Sunday - January 15, 2006 - I just heard that the father of the 15 year old kid who was shot in Longwood (who is now brain dead) tried to tell the police that his son only had a pellet gun but they wouldn't listen to him - they were hell-bound and determined to shoot that little rule-breaker to prove a lesson to the rest of the hoi polloi.  It still stuns me.  Right or wrong - the end result is still the same.  Parents burying their child.  It's not right.  Of course, my perspective is different than most.  Too bad for me, eh.  Now they get to live the rest of their life without their son..... 

The Chicago Bears play a football game today.  In 1986, about three weeks before Andrew was born, the Bears won the Super Bowl.  It was super.  It's an innocuous distraction.  I need a distraction right about now.  Here's my saintly boys dressed as fans of the Chicago Bears.  They could not have cared less about the Bears, but of course, they had to wear the sports-related clothing.  Go Bears, djb 

Jarrett in an uncle sandwich with Uncle Ron and Uncle Bergy

Andrew in 1987 (left) and in 1991 - evolution of a Chicago Bears fan

Jarrett - Bears fan on a swing

Andrew and Jarrett (Bears fans) in the front yard standing where my flower garden now lives.

Andrew - Bears fan in the house

Jarrett - Bears fan in the kitchen - notice the artwork on the refrigerator!

Saturday - January 14, 2006 - Diane's in the hospital - they don't really know what's wrong exactly.  She had a fever over 104 some severe pains.  That's all I know for now - she's already been seen by FIVE doctors.  But, of course, that was at noon, so maybe by now, it's up to 6 or 8.  She went in yesterday evening (yes, that was FRIDAY the THIRTEENTH) and is still in the ER because they don't have a room in the hospital.  Remember:  Don't get sick after 5 or on the weekends because a lot of doctors skedaddle out of town or I would imagine in Florida, they head for the golf course.

Plus, this weekend is a long one because of the MLK holiday on Monday.  When I was in college, I remember hearing the "I have a Dream" speech by Dr. King.  It was so awesome.  He could speak like no one else.  Amazing man.  It's against my policy to ask why he died or the boys or Brandon or a million other good people.  The only thing that makes a shred of sense is that it was their "time" to go.  Some day I'll understand it, I'm sure.

Right now, so many things are confusing and senseless.  Well, like a 15 year old kid getting shot at school.  That takes my breath away.  I don't think you have to gravely wound a kid - if you're a sharpshooter, can't you just shoot his foot or shoot the gun out of his hand.  [time out]  I just read about his sad and pitiful school-related life in the Orlando newspaper.  One thing grabbed my attention:  he was BULLIED at school.  That was something I wouldn't tolerate from Andrew and Jarrett.  Every time there was an article in the paper about a kid being bullied, I'd cut it out and read it to them and put it on the refrigerator.  My advice was simple - always be kind.  Gee, I wonder how those bullies feel today knowing that the kid they taunted is now lying in a critical care unit on life support.  Gee, I wonder who they're going to bully next week.  Of course, that thought will be lost in talk of guns and security and all that nonsense.  Can't we be kind to one another... can't we teach our children to be kind to one another.  It's very, very sad all the way around.

Since I'm speaking about GUNS.  Here's my gun story.  I've never like guns.  They scare me.  Many years ago, when Andrew asked Bob and me if he could have a paintball gun, I said absolutely not!  Bob, however, being a veteran and an expert marksman, said that he thought Andrew could handle it.  I said, bad idea.  Below is an apology letter from Andrew that I found a few weeks before Christmas this year.  Andrew and one of his friends were first shooting paintballs at one neighbor's garage door and then at the Konen's house.  There's a really long story involved in the whole paintball gun thing -  blah, blah, blah.  "We were aiming at the basketball hoop and it went across the street and hit their garage door."  I can understand ONE time, but 30 times?  Not such a good lie - Andrew was a terrible liar.  Anyway, when I found this letter, I had to laugh that I still had it.  Andrew was supposed to deliver it in person.  Obviously, he didn't.  So, I mailed it with the Konen's Christmas card and Donna put it on their refrigerator.  An apology from heaven, she called it.  I like that.  I'll see ya later, djb


Apology letter from Andrew to our neighbors, the Konens

Friday the THIRTEENTH - 2006 - Yikes!  - Remember, if you're afraid of the number thirteen, you have triskaidekaphobia. Fear of Friday the thirteenth is something else, I think.  I'm not going to look it up, you can do that for yourself.  Right now, I'm the midst of taking down the Christmas decorations.  It takes a very, very long time.  I keep forgetting to mention Andrew's comment regarding that whole Abramoff deal in Washington (if you don't know what I'm talking about do a Google search).  We always tried to instill the concept of right and wrong in the boys. We knew we had more work to do when Andrew told us his own philosophy:  "It's not illegal unless you get caught!"   Say what?  I must be going now. bye, djb

Andrew, Grandpa, Jarrett

Thursday - January 12, 2006 - I did come back on the website yesterday but I didn't write anything, I set up the photo gallery page instead.  What a pain!  It took me forever to do it.  The first time I posted it, the three pictures showed up okay, then the next time the rest of the pictures didn't show up in their thumbnails, so I got rid of it all and started over from scratch.  Now, it's there but I don't know how many pictures it can support.  It's likely just a few - probably not thousands!  Today's temperature is going to get up to 54 degrees.  To me, that's just wrong, wrong, wrong.  It's supposed to be COLD in January.  The flowers are going to go berserk.  The trees will be confused and start sending out their little leaves.  Although, if it does get nice, then I get to mow the lawn.  That's always fun.  While Bob and I were in Florida at Christmas, I went through the old pictures and came up with these.  Some of them are a little blurry but they're too funny not to include.  see ya later, djb

Andrew in the sandbox, Jarrett outside the sandbox and Bob sitting next to the sandbox

Andrew in the sandbox being supervised by Granny

Andrew picking up the blue rake and Jarrett getting ready to water the grass while drinking his bottle

Andrew posing with the blue rake and Jarrett still drinking his bottle

Grandpa pulling the boys in the red wagon into the "jungle"

Jarrett & Andrew obviously doing something they aren't supposed to be doing with orange golf balls and an orange (3/7/90)

Wednesday - January 11, 2006 - I'm in the middle of taking out the garbage, newspapers, etc.  I'll be back in a little while.  see ya sooner or later, djb

later - 1/10 - I put some pictures on the blogspot website, its address is  I don't know why I did it, except that it's FREE.  Anyone can have a website if they want to.  Part of the reason that I put my pictures in the middle of the page on this website is that it's easier to do it that way..  You might notice a difference in my Home (Casa) page - that's thanks to Dr. Nick.  He came over this afternoon and helped me figure out what I was doing wrong!  Actually, I wasn't doing anything right, so it was more a matter of him trying this and trying that and pretty soon, we had it finished.  Looks so awesome - much more easier to navigate.  When I started doing this two years ago, I had no idea that I'd still be doing it two years later.  It's become more of a family picture album.  I'll always want to have a website for sharing photographs because I've taken so many and I love to look at the old pictures.  It's nice to have the digital cameras because if you don't like the first one, you can take ten or twenty more!!!  All right, I'm out of here.  It's raining - it may even start snowing soon because it's 32 degrees.  This weather is annoying.  bye for now, djb

Bob and Jarrett with the work in progress on Jarrett's quarter-pipe   

Tuesday - January 10, 2006 - This morning, I went over to visit Donna and Sadie.  She had also invited Cathy to come over.  We had quite a nice chat.  In fact, we yakked for two hours!!!  We're making plans to WALK when it gets nicer outside (meaning warmer than 32).    Although, I'll have to begin walking even before it gets nice.  As long as it isn't 20 below zero, I imagine I could get myself around the block in fairly good shape and time.  Keep moving - that's what I say.  It wasn't always THAT warm when I was in Florida.  There were days when I had the sweatpants and sweatshirt on and had my hands in my pockets.  The day before we left, it was 80 degrees!  That's my perfect temperature!!!  I'm going to scan a bunch of pictures, so let me go do that and I'll put some in here.  They're pretty cute.  see ya later, djb

Granny, Andrew, Me, Jarrett in February 1990 - standing in the driveway by the SNOW

Me waving, Jarrett looking, Andrew saying the same thing I'm saying - could it be cheese?

later - 1/9 - I'm trying to put more and smaller pictures next to each other without them wrapping around.  Okay, so let me see if this works out for me.  see ya, djb


Andrew and Jarrett in black and white

Monday - January 9, 2006 - I'm SO confused by all of this, but I've got the BIG book so that should answer all of my questions.  Yeah right!  It's a good thing that I have to go to the drug store and get some medicine for Bob, otherwise, I would have to start pulling my hair out.  Here's a picture from many, many years ago. bye for now, djb

Picture of me taken for George and Sadie's 50th Wedding Anniversary in 1964

Sunday, January 8, 2006 - It's actually quite warm here when compared to a month ago although when a person considers 31 degrees to be warm, I'd say they're warped.  It's pretty early and I don't have much to say yet.  I've been scanning some pictures.  It's so much easier with this new scanner - like 5 steps have been eliminated.  Mercy!  It probably helps that I sort of know what I'm doing - with the emphasis on SORT OF.  They seem to have anticipated the various problems that users would have and made it dummy-proof.  I like that.  Time to get some more coffee (it's before 7 a.m.).  talk to you later, djb

Andrew and Jarrett posing for a picture - 11-19-90

Saturday - January 7, 2006 - This morning, I wrote thank you cards because I wanted to take advantage of the stamp situation.  Even though it's only a two cent increase, I felt compelled to send as many as I could write.  I think I finished 8 of them.  Dr. Nick is working tonight, so he won't be able to help me upgrade my FrontPage (that's the software I use to make this website).  I did look at the new FrontPage software and it's quite a bit easier to navigate than the old one that I have.  However, I could lose everything if I don't know what I'm doing which is why I'm bringing in the doctor!  He knows computers.  He knows websites.  He knows a lot that I don't know, and he's so young.  It's quite amazing to behold.  While I was in Best Buy, I got a new scanner.  It's the Epson one that has the automatic feed for the negatives.  The picture on the casa page was the first one I did.  It's a picture of the boys and me at Uncle Malvin and Aunt Gladys' 50th wedding anniversary in DeKalb.  I remember that Bergs came from Florida and they had to drive in rush hour through a lot of snow - like 6 or 9 inches.  Wait a minute.  I have another picture with Gran and me and the boys in the driveway in North Aurora.  ANOTHER picture I've never seen.  I'll have to scan that, too.  Mercy!  It's quite exciting.  Right now, I'm going to put in another picture that I scanned.  I'll be back later maybe - maybe not.  Maybe all of this will be gone.  That'd be a hoot and a half.  I can only laugh.  hahaa  bye, djb

Slighty blurry picture of Grandpa holding Andrew, me holding Jarrett and Granny smiling. 

later today - 1/6/06 - I have tons of emails to answer but I don't have anything particularly interesting to say.  I'm trying to do some things that appear to be progress, but I don't think they really are.  It's just slight of hand.  Amazing to me how much better I feel when I'm in the sunshine.  We haven't had sun here for quite a few days.  Ron and Liz are on a cruise to Key West and that other place that isn't Cancun.  Cozumel.  I knew it was in my brain somewhere.  They called me from the hotel pool yesterday - having a good time!  When I came back from the post office a few minutes ago, I realized how much I miss having Hobbes around.  He was much quieter than the boys but he'd usually manage to wake up from his slumber whenever someone came in the door.  I found some pictures on a disc that I'm not sure that I have anywhere else.  There's a cute one of Hobbes that I'll put on here.  see ya later, djb

Hobbes taking a nap on the brown bear blanket - what a hoot!

Friday - January 6, 2006 - This is driving me crazier.  I keep trying to do what I'm supposed to do and it doesn't work.  I even used that annoying little helper creature.  The animated paper clip. ayiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii - is that how you spell a scream????  Must go now.  I have to start over with all of this but right now I'm freezing in the computer room.  My nose is cold and my hands are cold and my feet are cold.  Well, I'm just cold.  There's so much to say.  There's so much to do.  PLUS, this Sunday postage goes up to 39 cents.  They just sneak that in under the radar every time.  Those little weasels.  talk to you later, djb

Krissy and Sara - I'm not sure why this picture is so small but it's quite clear.

Thursday - January 5, 2006 - I seriously do NOT know what I'm doing.  This is driving me crazy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  I've spent two hours - no make that two and a half hours - trying to put boxes around things on the home page, and  I can't do it.  I'm done for!  I can't do this any more without help.  It has to be easier than I think it is.  bye for now, djb

Bob hitting a shot out of a sand trap in Florida.  Nice shot!

Wednesday, January 4, 2006 - I'm not sure what I'm doing, but I'm going to change the format of my website to make it more user friendly.  Most likely, I'll have to check with Dr. Nick for some advice on what I'm doing because I DON'T KNOW what these things are that I'm putting on here.  I have NO idea what they'll look like....

We did see online in the Aurora paper and the DeKalb paper that another one of Andrew's classmates - Brandon Ackerman - died in a car accident on December 31st.  It totally breaks my heart.  I copied the obituary from the DeKalb paper.  This morning, I scanned Brandon's graduation picture and the picture of him with his sweetie, Amanda, from the Blueprints yearbook - 2003.  The cutest couple - indeed they are.  God bless you, Brandon.  later, djb