Bergman's Bruisers

A Look Into My Life Of Raising Four Rough
And Tumbly Boys

Saturday, July 31, 2010

The Challenge?

To make a week's worth of meals having not been to the grocery store in two weeks. 

I really needed to purge the food from the fridge and freezer. 

It was difficult, but I was up for the challenge...

Day 1- Breakfast for dinner! Omlettes, pancakes, hashbrowns, bacon, and fruit.  Yummy! 

Day 2- Fish sandwiches (otherwise called fish sticks put on a bun) sweet potato fries, broccoli and peaches from our peach tree. 

Day 3- Pizza.  I was finally able to use the last of the veggies!  And for dessert I made a hodge-podge sweet bread of blueberries, bananas, and carrots.  Okay, I have to admit I was the only one who ate the bread.  I had used up the eggs on 'breakfast for dinner' night and eggbeaters with carrot puree just made for a rather mushy combo.

Day 4- Country chicken casserole.  So excited when I found a desperately-needed bag of frozen corn in the bottom of the freezer--too bad the recipe ended up being a total bust.  The garbage disposal ate most of that meal.

Day 5- Cheesy shrimp pasta bake.  A frozen casserole that just needed to be eaten.  Told the kids it was mac 'n cheese and they loved it.

Day 6- Found some frozen flour tortillas from Central Market, added some chicken and cheese and !viola! Chips with salsa and the meal was complete!

Day 7- My challenge is almost over and my vacation is about to start.  Thank goodness, because I'm over trying to come up with meals from the depths of my freezer and I'm ready for a break!  Tonight it was Gyoza (chicken dumplings) with cous-cous. 

Atlantis, here we come!

Friday, July 30, 2010

A Barn's Treasure

When visiting Ohio a couple weeks ago GrandmotherJane decided it was time to sell the barn.  It's too difficult to keep up with the maintenance and she doesn't spend the time there she thinks she should.  She and I completely agreed, she's to a point in her life where she should only do things she wants to.  She offered the treasures and memories inside for anyone who wanted them.  All the things we brought home have found a perfect place.  A perfect addition and a loving reminder of my Grandparents. 

The last time I saw my Granddad was Christmas, 2006, when we celebrated my grandparents 50th wedding anniversary.  We all came together and had an amazing time.

I love this farm bench.  I love to look at the cuts and dings and think about the stories behind them. 

This butcher block goes back as far as my memories will take me.  I remember playing on this table 
and in the kitchen it sat in with my cousins and brothers.  It was in the basement kitchen. The basement is where us kids always hung out--daring each other to go into rooms that were way too dark or touching stuff knowing we would get it trouble if caught. 

I think I inherited my Granddad's love of chairs.  Big ones, little ones, as long as they're unusual, I love them.  I think he did, too.

A perfect place to sit and eat a pop tart.

These chairs make a perfect addition to my back porch.  Aren't they just begging you to sit down with a glass of iced-tea?

Love this one, at first glance it's a simple wooden chair.  But, looks can be deceiving...

A potty chair!  Complete with faux leftovers just to catch you off-guard.  Granddad was such a trickster--if you came to visit he would have convinced you this was the only toilet in the house. One of my earliest memories of him is being duped into thinking pigs' feet were candied apples.  Uh-huh, I totally fell for it. 

This is a simple bed.  But, a bed that my Granddad made so it means a lot to me.  It was really challenging to get the bed to Texas and even more so to get the bed into Gavin's room.  I overheard Steve channeling Granddad as he was putting the bed back together, "Come on, A.L., how did you do this?" a couple minutes later, "I got you, I see what you did, man, you weren't messing around!"  My favorite part about the bed is it still smells of the barn.
Each granddaughter was given a hope chest Granddad made.

 Harrison and Granddad, Christmas 2006.  Harrison was the only great-grandchild Granddad got to meet.  I know he would have really gotten a kick out of the other two that have since joined the family.  

It was a little hard for my GrandmotherJane to see things leaving the barn.  She said, "It's okay that I'm sad. It's what life is about.  It means I've had a good life when it makes me emotional to think about it.  And I'm having a great life."

Thursday, July 29, 2010

I'm Not Happy About It....

but I did finally cut Gavin's hair.  I about threw up in my mouth when I saw the mound of curls laying beside him.  What finally did it was all the swimming we've been doing lately.  Something about needing to dunk your son's head backwards into the water so the hair isn't in his eyes just doesn't seem right.  I gave him a bag of chocolates and went to snipping.  About five minutes, or three peppermint patties later, it was done.  I hope the ringlets make a reappearance, I'm not ready to see those gone for good. 

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Miss McKinzie Lee

My Goddaughter, McKinzie, came for a visit to celebrate her turning 13 this year!  We had a week chockfull of activities.  Laundry and household responsibilities were put on hold--you only get to turn thirteen once!  I really enjoyed the adult conversation, not having to talk about video games or toys was great.  It's made me look forward to my kids growing up, to see their personalities develop.  Kinzie's personality is full of fun-loving sass and attitude.  She kept us laughing all week!

Isn't she beautiful?!

 We enjoyed all Fort Worth had to offer--bounce houses, museums, swim parks, restaurants, and movies.  No activity was left unturned!

Surprisingly, it wasn't that hot at the zoo that day.

Taking a much-needed break from swimming. It made swimming a lot easier having man-on-man defense with the kids.

Super stylish 3-D glasses before the movie at the museum.
 (She's gonna love that I posted this one!)

I have always wanted to watch the Twilight movies and was excited when McKinzie said she 
hadn't seen the latest one.  We all watched the first two and had a girls' night out to see the third.  I'm not sure if  I loved it enough to go with my friend, Shanita, to the midnight showing of the next one, but at least now I know what it means to be 'Team Jacob' or 'Team Edward.'  Still not sure which one I am, though. 

Steve loved wearing this lovely hat!  We all enjoyed the show, but Harrison really, really loved it.  He literally couldn't sit still in my lap watching the knights joust, constantly asking me if he was a good guy or bad guy.  And, seeing as how I often have to remind him to use his fork and spoons, he had no problem eating with only his hands.

Not that she needed it, but I showed her the 'ropes' when it comes to make-up application.  
Being able to apply eyeliner without bumpy lines and smudges will make her the envy of all her friends!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

The Barn

After the fun wedding in Detroit we drove over to Port Clinton, Ohio, to visit my GrandmotherJane and her special house.  By house I mean a barn that my Granddad turned into a charming rustic residence.   The 'farm,' as Harrison calls it, holds lots of special memories.  When we're there it's always packed with family and filled with love.  Sadly, we lost Granddad three years ago; being at the barn is the one place you can actually feel his presence. 

 This is a thrilling game of 'keep the ball away from the dogs.'  A lot harder than it may look.

This is the family that packs the house and these are the kind of memories made.


We ferried over the Put-in-Bay.  It's a quaint little island on Lake Erie.  We rented golf carts and went site-seeing.  I have wishful dreams of owning a summer home on an island like this.  A girl can dream, right?

Oh, yes, Gavin was Batman for a few hours. Of course, he drew attention looking like this.  I think it looked like we were hiding some hideous affliction!  Thank goodness we parted with the mask before arriving to the island.

My cutie cousin, Rylan.  Harrison loved being her little helper. 

Gavin loves his Da-Da!



Mining for precious stones.  We had fun discovering if our ten dollar bag of dirt would hold the gem of all gems!  



♪ My first kiss went a little like this...♪

A slip 'n slide has been entertaining kids for how many years?  And, I have no idea what good Harrison's goggles are doing for him.  But, don't even think about trying to take them off!



I love this boy.


 GrandmotherJane made what seemed like a very simple request, "a picture with me and my three great-grandchildren."  No kidding, I took 22!! pictures and this was the best one.  Photoshop had to have come about from people trying to photo multiple children.  It is impossible!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Detroit Nuptials

Oh, how I love weddings!  And weddings of family members are even better!  And weddings with my big boy as the ring bearer are the best!!  

Harrison loving on his beautiful Godmother, Ashly.  Pay no attention to the phone she is holding.  In no way was that phone used to entice an antsy boy to sit still and smile. 

He wowed all the ladies on the way to the church with crazy, mad singing skills to 'boom boom pow' by the Black Eyed Peas.

I know, I know, the boy needs a haircut.  I just can't do it, okay?  It'll happen.  One day.

 I love seeing my Grandpa smile. 

Aunt Pat (M.O.B.) watching Ashly during the daddy/daughter dance.

Grandpa and Grandma were a 'shoe-in' for the who's-been-married-the-longest-dance.  I mean, really, who's is going to top fifty-seven years?

 Gavin loves being carried around by girls of all sizes.

 G-Jo schooling Harrison on the best way to pat a tooshie.  
Harrison told me he wanted a baby bruder.  I told him he had one already, but I would see what I could do.

I just thought this was so cute.  Gavin and Aunt Peg having what looks to be an intense conversation at the rehearsal dinner.  

This was the coolest wedding favor.  A photo booth!