Tuesday, December 11, 2012

                                    A Pinecone Christmas

                                     By Annette Bergman

When you’re young the meaning of Christmas leans more towards what you get for Christmas instead of, the Reason for the Season.

 As a child I remember going out in the woods to look for a tree for Christmas. I hated having a pine tree for Christmas, I knew there wouldn’t be very much under the tree on Christmas morning, but we were always grateful for what we did get.

  I wanted our Christmas tree to be like other people’s tree. The kind with the pretty flat and full branched. That almost looked silvery sometimes. The pine trees that we had where the candelabra pine and had a minimal number of branched. As they say in the South, “ you could read through it.”

  So I took the path that lead across the marsh to an area that was pretty heavily wooded to look for a cedar tree. Our choices on the Island where just a little better than, take it or leave it, we could have a cedar or a pine, if you could locate a Cedar tree. I had waited until low tide to take the short cut across the marsh. It was a little muddy, but I never mined getting in the marsh mud. I crawled across the large fallen pine tree always careful to watch out for the rattlesnakes, and walked my normal path through the thicket looking for a young cedar tree. I was thrilled to locate one after much searching, and went running back to the house to get my Daddy to come and cut it down.

He grumbled most of the way back, “Couldn’t you find one a little closer to home?” That was just how Daddy was, gruff when he was kidding me. We drug it home and I was really pleased that we would at least have a tree that you couldn’t read through, for Christmas.

  It wasn’t as pretty as I had pictured in my mind, but I was just a kid and I vowed that one-day I would buy my own pretty Christmas tree.

  The Christmas of 1989 I found myself back home with my father for Christmas. Daddy probably remembered how I felt about the pine trees for Christmas, but he never said anything. Neither of us talked much. Daddy was in bad health and when he did say something he would make comments like, "It’s just like having your mother back. You burn everything you cook.”

I had a feeling this could be my father’s last Christmas and he wasn’t in favor of a tree. The thicket had been replaced with homes so I didn’t have to worry about having an ugly pine tree for Christmas.

  Always when I went home, I picked up the pinecones in the vacant lot behind our house and Roy helped me make a Christmas tree out of Pinecones. We turned a tomato cage upside down and started wiring pinecones to it to make our Christmas tree.

 I added colored lights and made bows out of red ribbon and cut up some packing foam and made the squares look like little packages, wrapping them in white and red printed fabric and tied them with a bow.

We sat our tree in front of the double window and plugged in the lights. Daddy said it was the prettiest tree he had ever seen. We even had a neighbor stop and come inside to see the tree she had been admiring in the window.

  It still wasn’t the pretty blue spruce that I had wanted as a child, but I knew the reason for the season and I wanted it to be very special for my Father.

It snowed on Christmas Eve and we had six inches on the ground by Christmas morning. It was the first white Christmas that anyone could remember on Tybee Island. I drove around the island taking pictures, of the white marches, and the partially frozen tide water ponds, the light house grounds covered with snow, so I could show them to my Father.

 I had as many family members as possible to come for Christmas dinner and later that evening after everyone had left. Daddy said. “Today was one of the best Christmas’ I had ever had.”

My father died 17 days later. I’ll never forget the earliest Christmas with the pine tree and the last Christmas I would spend with my father in the same house. I had hated having a pine tree Christmas tree and yet the pine cone tree had been beautiful. Of course, knowing the Reason for the Season can change the vision from within.

Sunday, September 16, 2012


Life’s Shadows


Annette Bergman


On the anniversary of September 11, 2001 I hope we haven’t forgotten to pray for: the people that were lost, the injured and the ones who have emotional scares that they will be remembering on this day.

As I was taking my evening walk after the attack on our nation, I was reflecting on the past two days:  the torment so many of the people in America were going through in our darkest hour. 

Since the sun had been at my back, I hadn’t noticed that it was an exceptionally bright sunset.  As I turned the corner,  the houses cast long dark shadows on the sidewalk that crossed the street. I was walking in one of the  shadow. In between the houses the sun cast brilliant beams on the bushes and flowers, as thought they were being spotlighted for their final hour of beauty for the day.

I began to think that is how our lives are, sometimes we walk in shadows and sometimes we walk in the brilliant sunlight. As Americans we are accustomed to living in the bright light of our freedom all of the time. 

When bombings, earth quakes, flood and disasters occur in other countries we are some of the first to offer aid.  We watch in horror on television and feel compassion for the unfortunate.

After September 11, 2001, we will always  remember that we no longer take our freedom for granted. We are able to have a deeper compassion for the suffering.

Everyone I have talked to feels a degree of illness after watching the horror of 9/11on television.

We have to keep a watchful eye out for our neighbor next door and be more aware of what is going on around us. We need to be more involved in our neighborhoods.

Right now,  Americans are walking in a dark shadow that has been cast by some evil acts over our country.   But, just as the sun shown in between the houses so will the sunshine in our lives once again. No one can stop the sun from shining on America.

We are a Christian nation. Together we must pray for fellow Americans in New York and in our neighborhoods counting our blessing every day for the life style so many of us have enjoyed living in a free country.


Thursday, September 6, 2012

Attention Foreclosure Victims


Annette Bergman

Real Estate Broker


I didn't want to get into political article writing, but I feel like I owe it to my previous profession to let the victims of the foreclosures know how the foreclosures works.

I feel like, and I will explain why in this article, that the victims need to band together and sue the government and participating banks, and I believe the citizens will be behind you 100 percent.

Now I will explain why.  When a government insurance property goes into foreclosures the government has guaranteed the bank or lender 80 percent of the original SALES price.  For simplicity sake I will use simple figures.  Say you paid $100,000. for your property and put 10 percent down, leaving you a balance of 90,000. at a rate of  8 percent for 25 years.  Your payments were $694.75.  Not including taxes and insurance.  You made payments for 5 years and had your mortgage down, to whatever the balance is.

You lost your job so you moved out and let the bank take the house back. The government paid your banker 80,000. dollars and then the bank sold the house for 60,000. They have received 140,000 for the house, plus five years of interest.  Now you have a judgment against you for the difference between the latest sales price and the mortgage balance at the time of the foreclosure they have a judgment against you for the balance.

The money the government paid the bank was from us the tax payers.  I believe the 80,000 should have gone towards your balance and the bank should drop your rate and extend your term until such time as you have found a job or your income had increased.

My information came from a lady who worked at a title company and told me this is exactly how the foreclosures work.

          Why should the government give the money to the bank to make even more money and put your family on the street?

Anyone have a commit on this?



Monday, July 23, 2012

A picture from the early 40's

I had only seen one picture of me as a small child.  I was about 8 months old being held on a small pony.  When I saw a picture, my cousin sent me, when I was just months pass four years old I was shocked at how sad I looked and my sister looked equally as sad. I know we were born during a depression and now I feel like the depression was instilled into us as well.
I have spent the greater part of my life feeling unloved and this picture made me realize that the feelings I had for all of those years was baggage I had from my childhood.
I can't help but think that being parents, especially with a first child, is nothing more that an expensive testing ground for a lifetime of problems. There is a real need to have a simple book on the effects we have on our children from day one after their birth.
I saw a lady on Oprah that had identified the different cries a baby makes and what the cries means.  That CD should be as available as beer and cigarettes for every new mother.  The early years of a child's life is their "Golden Years", not when you are retired and the damage is done.
I just recently heard a mother screaming at her young children while sitting in a van.  I wanted to go over and tell her how much damage she was doing expecting a small child to act like an adult.
Just love and care for the little ones after all the are only babies...and expecting too much from a child Makes Me Nuts.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Where did it go?

I just trimmed a new pattern to make me a sun dress. I pinned the pattern to the fabric and thougght I should check the measurements around my waist to the measurements of the pattern before I took the sissors to the fabric. I was 9 inches larger around the waist than the pattern said a size 14 waist was.

I've been sewing for myself since I was 12 years old and some major changes are going on behind my back, or round my waist.  I can wear a size 12 in some store bought clothes and now it looks like someone has been messing around with the pattern sizes.  The sizes should be the same size universal.

I had noticed that my ribs were crowding my hips. I have lost weight and yet my measurement around my waist has caught up with my bust size.  I don't know exactly when this event took place, I can say with any certainty, because I don't measure my waist everyday. I've never been this old before, but it looks like I'm going to have to put it on the calender to do once a week so I can estimate when I am going to melt down to just one large glob.

The other thing that I have noticed a major change in is my eyebrows.  They are getting so long I have to trim them!  I thought about calling some doctor and see if he could transplant my eyebrows into my eye lashes, but after some more though I decide it would look funny to have long white eye lashes that might be tickling my chin by my next birthday. Getting older isn't a lot of fun.