DIY Lego Birthday Party

Both of my sons have been very enthusiastic about Legos this year, so I wasn’t surprised when my oldest decided on a Lego theme for his birthday party.  And, being the crazy summer that it is, I gave myself only 6 days to plan and prepare everything from start to finish. I  wondered how it would all turn out, but everything was, in fact, awesome. Cue music….

It turns out that there are tons of free printable resources online that made my job pretty easy! We used a free, customizable Lego movie invitation, these minifig straw decorations that we used as cupcake toppers, a minifig coloring page, and free printable Lego cupcake wrappers.

The Prep

I tried to involve my son as much as possible in the party prep, and it was a fun bonding experience, plus he was actually pretty helpful.  We handed out invitations that we printed 4-on-a-page and mounted on bright cardstock paper that we already had.

Hale Grafx free printable

We printed the minifig coloring pages, and also the straw toppers and cupcake wrappers, and cut those out. The boys used double stick tape to attach the straw toppers to craft sticks for the cupcake toppers.

I collected and separated Lego pieces into individual bags for our Lego car- building activity (check garage sales and local classified ads, or use your own stash and don’t send them home as favors).

I did purchase a few things for the party. I bought these Lego favor bags pictured below, some lego brick candies which I added to the favor bags and also decorated the cupcakes with (see below), a silicone Lego candy mold (we made chocolates, but you could do ice cubes, other candies, crayons, etc.), and minifig crayon sets which we could have made on our own if we’d had time.

 

 

I had some Wilton Candy Melts on hand that I used to make the Lego candies by melting the chips in the microwave, pouring in the molds, and refrigerating for a few minutes. They set up pretty fast, allowing me to use just one mold to make many candies very quickly. I packaged them up in small bags that I also had on hand already that I had found at the grocery store.

I also bought a long green plastic table cloth, red square plates, yellow cups and silverware, and blue napkins from the dollar store ($5 total).  I drew the minifig faces on the cups with a permanent marker.  I didn’t want to worry about feeding the kids lunch, but I got a veggie tray and a fruit tray, and that went over pretty well with the kids.

The  Party

We invited 10 7- year- olds, and I was a little worried about chaos, so I planned enough activities to keep them busy for 2 hours and made an itinerary.  My sister Cara was gracious enough to come help the activities move along and stay organized. Here is what my itinerary looked like:

10am  Gathering activity- Minifig coloring/decorating (10 min)

10:10  Lego relay race (10 min)
10:20  Lego straw game (5 min)
10:25  Snacks (veggie and fruit trays) (10 min)
10:35  Build and race cars (25 min)
11:00  Lego bracelets (25 min)
11:25  Presents (15 min)
11:40  Cake (20 min)

 

We did the coloring as a gathering activity while we were waiting for all the kids to arrive, and in addition to crayons, I provided googly eyes, pom-poms, glue, etc. to decorate them with.

Next we did a relay race, Egg-on-a-spoon style, with a tub of legos, a spoon for each team, and a bucket for them to dump their Legos into. I set a timer for 4 minutes (you could adjust according to the age of the kids playing) and they got as many Legos as they could without dropping them.

After the timer went off, I had the kids count how many Legos were in the buckets, and the winners got a prize (I reassured the kids that every kid would get to win a prize by the end of the party).

We also played the M&M game with straws and Lego pieces instead of M&Ms. (The idea is to use the straw to create suction and pick up Lego bricks for a minute or two. The winner is the one with the most pieces when the timer goes off. Make sure the pieces are large enough to be picked up this way and won’t be a choking hazard!)

I combined the snack time with the Lego car activity. The kids spent more time doing these things than I expected, and really seemed to enjoy building their cars.  They all got relatively similar pieces, but the cars were very distinct and unique from each other.  I loved watching their creativity.  After they finished building, we went outside to the ramp my husband put together with some wood and sheets of plastic propped up on a sawhorse. Each child raced their car against another, and everyone got prizes.

I thought Lego friendship bracelets would be a fun craft that boys and girls would each enjoy, and although the kids needed a lot of help, they all seemed to think it was a pretty cool activity.  They even realized they could carry around their Lego cars stuck to the bracelets. :)  We followed this tutorial from The Centsible Life for Lego friendship bracelets. My husband went through our Lego stash and pulled a few pieces out, and drilled the holes pretty quickly.

I like to do cake and ice cream as the very last thing at birthday parties, so we sang “Happy Birthday and passed out the cupcakes after the presents were open. (I will share the delicious dairy- free recipes I used in a later post!)

My son was thrilled with how his party turned out, and all the kids stayed busy enough that there were no squabbles, and no chaos, so I was happy too!

Cara’s DIY Wedding

I was looking through my pictures and realized that I totally forgot to post about my sister Cara’s outdoor/ indoor wedding that happened in October.  Which is sad, because it was a completely beautiful, totally DIY wedding.  So I’m going to remedy the situation, and post some of the awesomeness now.

First, my husband BJ and I took engagement photos:

My sisters Marissa and Anna and I threw Cara’s bridal shower, and a friend was kind enough to host it for us.

Here’s the shower invite that I designed using Inkscape (a free Illustrator-like program).

Here’s a somewhat better view of the refreshment table.  We had a tea and hot chocolate bar as well.

Here are the favors for the guests- a packet with an herbal tea bag and a honey stick.  The tags were designed by me- again in Inkscape.

Cara and I spent hours making bridesmaid jewelry using beads and findings she bought online and at Hobby Lobby. Each piece was totally unique, but had a unifying theme. There was a necklace, bracelet, and earring set for each of the 11 bridesmaids.

The house and yard was transformed for the wedding and reception by the tireless help of many friends and family members.  Tables and chairs were covered with fabric from the stashes of my mom’s friends and sisters.

My cute and talented mother did all of the flowers- bouquets, boutonnieres, table arrangements, indoor/ outdoor, etc.

This photo doesn’t do them justice, these are just the only flower photos I could find.

Here’s one of the bridal bouquet.

Photo credit to Giffy Pix.

My mom also made the cake pedestals by gluing together glass plates and vases, filling the vases with dried flowers, and tying ribbon around them.

My aunt, sister Marissa and I did Cara’s makeup, hair, and nails respectively.

My mom made this lovely wedding gift with words of advice, featuring a hand- crocheted doily (My grandmother made one for each grandchild before she passed away, and my mom saved them to give at each wedding).

My mom and my aunts took a basically strapless wedding gown bought for under $200 and using their brilliant sewing wizardry, transformed it into Cara’s dream wedding dress- a much more modest, and classy looking frock.  I wish I had a more close-up detailed photo of the dress, but you can get an idea by the picture below.

My dad is a bishop- a lay clergyman in our church, so he was able to be the one to marry Cara and Jeff.  My sons were ring bearers.

These 2 photos courtesy of Giffy Pix

I made the ring pillows my sons are holding in the above pictures (tutorial to come).

Marissa was the fantastic artist behind this lovely cake and multitude of cupcakes. (Check out her baking accessories shop on Etsy!)

I also made marriage advice cards for guests at the reception to fill out and compiled them into a book for the newlyweds to enjoy down the road.

It was a bit crazy to arrive just a day or two before the wedding and everybody work like mad to throw it together (after a several months of distance planning), but I think it turned out fabulously!  And the newlyweds are still doing great!

Mother and Baby Shower

I mentioned very briefly in my last post that while in Oregon, we had a baby shower.  What I didn’t mention was that it was a shower (or, more accurately, a mother and baby shower) for my sister Marissa!  My mom, my sisters and I collaborated and planned it all, with Marissa’s help and input, and I think it was a success!

 

Marissa wanted frilly, lacy, pink-y loveliness as the theme, and so that’s what we did!

Marissa and I got together and laughed hysterically- as we usually do- while we designed the invitations.  We were able to make them entirely out of what we had on hand already. :-)  The pink part is a sleeve which the invitation slides out of.  The umbrellas, clouds, and hearts were cut using my Silhouette machine.  I designed the text part of the invitation in Inkscape.

If you are going to ask people to RSVP, it is a good idea to not only include your phone number, but also your email address- some people (including myself) don’t like to call.  We also created a facebook event.  Hey, we just figured that the easier it was (and more ways there were) to RSVP, the better response we would get.

I had read about an idea of a “mother blessing shower” in one of my favorite new books (The Gift of Giving Life– seriously an amazing book; I would say that reading it, along with their blog for the past two years has changed my life and the way I think about motherhood- I’m not paid to say that, it’s just true.  Go check it out; you won’t be disappointed, even if you just read through the archives of some of the positive birth stories).  I was charmed with the idea that while it is great- and really fun- to focus on the baby, a shower is also a great opportunity to celebrate motherhood.  So, taking the suggestion from the book, in our announcement we invited people to bring a blessing or good thought for Marissa and a bead or charm to represent it, which would be put on a charm bracelet for Marissa to wear and feel happy vibes! 😉

This was a blank paper we included in the invitation for people to bring their written good wishes on.

The shower was fun (I really enjoyed seeing people I haven’t had the pleasure of visiting with for many years in some cases) and lovely of course.  We used pieces from our mom’s wedding china to hold flowers and candy.  My mom also had a great collection of crystal and glass serving dishes, and glass snack sets which she inherited from her mother.  I had picked up mini- chalkboards from the craft store recently, and those were fun to use, along with ribbons, and tons of tissue paper that we turned into flowers and pom-poms.

Ooh, before I forget, the menu included assorted fresh fruit, gluten/dairy/egg free brownies (which were amazing), oreo truffles, jordan almonds and Dove chocolates, dark and white chocolate drizzled popcorn, and heavenly pink sorbet punch.  Mmm.

Here’s the cute pregnant mama… I wonder why I couldn’t get her to look at the camera?!

Something else we did that I have seen done at other showers is pass around a basket of blank envelopes for people to address to themselves to make it that much easier for Marissa to send out her thank-you notes.  (Whoops, don’t have a picture of that one, but you can use your imagination…)

A few nights ago, Marissa and I got together, and we added jump rings to all the charms, and attached them on to a bracelet that we made.  I think it is adorable, if a bit crowded- but you can never have too many blessings, right?!  Some of the charms were meant for the baby some day, so ultimately, a few charms will be removed and it won’t be quite so crowded.

Here’s what it looks like on.  Artsy, unique, lovely, and a reminder of all the love, blessings, and good wishes from friends and family!

As a gesture of gratitude/ favor of sorts for those who attended, we made about 30 of these crocheted friendship bracelets with a bead in the middle.  The idea was that people would grab one as they walked out the door, but of course we forgot until half of the people were already gone.  😛  Oops.  Maybe they will go out in some of the thank you notes.

We definitely had fun with this baby shower, and I really liked the “mother blessing” part.  It seems appropriate to me that this portion could be done for any mother- regardless of how many babies she has had, or if she needed an actual “shower” for the baby.  Honoring motherhood and womanhood is always a good move in my book!  Tell me what you think in the comments!

Home Again, Home Again, Joggity Jog…

The last few weeks have been a whirlwind for me, and I expect the next two weeks to be more of the same.  However, I wanted to pop in and share a bit of what I’ve been up to…

Baby shower fare

A road trip to Oregon, during which we packed in a baby shower, a cousin tea party, taking my handsome brother’s senior pictures, a backpacking trip, an anniversary getaway, visiting family, and all the outdoor stuff the guys like to do (tennis, racquetball, golf, paintball, shooting), shopping, etc.

Tea party lovelies

Since we’ve been home, I’ve registered my son for preschool, gone to work (I am an RN), attended playgroup with my kids, and had eye surgery.  Yup, it’s been crazy. 

My brother… photo credit to my awesome hubby.

In the next little while I have trainings and meetings, my usual work, a webinar, and a mandatory weekend conference for work, playgroup, preschool starting, and working extra hours at a health fair.  Add in a couple of birthdays and family coming into town, plus all the laundry I still need to catch up on from our trip and things are about to get interesting!

I’m certainly not complaining about my life right now; in fact, I feel incredibly grateful.  Just busy, so with that, I will leave you with a these pictures, and I will be in and out, hopefully, with more photos from some of the things we have been doing, and some new projects.

Until then, peace!

A Wedding in the Family!

I just got back in town late last night after spending the week in Eastern Washington with my family and all our wedding preparations and festivities.  It was a crazy trip (but well worth it of course) but I will have to tell that story later.  My little brother Tayler got married on Friday morning to the lovely Heather!  The wedding was lovely, both the ceremony and the decor.  Man, we have got a talented family!  Heather’s family put together a beautiful reception in the church.

Check out what Heather and her mom (and other family members) came up with:

Lovely draped sheers in front of hanging lights; pillars and greenery.

Hanging paper lanterns.

Coordinating chair covers and linens.
Photobook as guestbook.

Lovely refreshment table.
One of the entryways.

Gift area.

I was really impressed with the decorating!  Not to mention that the take down afterward was the fastest and most efficient I have ever seen.  Note to self- having a clean up crew with specific assignments (not just the exhausted family cleaning up) is a great idea!

My littlest munchkin and me.

For the wedding luncheon earlier in the day, my mom covered tables with tablecloths and then butcher paper.  She put out black tiles with flowers, candles, and bags of crayons for people to write messages to Tayler and Heather on the paper.  I was asked to make the word cutouts for each table with their wedding date, their names, and other lovey- dovey phrases. :)

My mom and sisters pulled off some pretty amazing creations as well.  For example, the cake

Would you like to see that a little closer?  I thought so!

Live flowers for the cake topper.

Marissa was the mastermind behind the cake (of course).  She spent hours pre- making the roses out of gum paste and royal icing.  I helped with that too, but really I was just following orders- aren’t they all lovely?!

Strawberry frosting- flavored with real, chopped and strained strawberries.

Double chocolate cupcakes in doily wrappers.

Delicious cream cheese frosting.

The cupcakes, their creator, and the “helpers”.

If you know my mom, you know she is a seriously talented lady in so many areas, and one of her many talents is flower arranging.  She did all the flowers for this wedding, and they all turned out beautifully!

The Bride’s bouquet.

As you can tell from earlier pictures, the bride’s colors were vibrant pink and blue.  I love how the flowers incorporate those colors and round it out with a variety of shades.

The mothers’ wrist corsages.

Boutonnieres for the men.
Bouquets for the bridesmaids.

The last “craft” of the night was decorating the happy couple’s car.  They did a pretty thorough job with window paint, cans tied to the back, balloons, a bag of Hershey’s Kisses, and various other junk tied on the car.

The sendoff.

Everyone had bubble wands (or in my husband’s case, a bubble gun) to send them off, and the kids were in heaven.

I just love weddings!

A Grown Up Birthday Party

Last week the local Relief Society (women’s organization) of my church celebrated its birthday (actually later this month it turns 170 years old!) and I was asked to decorate… happy dance!

I didn’t get a ton of great pictures, but I thought I would quickly share what I did (with a small budget too)!

I pretty much had free reign as far as themes go, so I decided to go with simple, bright and colorful (while trying to avoid making it feel too much like a 3rd grade birthday party).

The majority of my budget went towards purchasing round vinyl tablecloths- why are those so much more expensive than rectangular tablecloths?!  We put contrasting tissue paper on top of the tablecloth, then filled mason jars with colorful tissue flowers. See how to make tissue paper flowers here (this is the approximate method I used).

I printed out “Charity Never Faileth” motto place cards which were then embellished with paper flowers.  I downloaded the free word art graphic here.

We had a soup buffet, and there were some amazing soups!  (Think clam chowder, chicken tortilla soup, taco soup, tuscan chicken soup, pumpkin soup, creamy tomato with tortellini…. Yes, I had like 5 bowls, thanks.)  We hung my reusable ruffled streamers on the walls and around the food tables.  Find the tutorial for ruffled streamers here.

Of course we had birthday cake (I’m sad I didn’t get a picture of the cake.  I’m terrible at remembering to take photos at events like this.  I never even think of it most of the time. Wah.).

Besides the table cloths, I think I only spent about $2-3 because I used things I already had (i.e. I’m kind of a packrat and I save used pieces of giftwrap tissue for projects- perfect for these flowers!)

I just have to say that I love being a part of the Relief Society.  I am grateful for so many women who have become role models, sisters, and friends.  Yay for Relief Society!

Origami Tree Tutorial and Christmas Party Decorations

Don’t miss the tutorial to make one of these lovely trees at the bottom of this post!

This Christmas season has gotten off to a roaring start!  Last Friday we made it to two of the three parties we had scheduled (!) – I guess everyone is trying to get their parties over and done early.  I was put in charge of decorations for our church Christmas party that we had that evening.  Luckily I didn’t have to do it alone- my friend Becca and I decided we make a great creative team despite a budget that did not support our delusions visions of grandeur and working with seating for 220 in a small gym.

The seating arrangements were tough.  Our church has a few long rectangular tables, but mostly round tables, and not enough to seat everyone, so we ended up borrowing rectangular tables.  We arranged two long rows of the rectangular tables, banquet style, and filled the rest of the gym with round tables.  I think almost every seat ended up being filled.  It was cozy- that’s for sure!

To keep our costs down, we made a lot of the decorations ourselves, and used things we already had.  For example, we folded dozens of green origami trees- with the help of friends and family, thankfully!  I bought about $3.00 worth of green butcher paper, measured and cut it into different sized squares, and went to town using an origami pattern my mom shared with me.  I think in total we folded about 20 trees and made several coffee filter wreaths (a big thanks to Marissa, Cara, Becca and Lindsey who all accepted jobs in my Christmas sweatshop).  Aside from the tablecloths, I believe we spent between $10-$15 for the whole thing.

Becca folded probably dozens of silver and gold stars too, which we taped to the accordion doors behind one of the buffet lines.

On the wall behind the buffet tables on the other side of the room, we hung strands of white Christmas lights, 6 wreaths and a few large silver doilies.  Down the long walls on either side were hung small white doilies (as snowflakes), and we hung a few wreaths on the doors.

The tables were covered in red, white, and green tablecloths, and some of them had a contrasting color of tissue paper or napkin in the center.  As centerpieces for the round tables, we used our lovely origami trees and mason jars with assortments of pine cones, Epsom salt, fake red berries, electric tea lights, and jute/ tulle tied around them.

On the banquet tables we put “bouquets” of fresh greenery tied with ribbon, laid end to end and with pine cones and electric tea lights here and there.  We also used a few of the origami trees and some book trees, and long cinnamon sticks tied with ribbon.  Each table was a little different.

I am lucky enough to have fresh fir tree branches at my disposal- for free!  My family lives on a Christmas tree farm and my mom sent me loads of heavenly- smelling greenery by way of Marissa who drove out for Thanksgiving.  (Thanks Mom and Marissa)!

As a decoration for the food table, we used a large vase and arranged silver and gold spray painted branches inside, with a few glass ball ornaments hanging.

 The dessert tables had large tree boughs around the backs, and tomato cage trees.  We put two more tomato cage trees along one of the side walls.  Thank you Pinterest for that idea!

Three of our wreaths; the one on the left is a coffee filter wreath and the one on the right is a book page wreath.

I think it all turned out beautifully and we had so much fun! (PS- Thank you Becca for taking most of the above photos!)  Now, on to the origami tree tutorial.  My disclaimer: I am not an origami pro, and I really don’t know all the technical names for folds.  My folding isn’t perfect, and after a while, I’m not so much of a perfectionist anymore!  My only recommendation is to make a sharp crease when folding- use the back of your nail, and try to line up corners evenly as best you can; other than that- it is what it is!  These are not difficult folds once you get the hang of them, but it can be time consuming if you want to make multiple trees, since you will probably need to fold 4 separate papers for each tree.

Origami Trees
These are not difficult folds once you get the hang of them, but it can
be time consuming if you want to make multiple trees, since you will
probably need to fold 4 separate papers for each tree.

You can make this tree on a really large scale, or a very small scale, and it looks great either way.  If you want to make 10″ trees (approximate measurement) like I did for the Christmas party centerpieces, you will need square papers of the following sizes:  12″, 10.5″, 9″, 7.5″.  Or, if you want to customize your tree size for your own needs, a good rule of thumb is that each paper size should decrease by about 1/8.

Let’s start with the “Stacking Tree Bases” for lack of a better term.  You will make three of these in total, in descending size.

1.  Start with your square paper.  You actually want to turn it so the pattern is facing down before step 2.
2.  Fold the paper in half diagonally (bottom to top) to make a triangle- pattern facing out.
3. Open up the paper.
4. Fold in half diagonally again, the other way (right to left), so that the folds look like an X shape.

5. Orient the paper so the triangle point is facing downward.  Put your finger next to the crease to hold the left side in place, and with your other hand, separate the layers of the right side.
6.  Pull the right corner down on top of the bottom corner.
7. Give the folds a nice sharp crease.  You should have a square on top of the triangle now.
8.  Fold the left side of the square up diagonally on top of itself.

9.  Repeat the same fold from step 5- separate the layers of the left corner a bit.  Use your other hand to stabilize the bottom corner while you do this.
10.  Fold the left corner of the original triangle down to the bottom point.
11. Crease the folds sharply.
12. Fold the triangle flap from step 8 back over to the left.

13. Fold diagonally so the the bottom corner of the square matches up with the top corner.  Fold the top layer of right side of the square over diagonally to the left corner.  Fold so the bottom corner matches up with the top corner again.  Repeat until all the squares are folded diagonally (bottom to top).
14. You should have a triangular shape that looks like this.
15. Take the top corner that you just folded and pinch it together, then start pulling it down towards the left corner.
16. Line up the corners and pinch in place.  Grab the right corner and fold it over so that it matches up with the left corner, and the top corner is folded down and sandwiched inside.  Press together, making sure to crease the folds on the paper sandwiched inside.  This picture shows what it looks like when you open it back up a bit.
17. Repeat steps 15 and 16 on the next 3 sides.
18. After you have done this for each of the 4 sides, it should look like this.  You are now done with the base of the tree- you need to make 2 more just like this with the smaller pieces of paper.

On to the “Tree Topper”!

Use the smallest paper for the topper.

1. Start with the same square you made for the Stacking Tree Bases (steps 1-12).
2. Grab the top layer from the right corner, separating the two layers, and hold it straight up at a 90* angle.
3. While stabilizing the bottom corners, push the center fold straight down so it lines up with the folds below.
4. Crease the folds sharply.

5. Repeat steps 2-4 on each of the 4 sides. so you end up with a kite shape like this.
6.  Fold the top layer of the right side over to the left, so the kite shape is closed like this.  You should apply glue on the patterned area of the paper that is shown in step 5, and then do this fold.

Put it all together!

1. Take your bottom base piece and turn it over- this is what the bottom looks like.
2. Pull the pieces slightly apart and apply glue, then squish it all together so all 4 corners are touching in the middle.
3. For the next two stacking base pieces, you want to put the glue far away from the corners that meet in the middle, so that it holds its shape, but still has room to fit over the top of the other pieces.
4. Here’s what it looks like from the top.
5. Place a dot of glue (I used hot glue) on the top point.
6. Quickly stack the next biggest piece on top, making sure the glue holds it in place. Repeat for the next two layers.

Tree with three layers- you really could be done here if you wanted.

Here’s the finished tree!

As always, if you have questions (or if you liked the tutorial), leave a comment below or email me at rochelle@homesweethomebodies and I will do my best to answer your question.  Happy folding!

Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Source: http://www.nationalbreastcancer.org/

Breast cancer awareness… a matter close to my heart.  Besides having more than one family member who has battled breast cancer, I am a public health nurse at the local health department, and one of my main functions is to screen for and educate about breast cancer.

These are the lovely ladies I work with.  I truly couldn’t have better coworkers.  I am on the bottom right in this picture.

We just had a health fair honoring breast cancer survivors and we put on a luncheon for a few women who have come through our clinic and who are being treated for cancer.

My boss put together a beautiful lunch for these women.  Yours truly was assigned to make the centerpiece.  I used my anthropologie-inspired cake platter/ cupcake tower, some beautiful rose cupcakes (that Marissa mostly frosted), fresh fruit, and rainbow tissue flowers as accents.  I think it turned out pretty good!

Important breast cancer information:
If you are at least 20 years old, you should be doing self breast exams.  I know
you may feel uncomfortable, or it may be difficult to remember, but do
whatever you have to do to remind yourself! Put a note or sticker
somewhere you will see it, or choose to do it on your birthday- date
each month. If you are at least 40 years old, you need a mammogram every
1-2 years (every year after age 50). Men, please encourage the women in
your lives to do this- it may save their life. When breast cancers are
detected early, women have an excellent chance of survival.  If you need
a reminder on how to do a self- exam, check out this link that has step- by- step instructions.

I like to tell the women I screen that doing a breast self exam isn’t
really about following a rigid set of instructions or searching for
cancer.  Thinking of it that way can cause anxiety that may cause you to
avoid even thinking about it.  I recommend being aware of your body-
becoming familiar with what is normal for you.  Think of it as a way to
have peace of mind.  If you do notice a change, whether it be a lump, a
change in color or texture of the skin on your breast, a change in shape
or appearance of any part of the breast, or anything out of the
ordinary that persists and doesn’t resolve, you should have it checked
immediately by a health care professional.

As women, we put so much of our energy into taking care of other
people that we sometimes neglect to take care of ourselves.  Please consider that you can best care for
those you love by keeping yourself healthy!  What I’m
saying is that there really isn’t any good excuse for not giving your
health the attention it deserves.

If money or lack of insurance/ underinsurance is an issue, there are
programs that offer free or low cost mammograms to women over 40 each
year if you meet certain income requirements. The clinic I work at is
one of these programs, and there are programs like this all over the
U.S. You can check out the CDC’s website to find out if you qualify.

What can you do to help?
1. Get yourself screened.
2. Spread the word and encourage someone you love to get screened.
3. Show support this month for breast cancer awareness and those who have battled breast cancer by wearing pink or the BCA ribbon.
4. Raise money for breast cancer awareness by participating in or supporting fundraisers.

Make the world sweeter this month by doing as many things in the above list as you feel you can!