Hello!

Hey y’all! (First time I’ve ever used the Texas version of “you all”.)

I just wanted to let you know that I have a new blog, “Taking Up the Cross of Jesus.” I’ve had it since September, but I was a little wary of telling anyone about it till I was sure I was going to keep up with it. Well, there are six posts up now, so you now have permission to go see it. ūüôā I’ll give you the link in just a sec.

By the way, this new blog is on Blogger, not WordPress. I decided I wanted to try out Blogger, even though I’m pretty satisfied with WordPress (besides the fact that I can’t personalize the layout without paying through the nose for it). Anyways, one feature that Blogger has is that whenever you have a new post up, it automatically shows it on Google+ for the whole world to see. Well, okay, not the whole word…just the friends you have on Google+. I hadn’t realized this at first, so when I published my very first post on Taking Up the Cross of Jesus, one of my cousins emailed me and told me how excited she was about the new blog. Aaaaaaack! I was kind of creeped out for a while, wondering HOW ON EARTH she knew about it! I hadn’t even told Brittany about it.

I eventually figured it all out (I can’t remember exactly how it happened, but I think I went¬†to the Blogger dashboard and looking up on Stats what the top traffic area had been…which was Google+), so now everything’s a fine and dandy again. Thanks for the scare, Emily. ūüôā

So NOW I will give you the link: Taking Up the Cross of Jesus

I put some pics on the About Me page (on my new blog, not on this one) from our vacation, so I guess that’s another reason for you to head over there. ūüėČ They’re just random pictures (no captions), but it’s better than nothing, right?

So, now that I’m off Facebook for a bit, I should have more time to write. On both blogs. Ha! Maybe. (Hopefully.) I guess we’ll just both have to wait and see.

Also, one more note that I almost forgot about…if you go to the very first post, it will explain why I started another blog when I already have one.

Happy Reading, y’all! (The second time I’ve ever used the Texas version of “you all”.)

Goodbye

*sigh*

Goodbye all of you lovely people. ‘Tis a shame to go, but I simply must. If I don’t, I am quite sure I will–

Oh.

Hi, there! Who are you? And, pray tell, what was I saying just now when you interrupted me?

Hmm? What’s that?

Ah, I see. Yes. I was saying what a shame it was that I have to leave–

Excuse me? Hasn’t your mother ever told you not to interrupt? Oh well. I’ve lost my train of thought again anyway. Go ahead.

Eh? You want to know why I am leaving, and what on earth I am thinking?

Well, that’s easy. First of all,¬†I am leaving because I feel like it is such a huge time waster. Secondly, I–

Oh bother! Didn’t your¬†father¬†ever teach you not to interrupt? Oh, well, go ahead anyway.

Why am I leaving you behind? Er…what do you mean?

*long pause*

Oh, I see. Ahahahaha!!! You thought I was leaving you?! Well, it will greatly relieve you when I tell you that I am not leaving my blog. Why would I? Now, what was I saying BEFORE you interrupted me?

Oh, never mind. I remember. I was saying something about a minute. Or was it about a second?

Heh?

OH!!! I see, I was saying that, secondly, I… Oh dear, I lost it again.

Ah yes, that’s right, I was answering your second question of what on earth¬†I am thinking. Well, I’m thinking about lots of things right now. I’m thinking about how I like the John Williams music I’m listening to. The song is the main title of “Superman.” In answer to the question you haven’t asked yet — but are sure to — I have not ever seen Superman. But I love the music. It’s pretty cool. Now the other things I’m thinking about are–

Arrrgh!

I wonder if there are any college classes that teach one how to NOT interrupt someone, since your parents haven’t taught you yet, and since you don’t seem to be interested in learning from me.

*sigh* Okay, fine. What?

Oh, I see. Ha! You didn’t want to know what I’m thinking¬†now, you want to know what I was thinking when I decided not to be on Facebook anymore.

What?

Yes, of course I’m taking a break from Facebook. That’s what I’ve been talking about this whole time! Sorry I didn’t make that clear. *grin*

Anyways, here is what I was thinking when I decided not to be on Facebook: I was thinking about all the time I could have been spending writing to you folks on my blog, and instead I was on Facebook. I don’t ever post anything anyway, so I decided it was high time to get on to some more important things.

Hmm?

Oh, yes, I certainly agree. Facebook can definitely be very good for some things, like keeping up with all the people I hardly ever get to see face-to-face, and wishing people happy birthday, and getting all kinds of news.

So I agree with you on that point. It’s just that…well…oh, I don’t know. I think I need some time just to get my priorities straightened out. I’ll probably get back on in a couple of months, after I’ve had a sufficient amount of time off. For now, though, you just might be able to expect at¬†least one post a month, now that I’m not so busy. Or maybe two. (Hopefully five, but probably not.)

Oh, and before you go, I just wanted to say how sorry I am for not writing here more often. I absolutely LOVE writing, but I haven’t even had time for some of the¬†books I’m writing. (Which should tell you something.) That should be changing now, though. No promises, but¬†hopefully.

Yeeks, I sure feel bad for being away so long. I’ve been following other people’s blogs, though, and that’s been great fun. I’ve found a couple kindred spirits among those bloggers (even though some of them don’t even know I exist…because I haven’t told them that I do…). I think I’m following about 13 blogs right now, which does use up a lot of my time. I unfollowed several people, just because I decided I didn’t really need to see their stuff.

I sure hope you haven’t unfollowed me, just ’cause I’ve been away for so long.

What? You¬†haven’t?!

Aw, shucks, you’re just too kind.

Well, I’d better be going now. I have other things I need to do.

You do too? Oh, how¬†nice. I hope you’ll go do them now instead of wasting even more time on the computer.

Huh? Oh…yes, I did rather imply that you were wasting your time reading my blog. But that’s not what I meant, and you know it! Besides…

Oh, well, never mind.

Now shoo! Go away and do something¬†useful. Like…oh, like figuring out how to NOT interrupt a–

What? Oh, you!!! You did it again! You interrupted me!

Well, whether or not YOU go away,¬†I am, and you can’t stop me. I’m outta here before you can interrupt me one more ti–

Okay. You are seriously driving me nuts.

Now goodbye.

Try to Wrap Your Brain Around My Brain

Aren’t you glad God made us all unique?! I was just thinking about how different guys are from gals, and while those differences might make it a little harder for us to understand each other, I am so glad that there ARE differences! Can you imagine how bored stiff we’d all be if we were all the same?

We’d all have¬†the same clothes, same shoes, same socks, same hairdo. Our tastes in music, movies, and other sources of entertainment would all be the same. We’d all want to climb the same tree, drive the same car, go to the same college. We’d all be B.O.R.E.D. STIFF! (See, even in being bored stiff, we’d all be the same.)

Instead, God made us all different.

People have blond hair, brown hair, black hair, red hair, gray hair, white hair. Some people like their original hair colors, and others dye theirs.

Those who dye theirs have interesting tastes, too. Some people have bright red or purple or raspberry chestnut or green. Although I don’t know why anyone would want to dye their hair green. But I’ve seen it! (So someone must want to.) Some dye the top layer of their hair blond and the bottom layer dark brown or black. Still others have red, brown, or blond highlights. (Or purple.)

Anyways, that just goes to show you how different we all are. And that’s just the COLOR of our hair. What about the length, style, thickness (or thinness), texture, cut, or curliness (…or lack thereof)?

And what about our tastes in the colors of clothes? We won’t even go there. Well, actually we might. Because I just wanted to say that at the thrift store here in Aurora I have seen green, tan, brown, purple, pink, black, and blue-and-white striped¬†jeans. Yes, JEANS! If there are those of you out there who like those colors of jeans…I’m not making fun of you. Again, this all just goes to say that we are SO DIFFERENT.

We are all so unique. I’m unique, you’re unique. But we’re not the same by both being unique. We’re a different brand of unique altogether.

Now my uniqueness is quite unique, and probably not at all like yours. Which, in itself, is unique. I’m not saying my uniqueness is any better than yours…it’s just unique, and that makes it different than yours, which means that I’m unique. And you’re unique, too, it’s just that…

Oh, well, whatever. I’m sure you get the point.

Anyways, I’m glad to be able to say that now, after approximately 400 words, I am now ready to delve into the subject I actually came to discuss.

Which is…?

Which is YOU trying to wrap YOUR MIND around MY MIND.

Scary thought? Totally.

Possible? Mmmmmmaybe.

Good idea? Erm…we’ll see.

I’m strange. I’ll admit that. My friends will clarify it for you if you’re having any doubts (which by now I’m almost positive that you’re NOT), and my family will too. Quite readily, actually. But guess where I got my strangeness? Ha! From hanging around weird friends and weird family members for too long! … But anyways. That’s not what we came here to discuss. We’re here to talk about MY strangeness, not theirs.

So.

I shall hereby recommence.

In a minute, that is. When I figure out what to say.

Ah, yes, I have it now!

*ahem*

Here are two sentences copied from a warning sticker on a screen in our kitchen:
Screen will not stop child from falling out of window.
Keep child away from open window.

It really bugs me to see sentences like that ending with the same word. It sounds a little repetitive to me. When I see something like this, I try to reconstruct it so that it flows nicely and doesn’t sound repetitive. (Which is where my strangeness comes in.)

Caution: Screen will not obstruct child from tumbling out of aperture. Keep child away from open window.

Warning: If pressed, screen may give way under strain and cause child to tumble headlong out the window. Injury or death may result. 

Alert: If parent keeps child away from window, no injury or death will occur.

Attention: The screen you have wasted your money on is not designed as a baby gate for your window as you thought. Keep child away.

Danger! If your children are regularly disobedient, don’t allow them to climb on your counters to reach windows. Injury may occur from fall off the counter. Death may result from fall out the window.

ūüėÄ ūüėÄ ūüėÄ

Another thing I like to do is have conversations with people in my head. (I can’t believe my head is large enough for 20+ people to fit in there…but indeed it is.) Unfortunately, this weakness of mine is well known by various members of the family, and so sometimes they will catch me at it and make fun of me. But since I am a Bergen, and since my sisters and brothers are Bergens too, we are all weird. So I can turn around and make fun of them right back.

For instance, one of my brothers likes to sing as though nobody is listening. (Unfortunately, we all have to listen to him since he’s so loud that one can’t¬†possibly ignore him. Which is unfortunate. We SHOULD be used to it by now, because the minute he was born, he was screaming, and he hasn’t stopped since.) That gives me lots of opportunities to make fun of him. The words he makes up for his songs are…quite interesting, to say the least.

Then there’s a sister of mine who talks in her sleep. She says interesting things too. I always listen to see if she says anything about her fianc√©, but she hasn’t as of yet.

Of course, there’s always my other sister who plays with dolls and talks to them. That is also quite…well, it’s not interesting, but it’s…something that I can’t put a name to.

Maybe I should start a blackmailing company.

But anyways. Back to¬†me,¬†since I’m sure you don’t want to hear about my siblings’ odd quirks. It’s rather terrifying to think of what a strange family I come from. But at least I have an explanation for my strangeness (or an excuse…whichever).

I declared earlier that we are here to discuss MY strangeness and not theirs…so I’d better stick to my story.

Oh dear. At the moment, I have over 1000 words, and I still haven’t come to the end of this post.

Anyways, back to the characters in my head. The other day I was talking to one of them, whose¬†name is Ryce. (What kind of a name is that, may I ask you? But that’s what he introduced himself to me as, and I’d better not make fun of him. It might hurt his feelings. He’s annoying enough that it shouldn’t matter, but oh well. I’ll be nice for once in my lifetime.) Anyways, Ryce was asking me all kinds of questions about my faith, and I was replying as best as I could. He started asking questions that were very difficult to answer, and I was hard-pressed to find a decent, sensible reply for some of them.

Well, that night I went to Bible study, and Pastor Bob was talking about victory in death. And as he spoke, I¬†was thinking, “Oh, these answers are perfect for Ryce! I¬†should write them down so that I can¬†remember¬†to tell him.” Of course, I didn’t really need to remember¬†since Ryce is not even a real person. And once I caught myself I nearly laughed out loud. *whoops* It’s a good thing I didn’t, because then I would have been asked why I laughed, and when I told everyone¬†(which I wouldn’t really do), they would be even more shocked than you are right now. *cringe*

And there’s always the thing about me being forgetful. Whenever I go down to the basement to get something (like salsa from the pantry, which is on the right, ice cream from the “big freezer” which is also on the right, dish soap or rags from the cupboard to the left, or popsicles from the “fridge freezer” on the left), I always go the wrong way. If I need to go to the right, I always end up going to the left (and vice versa). Finally I actually decided to count all the times when I went the¬†right¬†way. And now, after having gone down to the basement at least 100 times since (if not more), I have gone the right way three times. Yes, you heard that right. Three times.

Another thing about me, which may or may not seem strange to you, depending on whether you’re an avid book reader or not, is that I really get into books. I remember once when I was sitting on my bed reading a book. At various parts in the book, I would moan, cry, shriek with laughter, jump up and down¬†with excitement, put my hands in the air or over my mouth, or¬†gasp with joy. Believe it or not, I actually have a quite suspicious nature, and I checked under Brittany’s bed to make sure that no one was under there watching my reaction.

And if you book lovers out there would like to know what book had me in such a dither, it was A Proper Pursuit, by Lynn Austin. Another one of her books,¬†Wonderland Creek, also had me completely engrossed, but I didn’t dare gasp, laugh, or cry aloud since I was downstairs reading among respectable people.

Once I was so into a book that I nearly asked for prayer for the main character in Sunday School. Slightly embarrassing. (And, for you book lovers, that book was CrossFire, by Jeanette Windle. Definitely a book worth checking into.)

I like acting, too, as long as no one is watching. Once, when I got writer’s block on one of my books, I actually acted out the scene to see if I could get some inspiration that way. It worked! I felt really silly, though, especially when I walked around in the pitch blackness of my room with my pajama pants knotted around one eye, pretending to be a tutor named Percy Lefevre, who has an eye patch. Very epic. When I’m finished with that book,¬†The Fairy Tale,¬†you’ll have to check into it. And see if you can figure out which scene I was having trouble with. Although I will tell you one thing…Percy’s eye patch is NOT made out of pajama pants. And I’m sure his accent wasn’t as bad as mine, either.

Another thing that’s different from me and just about everyone else I’ve met is that I really want to be a missionary, and that makes the way I think a lot different than the way most other people think. (And the way I think is already strange enough!) Almost every time I sit down to a good, full meal, I wonder what people in Africa are eating, and what they would think if they saw that the amount I have for supper for just one night would feed them for a week or more. Our house has A/C in the summer and heat in the winter. What do people in Africa do when it gets blazing hot outside? And those tribal people in the jungles of Ecuador and Brazil…they walk on muddy trails and dig lice out of each others’ heads with their fingernails. And what do we do? Whenever we have to walk anywhere, we complain about the inconvenience…and we haven’t experienced anything like the walking the jungle people would have to do. And as for lice…well, most of us don’t really have problems with those, do we? I would say we’re pretty privileged, though you wouldn’t know it to hear us talk! When I sit down in front of my math or English book and feel like throwing it on the floor or ripping it to shreds, sometimes (though not nearly as much as I should) I think about how many smart kids there are in other countries who don’t have the privilege of learning…kids who would LOVE to learn math or science or whatever else it is that kids learn in school these days. I don’t think a day has gone by in recent years when I haven’t thought about those kids in other countries…and how I’d love to go and minister to them somehow. I pray I’ll get the chance someday.

Several months ago, when I was disc-golfing with some friends, I looked down at the ground where my disc had landed and saw that the stiff, bushy looking weeds reminded me a little of jungle pictures taken from an airplane. It was as though I was up in the sky, looking down at the jungle trees far, far below. That probably doesn’t even make any sense to you, but now every time I see those odd looking weeds, I think of the jungle. And I smile.

On a completely different subject, I also LOVE memorizing old documents (like the Declaration of Independence) and speeches made by men like Patrick Henry. I’ve memorized, like I said, the Declaration of Independence (and can hardly remember a word of it now…but still), Patrick Henry’s “Give Me Liberty, Or Give Me Death!” speech, and Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address. I’m looking into memorizing some of Ronald Reagan’s speeches…he has some good ones out there.

Another thing…I love to describe things in my head. It’s as though I’m writing a book about my life, only it’s all in my mind…none of it is down on paper. (For which I am eternally grateful.)

For instance, while we were on vacation, I was describing a certain plant to myself:¬†“The bush was tall, and perhaps what one would call scraggly. Its branches were a bright red, adding a splash of color to the plain brown hillside. Its green leaves were small and round, and when they waved in the wind, their white backs sparkled like diamonds in the sunlight. The strange bush seemed to grow best in rocky soil. It was obviously a very rugged plant, though very beautiful in its own way. Dozens of these bushes grew along both sides of the road, bright and cheerful against the brown hills and blue skies.”¬†

And I do this ALL the time. About almost everything. And if I’m thinking up a story and having the characters acting it out in my head, I can’t just have the character say something without finishing it with “he said” or “she exclaimed”. I have to describe every movement the character makes. I have to say:¬†“He frowned and reached out his hands toward her in silent entreaty”¬†instead of just imagining that he frowns and reaches out his hands. I guess it all comes with being [or trying to be] a writer.

I also like to imagine all kinds of cool vacations in my head. “Let’s see, we’ll drive here and stay at this motel, and then we’ll go to the hot springs the next morning. Then we’ll drive to this mountain and hike it, and then we’ll go back to the motel and spend another night. Then we’ll drive to see this person, and we’ll stay at their house for a couple of days. After that, we’ll drive back home, but we’ll stop at such-and-such a place on the way…” Yeah. I even imagine all the people I’m taking on my fake vacations. And I don’t even have my license yet!!! (But hey, I’m working on it.)

And…

…there are other things about me that are pretty strange…but I’ll not share them. Sorry. [Not]

If you are strange like me — or strange NOT like me — please give me a ring and tell me so. It would make my day to know that I’m not the only weird person out there. Do you do any of the above W.E.I.R.D. things? Or am I the only one?

Well, I know I’m not the ONLY one. So if I don’t hear from any of you, I will know there are¬†some liars out there. ūüėČ

Oh, and I wanted to ask an odd question, just to finish this odd post up…

Is it possible to talk OUT LOUD in your head?

And here’s another question:¬†Did that even make any sense?

Once Upon a Time, a Spider Web

Once upon a time, there was a girl and her sister. In other words, once upon a time, there were two girls. Or you could say, once upon a time there were two sisters. Whichever suits you best.

Anyways, the second sister was standing at the kitchen sink, washing out paintbrushes. She called the first sister (who, in real life, is actually the second sister, if one goes by order of age, but who we’ll call the first sister in this story since she is the main one) and asked her to take half of the paintbrushes and go down to the sink in the basement to wash them out. The first sister, being the obliging kind of person she was, did as she was told.

Now, let it be said here that the basement in which the sink was located happened to be the sort of basement that one would imagine held snakes and spiders in the shadowy corners. And one would not have to imagine at all¬†to be able to see the cobwebs up on the ceiling…since there really were cobwebs on the ceiling.

Anyways, as the first girl went down to the basement, she hardly noticed the spidery corners — she was used to that by now — but was not at all surprised when, as she was in the process of washing out the yellow paintbrush, she saw one long, thin strand of spider web, one end being attached underneath the faucet, and the other to the opposite side of the sink.

She waved her hand at it — not as if she thought it would magically go away with a fluttering of the fingers. She did not believe in fairy tails (you don’t believe that fairies have tails, either, do you?), pumpkin coaches, or magical wands. She simply waved her hand at it to knock it away from the sides of the sink, which, as you can imagine, should not be terribly difficult.

However, when she went back to wash the yellow paintbrush once more, she found that the spiderweb was still there.

She was not concerned, for she had found out somewhere — most likely from one of her many fictional adventures — that spider webs are actually quite strong. So she swiped at it with her brush, which not only failed¬†to knock away the spider web, but also splattered yellow paint on the counter.

The girl, it must be told, was not at all concerned for the counter at the moment. She was too busy being in awe of what she had just seen. Her paintbrush had just passed all the way through the spider web without breaking it! She decided that — being the sort of person who likes to experiment with things — she would try to make her paintbrush go through the web again, without tearing it from the sides of the sink.

Once again, she watched the paintbrush go all the way through the single strand of spiderweb without doing any damage to it. She tried it several more times, and, convinced that this was a discovery that the second girl must see as well, she hurried out of the room. (Being a good girl, she turned the faucet off before she left so that she would not be wasting water.) Suddenly, for a reason she was not quite sure of, she went back to see if the spider web was still there.

To her surprise, no matter how she stood or where she looked, she could no longer see the web. It was gone!

She was not too concerned, for she thought that the last time she had touched the web with her paintbrush, it must have fallen down without her noticing it. She went back to work, washing out the green paintbrush this time. Then, with a jolt, the girl saw the strand of web again. It was still there, even though she was sure she hadn’t been mistaken when she had thought it had disappeared. She waved her paintbrush through it, and again it went all the way through. She waved it back again, and this time she saw something that made her know for sure that the web had to be real and wasn’t a figment of the imagination. When the brush passed through the web, the place on the handle that had touched the strand got wet because of the water that had gathered on the web. Her fingers could pass through the web as well, but she could not feel the web itself, although she felt the slight wetness of the strand as her hand went by.¬†What was going on?

Once again, the girl determined that her sister should see the sight. So she turned off the water, set her paintbrushes aside, and left the room. But then she decided to go back and check again to make sure that the web was still there.

It was not. Although the web had been there when she had left the room — or so she had thought — it had disappeared by the time she returned, only several seconds later.

The girl could not believe her eyes, and suddenly wondered if her mind was going crazy. What on earth could be happening? Why did the web disappear, then reappear, then disappear again? Trying to decide whether or not to tell her mother, the girl went back to work, this time with the blue paintbrush. Suddenly the web materialized before her eyes! The girl felt cold with shock. Surely this was not really happening to her!

Upset, she set the blue paintbrush down and shut the faucet off, considering the idea of telling the second girl. When she looked back, of course the web had once more disappeared.

Suddenly the girl’s eyes lit up. She turned the faucet on slowly and saw the “web” come spurting out from underneath the faucet. It was the tiniest stream of water the girl had ever seen, so small that when she ran her fingers through it, it was impossible to feel it unless you knew it was there. And it left her fingers slightly wet when she ran her fingers all the way through the stream and back again.

The girl no longer has to question her sanity, though others may.

The paintbrushes are now all clean. The next thing that needs to be done is to fix the leak underneath the faucet.

True story.

~The End~

Quotes

Hope you don’t mind quotes again. My siblings — especially one or two — are constantly running at the mouth, so I have a good supply. The problem is mostly that I don’t write them down in time, so I don’t remember them when the times comes to write them here. But here are the ones that I DID remember to write.

~<>~

Toaster pops
Riley: “Oh good! My toast hatched!”

~<>~

Mom: “Henry’s a pretty laid-back baby.”
Riley: “I think he’s actually sitting up right now.”

~<>~

Riley: “I think Brady has chicken pox on his forehead.”
Me: “No, those are zits.”
Riley: “…oh…”

~<>~

Colby: “I have some gum that I’m going to take to church so that I can eat it later.”
Riley: “You’d better carry it concealed, because otherwise people might want to eat it.”
(Who ever heard of conceal-carrying gum???)

~<>~

Riley: *holds up wooden sword* “God’s word had better be sharper than THIS two-edged sword!”

~<>~

Riley, talking to Mom after hearing a hymn being sung at church: “So, Mom, explain to me why there is a bomb in Gilead.”

We had sung “There is a Balm in Gilead”…balm, bomb, pretty close. Pretty close sounding, I mean, not that they’re pretty close to meaning the same thing…

There is a bomb in Gilead
to make the wounded whole,
there is a bomb in Gilead
to heal the sin-sick soul.

Uh…no, that doesn’t quite go.

~<>~

Before the conversation below took place, Mom had been explaining to Riley about repeating decimals, and how you put a line over the top of a repeating decimal (in this case,¬†it was 0.333333…) so that it doesn’t have to go on and on and on. Colby had apparently overheard the conversation…

Mom: “Colby, I really wish you wouldn’t fight so much!”

Colby: “You mean you don’t want me to fight the like the line over the 3…forever and ever.”

~<>~

Recently Mom found one of her old journals that she kept when the oldest four kids were young. We found some funny quotes in there, too, and I thought I’d put them here.

Here is a small portion that Mom wrote about Brady, the day of his third birthday:
I got him up and dressed him in some new denim shorts and told him he could wear new shorts for his birthday. “Actually jeans,” he said since they were denim.

~<>~

Then, another one about yours truly.
Katie said something funny the other day — at a traffic light a car next to us was playing loud evil sounding music. Katie said, “Mommy, is that music Satan singing?”

~<>~

A couple of days ago Brady made us laugh. I told him I was going to throw away his ocean sandals now that summer is over because they won’t fit him next year. Also they are ripped and in very bad shape. He was horrified at the idea of parting with the shoes and started crying loudly. I asked him what on earth was wrong and he told me that he wanted to keep the shoes so that when he was lonely and didn’t have any friends, the shoes could comfort him. =)¬†

~<>~

6/14/10
Riley – “I am the one who has been going around telling lies. I’ve wrecked God’s commandments.”

Colby [to Craig] – “I need to tell you something. Hi, Dad.”

~<>~

9/11/10
This was our first week of school. On his 1st day of kindergarten I was helping Riley write his name (his first time using lower case letters and 3 lines). He was alarmed when he saw where the “y” was supposed to be placed and complained that it looked like the “y” was choking. The next day I asked him how the “y” was doing and if it was choking. He said, “No, it’s gotten used to it.”

~<>~

(Also on 9/11/10, when Colby was only 2 years old)
Colby surprised us when Brittany asked him to throw a broken pen in the trash. He said, “No, no, no! It goes in THIS location.”
Colby said so many big words when he was still really little! So cute! ūüėČ

~<>~

10/4/10
According to Riley, “r” s the letter that has a branch hanging down that looks like it is rotten.”

~<>~

Now that, I suppose, is why it’s good to keep a journal…something that I am terrible at. But who knows…maybe I should start trying. I’m almost tempted.

People Watching

No, not bird watching, people watching.

Yes, you heard me right. People watching.

I have always liked watching people, but I’d never noticed that I even did it until my Grandma said something about how when she went to concerts and parades and those sorts of places, she enjoyed “people watching.” Ever since then I’ve realized that, YES, people watching is fun! (Warning: At times, it takes a bit of imagination.)

One of my cousins once asked me what activity that wasn’t already a sport should be made a sport. I had no answer for him then, because if even chess is a sport, what else is there to be made into one?

Well, I have an answer now.

People watching.

It would make a neat sport…trying to figure out what this person is doing here and why, whether or not¬†they have all their debts paid off, and why there is big black Newfoundland dog in the back of their pickup.

I was out on our front porch, sitting on our porch swing. (Notice that I was sitting, not swinging. You can only swing sideways on that thing since it’s positioned so strategically [not!] that if you swing forward and back, you’ll hit the living room windows behind you.)

ANNNNNYways.

I was watching the cars drive by and, being the snoop that I am, I was straining to see in their windows.

How many kids do they have?¬†I would think to myself.¬†Oh, they have two kids and five dogs. Nice. Not. Woah, I wonder who owns that lime green jeep that just ran the stop sign. I wonder if the driver is that pink-haired-with-black-highlights¬†girl’s boyfriend…the one who’s sitting in the passenger seat with her feet up in the windshield. And that little dog on her lap looks like it’s ears are about to fly off it’s head.¬†

And say, I wonder if that loud-speaking lady in the gas station parking lot is going home to a nice clean house or to a junky apartment with McDonald’s paper sacks lining the walls. I wonder how old she was when she got that tattoo, and if she’s sorry now that she has it. Does she have a kind husband, a nasty husband, or no husband at all? How many kids, if any, does she have?

That lady in the jogging suit over there… Is that kid in the stroller hers, or is the lady¬†a nice auntie taking her niece/nephew out for a jog? And why is she jogging anyway? If she loses any more weight, she’ll fly away with the next gust of wind!

And that lady with the bandanna on her head…the one who’s walks by our house almost every day. Why does she never smile, even when I smile at her? Is she sad or lonely? Where does she live? What does she do for a living? Or is she retired? Is she rushing home to make supper for her man when he comes home starving, or is she just in a hurry to get off the street and away from my prying eyes? How many kids does she have? Are they¬†rebellious? Is that why she’s so sad?

Once I saw a girl while we were laser tagging with our cousins. She looked like she could be sweet and kind to the people that she loved, but was most likely cold and distant to those she thought annoying or in the way. She had a nice jaw and pretty eyes, and she had a regal — if a bit disdainful — air about her. I named her Gavrielle (it was the perfect name for her), and I still pray for her when I think of it.

Then there was a waiter that reminded me of Nicolae Carpathia from the Left Behind movies. I still call him Nicolae, and I pray for him too.

Is that strange? Praying for people you don’t even know, people you will, in all likelihood, never see again? Praying for a little girl in Walmart whose jeans and flip-flops are far too big? Praying for the lady who walks by our house every day, the one who looks so sad all the time? Some people think it’s not strange, and others stare at me wondering whether I came from Pluto or Mars. (I came from neither, just so you know. I came from Jupiter. Ha! Kidding.)

As if you haven’t figured out by now, I LOVE people watching, even though it makes me sad sometimes¬†as I see¬†how much of this imperfect world is mirrored in those¬†people’s eyes.

But then, people watching doesn’t have to be sad. There are people out there that I don’t even know¬†who¬†can still make me laugh when I watch them interact with each other. I love seeing families shopping together or taking pictures of each other.

Are those two girls sisters, cousins, or friends? And what are they laughing about? Are they…are they laughing at ME? Well, I suppose they have good reason, since I have powdered sugar from my funnel cake splattered all over my face and ketchup all down the front of my shirt. I wonder if they always laugh like this or if they’re just putting on a show in front of all these people. And I have to wonder if they think it’s weird that I’m laughing with them even though I don’t know them or know even for sure WHAT they’re laughing at.

Oh, I bet that couple over there just got married! They look so happy. I hope their marriage lasts for a REALLY long time! 

Aw, look at that teenager giving a horsey ride to his little sibling. It’s nice to see that he’s not ashamed of being kind to his little brother/sister out in public. Is that his girlfriend right there? Oh, that’s too bad. He looks way too young for that. Oh, wait a minute! That’s his sister…they look way too much alike to NOT be sister and brother. Phew!

Oh, that guy over there is being really nice to his wife. He’s pushing the baby stroller for her instead of making her push it herself. And now he’s playing peek-a-boo with his little girl so that she won’t bother her mommy. That’s sweet.

That girl over there sure is nice to share her sucker with her puppy. But that’s gross. Like, really gross.

And when you people watch, you don’t have to stick with random people you don’t even know. Watch your friends or relatives. (Or both.) I know I enjoy watching my friends (certain ones more than others). I like watching the differences in their behavior when only their close friends are around or¬†when¬†grownups/grandparents are in the room. (Believe me, there’s a difference in the way they act!) I like trying to figure out what they’re thinking, even though I don’t always get it right. I enjoy¬†knowing what certain expressions mean. I¬†like¬†seeing¬†how they boss younger siblings when their mom isn’t around versus when she¬†IS. (‘Cause there’s a huge difference there too!)¬†It’s fun to know who is competitive and how long it takes them to get mad during a game. It’s fun to see which people are the ones who really value others’ opinions and which are the ones who really don’t care.

People watching can also turn into people¬†listening, if you aren’t careful. Once I snuck (the spell-check says that “snuck” isn’t a word, but I’ll use it anyway, because it sounds better than “I sneaked into ______”) into my friends’ house and listened to a whole conversation between several of the friends and my brother on whether or not I was annoying. Brady and two of the others knew I was in there, but the other friend didn’t. But don’t worry…she answered all the questions right, and told my brother that I was no more annoying than HE was. (Ha!)

But I would be careful about the listening part. It’s not too smart, because usually eavesdropping only leads to trouble. Believe me, I know this from personal experience. Anyways, as far as I’m concerned, I would rather stick to the watching part [most of the time].

There are actually people I “know” from my adventures as a people watcher…as in, I see them around all the time, and I can tell you their names and ages (at least, the names and ages I’ve given them in my head). I “know” quite a few people who have NO CLUE who I am, and I actually have figured out¬†some of their names and where they live. It all comes from being a snoop…er, ahem…a people watcher.

So, have I convinced you? Even if people watching never becomes a sport, you should try it out sometime. Or maybe you already have, and what I’m saying is all old news. Either way, it’s a lot of fun.

The long-aforementioned part about needing a good imagination for people watching comes in when you have to figure out what color of house this couple is going home to, whether that other couple has two cars or only one, and if that guy over there painted his red-and-white-and-black-and-blue-and-purple striped pickup all by himself.

Yep. People watching can get pretty wild.

I’ve been drawing lately! [Surprise, surprise]

Yes, well, ahem…I’ve been drawing. Not with the normal pen and paper, however. There is a computer program on my laptop called “Paint.” It has been so much fun [and maybe more or less addicting]. Maybe that’s why I haven’t been spending as much time over here. Anyways, since I’ve all of a sudden gotten this hankering to write about something — maybe I’ll even get in two posts in one day…record! — I decided to show you my pictures. If a picture is worth a thousand words (which isn’t true of¬†my¬†pictures, anyway), then here are over ten thousand words for you.

First of all…some of the pictures that have words on them may be a little too small for you to read them. So if you actually want to read the words, you can click on the picture, and¬†viola! [or violin, you pick]

dum-dum…duh-duh-dum-dum…dum-duh-duh-dum-duh-duh-dum!

(That was supposed to be the drumroll. An epic failure, I know.)

Now *ahem*, to start off, we have a picture that you will have to click on in order to read the writing.

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And our next one…

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Yes, these next two were meant to be weird.

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This next picture you see was meant to look like a little kid crayon drawing. (This was drawn when I was first trying to figure out how “Paint” works, but I kind of like that it turned out so little-kiddish. It works for what I needed it for.)

 

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I had some fun writing out quotes and Bible verses. They were random, but kinda fun.

 

 

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And now, for my top four favorites.

Number one:

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Number two:

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Number three:

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And number four:

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Very strange, I know. For some reason the linked circles in the pictures above were oddly reminding me of the pictures you see of DNA…and I was thinking of this while I was drawing it, wondering where on earth that idea had come¬†from. Hopefully it’s just me.

If You Came to My House…

…and someone called you Ezekiel, that would mean that you are supposed to be quiet.

…and you crawled underneath the table while we are all eating lunch, you’d most likely get kicked…and it wouldn’t have been on accident, either.

…and you saw us with uncooked spaghetti noodles sticking out of our mouths, just know that that’s completely normal.

…you would [almost] always see certain members of the family bare foot. Even in the winter.

…you might¬†see large black tubes (the kind you take to the river or ride on in the snow behind a fourwheeler) on our trampoline. Why? Because merely jumping on a trampoline isn’t good enough. There’s always something we can do to embellish it a little.

…you would hear my little brother yodeling or whistling or singing. There’s no chance that you could possibly miss that.

…you would likely hear someone playing violin, especially if you come in the afternoon.

…you would have likely missed the two kids sitting on the branch of a tree over the driveway.

…and we told you that there were two children (or more) sitting in the aforementioned tree over the driveway, you would probably go to the window and say, “Oh my, sure enough! There they are!”

…and you went in our garage, you would see up to eight unicycles (or more…my counting skills aren’t up to par right now since it’s 10 o’clock at night) hanging on the wall.

…and you saw twelve children running around the yard, playing on the trampoline, in the sandbox, or at the top of a tree…they aren’t all ours. Six of them are friends.

…during school time, you would leave and never come back again.

…in the summer, you would see hole-y jeans and bare feet everywhere.

…and you saw the picture of the whole Bergen family on our wall, you would say, “Wow, there are a LOT of people in your family!” And I would say, “Yeah, well, since that picture was taken, our family has doubled in size — everyone has gotten taller.”

…and Brady tells you to pull his finger, don’t. It’s a bad idea. Don’t ask why, because you really don’t want to know.

…and no one gives you a polite “hello,”¬†don’t be offended. It means you’re considered part of the family.

…and you die laughing¬†on a regular basis, you’ll fit right in.

…and I wasn’t anywhere to be seen, that means I’m probably on a bike ride.

…and I’m weed-whacking our yard, sneak up behind me and see if you can tell what I’m talking to myself about. Actually, don’t. You might not live through the experience.

…and I’m sitting here typing on my laptop, I’m either writing one of my books, an email, or a blog post.

…and I’m sitting here laughing at something on the screen of my laptop, you can bet I’m on Pinterest.

…and I’m sitting here at my laptop with my headphones on, that means it is cold and I’m using them as ear muffs. Haha, just kidding.

…and you saw me staring blankly at my laptop, you would guess quite accurately that I am trying to figure out what on earth to write to you all about.

…and I asked you if you thought I should be done writing this long blog post by now, you might say yes. But you might say no.

Either way, I’m done now.

 

Am I the only one who…?

Am I the only one who…

…likes to watch videos in rewind almost as much as I enjoy watching them forwards?

…loves tornadoes and storms?

…catches my sleeve on the toothbrush tray and accidentally pulls it out of the cupboard, knocking the toothbrushes, flossers, and toothpaste flying across the floor?

…stands with knees doubled?

…gets the giggles when I’m overtired? (Ha! I’m kidding! I KNOW I’m not the only one that gets the giggles around here! ūüôā )

…[accidentally] uses rubbing alcohol as toenail polish remover? (Click here to read the story.)

…feels like laughing when someone blows their nose in church?

…gets a kick out of playing catch with an imaginary ball?

…sometimes can’t remember how to spell “T-H-E”?

…thinks it’s fun to get emotionally involved in the old documents I’m memorizing?

…thinks it’s cool to have belt wars? (As in, slapping, hitting, and snapping belts at your opponents, trying your best to make them yelp or drop their own weapons and run.) Well, I can’t have been the only one who thought it was cool, because my cousin and brother were out there with me.

…starts laughing in the middle of church or school or washing dishes because something someone said reminds me of the time I did something stupid or made a silly mistake?

…starts laughing hysterically at absolutely NOTHING??? (Please tell me I’m not the only one!)

…just found out that Jason and Jared are Bible names?!?

…takes a LONG time to figure out the time on a non-digital clock? (See, I don’t even know what it’s called!)

…still watches Winnie-the-Pooh with little siblings, having almost as much fun as they do?

…thinks I’m strange? No, I’m just kidding. I don’t think I’m strange. [I¬†know I’m strange!!! ūüôā ]

…plays the piano with my mind drifting off in all directions, only to suddenly find that I’ve reached the end of the song without knowing it?

…still drinks tea? Do teenagers these days drink¬†tea? Well, here’s one that does.

…does NOT sing in the shower, because I never know who’s outside the door purposely listening in?

…DOES whistle in the shower, since it sounds so much grander?

…gets creases in my eyelids when I wake up from sleeping hard, so that it feels weird when I try to blink?

…has siblings who¬†dance for joy when they find out that they have chicken pox?

…has younger siblings who use way bigger words than I do?

…can read a good book five times without thinking it’s getting¬†boring?

…loves summer simply because I can go barefoot and wear hole-y jeans?

…is ready to sign off and go do something else? ūüėÄ

Well, I¬†am ready to sign off and go do something else. So I believe I will do just that, if you don’t mind. [And even if you do…]

This is ME! [sort of]

I was poking around on someone’s Pinterest page, and I saw some hilarious posts. Most of them below describe me to a T.

exactly!!.....although sometimes I like getting up early too...

I'm the type of girl who will burst out laughing in dead silence because of something that happened yesterday.

Yup!

Rarely a good thing...

//

Truth xD

Uh. Yup.

Me.

Why I write....

I'm always writing a story in my head.

mmhmmm

all. the. time.

I feel sorry for those people

Haha definitely me and my friends

TOO funny!!!!

This is too often me

^^ Sometimes…it depends. Sometimes the person is laughing so hard that they are a lot funnier than the joke they are trying to tell. ūüôā

;)

If I'm not sitting on my bed while talking on the phone, I'm wandering around

Haha all the time in my house

This is all too true

Happens quite frequently

I dislike that when that happens....

Every time

Makes me hate myself.

Or the even more awkward moment when you think someone is being sarcastic...and they're not.

True that

All the time

I would love to know what causes this! I HATE IT!

Many times

HAHAHAHAHAHA! YES!

^^ I’ve never actually done that, but I’d love to try it sometime. ūüôā

Haha

Well how else will they learn?

Roller Coaster

^^ Next time I go to Silver Dollar City.

haha

hahahaha lol

... Yep!

And there are a lot more that I could post, but I won’t.

So.

If you didn’t know much about me before, now you know a lot. ūüôā

Poor you. ūüėÄ