DAILY JOURNAL (Blog) - 2/1/05

Saturday - March 5, 2005 - Today, we'll be at the cemetery at noon.  I told some of Andrew's friends that we KNOW they won't be up before then.  They agreed.  We realize that officially today is the day that Andrew died.  We're pretty sure that he left his body right after the crash.  And we also remember that we sat at the hospital and wished and prayed for him to live for almost exactly 48 hours - long, painful hours.  The healing energy that we received from everyone Thursday was very powerful.  You can't wish away grief or tell someone to GET OVER IT.  You have to go through it.  I didn't understand until I hit rock bottom last summer.  You actually have to DO something.  On Thursday, we remembered the accident and saw the Mar. 3, 2003 on the gravestone.  Today, we'll remember the day Andrew died as we look at the Mar. 5, 2003.  Apparently, I'll have to bundle up to keep warm.  If you come out at noonish, we'll see you there.  luv ya, djb

Andrew and Jarrett - I LOVE this picture. 

very, very late (3/4) - 10:30 p.m. - You know, I've completely given up the moment of silence thing.  That's gone.  We've only given out $21,000 in scholarships in Andrew and Jarrett's names in the past two years.  THAT was for the kids.  THAT was for the students who went to school with my sweet boys.  A shining star:  Theresa Loth.  Thank God, we picked her to get a scholarship.  She is an awesome young lady.  I hope some day she wins a Pulitzer Prize.  Those are the students we cherish.  She is an outstanding example of what one person can do.  She learned that life is short.  Life is precious.  You don't sit in a chair and wait for life to come and find you.  It doesn't matter what it is.  YOU make a difference.  Be kind to someone.  Do something great.  Or if you can't do something great, then do a small thing. 

I'm writing this now because I just realized a few minutes ago that none of Bob's brothers and sister nor his mom called him yesterday or sent him a card.  Not a word to support him or acknowledge our children's lives.  Andrew and Jarrett's blood relatives.  (To be fair, we did hear from Aunt Vada & Uncle Ted.)  But it hurts my feelings for Bob.  Most of my immediate family and extended family called me or sent a card or e-mail to let us know they were thinking about us yesterday.  Plus, Uncle Ron came to the cemetery on Thursday.  They were also their blood relatives.  Bob's family are the (so-called) good Christians who help everyone else in the world as long as they believe EXACTLY as they do but not their own brother who is still in a great deal of pain from losing his sons.  Isn't that just amazing?  It puzzles me beyond belief.  There is no excuse. 

I still am touched and heartened by Krissy and Karen's kindness and loving devotion to Bob and me.  Plus, the love they still have for their dear cousins, Andrew and Jarrett.  Apparently, they were left under a cabbage leaf by little gnomes.  Bob will just try to ignore it and blow it off (a manly reaction, I guess).  But tonight, I'm left wondering WHY?  Why couldn't they reach out to him and just tell him they were thinking of him.  Unless they really do think the boys are in hell, then I suppose they figure what's the point?  Either that or they're just plain ignorant.  I'm so thankful to have a family (and the girls) who showed us that they cared and that they still remember my sweet boys.  God bless the kind people of the world.  If this sounds too bitchy let me know and I'll delete it, but it's just how I feel.  good night, djb

Krissy, Andrew, Karen, Jarrett - God bless the children!

later - (3/4) - Late this morning, I heard the doorbell.  It was Donna and Lizz Konen.  They came in the door with bags and said, "Close your eyes."  I said that I would.  They brought me two angels boys on a bench.  How sweet is that!!  What a kind gesture from my dear neighbors.  I'm going to put them in Andrew and Jarrett's pond garden in the back yard.  Here's what they look like (below).  See u later, djb

The ANGEL boys - aren't they adorable!!

FRIDAY - March 4, 2005 - From the start, I think Bob thought that sitting out by the boys' gravestone ALL DAY was just a tad wacky.  However, when we got there at 10 a.m. yesterday, there were already some kids there visiting the boys.  We chatted for a while and they left.  Then, we put up our lawn chairs, I drove over to McDonald's and got some coffee and breakfast and we sat there for quite a while before more kids came.  After that, it was a steady stream of students, parents, relatives, friends.  In a word it was WONDERFUL.  It was so important for us to be there to hug everyone and talk to everyone and simply BE THERE. I took a few pictures, so I'll put a few them in here today.

The only fly in the ointment was the behavior of the principal (he's NO PAL) at the high school.  I just read my horoscope and it said, "If you don't have anything nice to say about someone, don't say anything."  WOW!  That's cool.  So, my discussion about the person in charge of the high school has been deleted!  The students have been and continue to remain awesome.  That was why we were there yesterday.  My kids were their friends and classmates.  Everyone seems to have an Andrew or Jarrett story.  I love that.  I love hearing about my kids.  It makes me smile.  They were my live children and now they're my dead saintly boys.  God bless everyone who came yesterday and God bless everyone who called or sent a card, and God bless everyone who thought a kind thought about us and our sons.  We love you, too. djb and blb

Karen made this for Andrew

Karen made this for Jarrett

Bryar and Karen at the cemetery on March 3, 2005


THURSDAY - MARCH 3, 2005 - This is the saddest day of my life - March third.  God bless Andrew.  God bless Jarrett.  I miss you both as much today as I did on March 3, 2003.  Andrew lived on life support for 48 hours.  But he was never alive after the accident.  I'll always miss my children until the day I die.  Forever in love, Your Mom


later (3/2) - One of Andrew's friends and a classmate of Jarrett asked The Principal if they could observe a moment of silence tomorrow to remember the boys.  HE SAID NO.  Still an unempathetic idiot after all these years!  What a hose job.  Unbelievable.  So, we devised a way to observe the boys' lives by having the kids who knew them wear a STAR.  I always wore my stars on my face when I was in college so the kids can put them wherever they want.  I don't think The Principal remembers that they were coming home from SCHOOL the day they died.  If anyone has a problem, get real.  Maybe some kid will hear about what happened to the boys and not drive in the snow or not drive down Keslinger.  It's quite beyond belief because after all the bullshit last year when he wouldn't recognize Andrew and Jarrett, we found out that they did have a moment of silence AT THE MIDDLE SCHOOL.  But NOT the high school that they attended.  How freaking rude.  How freaking insensitive.  I figured it would happen.  It just hurts my feelings that's all.  Something that made me feel good was the fact that Krissy and Brian came by with a bouquet of flowers for our anniversary.  THEN, they stayed to help me with the star wreath I'm making for Andrew and Jarrett's two year anniversary.  We're lucky to be  blessed with Krissy and we're lucky that she's going to marry someone as sweet and kind as Brian.  God bless those kids!!!  Gotta go finish up my stars.  They're looking GREAT.  See ya later, djb

20th Anniversary Flowers from Krissy and Brian  

Wednesday - March 2, 2005 - I'll be back.  Lots to talk about.  yeah hey der, djb  Kodak - yikes!

Tuesday - MARCH 1, 2005 - Twenty years ago today, it was a Friday - Aloha Friday.  It was the day that Bob and I got married in Maui under the banyan tree.  We had gone to a store the day before and found 'MATCHING' Aloha wear.  I found the dress and then he found the shirt - or vice versa.  We thought that was very cool.  The morning of our wedding, we stopped in a trinket store and bought matching ivory rings with gold inlay - only the best for us.  They cost $8.00.  We later got real nice matching wedding bands but at the time, it was just perfect.  Of course, I had the haku on my head.  I still have it, can you believe that?  It's in a box.  It's probably disintegrated by now.  Anyway, it was the perfect wedding for us.  So, Happy Anniversary to us.  Too bad we're not in Hawaii - sunshine, ocean, sigh............Aloha, djb

Pacific Ocean off the coast of Maui in Hawaii - 1985

Monday - February 28, 2005 - I woke up early and started writing but when I read it again, it sounded stupid.  So, I'll start over.  They're having Louise's visitation and funeral on March 3rd.  It was the earliest day they had open at the funeral home she had chosen before she died.  It's kind of cosmic that she died on Grandpa and Grandma's anniversary and she'll be put to rest on the day of the boys' accident.  We'll never forget those dates.  After Grandpa became her guardian, we always called Louise our "older sister."  Not in a mean way, but in a sweet way because we had known her so long.  It was nice that she wasn't going to disappear into some gigantic nursing home and waste away until she died in a cold, stark room - another anonymous old person.  She was in a few of those "chain nursing homes."  OhmyGod!!!  All very scary places.  They line the old people up in the hallway and they sit there and vegetate for hours on end, then they wheel them back.  The smell is overwhelmingly horrendous.  yech.  I heard a news report sometime this morning about a study they did on us Boomers.  People my age are afraid that they're not going to have enough MONEY for their retirement years.  Plus, more and more people are going bankrupt because of medical bills.  What is wrong with this picture?  Severely out of focus.  It's cold, cloudy, rainy, snowy, yukky.  I think I'll go look at my Kauai pictures!!!  bye for now, djb

View from the breakfast buffet at our hotel in Kauai 

later this morning (2/27) - I just got an e-mail from Granny telling me that Louise McRae passed away early this morning.  My goofy phone was off the hook again.  I'm going to blame Hobbes, but I think I hit it when I was wiping off the counter.  Anyway, I think it's coincidental that she died today on Grandpa and Granny's 59th wedding anniversary - that way we'll NEVER forget when she died.  I was thinking that she might wait until I got to Florida so I could go to her funeral.  Apparently, she had other plans.  God bless her.  She was always very strong-willed.  The past few months, her health has been steadily declining.  Most of the time, she didn't recognize the folks.  Although at Christmas, she did talk to them on the phone one day when she was feeling particularly well.  It was really downhill after that.  Grandpa is her guardian.  Before her husband, Ken, died, he asked Grandpa to take care of Louise if anything ever happened to him.  And Grandpa said yes and he did.  Plus, Granny helped with the bookwork for the courts.  God bless Louise.  I've known her for 30 years.  When the boys were born, she gave me a Christmas ornament for each of them.  I still have them.  Here's a picture of Ken and Louise on the patio during the 50th wedding anniversary festivities.  Hey Louise, say hi to Andrew and Jarrett for me and give Ken a big hug!  byebye, love, djb

Louise and Ken McRae on the Berg's patio (they lived next door for 30 years)

Sunday - February 27, 2005 - I'm trying to get this up and running before Grandpa and Grandma go to church.  S0, let me do that and then if they look on here BEFORE they go, then it'll be here.  See what I mean?  I'll be back.  Besides that, I need MORE coffee. bybybe, djb

This was some time between 1996 and 2003

Saturday - February 26, 2005 - This is better.  Nice light blue.  Very soothing.  It's late - already 11 a.m.  Bob and I have to go out and buy another lamp.  If you've ever been in our house, you know how DARKLY lit it is.  Well, this new lamp we got is totally bright.  WOW!!  Amazing.  So, we need another one.  Let there be light!!!  I was so happy to see Aunt Diane write in the boys' guestbook.  Aunt Di Baby!!!  This was the time of year that we always went to Florida.  January or February.  It was warm and we could play outside.  That reminds me of the sandbox.  Let me go and find that.  I really do have to get my skeedaddling shoes on.  I'll chat with you later, gator.  bye, djb

Andrew, Grandpa, baby Jarrett in the sandbox in Florida 1989

Friday - February 25, 2005 - Only 10 months until Christmas!  There is something very strange going on with my pictures.  The picture that I put in yesterday got replaced by the picture that I put on the Casa Page.  I'm so confused.  Bob and I went to the Kaneland Girl's Basketball game last night.  As I said on the Casa Page, it was heartbreaking.  Our girls were leading all night and then it was like those other girls woke up.  One of the sweetest things was the incredible support of the students, the parents and the community.  We had 20 times more students at the game than Naperville did.  And we're a much smaller school than they are.  What the heck were we doing playing them anyway - shouldn't they be playing BIGGER schools?  I don't know.  I'm just rambling because I'm so distraught.  We were sure we were going to win.  We deserved to win.  Except for the fact that they got more points than we did.  It really makes me sad, but I read something in the paper that Jessica said and it was so profound.  It wasn't bad loser talk - it was positive.  She said, "We worked hard all year.  We've got to try to keep our head up because it was a great season."  That made me recall what Bob said last night.  We may not have won this game, but all those girls on our team are winners!!  And so it is.  Thanks for a wonderfully exciting season to our Lady Knights.  What a bunch of classy ladies.  bybybye, djb

Thursday - February 24, 2005 - Tonight, the Kaneland High School Girls Basketball team plays Naperville Central for the chance to go on to the Supersectional.  That is so awesome!!  Bob and I are going.  We have to support the team.  Many of the young ladies are Juniors.....that's Jarrett's class.  Next year they'll be seniors and then they'll be off to college.  It won't be the same.  I guess nothing is ever really the same if you look at the molecular level.  I put this picture in yesterday and I'm going to leave it here.  Good luck, ladies!  bye, djb


Wednesday - February 23, 2005 - Linda Kelly called last night to tell us that the Kaneland Girls Basketball team won.  The ladies beat Oswego 52-51.  If you want to read about the game, go read the Aurora Beacon News on-line.  I'm going to have to find a picture of the girls.  Wait a minute. I DO have some pictures from last year.  I'm having some troubles with my Kodak pictures, so let me do this about that.  Here's a picture I can actually get my hands on.  I removed the Kodak software from my computer.  ayyaiyai. djb

Andrew's team - I know they're not girls, but it's the best I could do right now!!!


Tuesday - February 22, 2005 - I just finished my tribute for this year for Andrew and Jarrett at 3 p.m.  The bus just went by - kind of weird.  It's been an exhausting day.  I'm going to take a break for a while.  bye bye.  See ya later, djb


Monday - February 21, 2005 - Today is President's Day.  You know it's one of those made-up FAKE holidays when they still charge you for the parking meters.  haha  Plus, I just saw the garbage truck go by, so you know if it's a REAL holiday, they don't work!  But the kids love these 4-day weekends.  I suppose the teachers do, too.  It doesn't really affect me one way or another.  I'm pretty sure it's not a good day to go to the grocery store.  Most likely it's packed.  This morning, I archived all of my photos, then burned them onto a DVD.  One of those big DVDs holds 4.7 gigabytes.  I used 4.06 gigabytes.  That's a LOT of pictures.  At least, now I have them backed up so my computer won't nag me every day.  The new Microsoft Digital Image Pro 10 is the best picture organizing and editing program I've ever used.  It is truly awesome.  The old one wasn't as user friendly as this one.  Here are some funny pictures I found from Jarrett's 5th birthday in Florida.  He looks so happy.  It makes me want to cry.  Bye.  See ya later, djb

Jarrett with his birthday cake (mummy on top of the cake) and mommy holding out the cake and Barney on the table.  Yikes!

Jarrett getting ready to whack his pinata

Andrew getting ready to whack Jarrett's pinata

Jarrett with his birthday presents in Florida on his 5th birthday

Jarrett with such a happy, sweet smile and his Barney hats and plates on his 5th birthday


later (1/20) - Here's the rest of the story...

Chief Superdude

 Andrew was playing the match card game with Grandma Berg who had brought the Native American paraphernalia from a trip out west.  Of course, he was momentarily distracted by a stealthy move from Jarrett


Andrew with the tomahawk, Jarrett with the fist

Sunday - February 20, 2005 - Only ONE week until Grandma and Grandpa Berg's FIFTY-NINTH (59th) wedding anniversary.  Send 'em a card or flowers would be nice!!!  Maybe a plant.  We've had snow, sleet, hail and rain already this morning.  It is a weatherful day.  (I made that word up.)  It was fun to have Bryar here yesterday because we totally enjoy being around little kids.  It reminds us of when the boys were little.  See ya later, gators, djb

Andrew holding Kylie on his lap many years ago - Kylie loved my boys

Bryar at our house yesterday ("where's the kitty?")

Karen, Bryar, Krissy exactly two years ago (2003) when Andrew and Jarrett were still alive.

Saturday - February 19, 2005 - Before I go up and get my coffee, I wanted to write a little bit here and get it up on the www - not to be confused with the wwf (world wildlife foundation).  It was so cold yesterday.  I don't mean to complain but it was very cold!!!  Now, we're hearing about SNOW tonight and into tomorrow. Maybe even 3 to 6 inches. WOW.  Although I will say this about that........we don't care because it'll melt soon.  It is pretty while it lasts.  Let me find a picture to put in here.  Have fun today.  bye bye, djb

Grandpa Ocker, Veralee, Alan, Grandma O'Malley, Grandpa O'Malley, Grandma Berg and Grandpa Berg in June 1968

Friday - February 18, 2005 - Can that be right?  It's already the 18th?  Holy moley.  Times flies, eh?  When Michelle wrote in the guestbook a while ago, I tried to write back to her, but NOTE to Michelle:  Your e-mail address didn't work - the e-mail came back....just so you don't think I'm RUDE or anything.  I did enjoy hearing from you.  I found another picture from the Mother's Tea. 

Donna wearing a blue paper flower with Jarrett's picture inside with Jarrett and his football-themed tie at the Mother's Tea

When I see the pictures of the boys with other people or by themselves, it doesn't affect me as much as seeing a picture of me WITH them.  I never have my picture taken because I'm always the one doing the taking.  I'm so puffy in this picture because it was in 1996 when I was very, very sick.  No one knew how sick I really was because I didn't LOOK sickly.  Anyway, it just reminds me of how difficult a time it was.  I kept thinking I was going to bleed to death in the brain (a possible scenario) and then who would take care of my boys?  Who would be their mom?  It made me cry all the time.  Now, it's a moot point.  How ironic.  Better go.  bye, djb

Thursday - February 17, 2005 - It's VERY cold here today.  I think the wind chill is around zero or 1.  I've been trying to find the school pictures of Andrew and Jarrett but the years 1995 and 1996 are missing.  Apparently, because of the onset of my ITP, I must've spaced out and forgotten to send in the forms.  In 1996, I started losing my sight because of the steroids so it's possible I STILL have the missing forms in my piles of stuff from those days gone by.  Now I'm trying to figure out which pictures are from those years so I can get a reasonable facsimile.  Good luck to me.  Last night, we received a card from Rob Anderson remembering Andrew's birthday.  It would've gotten here sooner but he's in Florida on family business and it had to go through the Florida postal system.  say no more.  Two weeks from today is March 3rd.  I hope it warms up a bit.  See you later, djb

Candidate Uncle Bergy feeding a baby.  That should garner a few votes!!!

Wednesday - February 16, 2005 - Well, I can breathe a sigh of relief now that Andrew's birthday has come and gone.  It was very stressful for some reason.  I used to always decorate the house and try to buy the perfect presents.  The upcoming 2 year anniversary of the boys' accident is going to be an opportunity for healing.  Rob Anderson related to Bob and me one type of grief work he did for his son, Brendan.  He amassed a boatload of hearts - one for each day of Brendan's life (over 7,000).  It made made me think about the stars.  I still have the sign that someone made, 'THEY LANDED AMONG THE STARS"  I just love that saying.  I'm going to start making stars as part of my grief work for the two year anniversary.  I'm not going to get up to thousands, but I know that the act of making them for Andrew and Jarrett will be cathartic.  I've already made ONE.  It's a small star (4"), but I covered it in aluminum foil, so it's shiny.  I put it by the two red roses that Shawn brought and it makes me smile.  And that's good thing.  It is time to go out and get the garbage cans before they blow away or get run over.  I'll chat with you later.  bye, djb

Me on Andrew's birthday, giving him a thumbs up!

later this afternoon (2/15) - Here's some pictures from Andrew's 10th birthday party apparently the Chicago Bulls were doing quite well.  bye, djb






EARLY THIS AFTERNOON (2/15) - I found the pictures from Andrew's 3rd birthday party.  This time, we had the Burkholder and Paul families attend the festivities.  What a hoot!  We're going to Fisherman's Inn tonight because I got reservations!  ohboy. bye, djb

Andrew looking at his candles on his 3rd year birthday cake (nice hat!)

Jarrett in his high chair, Donna blowing a noise maker, Andrew blowing a noise maker, Bob blowing a noise maker - do we have enough NOISE yet?

Donna (with curly hair) cutting Andrew's cake and putting a piece on his plate.  Karen is standing on the left and Daniel is in the middle and Bob is on the right.  This is a CONE HEAD BIRTHDAY PARTY!

Jarrett drinking out of his big boy cup, Andrew looking up at something - where are the hats?

Jarrett Cone Head trying to blow a noise maker

Daniel getting ready to blow the noise maker with Grandpa Burkholder watching the festivities

later this morning (2/15) - Earlier this morning, I scanned some pictures from Andrew's 2nd birthday party.  That's why the cake is on the Casa (home) page.  Andrew was only 22 months when Jarrett was born, so it's kind of fun to see how young we all were!!!  Here we are.  Talk to you later on.  bye, djb

Donna, Andrew (face obscured), Bob holding baby Jarrett (6 weeks old)

Donna, Andrew looking at his big present, Bob holding Jarrett whose head is turned

Donna helping Andrew with his new toy farm, Bob holding Jarrett who is trying to "get" Andrew's toys

Uncle Ron, Liz (not Aunt Liz at this point), Uncle Al, the kiddy's pal

Uncle Ron, Liz, Uncle Al, Gayla, Aunt Veralee, Uncle Bergy, Aunt Avis, Donna holding Jarrett, and Andrew sitting in his chair

Same crowd, except I'm looking at the camera this time

Andrew checking out his silo that holds all the little people and animals that go with the barn

Tuesday - FEBRUARY 15, 2005 - Andrew was born today 19 years ago.  He weighed 10 pounds 7 ounces.

oh my, Mercy!  What a BIG baby he was.  While we were waiting for him to appear, we discussed the fact that my brother, Steve, was getting married to Mary that very same day.  So, Steve and Mary have been married for 19 years today.  I have their wedding picture somewhere, but then, I have everyone's picture SOMEWHERE!!  Bob and I were going to go to Red Lobster tonight to celebrate Andrew's birthday, but I don't like their waiting area.  Then, we thought about Olive Garden, but that was more of a Jarrett place than an Andrew place.  However, when I woke up this morning, I thought, "How silly of me to not have chosen Fisherman's Inn."  When they open up, I'll give them a call and we'll go over there.  I even have a picture of Andrew at Fisherman's Inn on my 50th birthday (1999).  I put Jarrett's picture with him a while ago.  Here are my sweet boys.  bye for now, djb


Monday - February 14, 2005 - It's still VALENTINE's DAY.  I started this a little while ago and I heard the doorbell, and lo and behold, it was Shawn (Andrew's Shawn).  She brought me two red roses.  What a sweetheart she is!  How thoughtful and gracious of her.  It was just the wonderful gesture I needed today in remembrance of my two sweet little valentines, Andrew and Jarrett.  God bless her.  bybybye luv, djb

The red roses from Shawn - you can see Andrew's pictures in the background

Sunday - February 13, 2005 - I figured it out - he'd be 196.  Then, I heard it on the news.  hmmm.  This I learned from the boys.  You know Lincoln was born in 1809, so 2009 would be 200 years, and it's 2005, so you subtract 4 from 200.  It's just another way to figure it out in your head.  One thing both of the boys could NOT do was approximations.  To them, a math answer was either right or wrong.  That's kind of funny.  What's not funny is that there was some sort of brawl between St. Charles North students and Burlington Central students.  A sweet young man from Elgin (20 years old) was killed in the melee.  My first reaction was, "Oh my God, how sad for his parents and his friends."  Then, I thought, VIOLENT VIDEO GAMES inure the kids to violence.  The sad reality is a young man is dead because some youngsters acted like crazed lunatics.  What kind of feud could be so damn important that someone has to die and his parents have to bury him and mourn him forever.  God bless his family and friends.  How very, very utterly devastatingly sad.  God bless them, djb

Saturday - February 12, 2005 - If Abraham Lincoln were alive, how old would he be?  I'll be back with the answer in a little while.  I truly have to make some fresh coffee.  I'm not kidding.  See ya in a little bit, djb

Isn't this gorgeous?!  I bought this card not to send to anyone but to keep for me because it's so lovely.

Friday - February 11, 2005 - Today's a better day.  You know, the sun'll come out tomorrow...  That's why people shouldn't kill themselves because the sun comes out tomorrow.  Although I read a book written by Judy Collins (the singer) about her son's suicide and it seems as though the person who kills themself is dealing with something completely different than just a regular "depression."  They can't stand the pain of living.  That's not what I always thought it was.  It's not selfish and it's not meant to hurt other people (most of the time).  They just can't stand living.  We've always tended to blame the victim in those cases.  I don't think it's our job to go around JUDGING OTHER PEOPLE.  I'm pretty sure that's God's job.  This morning I read about some people who killed themselves because of bullying - that's always bothered me.  Especially, if it's a young person being bullied by their peers.  When I read it, I thought to myself, they couldn't stand living and no one could help them.  The only way out - death.  That's intense.  The reason I read Judy Collins' book was to get a different perspective on another parent's loss.  She's quite articulate and totally opens up her heart and her life for examination and discussion.  She gave me some good insights, like, "As long as I'm still here, I came to the conclusion that I had to live my life joyfully otherwise, what's the point of going around being bummed out all the time.  I honor my son's memory by living each day to the fullest and happiest because he never could and he can't now, so I have to."  Something like that.  That's what I remember from it.  It sounded like wise advice.  Her son's been gone a lot longer than my sons so hopefully in time, I'll be able to become less sad and more thankful that they were here to teach me so many lessons in their relatively short lives.  See there.  I'm not even crying today.  It will be a good day to start my gigantic cleaning, sorting, tossing, filing, saving project.  Oh boy!  See ya later, alligator, djb

Nick and Jarrett with the tree they planted above the time capsule that they dug up two days later.

Thursday - February 10, 2005 - I'm slowly descending into a deeper depression.  I feel like crying ALL THE TIME.  It makes me wonder when I'll ever feel not sad.  I don't want to take anti-depressives for the rest of my life.  When I take them, I feel nothing.  When I don't take them, I feel so freaking sad.  Did you hear on news today that there is such a thing as a broken heart?  Imagine that?  When I talked to Granny last night, I said that I might go down to visit the Bergs.  I have to do something.  Valentine's Day is Monday - that's February 14th.  Tuesday - February 15th - is the day Andrew was born 19 years ago.  How can I celebrate Valentine's Day?  It just reminds that the next day is Andrew's day of birth.  Andrew's not here to celebrate it.  He's in heaven or somewhere.  I don't know where he is.  It just makes me so sad.  He was such a big baby - 10 pounds 7 ounces.  Right from the start, he always caused a commotion.  When he'd cry in the nursery at the hospital, he'd wake up all the other babies.  The crabby old nurses would wheel his little bassinet into my room and say, "Here, take him, he's hungry and he woke up all the other babies."  Andrew always caused a commotion wherever he was.  God bless Andrew.  God bless Jarrett.  God bless me.  I'm serious. djb

Jarrett and Andrew mimicking the dinosaur's big mouths!

Wednesday - February 9, 2005 - It's garbage day, we had about two inches of snow and I didn't know that Sarah Alef was going to IMSA.  I guess I hadn't really thought about.  I know Elysse is at Rosary.  AND I wrote to Michelle but it bounced by (wrong address it said).  NOTE to Michelle:  Thanks for writing in the boys' guestbook.  You're right, it was a very fun evening!  I still liked the part where we got to pick up our food with our hands.  We all had a blast!  Speaking of celebrations!!!  It's getting close to the Berg's 59th wedding anniversary (February 27).  I can't even believe that!  Next year, they will have been married for 60 YEARS.  WOW!  That's incredible!!!  Here's a picture from their 50th anniversary that I took of the kids.  I'll put some more in here after I scan them and get them in my photo library (that sounds impressive).  Bye for now.  See ya later, djb

Caroline, Alex, Jarrett, Breece giving each other bunny ears at Grandma and Grandpa Berg's 50th Wedding Anniversary Celebration in 1996 (I don't know where Andrew is, but he's probably standing behind me giving ME bunny ears)

...just a few minutes later (1/8) - I just read Michelle's post in the guest book.  THIS is the picture that she's talking about!!  We had so much fun at Medieval Times.  Eating food with our hands, horses running around, knights were fighting, etc.  Very exciting.  Plus, I'll put that other picture in from the Mother's Tea.  I said I'd back!  bye, djb

Michelle, Eric, Aaron, Kyle, Andrew and Jarrett at Medieval Times having a wonderful time in January 1994

This is the Third Grade Mother's Tea - Jarrett's in blue - but WHERE is Michelle?

Tuesday - February 8, 2005 - We've already had some snow flurries.  We're supposed to get a couple of inches later tonight.  Oh boy!  All of our snow melted which means that the flowers and bulbs don't have their protective SNOW cover.  This is getting on here late today, so I'm just going to cut out the chit chat for now and get it up and running.  I'll be back later on.  See ya sooner, djb

Jarrett and Frosty

later on today (2/7) - I've been looking at my pictures and doing stuff.  I came across this one that I think is absolutely hilarious.  Hobbes' cousins, Sophie and Duke, posed for me last summer.  Maybe this has been on here before, but I needed a laugh and this is it!  bybybybye, djb

Duke and Sophie enjoying the good old summertime

Monday - February 7, 2005 - I didn't know it at the time, but when Bob and I walked around the block on Saturday, he said, "Look at the birdie."  Actually, he said ROBIN.  The first robin has arrived.  I didn't hear him because I was obviously distracted by a shiny object.  Anyway, I think it's interesting (possibly even serendipitous) that I put the picture of Hobbes looking outside on the same day after I DIDN'T see a robin. haha  It's quite foggy here.  That always makes me uneasy.  Fog is bad.  It reminds me of when I was almost blind from the cataracts that were caused by taking massive doses of prednisone for my platelets.  Yikes!!  Everything looked foggy.  Although I will say this about that - I couldn't see the floor and how much it needed to be CLEANED.  In those days, I had boys in and out of the house all the time - with dirt and mud on their shoes.  Now I have a clean floor.  say no more.  see ya, djb

CHRISTMAS 2004 - Bob is sitting on the sofa, PATRICK (the Saturday birthday boy) is standing with a present, Diane's on a chair by the table, I see Steve's legs, I'm looking at something, Brittany's head is in the right foreground and Mary's head is behind Brittany.  Oh yeah, and Irene is taking the picture.

Sunday - February 6, 2005 - The other day, I got the ROBIN report from the Bergs - the robins had landed and left their calling card on the CAR.  That gives them about 3 weeks or so to get here.  You'd think they'd wait until it got warmer, but apparently robins aren't too bright.  Here's one of our favorite pictures.  I remember the boys saying, "Hey Mom, look at Hobbes."  So, I grabbed the camera and got this shot:  (We like to call it, "BIRDIE OUTSIDE)

"If only I had an opposable thumb, I could open this window and get out there and GET that birdie!"

It's certainly not as nice as it was yesterday.  I'm not sure what our temperature got up to but it was in the 50's.  Bob and I actually walked around the block.  It was a pre-spring day - a winter thaw.  A lot of the snow has melted which is revealing very ugly grass - it's not green and lush, it's yukky.  Yikes!  Here's another fun picture I found of the boys writing on the driveway.  In fact, I have a box of chalk that's ready at all times for drawing on the driveway!!!  Mercy, I must be going now.  I forgot to eat breakfast, so I have to find something to eat.  See you later.  bye, djb

Jarrett, Nick and Ben drawing with chalk on the driveway quite a few years ago because Nick is short!  haha  HI NICK!  HI BEN!  All right, I'll say hi to you, too - HI JARRETT!

Saturday - February 5, 2005 - HAPPY BIRTHDAY PATRICK!!!

Today is my nephew, Patrick's birthday.  He was born a month and two days after Jarrett.  So, he's 17 today.  I have this cute picture to put in here of Patrick and Jarrett with Andrew behind them at the lake.  We were having an impromptu family reunion.  It had to be 1994 because it was Howard's 30 year reunion from RTHS (Rochelle).  That means that Patrick and Jarrett were 6 years old and Andrew was 8.  They all used to love to go fishing at the lake.  It was a lot of fun.  I've got to get going because it's so nice outside, I must go out and watch the snow melt.  Haven't seen any birdies at the bird feeders yet!  byebyebye, djb

Patrick and Jarrett (with fish) and Andrew in the background trying to catch a fish - 1994

Grandma cutting the cake with PATRICK and Grandpa watching the action.  I just noticed that Grandpa's arm is in motion reaching for his piece of birthday cake - that's cool.

Friday - February 4, 2005 - I'm running way behind my self-imposed schedule today.  Once again, I'm reading my book on how to write creatively using the RIGHT SIDE OF THE BRAIN.  I found that the author had written a book about dealing with difficult personal issues through writing, so I decided to check that out and the I just ordered it.  Don't you just LOVE the internet!  Thanks Al Gore!  We're in for a January thaw - except that it's happening in February.  At some point, it's supposed to get up close to 50 something.  The days are getting lighter longer so we're getting further and further away from winter....that's good!  I don't mind the snow because it's like a big blankie for the flowers.  When they pop up this spring - look out!  Yesterday, I finally got BIRD FEEDERS so I'm going to go outside and put those up - finally.  Better late than never.  When I went outside to pick up the newspapers this morning, I heard a happy bird, so now I've got an incentive - to keep that bird around for a while.  Plus, I can use my telephoto lens to take birdie pictures.  Let me see what I can put in here.  It must have some blue in it!  I'll be back......see ya, djb

Grandpa, Andrew, Grandma Jarrett in June 1988 

later this same a.m. (2/3) - I just got back from the cemetery and put a new picture on Andrew & Jarrett's Stone page.  Of course, I know that there are a lot of people who read this web site and happen to live in a warmer climate.  Just so you can feel smug today, here's what the stone looks like surrounded by snow that hasn't melted yet.  We have lots and lots and lots of SNOW.  bye for now, djb

Andrew and Jarrett's stone in the middle of winter - February 3

Thursday - February 3, 2005 - Yes, as a matter of fact, I did clean the house - it really smells good.  Well, it did smell good until Hobbes just pooped.  He drives me crazy.  Thanks boys.  I'm sure you both have something to do with it.  Excuse me.  I'm going to put in a very lovely picture and put this up on the web.  Then, I'm going to take care of Hobbes' business.  yikes!!!  Plus, spray something.  I'll be back.  I like this blue background.  later, djb

Andrew, Chad and Jarrett underwater in the middle of summer - those waterproof cameras are great!

Wednesday - February 2, 2005 - GROUNDHOG'S DAY.  Have you seen the movie, Groundhog Day? I love that movie, not just because it's hilarious, but also because it was filmed in Woodstock, IL, and I've seen the places that were actually in the movie.  How cool is that?  Way cool.  So, the University of Illinois DID win their game last night.  Why shouldn't they - they're NUMBER ONE in the USA!!!  Hurray.  I've been trying to get this up and running all morning, so I'll cut the chit chat short.  That just proves that I'm busy and I have to clean the house.  Does anyone really care? That's funny.  Have you noticed that the days are getting longer?  Pretty soon - flowers will start sprouting out the dirt.  See you all later.  I suppose I could take a picture of the clean house just to prove that I did it.  probably not.  haha  As I said before, see ya, djb

Hot Air Balloon that was right above my head - you can see the people in the basket. 

Tuesday - February 1, 2005 - I've been trying to file and organize all of my pictures...yes, I know I've said that many times BEFORE!!  It is a much more involved and massive undertaking than I realized when I began doing this.  The upside is that I get to look at all my pictures of Andrew and Jarrett doing THINGS and STUFF!!!  haha  So, I'm back to my usual chat page - blog, if you will.  This can't be mixed together with the Remembering Andrew and Jarrett page because then I'll get confused.  I think I have ADHD.  I know I have OCD - not severe, but I do tend to save things - well, everything.  It takes a LOT for me to throw things out.  I think this is good in my case because I am now blessed with a plethora of papers, pictures, plaster of Paris items that belonged to the boys. While I was looking for something, I found this CUTE picture of my nephew, Chris, after he had eaten his spaghetti.  Irene mentioned that she enjoyed the pictures of Andrew and Jarrett with saucy faces, so I'll pop this in here and then I'm going into town - Elburn.  Don't forget, the UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS plays tonight.  GO ILLINI.  Kathy D gave Bob and me ORANGE Illini tee shirts so we are ready to rock tonight.  See you later, djb

Chris Berg with his spaghetti face - probably about 1-1/2 years old.