, which I'm lucky to have at all, because most private, or small company health plans make it very hard, or next to impossible to cover people with pre-existing conditions--We can't qualify for "HIP", because our income is too high, and you must be denied coverage to qualify, which I can't allow to happen because if I did allow for a gap in my medical coverage, I would NEVER be able to get health-care coverage in the future, because there can be no gaps in coverage when changing from one plan to another...) This yearly amount, NOT INCLUDING the new pump I paid a $3700 co-pay on, is $9600...This is like paying TWO mortgages each month!!!!

Now...McCain suggests a $5000 incentive to "help" cover insurance costs...That is laughable to me, and to every other American out there who are paying ridiculous amounts not only for their premiums, but out-of-pocket expenses not "covered" by one's "coverage."

Insurance companies are getting RICH...They are collecting on the fact that people like me need coverage to survive...Don't even get me started on the manufacturers of diabetic supplies and medicine, and how much money they pocket from the diseases that WE live with...I did NOT ask to be a diabetic...I did not do something in my lifestyle, other than have a genetic factor, which manifested itself when I was 20...My mother did NOT ask for Breast Cancer...so why does she have to spend $350 (which is her CO-PAY price!) for THREE pills EVERY WEEK to help her with the pain and sickness of CHEMO to fight the ravishes of cancer?!! How is this "helping" the American people?

This is a quote from last night's debate:

Schieffer: All right, let's go to a new topic, health care. Given the current economic situation, would either of you now favor controlling health care costs over expanding health care coverage? The question is first to Sen. Obama.

Obama: We've got to do both, and that's exactly what my plan does.

Look, as I travel around the country, this is the issue that will break your heart over and over again. Just yesterday, I was in Toledo shaking some hands in a line. Two women, both of them probably in their mid- to late-50s, had just been laid off of their plant. Neither of them have health insurance.

And they were desperate for some way of getting coverage, because, understandably, they're worried that, if they get sick, they could go bankrupt.

So here's what my plan does. If you have health insurance, then you don't have to do anything. If you've got health insurance through your employer, you can keep your health insurance, keep your choice of doctor, keep your plan.

The only thing we're going to try to do is lower costs so that those cost savings are passed onto you. And we estimate we can cut the average family's premium by about $2,500 per year.

If you don't have health insurance, then what we're going to do is to provide you the option of buying into the same kind of federal pool that both Sen. McCain and I enjoy as federal employees, which will give you high-quality care, choice of doctors, at lower costs, because so many people are part of this insured group.

We're going to make sure that insurance companies can't discriminate on the basis of pre-existing conditions. We'll negotiate with the drug companies for the cheapest available price on drugs.

We are going to invest in information technology to eliminate bureaucracy and make the system more efficient.

And we are going to make sure that we manage chronic illnesses, like diabetes and heart disease, that cost a huge amount, but could be prevented. We've got to put more money into preventive care.

This will cost some money on the front end, but over the long term this is the only way that not only are we going to make families healthy, but it's also how we're going to save the federal budget, because we can't afford these escalating costs.

Schieffer: All right.

I see OPTIONS...I don't see Socialism...No one is making anyone do anything they don't want...

I'm not seeing it...What's the problem?