Bergman's Bruisers

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

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Can-The-Man 8 Months Old

 So many firsts happened this month; G-Jo's first visit, Grammy's first visit, your first ear infection, my first job here in South Carolina, and a blogger first....I didn't get your 8 month shirt done on your eighth month birthday!  It has been busy, busy, busy! Let's just get down to it....

 G-Jo's visit was pintastic! We have some well-written blog posts to attest to that, my guest writer puts my writing to shame!  I don't write because I like it, it's a struggle to put my thoughts into words. I write to capture these moments that pass too quickly that I know one day I'll want to look back on (I hope you and your brothers do, too!) and remember.  Grammy is here visiting being the "mom" during the week while I start my new job in the NICU.  After five eight-hour days, hospital orientation isn't  nearly over, and I am dying! It's grueling sitting in class all day missing you and your brothers. I can't wait for it to be over so I can return to my normal night shift schedule.  Although it's hard staying up all night it's even harder not being able to be home doing the job I love best.

 You have not helped make the transition to my returning to work any easier.  You are a bonafied boob-addict and will not take a bottle. That, alone, makes you less-than-pleasant to take care of.  Added to that, you have a cold and cough that has developed into an ear infection; you are raking Grammy over the coals!  She says you're lucky you're so cute!

You have met some developmental milestones this month, rocking back and forth on your knees, rolling all over, almost pulling to a sitting position, but none more my favorite than...drum-roll, please... 

Giving kisses!!  It's the best!  All I have to do is ask for a kiss, pucker up, and wait for the best open mouth kiss to be planted. 

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Pinsanity Finale

                      Sock bun: our next-to-the-last Pinterest craft on our Pinsanity weekend.

I had to watch an actual demonstration to see how this process worked.  It took a few attempts, but as you can see, a sock was turned into a hair bun.

The idea is to wear this attractive little hairpiece to bed and wake up in the morning....... this!  Pinarguably the sock created the Pintended outcome: waves, curls, and body.  We're not Pinsinuating anything here, but Pinasmuch as we were expecting a Pincredible head of shiny curls cascading down Greta's back, we weren't initially Pinpressed, however, we became Pincreasingly more pleased as the morning wore on.

And, finally, our very last Pinsanity Weekend project: turning an ordinary cardboard box into a Pinpressive storage container.

Pay no attention to the naked boy on the left.  He is merely between costumes. 
We needed a cardboard box: Greta had plenty, cool fabric: we found these two remnants at Hancock Fabrics, and spray adhesive.  I can't say I've ever used spray adhesive before.  I had a Pinkling I was going to really like it and I did.  Pinpressive, Pindeed.

Pinsanity Weekend is now just a Pincredible memory that will Pinspire us to keep the creative ideas flowing.  From the monster jeans to the laundry detergent to the continuous Pin something-or-the-other-words,  it was a truly AMAZING weekend.  Thank you, Greta.  You Pinspire us all.  I turn the keyboard back to you now...... 

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Pinsanity Take II

Exit: White Cheddar Cheese Ball Snacks. Enter: 14 lbs of homemade laundry detergent.  Greta wanted one of those cool apothecary jars like the original Pinterest posting for the homemade detergent.  However, since we spent an entire morning locating the ingredients for the soap, there wasn't time for another shopping outing.

If  you know Gavin, you know that hauling around a monster container of snacks--in this case said cheese balls--throughout the house is his mantra.  For the remaining few balls, he will have to carry around a zip-lock bag, because the container is now the new home of a year's supply of laundry detergent.  We highly recommend this Pinterest idea.  It really did only cost about $20.00 and is suppose to last at least nine months.  The laundry came out very clean and the smell is Pinvigorating!

Good thing the laundry detergent has such a pleasant aroma because the smell of making deviled eggs left us all wondering who "let one go?"  Another Pinterest idea:  using a zip-lock bag to mix the "deviled" part of the eggs.

It is truly a Pingenious idea.  The ingredients easily blend together.  The best part: snip the corner with a pair of scissors and squeeze the contents into each shell.

A Sprinkle of paprika and, in Steve's words, deviled eggs are the original "poppable food."  Pincidentally,  Greta's neighbor wasn't Pinpressed.

Greta has a bay window that was screaming "window seat!"   So we found some cute fabric and let the Pinspiration begin.  What makes a window seat Pinterest-worthy? It's not the really cool combination of colors that blend well with the aqua-themed kitchen, nor is it the fabric glue that we used to close the last seam, it's not even the idea of adding Velcro to help hold it in place......

It's the "dis-pinterest" of You-Know-Who that makes the window seat project blog-worthy.  Steve read that the fabric glue needed "pressure" to make it "hold" so, as you can see, he applied some.  Pincidentally, Steve would like to use the fabric glue to fix the seam in one of his pants.

OMG!  This next Pinterest idea is absolutely Pinaginative!  Monsters have taken over where holes once were.
 It was complete Pinsanity Saturday morning as we created one monster after another......

                                                       And the jeans are cute, too, huh?

Each Pinsanity day included at least one "normal" activity.  Saturday was hiking 2.2 miles there.....and 2.2 miles back from..... 

.....this amazing waterfall.   There were a few moments of "are we going to do it?" thoughts, but we all made it, there AND back.  We had "scary" trees to manipulate around, huge rocks to explore, incredible views to take in, a hanging vine to dangle from, and mountain lions to avoid (not really, but Steve had the boys looking for them).  I think one of the most interesting sites along the way was seeing the friendliness of the other hikers.  I know this because as we passed each one Greta would ask, "how much longer to the waterfall?"   

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Friday, February 17, 2012

It's Complete PINSANITY!

I've been talking to my mom about how much I love Pinterest and all the amazing things I want to craft.  Thank goodness she was coming for a visit because she is the one who bridges the gap between what I can imagine and what I can do (and by what I can do I mean what I sit and watch her do). She puts the 'C' in crafty.  I finally talked her into joining the site and even got her super excited about spending her weekend here crafting.  We have been talking about it so much that we pinned the weekend Pinsanity.  Steve rolls his eyes whenever we mention our crafting (which is about every 4-5 minutes) we've concluded he's dis-pinterested.  

We have a first here on Bergman's Bruisers--a guest blogger!  My mom,  Polly, or G-Jo as three little boys know her.  She is going to take over giving the reviews of the Pinterest crafts we've done so far.  Was it Pinpressive? Did it need a Pintervention?  Are the results Pinconclusive? Or was it completely Pinadequate? 

Hi to all of Greta's Blogging followers.  I'll jump right in and say that a wooden spoon over a pan of boiling pasta to prevent the pot from boiling over: Pinconclusive.  At first it was Pincouraging: no spill-overs as the water boiled to just the top of the pan.  But then we had to test the Pinterest trick so we took the spoon off the pan.  It wasn't long before it began to boil over.  Pinpressive, we thought.  So to further test the trick, we added the spoon back on the pan.  We expected the water to suddenly stop boiling over.....but it continued to drip onto the stove.  Pinconclusive.

Low-Cal Chicken in White Wine Sauce: Pinpressive!  Easy to make and very tasty.  

Make your own laundry soap. Pinterest claims this is the BEST laundry detergent EVER!  For twenty dollars you can make enough laundry detergent to last nine months AND your clothes will be cleaner and smell better than ever.  We set out early Friday morning to locate the above ingredients.  

Pinterest said the ingredients could be purchased at any grocery or department store.  Bi Lo was our first stop.  We quickly located OxiClean, baking soda and Borax.  However, searching each shelf and the entire laundry isle failed to find Arm and Hammer Laundry Soda or Fels-Naptha bar soap.  Greta scanned Pinterest on her iPhone for details and discovered that Fels-Naptha could be found at Home Depot.  We headed to Home Depot. 

After searching the cleaning isle of Home Depot, no Fels-Naptha or A & H Laundry Soda were found.  Greta, holding Cannon in one hand and her Iphone in the other, knew a Pintervention was needed; so she approached the Orange-aproned sales clerk who let us know that we could find the Fels-Naptha at a specific Walmart about nine miles away.  Pincouraged once again, back to the car we went.  

Still with me?  We've been to two stores and headed to a third....did I mention it's Pinsanity weekend?  Say what you like about Walmart, but with only 15 minutes left before we had to pick up Gavin, we rushed into Walmart expecting to Pindrop the whole laundry soap idea.  To our amazement we found ALL five ingredients for the laundry soap lined up right next to each other.....Pintastic!!!!! We were back in the car and headed towards Gavin's school in less than seven minutes.

 Grating three bars of Fels-Naptha was a mighty chore.  However, watching Steve grab a handful and dropping it into his mouth thinking it was an aged specialty cheese was SOOO worth the grating chore! 

The ingredients were mixed together in a five-gallon bucket.  Decision: Pincouraging.  The real test will be three boys' dirty laundry.  We'll keep you Pinformed.

Though Steve declared Dis-pinterest, his Philly-Cheese Sandwich was Pincredible!

What happens when you add baking soda and peroxide to Mountain Dew?  According to Pinterest, it glows in the dark. A fun night activity for little boys, we thought.

According to Greta and me: Pinaccurate. There was no glow, not even a spark.  I should probably mention that we used Diet Mountain Dew. 

This idea had Greta and I the MOST Pincouraged!  According to Pinterest, you are suppose to cut the top of a Gaterade bottle and slide a package of, say, chocolate chips, through the top and then "seal" it with the cap.

We didn't have a Gaterade bottle, but we had a pico de gallo jar.  This is my absolute favorite Pinterest so far.  I give it a Pintelligent triple-thumbs up!

It wasn't an entirely Pinsanity day.  We went to Furman University and fed the ducks.  This is always a crowd-pleaser amongst the under-seven age group.  You can't really see him, but off in the distance is a lone duck paddling as fast as his webbed-feet can to make it to the duck-feeding frenzy.  We patiently waited and saved several slices just for him.

It was an amazing day, filled with so many Pincredible things, but there is nothing better than three grandkids cuddling.....Pindescribable!

Follow Me on Pinterest  You can click on the Pinterest tab and check out all the pins to get recipes and crafts!  Just sit on you hands and contain yourself already, more reviews will be coming soon!

Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Thursday, February 16, 2012

The Man In The Glass

      There was a poem that hung in the entryway of my GrandmotherJane and Grandad's home growing up.  Even as a kid the poem resonated with me, enough that I memorized the words. Over the years the words have faded from my memory, leaving me only with the first few lines.  For some reason the other day I found myself thinking about the poem and where it hung in my Grandparents' house and thought it would be special to frame it in my house just like they did. 

     We moved into a foreclosed home that had been stripped of most anything of value.  This mirror was the only mirror left in the bathrooms.  It was dirty with cracks in the wood and chips in the glass, which is probably why it was left behind.  Steve said it was junk and needed to be trashed; although I agreed the mirror was junk, I couldn't trash it.  There were many days when I looked in this lone mirror and gave myself a personal pep talk about being the person I wanted to be and making this transition the best for my family.  It seemed only fitting that I sand, clean, and stain this mirror and hang it, imperfections and all, next to my family-inspired poem.

The Man in the Glass

When you get what you want in your struggle for self
And the world makes you king for a day,
Just go to a mirror and look at yourself,
And see what that man has to say.

For it isn't your father or mother or wife,
Whose judgment upon you must pass;
The fellow whose verdict counts most in your life
Is the one starring back from the glass.

He's the fellow to please, never mind all the rest.
For he's with you clear up to the end,
And you've passed the most dangerous, difficult test
If the man in the glass is your friend.

You may be like Jack Horner and "chisel" a plum,
And think you're a wonderful guy,
But the man in the glass says you're only a bum
If you can't look him straight in the eye.

You may fool the whole world down the pathway of years.
And get pats on the back as you pass,
But your final reward will be the heartaches and tears
If you've cheated the man in the glass.

    I almost have put the words to memory again.

   I just have to be successful in putting the words into action.

Grandpa 'n Grandma's Attic Finds

When we were home (Ohio) for Christmas my Grandma and Grandpa Pits let Steve and I go 'picking' through their attic and basement.  We found so many awesome pieces!  Some things I went into the attic looking for, like kitchen table chairs, but other things like, this awesome stool and an old table I wasn't even expecting!  The biggest challenge became figuring out how to get the stuff home.  Que the 'Sanford and Son' theme song now because we packed it all up and drove ten hours home--six kitchen chairs, a table and base, stool, children's desk, two children's chairs, a mirror, our luggage, a cooler, and our family of five (which includes three kids in ginormous car seats)!!

I loved the simplicity of this stool, add to it my Grandma used it as a little girl, and it became a must have!

 Steve sanded through years and years of old paint.  Under the white and rust was another coat of green.

 I wanted to monogram a 'B' on top of the stool but Steve nixed my idea.  He likes the simple colors with the simple design.  

 The stool will be used by all the Bruisers to get to their favorite cereal and snacks in the pantry.  

 I love, love, love these red chairs! They don't all match and they are a little worn in places, but, to me that adds to the character of them.  Paired with the table Steve made it makes our kitchen.  The chairs were just waiting patiently in the attic and basement for us to come along and claim them. 

 This wooden desk my mom used as a girl, it makes the best computer desk for the kids in their toy room.  The keyboard can be stored in the cubby and they still have room to color.  The two chairs Gavin is sitting on came from the basement, too.  I have plans to refinish the plastic seat and metal legs, but they work perfect as is. The table and base are a work in progress, it will deserve a blog post all its own when finished. 

Thanks Grandpa and Grandma for all the furniture!  Mixing the very old with the very new, isn't that what makes the world go round?

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Tuesday, February 14, 2012

I Heart Valentines

 I was bit by the love bug this year and really wanted to make the day special for my boys.  Their day was started extra sweet with sprinkl-pink donuts from Dunkin' Donuts.  Originally I wanted heart-shaped pink frosted donuts from Dunkin', but when I went the day before they had all sold out.  I was bit by the love bug but not enough to wake up at five a.m. when they said they'd have more.  

 Gavin loved his heart shaped lunch!  A heart peanut butter and jelly, Cheetos and bananas in a heart mold complete with a heart napkin. I made him close his eyes until I put the plate down in front of him, he opened is eyes and excitedly hugged me saying, "Mommy, I wuve you!"

 Cannon said Valentine's in crap, nothing but a greeting card holiday!  Not with his words, (he's not that advanced!) more with his actions, he was in this cute outfit for five minutes before he exploded poop everywhere.  The kind of blowout that makes it impossible to take off his shirt without smearing poop through his hair. The kind of blowout that demands an immediate bath. The kind of blowout that makes me think about just throwing the outfit away because the thought of cleaning it is overwhelming and seems futile.  Have I painted a clear enough picture of the blowout? It was for reals.

 When Harrison came home from school we got busy making our red velvet cake for dessert.  We took a vote between strawberry and red velvet, I was out-voted 3-1 for the red velvet.  I really need some more Team-Mom members in the house! I'm still holding out for Cannon!

 Cracking the eggs is the best part! Lucky for them the red velvet recipe calls for three eggs. I bet my lame 'ol strawberry cake would have only called for one.

 Oh, and dinner was our favorite!  Homemade the shape of a heart, of course!  Steve has tried for years to toss pizza dough like me.  He tries his best, even channels his best Italian voice as he's rolling it out, "I'm-a-making-a-peeeza!" but he usually ends up handing me the dough ball in frustration. 

 The little bit of left-over dough makes the best pretzels that are perfect dipped in pizza sauce.


Our day of love ended with our heart-shaped red velvet cake topped with sprinkles.  It was a day spent making our daily events a little more special.  A perfect Valentines!