Sunday, December 28, 2008

Snow in Vegas?

Yes! It did snow in Vegas! We started getting snow starting around 11:30 a.m. on December 16th and it didn't stop until well after we went to bed that night. When all was said and done we had somewhere around 6 inches! The kids were even out of the school the next day! Louis had taken off work that day to go get the brakes on his car fixed, so luckily he wasn't at work on the other side of town like usual. My office left a little early around 4:15, but by that time, the roads were already pretty bad and what is normally a 10-12 minute drive home for me took me almost 50 minutes.
I was freezing when I got home after my 50 minute drive! (my car never got really warm during the drive) I got cozy in pajamas and settled in under a blanket while Louis and the boys went to a church that is around the corner from our house to play in the snow that accumulated on the large grassy area around their parking lot. Just when I had gotten warm, a neighbor came knocking at our door to see if the boys wanted to come outside and make a snowman. I told her that they were playing at the church, but that I would come out. So she, her husband, a couple other neighbors and I built a snowman and a snowlady. We all had a good time playing in the snow. And of course, I had to put an Alabama cap on the snowman!
When Louis and the boys came back home, Chris and I walked around the entire neighborhood and made pictures. It was a sight to see snow in palm trees! And a lot of the poor trees in our neighborhood buckled and collapsed under the snow's weight. And then after walking through the neighborhood, we went back inside and I made homemade hot cocoa for everyone. That was a nice treat after being outside in the cold for so long!
Here are a few pictures of our short lived Vegas Winter Wonderland! I know that it wasn't near as much snow as they get in Chicago, New York or Boston, but for Vegas, it was more than enough. Good thing it only happens once every 30 years (so they say)!!
Love to all!
Angela, Louis, Chris and Mark
Mark, Louis and Chris

This is our street

Our little catcus plant in our front yard

One of the poor palm trees in
the neighborhood

The Snowman and Snowlady
(notice the Alabama cap on the snowman)


Monday, October 27, 2008

Busy Bergmanns

have we been busy lately! Chris is in Madrigals Choir at school and he made the Clark County School District Middle School Honor Choir as well. He has been attending rehearsals for the last 2 ½ weeks for the Honor Choir. This past week he had 3 rehearsals in a row for it leading up to the performance on Wednesday October 22nd at the University of Nevada Las Vegas. The middle school choir performed 6 songs and then a 7th song with the high school honor choir. Chris was very excited because Z. Randall Stroope who is the composer of his favorite piece, Omnia Sol, was their conductor. He was, however, slightly disappointed that the honor choir girls got to sing Omnia Sol instead of the boys. Dr. Stroope actually called him and another boy from his school down from the back row and put them in the front row during rehearsal because he liked that their voices were so deep and wanted them to be heard more! I cannot even describe the proud look that was on Chris’ face when he came home after rehearsal that day and told us about this! He was just beaming!! The performance was so good! Louis and I are so proud of Chris! He looked so grown up standing up on that stage during the performance and I think that he was actually proud of himself too! Those kids all sounded so good. It’s hard to believe that they are just in middle school.

And let me tell you, just the fact that he is even in Madrigals and Honor Choir is something that makes us proud. You see, Chris gets extremely bad stage freight if he has to perform by himself. And this is exactly what he had to do to tryout for both Madrigals and Honor Choir. We found out about his stage freight a few years ago when he was in elementary. He wanted to tryout for a school talent show and had a panic attack during the tryout. The teachers said he turned white as a ghost, started breathing hard and sweating and they were concerned that he was going to pass out! So last year when he decided to tryout for Madrigals (he had to sing by himself in front of 3 judges), I was concerned about how he would handle it. I got the music for the piece of the song he had to learn and played it on the piano for him so he could practice. He and I worked and worked on it and I thought that he had it down really well. But on the day of tryouts, he didn’t go. But his choir teacher Mrs. Fleischer didn’t take to kindly to that, so she cornered him the next day and had him do the piece for just her and then gave him a shot at being in Madrigals. And I am pretty sure that she is glad that she forced him to tryout!

Fast forward to this year….imagine my surprise when Chris decided that he was going to tryout for the CCSD Honor Choir!! He seemed to be doing well with it all, until Friday, the day before the tryout. Mrs. Fleischer had a rehearsal with all the kids trying out after school. I went to pick up Chris and when I saw most of the other kids coming out and no Chris, I knew something was up. I walked into the choir room and saw Chris, pale as a sheet, shaky, breathing really shallow and sweating. I immediately had him take off his backpack and hoodie and sit down. I fanned him while Mrs. Fleischer worked with all the other boys and then saved Chris for last. She talked to him and encouraged him and got him to sing the song. And without prompting, he sang it perfectly in pitch. She told him that he is a talented young man and that she wouldn’t let him tryout if she didn’t think he was capable.

He went to tryouts the next morning and afterward he was sure that he didn’t make it. He said that the judges had warned him that the music they were using was a lot slower than he had practiced with. But even with that warning, he said he wasn’t able to keep up with the song and that he was just terrible. Nothing I could say made him feel any better. My Mom even spoke to him over the phone and nothing she said helped either. But, of course, we know that all this was for nothing, because he made Honor Choir!

This whole experience has really helped his confidence. He is helping Mrs. Fleischer out in Concert Choir (which he sings with as well) by working with the other basses and he really is becoming a leader! Both Chris and Mark have performances coming up. Chris has a Fall Concert with Madrigals and the advanced orchestra and band this Wednesday, October 29th. I will update on them with pictures and hopefully video soon after them as our schedule permits. Chris also has performances next month for 3 different Christmas lighting ceremonies. Whew! We are going to be busy!! For now, here are pictures of our handsome boy from the Honor Choir performance and links to videos from the performance that I posted onto YouTube. Enjoy!

Chris and his autographed sheet music
from Dr. Z. Randall Stroope

Me, Chris and Louis

Chris is just to the left of the boy sitting down

Chris with Dr. Z. Randall Stroope

YouTube video links:

My Dancing Day

Rise Up, My Love, My Fair One (boys only):

Sit Down Servant (with the high school honor choir)


Saturday, September 20, 2008

Getting Up to Speed...

After keeping up with some family, their family and their friends by reading their blogs faithfully, I thought that I would make a blog for my family so that my family (that is so very far away) could keep up with us. I am doing a lot of assuming that they *want* to keep up with my family! But anyway, I know that my Mommy will at least look at it. : ) I figured since I just started this thing, that I should bring everyone up to speed as to " what's happening in vegas"...

I'll start all the way back to September 2007...if I skip a month, that means nothing other than day to day things happened that month! : )

l September 2007 - Louis and I got the amazing opportunity to go see the Cubs in the playoffs. Although they lost, it was so amazing to be at Wrigley Field for a playoff game! We also went to a regular season game in July and got to go onto the field before the game and watch batting practice and sit in the dugout! Louis' aunt, uncle and cousins went with us. What a cool thing that was!!

l April 2008 - Louis woke up in the early morning hours of April 30th in terrible pain. I knew from where the pain was located, that he probably had a kidney stone. He made me go on into work and was going to call his doctor when his office opened at 9:00, but shortly before 9:00 he called me saying he couldn't wait and I met him at the ER at the hospital by where I work. After a urinalysis and CT scan, my suspicions were confirmed, he had a gigantic 6mm kidney stone completely blocking his right ureter and 3 smaller ones in his kidney. Now because of the stone's size, he was going to need surgery. But Louis' doctor is on the other side of town and does not have privileges at our hospital. Thank goodness I work for a great doctor and he was willing to admit Louis and take care of him while he was in the hospital. It is also nice that my doctor is well known at our hospital and also was able to get a consult called in quickly for a urologist to come see him and take him to surgery. The surgery was scheduled for early the next morning and it lasted all of 32 minutes. I was told it would be around 40-45 minutes, so I was surprised to see Dr. Finkelstein come out so early. He is an absolutely great guy and a great doctor. He answered all my questions, set both our minds at ease and although Louis had to have a stent for a week after the surgery (I will not go into the details of that, suffice it to say it was very uncomfortable for him), his recovery went really well. He even played a gig (he is a drummer/singer) the Saturday after his surgery!

l June 2008 - We went on our annual vacation to Manzanillo, Mexico. We absolutely love it there! We have gone there the last 6 years. This year my Mom met us down there. We all had a good time, saw lots of neat and beautiful things, ate a lot of good food, spent a lot of time with our friend Jose and Erica and their girls Navia and Kate and had a lot of laughs. As usual, we had to have a little drama. You may not know this, but back in 2006 while in Mexico, Louis decided to raise his head up into a 5 speed industrial ceiling fan. You know, the one with the huge metal blades?! Well, he had a giant gash in his scalp and we were taken to a little free clinic by the taxi driver who came and got us. They put in 7 stitches, gave him a tetanus shot, antibiotics and pain meds. The grand total of that whole thing came to 100 pesos! (That is roughly $10.00 American) Well, anyways, back to Chris...he was running down the beach and stepped on something (we think a sharp rock, shell or maybe even a piece of glass), and sliced his big toe on his right foot open. He didn't realize that he had done this until he had take a few steps with it cut open, so he ended up with a layer of sand caked up inside the cut. Now being in the medical field, I always carry band-aids, antibiotic ointment, anti-diarrhea meds and even antibiotic meds with us when we go to Mexico. I didn't realize that I should have also brought iodine preps, 4x4 gauze pads, surgical scissors and surgical tape! Chris is usually a pretty tough kid, but you would have thought that someone was chopping off his toe when I tried to clean out that sand! I wasn't getting anywhere cleaning it out with the things that I had and I knew that it needed more than I could do, so our friend Jose came and took us to that same little free clinic that Louis went to 2 years ago. And to my surprise, the same little male nurse was there, and he remembered us and Louis! They took Chris back, cleaned up his toe (which caused more screaming and dramatics from Chris), put some gauze on it and sent us home. They weren't going to take any money from us this time. We insisted that we should pay something so they said 20 pesos (that's $2.00!). I love Mexico!!

June 15th (the day after we got back from Mexico) was Louis' 40th birthday. I planned a big surprise party for him at our favorite Mexican restaurant. I had him a custom cake made to look just like his snare drum and he and his friends were absolutely blown away by it. It was pretty amazing! We had a really good time!

l July 2008 - Mark decided to get in a little time with a doctor this month. He climbed up on a wall in our subdivision (playing hide and go seek with friends) and when he was coming down off that wall, he lost his balance, fell and landed on his left arm and broke it! Now keep in mind that this is the same arm that he broke 3 years ago. And of course, he couldn't have done this through the week where I could take him to his doctor, no, he had to do this on a Saturday to he could go to the ER! It turned out OK, because I knew the radiology tech who came to do his x-rays. And because he already had an orthopedic doctor (a past broken arm and an amputated tip of his ring finger on his left hand, yes you read that right!) I got him an appointment on Tuesday for his cast to be put on. He only had to have this cast on for 3 weeks, the one 3 years ago was 6 weeks. Good thing since it was July and 110+ degrees outside!

l August 2008 - Back to school time! Chris started 8th grade and Mark started 6th grade. My little baby is in middle school! I can't believe it! It seems like only yesterday I dropped him at the kindergarten class and worried about him all day. The worrying part is still there, he is just older now!

I think that brings us up to this month. I will post a few things that have happened this month on the next post. I am going to attempt to put a little slide show up showing pictures from all the stuff I just mentioned. Until then, everyone take care!