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In our lives, we all have certain milestones we look forward to our first car or house, graduation, getting married, having children, a new job or promotion. I recently hit one of these infamous "mile" markers. I turned the BIG 4-0!

My friends and family welcomed me into this elite club with a bang! My oldest sister gave me a mug that reads, "You're not 40! You're 18 with 22 years of experience." I like this saying, because that's how I feel. Alright, maybe I feel closer to 25, but I sure don't feel 40.

To celebrate my big day, my husband and I, sans kids, got away for a weekend in Catalina. Along with two other couples, we spent my birthday snuba diving a cross between scuba diving and snorkeling and, you don't have to be certified to do it. Ocean life under water from that perspective is remarkable. It will definitely be a birthday I will NEVER forget. I'll be talking about this one at my 80th birthday.

Just as people can celebrate milestones and accomplishments, so can cities. Bakersfield recently hosted its 25th Business Conference with a lineup of speakers that drew an international crowd. KCFM's Publisher LJ Radon and I were lucky enough to attend the event as part of the press; we met and mingled with some impressive people. George Martin of Borton Petrini and his son, Brandon Martin of Martin Media Strategies deserve major accolades for organizing Bakersfield's event of the year. Check out our coverage of the highlights and conference photos on page 8. And, we can't wait to attend the next one scheduled for 2015.

This month celebrates one of my favorite holidays: Thanksgiving a time to give thanks and appreciate family and friends. In our monthly Newbie Dad article, "Thankful for my Mother-In-Law," on page 10, Brian Kantz writes about his growing admiration for his wife's mother. He remembers a time in graduate school when his class started bashing mothers-in-law. He had no material to contribute, because his mother-in-law had always been there for his family. He says over the years, he has become even more impressed with her. And, he loves that she cares for and baby-sits his children, because that's how he and his grandmother shared a priceless bond. A piece of advice he gives his readers: for Thanksgiving make sure you let your loved ones know how much you appreciate and love them.

In another KCFM monthly column, Tracie Grimes's Humor at Home article, "Makeover Magic," on page 11, she writes about a recent makeover she experienced at a retail store from her new BFF, Edvin. In her humorous way, she explains how he got her attention by complimenting her skin and referring to her daughter as her sister. This makeover helped rejuvenate and relax her and even made her green eyes go from "pooped" to "popped" with a flick of a brush coated in eyeliner.

This month, whether you celebrate your baby's first steps, finish your first semester of college, or blow out birthday candles, just remember to be grateful for all of it. Giving thanks and rejoicing in family and friends is what November is all about.

Happy Turkey Day!

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