23 June 2008

Alvan's heart check

Alvan's father recently underwent some more heart procedures. He has had coronary heart disease for many years, and it is a family condition that many of his siblings have died from. So, because Alvan is now getting close to the age his dad was when he had a quadruple bypass, and considering the fact that I now work for a company that has 12 cardiologists, what better time to check out the old ticker. I spoke with Dr Cox about Alvan's family history and he was more than happy to see him. Firstly, he had a have a stress echocardiogram. A stress echocardiogram assesses the likelihood that you have significant narrowings in your heart arteries. By comparing your heart functions before and after exercise using echocardiography (ultrasound), the cardiologist can infer whether enough blood is getting to your heart or if a narrowing is restricting this supply. His also had full blood tests done, all these tests showed Alvan to be in good health. But because of the strong family history, Dr Cox wanted Alvan to have one more test, a coronary artery scoring. A cardiac calcium scoring uses a special x-ray test called a computed tomography (CT) to check for build up of calcium in plaque on the walls of the arteries of the heart. This test is used to check for heart disease in an early stage and to determine how severe it is. Alvan had a total score of 292.

A score between 101–400 means there is a moderate amount of plaque is present. You have heart disease, and plaque may be blocking an artery. Your chance of having a heart attack is moderate to high.

Dr Cox has put Alvan on a lifelong daily course of Crestor and small asprin. The Crestor is used to lower the "bad" cholesterol and raise the "good" cholesterol. He will see him again in 3 months, at which time another round of blood tests will be done, and hopefully it will show improved results.

We feel that this whole experience although a bit of a shock has been such a blessing from Heavenly Father. We are amazed at the technology that is available today, and that we were able to access it all so easily and quickly for Alvan's benefit.

Family working bee

Work for our new patio began on Saturday 20th June, first we have to demolish before we can construct. So it was a family working bee...all the family came, the boys had a great time working jack hammers, (at least for the first few hours, I think the novelity worn off after that). But Alvan and I are extremely grateful for children who gave up there Saturday to help us out, we love you guys and appreciate all your help. Perrin cooked the pancakes for breakfast, and hot chippies were purchased for lunch. Work started just after 8am with the pulling down of the existing patio, and finally at about 4pm when all the boys were sufficently exhausted tools were downed. Leaving just a small (ish) slab of concrete left for Alvan to demolish on Monday.
work begins...first the patio has to come down
yus on the roof & dad "supervising"
two jacks are better than one...Rick and his brother Jessie
and the dust starts flying
Yustan's turn
Alvan's turn on the jack hammer....
Alvan finishing the job on Monday morning
P.S Yustan very kindly showed up around lunch time on Monday to help dad finish off the job, that last corner was a doozie! Well done everyone.

22 June 2008

Backyard works

Well we've been planning and costing things for months now, but finally the works have begun on the backyard landscaping! We are finished with week one, of a two week job and already it's looking great..starting to see the difference it will make. The first 4 pictures are before work began, and the next 4 are at the end of week one. The bottom retaining wall has been made higher, and the middle retaining wall has gone up. Note the left side has been left sloped for two reasons. 1) to allow for easy access for the lawnmower, and 2) to allow for a slide for the grandchildren (eventually!!) There will be one more smaller retaining wall at the top just behind where our new patio will go. The pegs you see in the ground on at the top of the slope are where the new patio will go out to.

10 June 2008

Grandkids at Movieworld

Jaime took Tara & the her kids to movieworld for the day. The bumper cars were fun, and Freyr loved the super heroes...no fear that boy!

Elder Joshua Bennison

Alvan and I were blessed to go to Melbourne the weekend of May 23-25. It was a wonderful time, we stayed with Karen's sister Kerrie and her family. And went to the temple with Elder Joshua Bennison and his Mum, one of Karen's other sisters Liz (for their first time). It was so joyous in the Celestial room.

Our neighbourhood friends

Just a few pictures taken from our yard in the last month. The kookaburras are on our side fence and the next door neighbours side fence. And the Kangaroo is in our front yard, and the girls from next door came out to feed him some bread, so he went to house too!