Sunday, April 6, 2008

It's Been a Long and Lonely Winter

OK, it's not been a lonely winter, but it has been over 3 months since we've posted a blog-as you can tell. Anyway, there's a lot to cover.

ETHAN: In January we took Ethan to his appointment at Primary Children's Hospital. It was a routine check-up and found that he's still in the 95th percentile for length, 75th for head circumference, and 50th for weight. When Dr. Jou listened to Ethan's heart, he noted that his heart murmur was higher-pitched than ever before. He explained that a murmur is like a whistle, with a smaller passage, the sound becomes higher-pitched.
This was obviously concerning, so he got us into an echocardiogram room to take a closer look. We found that the pressure in the right side of his heart was too high. So we scheduled another balloon valvotomy to open up his pulmonary valve.
This procedure took place on Joelle's birthday, Feb 14th. He did well and the pressure in his heart was lessened--but not enough. We've gone back to visit Dr. Jou at Primary Children's and learned that Ethan will need open heart surgery to repair or replace his pulmonary valve. No date is set because doctors want to wait until Ethan reaches 25 lbs. He's currently around 21 lbs., so it'll most likely take place within the next 4 months.
Ethan is so happy and appears to be very healthy. He's developing on schedule, which means he's working on crawling right now and getting real close. He's also playing around with us more and more.
One morning before I left for work, Joelle was sitting on the couch behind Ethan, who was sitting on the rug with me. He looked over his left shoulder at Joelle, who responded with an excited smile. Ethan then turned his head and looked over his right shoulder at Joelle who began laughing at his new game. He then went back over his left shoulder, then back over his right. We might be biased, but he's so cute!
He likes looking at the world upside-down, being thrown into a pile of blankets, playing with other kids and animals, he loves the hymns during church, loves his baths, loves to listen to books, and he's begun eating solid food. He'll eat sweet potatoes, but he really likes peaches and pears.
The most important new thing in his life (and ours) is that Ethan is finally sleeping through the night--with only one feeding! Thanks to Kelly and Amy for teaching us the rip-it-off-like-a-bandaid method. It's improved the livelihood of everyone in the home!

MBA DECISION: In the background throughout the last three months has been the decision we've had to make regarding our future. MBA schools have responded with their admissions decisions and we've spent a lot of time (& money) making an educated choice about our future.
We applied to four schools: Minnesota, San Diego, Oregon, and San Diego State.
Oregon's response came during my interview with the dean of admissions, who told me an official letter of acceptance would arrive shortly.
So, Joelle and I planned a trip to Eugene to check out the school. We flew into Portland and visited the temple grounds before setting out for Eugene, where the University of Oregon is located. We made a stop in Albany along the way to visit Joelle's cousin, Jen and her family. We left hoping we'd have more opportunities to see them in the future.
Later that night we made our way to Eugene to get to our hotel. We woke up with good intentions of attending church. We heard the hymn being sung and figured we were a bit late. We entered the sacrament meeting room and sat on only available row, the front row. After the hymn ended a ward member stood up and said what strangely sounded like a closing prayer. Sure enough we had walked in to the front of the room during the closing hymn. The time we were given was the right time, but their meetings were in reverse. We decided to go and visit the campus instead.
We had plans to meet the Elkingtons for dinner a bit later. We really enjoyed getting to know them and were reassured that if we were to end up in Eugene, we'd have great support close-by.
That night, as I was getting ready for bed, I noticed something suspicious going on out in the hotel parking lot. A cell phone light was floating around over car windows, so I pulled back the curtain to investigate. I saw someone using their cell phone to look in cars. So I called the front desk and headed out to our rental to get our camera and Joelle's purse. When I got out to the parking lot, the suspicious people were gone and I noticed shattered glass on the asphalt. Luckily, our car was untouched, but two unfortunate SUVs near to our car got hit. Apparently, we were staying in a shady part of town.
The next day we went back to campus and met people in the MBA program. We were so impressed with the people, the exciting MBA program, and the beautiful campus. When we left. we thought the chances were great that we'd be back to attend school.
But at that point, we hadn't received word from any other school. The next response came in from Minnesota, which informed me that I was 1 of 9 applicants placed on their admissions waiting list. Knowing the University of San Diego was more exclusive, we thought Oregon was an inevitability--and we were still excited.
We received word from USD a few weeks later and, much to our surprise, they accepted me with a scholarship offer. Despite this offer, we really had to talk it out. I had visited USD's campus in October and really enjoyed my experience there as well. As we prayed and talked and talked some more. it slowly became clear that USD was the place for us. So, we've decided; we're moving to San Diego in July. We are so excited to move be close to family again and attend such a great school. We are also sad that we are not going to be spending the next few years in Eugene.
Other than that, we're busy parenting and preparing for the move. I've been working on creating a few websites for my dad's business, and Joelle's mom's business. I'm hoping to build a portfolio to begin bringing in extra income to prepare for our move and help support us during graduate school. Check the sites out at, AND (still under construction) Thanks and we hope to hear from you soon.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Merry, Merry to all!

Well Hello Family and Friends-
We hope that this blog finds you all well and happy this wonderful Christmas season. We are doing well. For those who do not reside in the state of Utah we have finally received snow and a lot of it. We have had to shovel our walks a couple of times and poor Aaron hurt his back shoveling the first snow of the season because there was so much of it.
We bought a tree the first Monday after Thanksgiving so that we could get as much use out of the $30 tree as we could. Poor thing is as dry as the Mojave desert and only has three needles left on it, oh well. Sammy has made the tree her new home, she is always under it and loves the water which is probably why the tree is in the state that it is.
So, another holiday has come and poor Ethan has been forced by his parents to put on cute outfits. He is so darling, we can't resist him in his Santa and Reindeer getups. Most of the pictures we took he was crying in so we won't show you those, but the good ones we did post on the blog for you to see.
Ethan and I went to Montana for Thanksgiving and when we returned our house was beautifully decorated by my father, brother and husband. I guess their original idea was to go overboard with the decorations and try to embarrass me in front of our neighbors but the house really turned out nicely.
Ethan continues to grow and amaze us. He is now holding things and switching the objects from hand to hand. He also rolls over all the way and then back. He loves to drink water from my water bottle and he is interested in adult food even though we haven't given him any yet. His first tooth is coming in which is the longest and worst process ever. We feel really sorry for him but there is not much that we can do other than rub his mouth and let him suck on ice chips.
Well, we love you all and hope that you know that you are always in our thoughts and prayers. We hope that you get to eat lots of sugar cookies, don't receive any fruit cakes, and find your self under the mistletoe at least once this season. Take care.

-Joelle, Aaron, & Ethan

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Ethan's First Laugh

As promised, here is the video of Ethan's first laugh. We still haven't been able to get him to laugh like this since. He's gotten close, but not like this. Anyway, we're relieved we got it on video. Just to set the scene, Ethan is sitting on Joelle's lap and I am asking him if he wants to be a cow...for Halloween.

Monday, October 29, 2007

The Many Faces of Ethan

In lieu of the upcoming holiday, Joelle and I came up with a few costume ideas for Ethan. Frankly, we couldn't decided ourselves which one we liked best. So here's an image of the options; He can either be a cow, a pea, or his daddy for Halloween. I bet you can guess which one is scariest to us. People say he looks a lot like his dad...poor guy. Anyway, Let us know what you think.
Two Sundays ago, Ethan was blessed at church. Unfortunately we didn't take any of our own pictures of Ethan in his white suit, but when we get a hold of some we'll post them on the blog. We had a lot of friends and family come in to participate and we appreciate all the help and support we received with the blessing and the luncheon.
Ethan continues to grow quickly. We seem to constantly be pulling out new clothes for him because he's growing so fast. Anyway, he tries so hard to sit up, but he's already rolling over and holding on to things. Most excitingly, Ethan gave us his first laugh. It certainly made all the sacrifices worth it to here him giggle. Luckily we got it on video, but we need different equipment to get it on the blog. We'll get that on as soon as we can as well.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Wireless Ethan

Up until now Aaron has done a beautiful job writing our blogs but now it is my turn. Prepare to be amazed and blown away. So, it has been quite a week for the crazy Bangerters, we had Ethan's appointment on Monday. Our appointment was at 1:10 but they asked us to get there 30 minutes early so that we could check in which took 2 minutes and then we waited 28 more minutes until our appointment. They sent us down to get his x-rays taken, they held poor Ethan down naked on a cold metal table and took his pictures. We then went to see his cardiologist Docta Jou who tested his oxygen levels both on and off his tank and he stayed consistent at 95%. Jou listened to his heart which still had the murmur but had not changed since his last visit. He went over both the new and old x-rays showing me that the heart was now normal in size and looked really good. He gave us permission to take Ethan off his oxygen tank and said that we could fly to San Diego! It was a very good, relieving day. We've been able to dress him regular clothes now because there's no cord that might get in the way of us trying to put a shirt over his head.

On Friday I took Ethan to a Relief Society retreat up in Provo Canyon. All the
ladies in our ward fussed more than Ethan wanting to hold him. Ethan was pretty shocked by all of the attention and the ever present giggling that went on between the sisters. He must have decided that he had had more than enough and cried for about 20 minutes on the way back up to Salt Lake. I was finally was able to calm him down by telling him about our upcoming trip to San Diego. Aaron stayed home that night and finally got the peace and quiet that he wanted. Then on Saturday I went to my monthly get-together with my friends and I took Ethan with me. He must have had enough from the previous day because he cried and just wanted to eat and sleep, which I told him was not a good way to win over the ladies.

Ethan has gotten really big he is now 26 inches long, 12lbs 13 oz and he wears 6 month old clothing. He's in the 93rd percentile for length, around the 70th percentile for weight, and the 55th percentile for head circumference

Aaron is doing well. He is working hard at his job where they love him. He is very excited about it being football season again but once again his Bills have disappointed him by how awful they are. Thank goodness he has two other teams to fall back on, BYU and U of U.

I am excited and challenged by being a mother. I love the fun quiet moments that I get to have with Ethan. He is a joy and it is so fun to see him change everyday and make new sounds and smile so fondly up and me and his dad.
We hope that all is well with all of you. Take care and we hope to hear from you soon.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Smiles and Coos

This week has been full of changing diapers, watching Ugly Betty on mute, and rocking Ethan to sleep. To our surprise, my diploma arrived early this week. So now I finally have proof that I finally finished. Just in case you are doubting it, the picture is right there. Notice how good at dusting Joelle is. Look at the reflection that shows up on the wood table.

I was proud to watch the Utes crush #11 UCLA yesterday, 44-6. It's the only thing that was exciting in sports this weekend. BYU's defense couldn't stop Tulsa and the Bills got whooped by the Steelers. Can't say that I was surprised about that though.

We've looked forward to this weekend for a while now. Well actually, we've looked forward to tomorrow. We find out from the doctor how Ethan's heart is doing and whether or not he'll need to keep the oxygen. We appreciate all your support, fasting, and prayers. We are optimistic that he is doing well. But we know that no matter what, everything will be fine.

Ethan had some more visitors today. His grandparents and Aunt Amber showed up to see how the little guy is getting along. After eating for the first 30 minutes or so, he came out to greet everyone. It started out fun, with Ethan smiling and cooing at Grandpa, but quickly turned into a full out cry by the time they all left. It was nice having them over to see us.

We enjoy him so much. He's been a lot of fun lately, smiling and cooing. Sometimes, we'll set his boppy up at the end of the couch and sit him up like an adult. He likes that especially after a nap. He'll smile and coo and act like he's telling us his dreams. We get such a kick out of it. We're falling more and more in love with him, he's got such a wonderful personality. We hope as you all get to know him, you'll agree. We're sure you will. We see so many of the family in him from time to time.

Monday, September 10, 2007

A Comment on Comments

Visitors of this site are encouraged to leave their comments. We mistakenly thought we had allowed anonymous users to leave comments, but somehow the setting didn't change. Well, we fixed it and now anyone that wants to leave a comment can do so by clicking "comments" at the end of the post. Thanks.