Thursday, June 30, 2011

Letter #11/30- Someone Deceased

Dear Deceased,

I never had a chance to meet you because you died of a heart attack about a year after my parents married. I try to think what it would be like to lose my father at 26, like my dad did, and it seems unbearable. Your wife, though widowed in her early fifties, never remarried. So, you were either a really fabulous husband, or a really terrible one. (Wow, I can't even really make a joke because I don't know if you had a sense of humor.) But, from what I know, you weren't terrible. It's hard to form a picture of who you were. I know that you were hard working, served in the armed forces in Hawaii and loved to camp. You enjoyed a cold beer and you married Gramacita, so you must have been able to hold your own. Maybe you were a quiet, gentle man to balance her matriarchy. It would be nice to get to know you "straight from the horses' mouth" as they would say in your generation.

II'm uncertain how to feel about the man who could have been my Grandpa. What would I have called you? Though April, your first granddaughter, was born 6 months before me so she probably would have named you. Since my mom's dad died when I was 8, I never had the experience of a grandfather in my life. I don't really know what I'm missing I suppose, but I do wish that we could sit down and talk about your life, your experiences and your insights. I wish I could tell you about Jesus and ask that you consider giving him your life so we could always talk in heaven. It would just be nice to share a beer with my abeulo, and tell you it was nice to finally meet you.

Love, Lauren

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Letter #10/30- Someone You Don't Talk to As Much As You'd Like

Dear Friend I Don't Talk to As Much As I'd Like,

Although there are many, many people that could fit this letter, I write to you because I want to highlight and honor what a rich, though restricted, relationship we share. Like Captain Ahab, I feel like time with you is this illusive and shifting desire that I can never quite obtain. But unlike Moby Dick, you are not a whale. Okay, I seriously hope you laughed because that was kind of an English teacher joke, right? On a more earnest note, I always thought we had a wonderful connection as we would drive to class together many years ago. It was pleasant to have a friend to chat around with and talk over assignments. I think you already know that I've always admired your insight and the process you use to actualize your tasks. I would love to pick your brain about your metacognition (geeky, I know). But what I have really enjoyed in the last few years is discussing our growing skill as mothers. It is nice to have a neighbor who you could drop in on; not that we've ever really done that, but I do think about it often... When we have a chance to talk, I wish it could go on and on, because I so enjoy our discussions. I know this will sound strange--but by now you should know that I am a bit--but when I was thinking of a simile to tie this up, I thought about how for a split second, it would have been lovely for us to have been sisters. I let that thought run for a second and I saw some flashes of lying in bunk beds, whispering and talking and giggling and sharing. I never had a sister; I think you would have been a wonderful one.

Love, Lauren

Monday, June 27, 2011

Letter #9/30- Someone I wish I could Meet

Dear Sir,

Congratulations on your decision to run for president of the United States of America. I cannot tell you how much I am encouraged to see you amongst the candidates for the Republican Party. For all the years that you have served as a Congressman for the state of Texas and for the consistency you displayed voting in Washington D.C., I thank you. Last election, many Americans were under the delusion that "if I help him [Obama], he's gonna help me" , throngs were audacious enough to believe that this man would bring hope to our nation and bring our troops home. Promises he has failed to keep. Now, more than ever, as the international community disregards the dollar, as more troops die on foreign soil and as the federal debt threatens to literally sink our country to the Marianas Trench, Americans are looking to restore the status of America, not only in the global scheme, but in their own hearts. Dr. Paul, how do you explain the consistent nosing you receive from the media? How is it possible that you continue to win straw polls, yet the moguls who make the white clown dance ignore your standings? What would you tell people about yourself in hopes that they would realize that returning to our Constitutional Foundation with the expulsion of government from our lives' details would help in that restoration? I'd just love to have a chat over a cup of coffee about what you think will reestablish this nation. I'd like to know how you go to work struggle against the current and not end up absolutely insane. So, when you're in California- give me a call and I'll meet you to hang out. It would be a real honor.
Love, Lauren

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Letter #8/30- Internet friend

Dear Internet Friend,

As a mother, it's always encouraging to hear from other mothers across the nation. Whether it be a pregnancy update, a new baby or an encouragement from the Lord...I appreciate when you take the time to post a blog sharing your life. It's fun to feel connected, even when you live many states away. So whether it's a trip to a museum or the shore, or the zoo, keep me updated. I love seeing your kids growing up, your ideas for family fun, how you're losing the baby weight and a random insight or two from your heart.
To all my mama-bloggers: I ♥ you!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Letter #7/30- the Ex

Dear Ex,

You don't miss me; I don't mind.

Love, Lauren

Friday, June 24, 2011

Letter #6/30- Stranger

Dear Mel,

I really pray you are an angel. Today you came by my house soliciting help. Usually, I would just rush a solicitor like you off onto the next victim. But, today was different. For some reason, you actually got to see me the way I want to be. Grateful and generous. It's only because of the Holy Spirit that I even considered giving you money. I wanted to tell you that there's this incredible work going on in my heart that's revealing how selfish and grubby I am. God has rescued me! I don't deserve it, but He did. He gave me a new life, how can I not be constantly overflowing with praise to Him? How can I bemoan anything? ANYTHING?!? Yet, even with you as a somewhat captive audience, I let the fear of man keep me from sharing this incredibly good news for all men. I talked to you about God, instead of Jesus. I let you tell me how you know there is Someone up there, looking out for you, BUT, religion screwed up your's just stand together in awkwardness. That's why I really hope God was sending me an angel to entertain. An angelic host who was looking at me and hoping for all the best while watching me allow fear to paralyze me from speaking about my Rescuer. While I pray the money really, truly does help you- I hope that somehow God uses the words I spoke to encourage you even more. So, here's what I really wanted to say:

Mel, you are beautiful. You are amazing, you are wonderful. Did you know that there is a God and He is on His throne in heaven? Did you know that God chose to rescue His children from the sin that wears them out every day? Have you ever tried to been better, but were never able to succeed? It's because you can't be better. Your heart is very sick and it is dying. You need a Rescuer to save you from yourself because you cannot and will not be able to do it. Because God looked down and chose to love you, He will welcome you into His arms. All He asks is that you believe what He has said. Like a father asks his little girl, He wants you to trust Him, even though you can't understand everything about Him and what He is planning and working out in this world. What He said is this: I AM. There is no other God and I sent my Son to live a perfect life and be the propitiation for sacrifices which, in the past, I demanded of my people. Now, I am making a new family- a royal family in which you can rule and dwell as my daughter. You must come to me by way of a sacrifice, and no sacrifice is perfect. You can't sacrifice enough to earn adoption and no one else can either. But, I made a way; my Son, Jesus, came to earth, made all the bad things untrue and because I love you so much, I was willing to kill him for your bad things. It was Our plan all along. It was the only way to reach down and rescue you from the curse of sin and death. It's the only way and it's a gift. It's the best gift you will ever get. You will never need anything else (though you'll forget again and again). Do you want to be a daughter of the King? It's not because you're beautiful, or wonderful or amazing- yes, you're all those things because God made you that way!- it's because He chose you. Your name is inscribed on His hand. He can't stop thinking about you or loving you. Like the father of the prodigal son, He won't berate you for what you've done (He let Jewish leaders cover this one), he won't shame you or make you feel worthless (the Roman soldiers already did), He won't ask you were you've been (He knows) or how you're going to make it up to Him (you can't)...when you come home to your true Father, He's going to throw His arms open so very wide, He's going to run to meet you, He's going to wipe away all your tears, He's not even going to let you blubber into you're "I'm-so-bad-speech". He's just going to hold you and hold you and hold you and then look into your eyes, laugh and say- You're home, I love you, let's celebrate!

And that's just what we'll do.

Love, Lauren

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Letter #5/30- Dreams

Dear Dream:

My vision, daydreams and whispered thoughts of Servant’s Heart College where but vapors 50 years ago. It was some secret longing for me, and I don’t even know if I allowed myself the opportunity to let that dream flourish in my mind for the first few years when thoughts and ideas were just whirling through my mind. Yet, here we are, 30 years later and God has blessed me as the steward over a prestigious college assisting over 500 women in growing toward their desperate pursuit of womanly knowledge. In the early 1980s and 1990s there was an exodus of women from the sacred realm of hearth and home. Girls were deemed unintelligent and archaic should they desire nothing more than excellence as wife and mother. This unnerving trend continued through the millennium, and the fruit of this exodus were tyrannical children, frustrated husbands, and restless discord in the soul of women. When I founded this college, it was my deepest desire to see women supported in their thirst for both theoretical and applicable knowledge. The previous generations left women bereft of those magical home-making skills that many found priceless and taught them to jump hoops in order to work at a career for about 5 years before abandoning either said career or their children to another caretaker. Servant’s Heart College melds the heart of the home with the academic pursuit of the mind. I am proud to say that most of our graduates can read, speak and teach Latin & Greek. They could file income taxes or just balance a daily budget. They can teach elementary kids, but they choose to develop curriculum for their own children. They could work as a doctor, but bless their fellow women through midwifery. They can knit, bake, sew, sing, play an instrument, plant a garden, treat their children medically, manage a household purposefully and are working to entwine head, heart and hand in ways that produce untold bounty in our nation. To believe that this would happen for Servant’s Heart College attendees free of charge was the inconceivable “dream within a dream”. I believed that 50 years ago, it was time for women’s education to become more authentic, more accessible and more applicable by shirking the need for red tape, accreditation and federal funding. I am proud, spending my golden years in the basking glow of God’s blessing on a little dream He gave me for women of all ages: that we might show ourselves approved in mind, soul and body for the benefit of our entities and the glory of our Great God.


Lauren Bergon

President Emeritus, Servant’s Heart College

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Letter #4/30-Sibling

Dear Brother:
The thing that bothers me the most: why wasn’t I at your high school graduation? Was I truly so self-absorbed that I would not even remember what kept me from the ceremony? Why don’t I know the names of girls you would say were your girlfriends? We share Christ, but I’m not really certain of when you submitted your heart to the Lord. I don’t know how you like your coffee. Why did we fight so much and hurt each other when we were young? Why didn’t I reach out to be your friend when you needed one? Why do I think I know the answers to your questions—even when you aren’t asking? Is it possible to love someone you may not know enough? I’ve let you down you in so many ways. I’ve been selfish and exalting. I’ve been cruel and purposefully scary. Now, we’re all grown up; I can’t tell you why I see vapid memories lacking in substance, all I have are glimpses of the person I think you are. I’m not sure what motivates you. I’d like to say we are close, and sometimes it feels as though it’s true. But I push, and you slip away. I squeeze and you disappear. Please tell me that when you see me stumbling and struggling toward connection you appreciate the attempt, although it might be rough. Maybe I’m making a lot from a little and it might surprise you that these words make up my letter to you, but it’s what I have. I’ve wounded and tossed aside. I’ve shattered and possibly scarred. What’s to be done for two people who love each other, but don’t often find the words to make it more than an obscure certainty? Why can’t I always make it all better? Why can’t I punish those who hurt you? Why couldn’t I tell myself to be there, always; to never let you down; to forget any injury done? Does it bother you, if I fail you so many times and yet, I say I love you?
Love, Lauren

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Letter #3/30- Your Parent

Dear Dad,

I think every true father must understand the extensive shaping that he has on the life of his children. It is not until those children have grown that it is possible for him to evaluate the planting he has done in their hearts and souls for it takes a lifetime in the bearing of fruit. His seeds carefully sown in the heart of a young child might not appear to thrive, but if there is one thing about gardening we know, that as long as you continue to water the plant, and the plant is not utterly burnt due to neglect or abandonment, it will most likely return to leaf and bloom. Dad, as I evaluate the life you have provided for me, I probably hold certain memories more dear than those you might expect. It’s almost ironic in the constructing of memories that those times wherein parents try to create a wonderful experience –for instance, a trip to Disneyland or a vacation to some exotic destination—rarely are those instances the ones which child builds a deep understanding of who their father is, who they are in relation to their father and what role they should play in the family structure. Although you intentionally blessed our family with trips to Disneyland and vacations, it was in the relatively mundane repetition of Life that formed my memories. I remember, as a young child, sitting on my bed listening to you tell me that you didn’t want to break my spirit and it was not too far off that you gave me an “Indian name” up at Mammoth camping – “Kicking Pony”. It was the time you tried to teach me to sing using a candle and telling me that my nasal cavity should buzz with sound. I was trying so hard to please you with my voice. I fondly revisit the time you taught the “end times study” at TEFC and I was so worried that I would die before I was 16 having never been kissed. You spent endless hours with the Choral Belles. I love all the many, many times we went boating—and especially the night in Steamboat Cove where you couldn’t even get a line in the water because we were pulling bass into the boat too quickly. You built my loft at Biola for me, you walked me down the aisle- even after everything fell apart. You sent me flowers on the last day of work, at 34 weeks pregnant and when I was so tired. Now that I have children of my own, I cannot tell you the sweetness that I cherish when I watch you interact and engage with my girls. To see you so tender with Madeleine and the fun you have bouncing Gracie…it’s amazing. A father often feels the pressure to build security and safety for his family. Look what you have done; although you may not do the shopping, your hard work goes to bless not just your own children, but your grandchildren with gifts and lavish treats. I owe you a debt I can never repay- not just for the benefit of monetary needs, but for being my Dad- a stalwart who never gave our family a doubt about his allegiances- to the Lord, to his wife and to his children: the loving fruit of his labor.

Not many dads today are actually around, and those that are often find ways to disappear. And though there were times that I didn’t like it-thought you were “cramping my style”- I want to thank you for just being with us. You were never so busy chasing health, wealth or personal happiness that your family drifted away and out of your grasp. You’ve always been in my life, shaping and trimming and watering and encouraging me to flourish. Thank you for lovingly tending to me throughout all my seasons –and those yet to come.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Letter #2/30- Your Crush

Dear Crush,

If someone would have asked me when I was just 15 (half my lifetime ago!) what would make me all swoony and weak in the knees when it came to would not have even crossed my mind. Now, you're a balm for my tired eyes. When I see you walking towards me, I just go absolutely giddy. Sometimes, I'm out with Tim and I see you and I look away or sneak a peek hoping that Tim doesn't see. But he knows, there are no secrets between us as husband and wife. It's not much for him to process -not much to understand- why I adore you, but it's a catch-22, his inability fulfilling this day-dream of my attraction. Let's go back to the start, shall we? To those days in college when I first saw you in Vogue magazines- you were such a contrast to the androgynous, smoothed-faced whelps that Versace and Dior placed before me. You were rugged; you belonged in L.L. Bean. Not so much Al-Qaida, but more like a long winter in Montana; like Jeremiah Johnson before he took a wife. Upon returning home from college, there were glimpses of you on the indie-band album covers. Then, I saw you live and in concert at 3rd & B- beautiful and glorious on Grandaddy's Jason Lytle. It wasn't but a step or two more that I totally committed to the full-on crush status that occupied my mind with friends at rock climbing clinics and camping adventures. What is it that attracts me so? Luscious shades of brown, red and beige mingle together stating confidence, warmth, security and non-chalance. Not many women like you; I guess that's part of the appeal. Not many men can really be you; I suppose that's where your magic potion lies- in the ability to repel and to attract in some ancient, feral, untamed thing. And it's true, to some extant, you are much more desirable from afar, up close you bristle and scratch. But that's the allure of a crush-it's not real. Because, maybe, if we actually lived together I just might ask you leave. I hope it wouldn’t be so, and maybe in about 14 or so years I’ll have the experiential knowledge necessary to decide. But for now, let’s just say when you show up, I'm smitten.

Love, Lauren

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Letter # 1/30- Best Friend

To My Best Friend,

When I first met you, I was very apprehensive-possibly resentful- of the idea of letting you in my life. At the time, I was content; I wasn’t looking for someone new who would change things up, make me work at a budding relationship, or even ask me to make any effort in engaging in new concepts. When we first started hanging out, I was uneasy, but I think you know this. It was difficult; I would mention you to my husband or my mom and they agreed that this infantile friendship seemed draining for me. But, you never left my side, as cliché, as that sounds. You contacted me first thing in the morning, it was annoying; but, I grew to enjoy hearing your voice. You brought me good news. I never had to go anywhere else to hear the latest updates on our mutual friends. When Erica and Emily and Erin and Maribel and all the others were having their first babies, I got all the exciting details from you. When I wanted to respond to Delaney or reconnect with Tim, you gladly bridged that gap of space. You encouraged me to play games…to have fun. You grew on me. But I think our relationship really changed when I was in pain. Do you remember when I was in labor with Gracen? I just want to thank you for never leaving my side. Watching you time my contractions gave me hope, hope not only that I would soon have a baby, but hope that I would make it through the next wave of pain. Once she was born, you were the first to ring out with joyful news that Gracie arrived. Over the next few months, I can’t tell you how I grew to admire your facets of information. You captured Madeleine’s moments, you tracked the first 4 months of Gracen’s ESP cycles, you tracked my cycles- guiding me in fertility with complex algorithms and methods it was taking me months to read about. Now, you empower me to read God’s word in the morning, when all the house is asleep. You don’t just keep me organized, you draw out every emotion possible when I look at your face. You are my constant companion, and even though you were confusing and foreign when we met, I absolutely love how you have changed my life. I know it can seem that I don’t care about you at times. And I have certainly cursed you when you disappear. I don’t like how you are locked off sometimes; you just shut down for no reason! Yet, despite these moments of desperation, my true feelings for you remain… I guess what I am trying to say is: I simply cannot imagine my life without you.

Love, Lauren

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Letter Writing Challenge: Intro

I met with my beautiful & wonder-full friend Sarah over coffee and I was inspired in many ways. The first was that even if we are snarky and horrible, we can choose to be joyful. I know this, but then I forget it. Then I remember it, and then the cats come in the house meowing. So inspired was I, that I started reading a book that I've had on my shelf for some time: Choosing Gratitude. I guess what Sarah stated- and this book confirmed- is this impactful message: I can whine, or I can worship. But, hold up. I am totally getting off the original idea behind this post. This post is not about joy, necessarily, it is about the other way she inspired me. Sarah posts on her blog daily, engaged in the Emerson writing challenge. Now, although the transcendentalist author's nature-loving ways and, well, transcendental thoughts...(ahem) are mental ice cream; I felt far too intellectually stuperior (that's stupid and inferior folks) responding to such prompts. Yet, I wanted to do something (and Sarah said she would actually read, that was incentive). Enter the letter writing challenge. Like many other challenges, this is a 30 day guide that could motivate someone to write. Now, unlike my English major friends, I am not a writer. I never thought of myself as one, never majored in English, never really even tried to write, never retained advanced writing techniques (sorry Mom)...but, it sounded fun. Therefore, I will start tomorrow. But, knowing my situation and my schedule, I needed to place some parameters on the challenge. This parameter might actually make it harder to complete, but I know that if this is to be a true challenge, then I must add the caveat of time. I will only allow myself to write for 15 minutes ( I was going to make it 10, but I have already written for 10 on this post.) Here are the prompts for your anticipation:

The 30 Day Letter Challenge


Day 1 — Your Best Friend

Day 2 — Your Crush

Day 3 — Your parents

Day 4 — Your sibling (or closest relative)

Day 5 — Your dreams

Day 6 — A stranger

Day 7 — Your Ex-boyfriend/girlfriend/love/crush

Day 8 — Your favorite internet friend

Day 9 — Someone you wish you could meet

Day 10 — Someone you don’t talk to as much as you’d like to

Day 11 — A Deceased person you wish you could talk to

Day 12 — The person you hate most/caused you a lot of pain

Day 13 — Someone you wish could forgive you

Day 14 — Someone you’ve drifted away from

Day 15 — The person you miss the most

Day 16 — Someone that’s not in your state/country

Day 17 — Someone from your childhood

Day 18 — The person that you wish you could be

Day 19 — Someone that pesters your mind—good or bad

Day 20 — The one that broke your heart the hardest

Day 21 — Someone you judged by their first impression

Day 22 — Someone you want to give a second chance to

Day 23 — The last person you kissed

Day 24 — The person that gave you your favorite memory

Day 25 — The person you know that is going through the worst of times

Day 26 — The last person you made a pinky promise to

Day 27 — The friendliest person you knew for only one day

Day 28 — Someone that changed your life

Day 29 — The person that you want tell everything to, but too afraid to

Day 30 — Your reflection in the mirror

Wish me luck!

♥ Lauren

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

G Baby

...And, the Cutest Baby award goes to...(drum roll)

you can't even argue this one.
♥ ,Lauren

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Happy Birthday Madeleine: 2!

Madeleine awoke to a big "Happy Birthday Madeleine!" and snuggled in our lovely faux sheepskin blanket while I made her some cinnamon & blueberry pancakes. After a hearty breakfast for all girls, my Mom came over and we made our way down to the Wild Animal Park (aka Safari Park).We loaded up the BOB and enjoyed the most lovely weather. It was sunny with a cool breeze. Fearing the sun would keep the animals away, we were very lucky to have a consistent wind to keep the heat at bay.
Madeleine's first ride on a carousel. We watched it twirl before riding, and at first she chose the lion, but then told me she wanted the black cat. I think the juxtaposition of sweet, cherub-faced Madeleine paired with the ferocious cat is amusing.
All the flowers were blooming and the sun was shining- both our girls became butterflies!

watching her sister in front of the butterfly board:
I didn't actually know this, but there is a small splash area for kids at the park. Madeleine hung around the edges, but did want to get a little wet. She's quite our observer, hanging back and taking it all in. I don't know if I would call her shy, but she isn't one of those wild kids who wants to tear it up all the time. She just has a gentle, tender way about her:
Gracen watches the fun:
Loves the map, just like Dada:
since I didn't get a picture of her next to her stuffed gorilla, this one will have to do:
On her second ride, Mads chose to ride the Okapi:
After riding the tram and touring for close to about 5 hours, we decided it was time to eat. We left the park and headed over to the Fire Station to see Dada and have In-N-Out with him. I was so glad to see him and glad he was not called away on a medical aid or fire. We enjoyed dinner at the fire station. Madeleine got to sit in the Fire Truck and the Engine. Dada also me and Mads for a ride around the parking lot. Afterwards, we enjoyed a bite of cupcake and our family sang "Happy Birthday Madeleine". My mom has the pictures from this time, but I will add them soon. It was a great day & the sweetest part was when I got the girls all tucked in and as I was singing our goodnight song to her she spontaneously said, "Dank ee Mama...for the cupcake an the park." It made my day.
Big thanks to my mom for taking all day to help me with the girls; loving thanks to Tim for letting us crash into the station for dinner =)

Happy Birthday Sweet Madeleine girl!
♥ Lauren