CURRENT JOURNAL (9/17/04)
later...(9/30) - When I got up this morning, it was very foggy. Here's a picture taken toward Elburn:
Isn't this neat?
Hobbes was following me around, so after I got the newspapers, I walked over to Andrew and Jarrett's garden in the front yard and took this picture:
Andrew and Jarrett's candles with Hobbes in the middle - doesn't this look cool?
Last night, Bob was a little late in getting home from work. But, he had a darn good reason. This is what he brought home:
Birthday flowers - Aren't they gorgeous? Yes. You can see the refinished table top - also lovely.
It's time for my lunch. Just talked to Ron. He's on the train going into the city. What a beautiful day to be downtown. It's also a beautiful day to be in the country!! all righty. bye. djb
Thursday - September 30, 2004 - HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ME. Oh boy, it's my birthday. Also, it's my cousin, Cindy's birthday, too. She was 8 years old when I was born and she thought that I was her birthday present because, well, I was born on HER birthday. Very funny. I'm not sure what I'm going to do today, but whatever it is, it's going to be FUN. Only fun. Nothing serious. Certainly nothing related to cleaning or working or any stuff like that. I just want to get this up here but I'll be back later. See ya, djb
All these young boys are wishing ME a Happy Birthday! (haha) (Hi Nick!)
Wednesday - September 29, 2004 - Less than 24 hours until MY birthday! woo hoo. I'm late getting on here today because I had to take out the garbage and recyclables, etc. That's done for. I got my birthday present from UPS yesterday. Well, UPS didn't give me the present, Bob did. But, UPS brought it to me. It's another camera. What an original gift idea! That's what I get for my birthday....cameras. I'm having a theme life! ha ha very funny. I'll let you know how it works once I get it going. Bergy's coming over this afternoon and he's going to order a computer. (Can anyone say, "It's about time?") All righty, I've got to go to the store and get some stuff. So, here's my picture of the day. bye for now, djb
Patrick and Jarrett with a fish - Andrew in the background trying to catch a fish at Donnyhill pond in 1994
Kathy, our sweet angel
Tuesday - September 28, 2004 - HAPPY BIRTHDAY, KATHY (in Heaven). Today is my cousin, Kathy's birthday. I can't remember the exact year she was born, but she died of a brain tumor when she was 40. We all loved her to pieces. She was so much fun. When we were younger, her mom (Joan) would come over with Kathy and Gary and we'd all pile in the car (my mom and us kids) and go to Rockford. We'd have McDonald's for lunch and thought it was the most wonderful food in the world! We do miss her very, very much. When her sister was born, we called her Baby Judy. Then, when Diane was born, we called her Baby Diane. We were so darn original. That reminds me of the cousin picture. Let me go get that. Up above, I put in the black and white picture of Kathy where she looks like an angel. God bless Kathy. God bless Andrew. God bless Jarrett. God Bless Grandma. See ya later. It's cold. bye, djb
Judy, Kathy (Granny in the back), Diane, Donna with braids
Monday - September 27, 2004 - HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO GRANDMA O'MALLEY (In Heaven). She was born in 1883, so it's been 121 years since she was born in Hartland Township. She was 44 years older than my mom and 66 years older than me. Isn't that neat? We could be one of those math problems that we used to have back in the olden days. I have no idea what kind of "story problems" they have these days. I'm completely OUT of the loop. We're going to have a lovely day today. I'm not sure how the weather is going to be on my BIRTHDAY, but I don't really care. Here's a picture of me and Grandma from many, many, many years ago. haha see ya later, bye, djb
Grandma O'Malley giving baby Donna her bottle.
later...(9/26) - I just got this picture off the internet from channel 9 in Orlando. When Granny was here, I downloaded the peaceful picture of Epcot.
Epcot on a nicer day
I talked to Diane a couple of times today. She had to take Marc to the hospital last night because he was feeling more pains in his chest. She drove over to Winter Park Hospital like a bat out of hell. On the way, she passed a police car. Oops curfew!!! (sound familiar, Andrew and Jarrett?). So, the police car followed her until she turned into the hospital. whew. They admitted Marc to the hospital and he's going to stay there for the duration. Diane's going in to see him later when the winds subside. I talked to Irene via email. The wind is blowing like CRAZY over there. I'm trying to find the exact mph but I can't. Suffice to say they're getting hit with stormage! Yikes!! Better go. Have to go outside and dig some dirt. Oh, here's a picture of Marc and Diane. God bless Marc. bye, djb
Marc and Diane in Florida before the HURRICANE SEASON!
Sunday - September 26, 2004 - HUNKER DOWN, YA'LL!!!!!!!! I'm watching and listening to the hurricane coverage on WFTV in Orlando. It's online so I can keep up with what's going on. Right now (just before 8 am Central time), it does not look good down there - that's an understatement - it's downright scary. I haven't called Diane yet. I did talk to her quite a few times yesterday. It makes me a nervous wreck. Oh yeah, these past 6 weeks are just like Groundhog Day - someone said that on the broadcast. Of course, Bergs are still in AZ so the good news is that they don't have to go through ANOTHER hurricane. The bad news is that they're not at home. Then again. That could be good. This one is stronger than the other two that went through Orlando. I sent an e-mail to Irene and she said that the hurricane is headed toward them! Yikes! She's busy cooking before the power goes out. Hopefully, it won't but with winds that strong, you never know how the infrastructure is going to hold up. It's just unreal. In fact, Florida has never had 4 hurricanes hit the state in one year. Was Bonnie ever a hurricane or just a depressed lady? I can't remember any more. Haven't talked to Steve and Mary yet. I'm going into town right now to the grocery store and then I'll be back. I hate to leave in case someone calls me. Last night, Chad and his friends stopped by on their way to the homecoming dance. How sweet was that!?!?! Julie told me to take Stephanie and Chad's picture. With all the hubbub yesterday, I forgot until 5 o'clock. So, I called Chad and he said they were going to eat dinner, and they'd stop by on their way back to the school. Whew. That was a close call. I got some great pictures. The girls looked so very cute and of course, the guys looked quite handsome. Here's Chad out in the back yard. I'll probably put another picture on here but for now I must be going now. See ya later, djb P.S. THEY JUST SAID TO HUNKER DOWN!
Chad - posing before homecoming dance
Saturday - September 25, 2004 - ONLY 5 DAYS TILL MY BIRTHDAY! Anyone who knows me very well, knows that I can't help it, I have to ADVERTISE my birthday. I just remembered something. Right before Jarrett's last birthday on earth, when he turned 15, I sent out e-mails to my brothers and my sister and my mom and dad and told them to send Jarrett happy birthday e-mail cards and they did!! He thought it was pretty cool! Because his birthday was January 3rd, he always got weaseled and most people forgot his birthday. Grandma Berg always remembered it. I guess it's better than Uncle Ron's birthday on December 26th. Hey Krissy, Get a JOB yet??? Just kidding. I know it's not funny. But I think you're taking the whole situation quite well. Plus, you're a notary. So there! You've got that going for ya!!! It's pretty cold here today. No more 80's. This morning, I'm going to call my sister and see how her hurricane preparations are going. We don't know if Bergs are going to get back to Orlando Monday night or not. YikeS! All I know is because of their weird weather, we've been having spectacular weather here. Usually, we're the ones who have blizzards and tornadoes and locusts. I'm going to re-re-finish my table again. It's 2/3 done. For some reason, I had to go back and brush over the polyurethane "one more time" and that was not good - it got streaky. yuk. Okay, this is pretty boring. Gonna go, djb
Andrew and Jarrett in front of the staghorn fern in Florida - I totally LOVE this picture.
Friday - September 24, 2004 - Yesterday was a very busy day. I talked to Lindsay, Julie, Diane, Granny, Grandpa, Zoe, Veralee, Karen, Krissy, Grandma Burkholder, and I'm sure there was someone else! Plus, I refinished the top of the oak table and put a little poly on the floor (on purpose). I think I'll do another coat today. The flowers at the cemetery look great. Well, except for the red mums. I'm going to have to get replacement mums like I did for the yellow ones. Aunt Clara's orange mum is still looking good. I think the orange ones have better staying power. Yes, I will take a picture of Andrew and Jarrett's stone today. Maybe I will. It's cloudy right now, and the pictures always come out better in the sun. That reminds me, it's time to HUNKER DOWN in Florida, once again. I mentioned Hurricane Jeanne to Grandma Burkholder and she said, "Whatever." They're going to put a travel trailer (that's what she called it) in her yard so she'll have somewhere to live while they renovate her Charley-damaged house. Diane has to find her other phone and make sure she has batteries and water and non-perishable food for Jeanne-Fest 2004. I can't believe all these hurricanes. It's just unreal. I'm extremely disturbed about the pictures coming in from Haiti. I don't understand why they're not getting help. It happened 6 days ago. Can you imagine not eating or having a roof over your head for that long?! We miss a meal and say that we're "starving." Give me a break. Say a prayer for those poor people. My heart goes out them. God bless them. Then, I see in the paper this morning that people with money are more "satisfied." Gee, ya think? I imagine the most satisfied person in the world would be Bill Gates. That's just a guess. Okay. I must find a picture to put in here. See ya later, djb
These are mostly Donnyhill neighborhood boys from a LONG, LONG time ago. As I've said before, "Where's Jon?"
From My Journal
MONDAY (July 14, 1986) - Today Andrew demonstrated memory. He had
ahold of his Glow-worm toy and continually hit or squeezed the toy's
music button (more than 12 times). Some of the time, he was
squeezing and biting the toy's head and face - but then he'd go
back to the chest area where the button is located.
It was absolutely fascinating to watch him. He's so very alert.
The MacArthur Foundation fellowships will be given out
tomorrow - I think that is the best. Such a great idea!!
Apparently, they think so, too.
Andrew in his crib with the rubber ducky on his tummy.
Glow-Worm similar to the one that Andrew had.
later... (9/23) - This morning, I went into the cemetery and watered Andrew and Jarrett's flowers. I also brought in some of their Halloween decorations. I'll take a picture tomorrow. Yesterday, Bob sent me the picture that Jode took of Gloria and me at the reception on Saturday. Since I NEVER get dressed up, I thought, hey, what the hey. I'll just put it in here. See ya later, djb
Donna Jean and Gloria Jean in the BIG city
THURSDAY - September 23, 2004 - All right, it's EXACTLY one week until my birthday. I can't keep it under my hat any more! hahaha - lol. I'm having so much fun putting in my journal entries about Andrew as a baby. I've always been a journal fanatic and now I'm SO GLAD I am! The Bergs got the DVD that I burned with their pictures on it. What a hoot!! I sent it by USPS overnight. It got to Phoenix in the middle of the night some time, and it was delivered at 10:30 am. Now that I know what I'm doing again, I'm going to make some more DVDs with the Roxio 7. It is an awesome program. I highly recommend it. Last night, I was looking at the information that Jim recovered from my old, old computer. It had addresses and genealogy information on it. Thankfully, he was able to get it all. whew. Anyway, as I was looking at it, I noticed that the sky was quite reddish, so I went outside and saw the most gorgeous sunset. I'm putting it in here. Of course, the picture doesn't do it justice. It was awesome!!! Must be going now. Have to get some coffee. bye, djb
Sunset over Elburn
MONDAY (June 23, 1986) - Today, Andrew and I went to see Dr. Hao.
Andrew weighs exactly 16 pounds, and he is 26-3/4 inches long.
What a big guy! He was really good at the doctor's office but we had to
wait for such a long time that dada came by on his way home for lunch.
So, he helped when Andrew got his shot. Poor baby was so tired, he went
to sleep on the way home. We finally got the OK for Andrew to eat cereal
- so tonight he had his first official rice cereal. What fun!!
Then, while he was sitting in his little rockin' seat, just as Bob drove in
the driveway, Andrew stuck his big toe in his mouth - another first.
I took a photo of the "toe-in-mouth." (see below)
Tonight, he's feeling kind of warm and tired. I gave him some
baby Tylenol for his fever. Plus, I think his other tooth is
going to be coming in very soon. What a guy!!!
Andrew with his toe in his mouth on 6/23/86
WEDNESDAY - September 22, 2004 - After Andrew was born, I kept a journal for 8 months. Sometimes, I wrote every day. Toward the end, I was writing occasionally. After Jarrett was born, I only kept track of events by making notes on a calendar. It's kind of cool to go back and read it now. Once again, my unsolicited advice: KEEP A JOURNAL. Mine was basically about Andrew's height and weight, taking walks, eating cereal, getting teeth, etc. Think about the things that are really important to people - pictures and information about their families. Of course, I am a picture fanatic, as everyone knows. And not everyone has the inclination or the time but think about how invaluable it is. sigh..... Must be going now. See ya later. Bergs are at Alan's house. bye, djb
FROM MY JOURNAL:
Friday (May 30, 1986)- Today, Andrew and I went over to
Kirkland to deliver some stuff to Bob Berg.
Judy and Steve were visiting with Joseph. He's 14 months old.
Joan really enjoyed Andrew. Well, so did Jude.
We stayed til 3 then left, but Andrew got cranky,
so we drove by Alan's house in Dekalb on the way home.
Alan was mowing the lawn so we stopped to visit.
Andrew had a lunch break and went to sleep.
I showed Alan and Gayle the photos
(see one such photo below) from our trip to Florida (5/18).
Then, we came home and took a walk.
Andrew (3 months old) in Florida waving at camera. His first airplane trip. Notice squirmy-wormy's eye on the bottom left.
Tuesday - September 21, 2004 - Well, I guess I will continue with my website until further notice. Last night, I got an email from my cousin, Judy (Z). She's in California and keeps in touch with the family business by reading what I put in here. Judy's one of our most favorite cousins ever!! I've known her since she was born. We called her baby Judy. Her sons, Joseph, Philip and Anthony were Andrew and Jarrett's buddies - the hammock boys. Hi Jude!!! Here's the picture of the boys: I LOVE this picture!!!
Yesterday was a nightmare for more than one reason. The main problem was the Roxio program I was working with. When I tried to burn my DVD, it would NOT work. FINALLY, after thinking I might know what the problem was, I called Howard and he and Irene advised me to go to roxio.com - which I'd been to before but this time I downloaded a patch and I was on my way to burning DVDs left and right. Medical Update from Spring Hill: Chris shut the door on his thumb, so Irene was taking him to the doctor or the ER this morning. She had already broken a finger during hurricane preparations. Howard got stung by two yellow jackets while up on the roof also during the hurricane preparations. It's a medical maelstrom down there. Yikes. Bergs are on their way to Arizona today. I have to get back to my business of editing the DVD just a little bit more - just a little more tweaking. FINALLY, I've figured it out - again. Basically, I just have to keep on using that program so I don't forget what to do. Here's a picture for Judy and the boys of Bob and Joan (and Aunt Gladys) at our house on September 11th. Bye for now. See ya later, djb
Bob and Joan on 9/11/2004
Joan, Bob and Aunt Gladys on 9/11/2004
Monday - September 20, 2004 - It's Monday morning, and I just noticed that it's going to be 82, 82, 82 degrees for the next three days! My perfect temperature! Can you believe it?! I'm putting together a DVD for Granny and Grandpa with the pictures that I downloaded off the CD-R that Granny had with her. It's a hoot because I'm adding more pictures and she doesn't know about that! Veralee sent me some of the latest pictures of baby Hope and Zoe. It's hard to find a long enough music track to add behind the pictures so that it doesn't stop in the middle of things. My favorite is Bob Seeger's album. Andrew put it on in the computer in album form so it's not just individual songs. Not sure how Granny and Grandpa will feel about that. But, I can change the song at a moment's notice. Yesterday afternoon, while Bob was playing golf, I added the Kodak pictures that got wiped out back onto my computer. So, that was pretty fun. I may stop doing this web site because I can just e-mail the people who read it. It seems like people are already forgetting about Andrew and Jarrett. I guess that doesn't matter as long as I remember them. I mean, really, who wants to check in here just to read about my BORING life. Answer: not many. Actually, I don't write about the REALLY EXCITING stuff. That might scare some people. HAHAHHAAA I'm trying to keep this G rated. I must be going now. Here's some pictures of Andrew and Jarrett that I found in my new batch of photos. See ya later, djb
Andrew in front of Grandma and Grandpa's canal in Port Charlotte, FL
Jarrett's kindergarten class - I think they just got back from their year-end picnic or it could have been a Nelson Lake adventure
Sunday - September 19, 2004 - Returned from Chicago just before the Bear's started playing. We went in to Dick and Michelle's wedding reception Saturday night at the Palmer House. I didn't write yesterday, but I have to put something in here or the universe will be in chaos. see ya, djb
The Palmer House lobby - Chicago
Saturday - September 18, 2004 - I'm back from the cemetery. I planted the new mums and put the pumpkins in there. They are so beautiful. What a great gift from Mother Nature. I feel extremely sad today. I think it's partly due to the fact that I'm not taking my medication. But I'd rather be sad sometimes, just not ALL the time. Here's a picture of the pumpkins when they were still in the yard a week ago. They really turned orange this week. You can see them on the Boy's Stone page. Better go. I have to paint my nails. See ya later, djb
THIS is what makes me sad.
Earlier this summer, I wrote this piece about Jarrett.
JARRETT, MY SON
I don't want to forget him,
and I don't want anyone else to forget him.
How could I forget Jarrett!?
Hard to believe, a fairly easy 10 pound birth.
Right away, he looked us in the eye -
Startling to see a newborn so aware.
Always had a mind of his own
At 2 years old, he called Grandma "big boy."
An insult we never figured out.
He and Andrew were inextricably bound by brotherhood
but they defined sibling rivalry (Cain and Abel).
When you look at the pictures of them together
They appeared to get along - yes, no, sometimes.
Though temperamental and headstrong, he could be a loving child.
During the grade school years, he was chubby --
Then, he grew tall, slimmed down
And developed a perfect physique
through hard work and incredible discipline.
While Andrew was a lazy genius, he was definitely not.
Jarrett would do his homework while watching TV and playing a chess game.
Read 30 chess books, played with international masters and
was fondly called the Chess King.
His sense of humor was legendary - funniest kid ever.
This summer, I copied his jackass video onto a DVD.
It made me sad, and yet at the same time, glad to see him
alive and cracking jokes on the screen.
So close, yet so very, very far away.
Jarrett was born 22 months after Andrew.
He died exactly 48 hours before his brother.
A final version of "No, I get to be first."
I miss Jarrett.
He'd make me laugh so hard, I'd spit water out of my mouth.
No one to "crack" my back any more.
No one to argue with any more.
Every school day, I'd say, "It's time to get up." And he would without complaint.
"God bless you, sweetie," I used to say to him.
I'll always love you.
I promise I'll NEVER forget you.
My son, Jarrett
FRIDAY - September 17, 2004 - I feel like putting in some pictures of Andrew and Jarrett together. See ya later, djb
Jarrett and Andrew - the early years
Andrew and Jarrett - in the good old summertime