Monday, September 29, 2008

The Difference Between a Billionare and Us? A Billion Dollars... and a Heart of Gold

Just so you know, you are now reading the blog of TV stars. Does a 30 second spot on national TV qualify us as stars? Maybe not, but it was still an awesome experience. Just this past weekend, the Glenn Beck show was here in Salt Lake taping a special on the Huntsman Cancer Institute. It was actually to honor the man behind the hospital because Glenn is a huge Jon Huntsman fan (just like we are!). So Dan was invited to go be on the show with four other patients to have an opportunity to thank Mr. Huntsman. Dan said something to the effect that because the news of his cancer came three weeks after we were married, we were still in the honeymoon phase. It was scary to think we might have to be apart and Dan might have to do this alone... but he didn't. Because of the facilities, we were able to be together throughout EVERY minute of Dan's treatment. Because of Mr. Huntsman's vision of what a hospital should be, he was able to heal surrounded by his family. Anyway, I didn't say it as well as Dan so you'll just have to watch it air on Thanksgiving.

Jon Huntsman is a self made billionaire, and is going to die a poor man because all of his money is going into his hospital. With the economy the way it is, no one is even dreaming of expanding, but the Institute just announced that they are doubling in size and construction is going to start very soon. It's all possible because of the generosity of the Huntsman family. Wow, what an example of selflessness.

But you know what, that's not even the best part about him. The best part is how humble and loving he is. When we got to meet him after the show, he was actually thanking US! It was very humbling. We love him! (...and it was fun to meet Glenn Beck, too!)
(What am I doing?! Obviously too busy to look at the camera :) oh well...)

Well I hope I didn't go overboard with praise... but I just wanted to let you know all the things that were floating around in my head as we were able to meet him. He's a great example. Maybe after Daniel and I are millionaires we'll build a hospital too!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Happy Birthday Dallin!

Today is my little brother Dallin's birthday. He's probably the most mature 15-yr-old guy you'll ever meet. He's grown up with all sisters, no brothers, so we take all the credit. All the girls want him and all the guys want to be his friend, and yet he's so down to earth. Dallin would do ANYTHING for you and you don't even have to ask him... He just does it. He's playing football on the high school team and is such a stud. But even though he's a big jock he still takes time for the people who might not have a lot of friends. I love being your big sis, Dallin! Dan and I love you!

Speaking of football, check out the seats we had for the game last Saturday...

Pretty Sweet, huh? Thanks to John Monahan and his friend we had BOX seats at the UCLA game. Even though we were hoping for a more exciting game, it was still pretty awesome watching BYU recover all of those fumbles and then run them in for touchdowns. It was almost embarrassing for UCLA! Thanks Joy and Drew and John! We love you!
Trying to take a nice picture. Oh Daniel... What am I going to do with you?


Monday, September 15, 2008

Giving Away a Small Fortune

When I first received the assignment in my English class to buy something for a total stranger I had it all figured out. He wants us to get out of our comfort zone, have something creative to write about, blah blah blah. Little did I know how much fun it would be.

Dan and I drove to Smith's and set out on the quest. When we get to the store Daniel informs me that he won't be participating and runs off (actually hobbles off as quick as he can with his cane). "What?! I can't do this without him!" I am really shy when it comes to this sort of thing and I was depending on Dan to smooth things out because he's a pretty charismatic guy. I guess he wanted me to have the full effect and not depend on him. Smart guy. So after stewing over my task for a while, I picked a cute married couple.

"Can I buy your groceries?" Blank stares. "I don't want anything, I just want to buy them for you." Blank stares. I guess they needed an explanation. "I have this assignment for a class..." They finally gave in. With appreciative, but skeptical faces, they said "thank you" and left.

Even though it wasn't the experience I had hoped for, it was fun. What was I hoping for? I don't know... maybe a "Oh wow, how did you know? My husband just lost his job", or "Our house just burned down", or "I didn't know if we were going to make rent this month". Okay, so those were pretty lofty goals but they would have made for a great story. For now I'll have to settle for the fact that a cute married couple living in Provo is now $14.37 richer than they had planned. Believe me -- for a young married couple, that's a fortune.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Origami and Ottomans

Tonight my English class was canceled and Dan had a great idea to go to the library and find an origami book. So we went to the children's section of the library and picked out the book with the best pictures :)

But as we started we quickly realized why this book was in a children's section. They turned out so cheesy! The pictures didn't look ANYTHING like the real thing

For now, I think we will just steer clear of the children's section until we have children. We also rented Sister Act 2 from the library... it's bringing back great memories. Where is Lauryn Hill these days? She is so good!

We had another exciting step toward normal life today (since that is supposed to be the theme for our blog). When we were married we bought a really pretty ottoman for our living room. When Dan got sick, it quickly became Dan's medicine cabinet. It was filled with supplies for his Hickman port, prescriptions, lovenox injections, and numerous other things. Well, we were finally able to get rid of all those things! We filled up a WHOLE trash bag worth of medical supplies. It felt great! Now we have an empty ottoman but no idea what to put in it. Any suggestions? What are you supposed to put in an ottoman?
This is what is looked like:
And now it's all gone!!!
Happy day.


Sunday, September 7, 2008

Lung Surgery

I know this is kind of old news and we have already told most of you the results of Daniel's lung surgery, but I thought I should post some of the pictures on here. The surgery was very successful and he is healing well, but the process is very slow. Sometimes it's discouraging, but we are happy he has one clean lung! The doctor was able to take our 28 nodules!

Here's Dan getting ready to go into surgery. Why did they put a hat on him? We laughed so hard. A nurse even came in with a razor to shave him before the surgery. I told her I would be amazed if she could find one hair on his body :)

This is Dan right after surgery. He even smiled for the picture!

Daniel spent the week in ICU. I guess it's protocol for lung surgery patients. Look at everything he's plugged into! There are so many cords!

His first walk after surgery

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Opening a New Chapter

As most of you know, for the past several months Daniel and I have been keeping in touch through the website This has allowed us to chronicle the amazing past few months we have had. Dan's struggle with bone cancer has taught us more about love, charity, miracles, and hope than any other life experience could. We will forever look back on the first few months of our marriage with such an array of extreme emotions, but mostly we'll remember how it solidified us together and taught us so much about God's Love.

Having said that... we are very excited to start our new blog for this new chapter in life. Dan has only one surgery left (hopefully) and we are going to thoroughly bore you with the news of our everyday BORING life. We are oh so excited for BORING life!

So, here it goes. Jump into the magical world of Daniel and Melanie... okay, maybe not magical but I'll try to make it entertaining.

Our first day of school (notice the scrubs... I really look official, don't I?)