The Bergen Family - Bergen's In the Corn

The Bergen Family - Bergen's In the Corn

Monday, September 8, 2014

Starting Off September

There were some photo mistakes in my last blog.  I had two of one picture and forgot to upload the picture of me.  If you want to view the updated blog, go to this link:

The beginning of September has been dedicated to finishing things up and cleaning.  Lots of cleaning.  Like I mentioned before, I was very busy in August and my apartment really felt like a wreck!!  I have continued to apply for many, many jobs.  The last one that I applied for that was the more office-like job was on Friday, August 22nd.  I heard my rejection before ten o'clock on Monday morning.  I am done with that.  I have tried so hard to get a good job, but I have switched my focus.  I am no longer looking for an office job but looking more towards what I am good at.  And that probably means moving later this year.  I am only looking in Park City now.  Apartments seem to be about the same price as in the ghetto where I am living currently.  So why live here, when I can live there?  Obviously this is still in the early stages, but that is partially why I needed the new car.  I couldn't look for jobs that were outside Salt Lake City because I didn't have reliable transportation.  So that is what I am currently working on.

Also with this last job application, I needed two letter of recommendation.  I asked my go-to person for the first one and asked my former boss from last year to write the other.  I made contact a few times as a reminder and just got an email back last week, nearly two weeks after the deadline, saying that they just saw it.  I am still appalled.  I am disgusted.  It still burns me up.  I cannot believe the lack of professionalism.

Last Wednesday, I went to my second Isaiah class.  Which was just as good, if not better, than the first one.  I call my mom after my class and tell her all the neat stuff that I learn.

Also on Wednesday, September 3rd, I took my friend to the airport.  This was the friend who had been interested in my old car.  Thank goodness he didn't have the old Impala to trudge across Wyoming!!!  He is going back to the area of his mission and going to live in Council Bluffs for a while.  I hope it is a great experience.

I was invited to go to Bear Lake with the Laytons.  They decided last minute that they would go one more time before James leaves for his mission.  Unfortunately, their cabin is "no dogs allowed" due to some family members having allergies.  So I ran some errands on Friday for my day at the lake.

When I was almost back to my apartment, I got a lovely phone call from the Chevy dealership.  We return back to that saga of a moment....  They needed the title.  If we rewind back to July 22nd, I had gone to the DMV to transfer the title of the Impala to my name from my mom's.  At that time, we were still planning on me having the Impala for a while longer.  In the meantime, we traded in the Impala.  And I still had no new title in my name.  The dealership said they would take care of this issue.  They also said that they sold the Impala.  So, now they said that it was still not theirs and they needed the title so they could get rid of the car.  And the saga continues to plague me!!!!!  I ran into my apartment to grab the papers from the last time I went to the DMV and basically went back to the area I was just in.

The DMV is horrific.  I walked in and there were well over one hundred people and it smelled like B.O.  You are given a number and then have to sit and wait your turn.  I was given a number for something incorrect, but was the first number called after I sat down.  That was a miracle.  I was on the edge of hostility and rash actions and I don't know if I could have sat there that whole time and remained sane.

We did get the whole issue tended to and I hope that lady at the dealership was pleased with my immediate action.  That way, I didn't have to think about the whole insane issue all weekend.  For the last time, the car is finally gone!!!  At first, I was sad (a month ago), but on Friday I was glad to never have to deal with an Impala situation ever again.

Speaking of Impalas and never again...have you seen the new Impala?  It is impressive and sporty!!!

Finishing Up August

The last week of August was definitely playing catch up.  August was full of so much.  It makes me tired just thinking back on it!!  On Wednesday, August 27th, I started an Isaiah class.  I am totally enjoying myself and learning a lot in the class.  By the end, I will have a full notebook dedicated to all things Isaiah.  It has been fascinating and I've only been to two classes.  The teacher is great and even though it is an hour and a half, it goes by really quick.

On Friday, August 29th, I was invited to go to Swiss Days, which is in Midway.  It was so much fun!!!  I'm still not buying anything, but Melissa did buy me a pair of earrings.  What it is is a bunch of booths set up with fun vendors like jewelry and cute things.  Basically just everything that I love.  The town is a Swiss feel.  The architecture feels like you are in Europe and there was a yodeler.  It was a cute little town and I would love to go back next year.

Also in the last week of August was another wedding.  This one was at The Grand America hotel which is located in downtown Salt Lake City.  As the name implies, it is very grand.  It was recently included on a list of "The 21 Best Hotels in America".

The wedding and reception setup was very classy.  All black, white, and gold.  I was glad to be part of this wedding and the wedding party and guests were all great people.

My favorite part of the evening was definitely the food.  I was starving and was so excited to see that we were having the same food that the guests were eating.  I'm not sure how well you can see the menu above, but all that stands out to me is "Sautéed Crab Cake".  It was real, fancy crab.  We also had steak and chicken.  It was the best food I've had since my Park City adventure with my parents!!

This was a military wedding and kind of a unique one.  There were also some very fun guests.  I stopped one of them to take a picture with.  He was wearing lederhosen and the rising sun.  It just was kind of funny to see.

The reception and dancing went until midnight.  That means that we start cleaning up things after midnight.  We don't do a ton of cleanup, but there was a lot of drinking all evening and that means that there are a lot of glasses and trash that needed to be removed so we could remove the linens.  The linens and flowers are mainly all that we need to tend to.  It still made for a very late night, a grouchy Chihuahua, and a tired girl.  But it was a great wedding and a fun night!!!

The Saga of the Car + Dessert Adventures

So, we left off where my parents left Utah and returned back home to Nebraska.  I normally would have been sad and mopey.  Originally, I had planned on sleeping late and tidying up my apartment since my mom had brought some boxes and things that were still sitting out.  But, alas, that was not what I ended up doing that Monday.  I got a phone call from Tanner Daines saying that he was on his way over and would be at my apartment in a few minutes.  I was still in bed.  He had wanted to go to the Chevy dealership to see if my old car was still there and if he could buy it.

I quickly crawled out of bed and threw myself together.  We literally spent all week trying to tend to this car situation and it became extremely frustrating and annoying.  I believe we went there around ten times that week.  No one could "figure out" where that car was.  First it was being test driven by the mechanic, then the mechanic was out to lunch, then it had left the dealership, then it was taken off the assembly line, then it was on its way back, then it was sold.  I'm not sure what the story ever really was.  I don't really care but I also do not like how the situation was handled.  I had just bought a new car there and I felt like they didn't treat me as a paying customer.  However, it was a really odd request.  In the end, I think it is fine that he didn't get the old Impala.

The icing on the cake - that same week, on Friday, the last day of the car debacle, we drove through the old car lot and there was a white Impala.  Less than an hour later, when we came back, we drove through the lot again and the white Impala was not there.  I find the situation odd and I do think that they lied to us.  I think they said my car was worth three hundred dollars and they did a little fixing up of it and made a profit.  I do not believe that they sold it for parts.

The days after my parents left, I did not really have a chance to miss my parents being just down the street.  I was very busy with the car saga and other things.  Daines was in Salt Lake City a few days during the week so we were able to hang out some.  I also was helping the Laytons in getting their house ready for the missionary homecoming and missionary farewell gathering.  Nate came home the beginning of August and James, their youngest son, leaves next week.  So I helped vacuum, clean, and set things up for a meal on Sunday, August 24th.  I also ordered some special cookies that were Nebraska themed along with some ties.  I still love these cookies!!  I also made lots of cake pops.  On Sunday, I went to church with the Laytons since both Nate and James spoke in church.  Afterwards was the meal at their house and around two hundred people came.  I also helped with vacuuming the next day.  Lots of vacuuming!!!

Above are the cake pops where the picture shows the process of melting the chocolate and then the finished product.  There is also a picture of the corn cookies, Nebraska cookies, and ties.  They looked great on my Nebraska plate!!

The Parents Come to Visit

I left off with my parents just arriving in Salt Lake City to come to visit me.  It was nice to have my mom playing games with me again, my dad sitting on my couch saying, "Turn that up.", referring to the volume of the TV, and both my parents adoring Littleberry.  I was glad to be able to ask my mom to get something for me instead of always getting up myself.  And, it was nice to be able to talk to my mom without having a Bluetooth in my ear all the time or saying, "I can't hear you." or, "Are you there?"

They arrived and we went and picked up Cafe Rio for dinner.  It is some good, quick serve, Mexican food.  They have the best dressing.  I probably try to get a salad from there once a week.  My mom says that they have the best enchiladas.

The next day, Wednesday the 13th, we made the plunge to get the new car.  I had taken a Chevy Cruze on a test drive the week before and liked it more than I thought I would.  I believe it was that same car that I have now.  I will say one more time that I loved my Impala.  I had no intention of having a new car this soon.  I would have loved to have spent more time with old reliable.  Alas, old reliable was not reliable anymore and quite dangerous recently.  It did not pass the safety and emissions test that is required in Utah, the A/C didn't work at all anymore, and it sounded like a blender full of nails.  We ended up getting three hundred dollars for it.  I still feel like we were scammed and definitely ripped off; however, I think it was a sign that it we shouldn't trust a car worth that much (or little) to get me safely around the city and mountains.

After several hours, we drove away in a new car with only 136 miles on it.  I did shed a tear or two when I said goodbye to my white Impala.  My new car is a bit more of my personality.  It is black, sporty, and has all kinds of new technology in it.  It has definitely been fun to drive.

The next day was Thursday the 14th.  We went to Ogden, which is North of Salt Lake City, for an LDS temple open house.  That is where the public gets to see inside the temple.  It was very nice and bigger than I expected.  It was also a very hot day.

We then went on a little road trip towards Park City.  I decided to take the more scenic route instead of going back the way we came, which is full of humanity.  There was some pretty scenery and even some wildlife in the form of a cow or a horse.  We got to Park City and I had to parallel park mom's whale of a car.  I was parking in-between two cars that were more on the luxurious side of the spectrum.  But I am a champion and got that car parked.  And, I was even right across from a public restroom.  We checked out some of the shops and then ate at a restaurant called Chimayo.  It was a Southwestern restaurant and it was the best enchiladas I have ever had.  I also was quite pleased with their water goblets.  They were cold and kept the water cold.  Plus, they were always full.  That is how a water goblet should be.  It was delicious and I would go back in a heartbeat!!  Dad also found an authentic cowboy store that made his day.

We came back over the mountain, over Guardsman Pass.  There is an excellent view from there.  We also stopped at Silver Lake, which is easily accessible.  Mom wheeled dad to the center of the lake where some people were fishing.  It was perfect timing to see the ducks!!  Dad wished that we would have brought some crackers.

The next day was Friday the 15th and it was a shopping day.  We have all been in desperate need of new clothes!!!

Later that afternoon, we went to a sushi restaurant where dad tried his first sushi.  I think he is better at wielding chopsticks than mom is.  The sushi was not the main course but we did get some as an appetizer to share.  After we ate, we headed up Little Cottonwood Canyon to Albion Basin, but most of the wildflowers were all gone and there were no moose around.  Plus, we left dad at the bottom sitting on a rock.  This was just a quick stop.

The next day, Saturday the 16th, we went to Provo.  We saw my mom's old apartments and a building where she had some of her classes at BYU.  It was very hot.  We went to the Monte L. Bean Life Science Museum and looked at the exhibits there.  Believe it or not, their gift shop had a Capybara!!! I decided to take some pictures with it and the exhibits.

Later that evening, one of the missionaries that I was friends with while he was in Nebraska was in Salt Lake City.  We met up for the first time since his homecoming in May and went to the Laytons.  It was the first time the three of us had been together since before Christmas.  It was a fun reunion.

Sunday the 17th was the last day my parents were in Utah.  My mom went to church with me and then I made some pasta for our pathetic meal.  It was sad to see them go because it meant that I had to resume my difficult life.  We had fun and I can't wait for Christmas!!!

The First Part of August

And now, I will blog about the first part of August.

Of course, August 1st is George's birthday.  This year, he turned fourteen.  That means that if you turn that into dog years, he is an ancient old man.  But he is still full of life!!!  He celebrated with a gourmet birthday cake (even though that was just a few days ago).  Below is a collage form past birthdays that I made.

Also on the first, my mom finally got an iPhone!!!  I'm so proud of her even though I think she hates it.  It has been nice to be able to FaceTime her if I want.

On August 2nd, I had a wedding at Red Pine Lodge at the Canyons Resort in Park City.  This was not my favorite.  I thought it was an odd location.  Plus, it was kind of a chilly, gloomy day and the end of the night was not so pleasant.  We did have some delicious wedding cake though!!  The picture of the trees below was right next to the wedding ceremony location.

The next week, Elder Layton got home from his mission in Nebraska.  There was a huge group that went to the airport when he landed.  It still is weird that he is back in Utah and not still in Nebraska.  It also has been weird seeing him at home with his family since I got to know them without him being here in Utah.

My parents were planning on coming to visit me the next week, so my next few days were spent getting ready for their arrival.  The day they were to arrive, Littleberry decided to poop on my walls.  I was furious!!!  I had been gone for just a little bit and I came back and my bathroom was a complete mess!!  I do think that he may have had a seizure because it was not normal of him.  I had to quickly bathe him so he wasn't a mess for when my parents arrived.  The one picture is a cute one of him, the other is a face of shame after his bath.

My parents set out on their journey on Monday, August 11th.  They arrived here the next day.  Part of the reason my mom had wanted to have an iPhone was so she could have the wonderful GPS assist her in finding my apartment.  This was the last time the Impalas were seen together.

The next few days were a whirlwind of lots of activities and getting things done.

Finishing Up September?

I am terribly behind on my blog....  So, I am going to try and get caught up!!!  Good thing I have an excellent memory!  We will rewind back to  six and a half weeks ago.

In Utah, Pioneer Day is a huge deal.  I never knew that it really was considered a holiday.  Apparently it is.  On Thursday, July 24th, there is a big celebration.  There is a parade with floats, bands, and other things in it.  I went to this parade and was impressed that it was a legit parade!  It was a beautiful day and we had good seats.  While some people seem to be very excited about the Pioneer Day parade, I do not think that it is something that I need to go to every year.  But it was good!!!

The night before Pioneer Day, there was a small local parade that I went to.  It was mainly for kids to decorate their bikes and parade through the neighborhood en route to a neighborhood picnic / barbecue.  There were different activities and even a show with animals later on in the evening.  I participated in an egg toss and had an exploded egg all over my arms, but it was fun.  The strange thing of the evening that I must share is that I ran into my former boss and learned that he had also been dismissed from the company.  I knew that it was a sinking ship!!!  The whole endeavor really has been unfortunate and a sad, sad tale.  But it was nice closure for me.  If we fast forward to present time, I found out that another coworker had been fired a little over a week ago.  So, now, almost everyone that once was there is no longer working there.

Back to Pioneer Day.  Later that afternoon, after the parade, I came home and finished putting together a pasta salad for a gathering with the Laytons and some of their family.  It really was a great day.  Melissa's sister has a pool so we spent the afternoon swimming and lounging about.  There is a great view of the mountains from their backyard and the day was perfect.  Plus, there was lots of good food.  I must point out that this was the first time that I swam in years.  Since 2005, I believe.

The next day, Friday, July 25th, I got up super early to go on a hike with the Laytons to Albion Basin.  This is in the Alta ski area, up Little Cottonwood Canyon.  There is a lake at the top of the trail - Cecret (Secret) Lake.  The wildflowers were at their peak so it was extra pretty.  If you follow me on Facebook, this was the day I saw a mother and baby moose along the trail.  I got a lot of interesting comments about those moose and being too close to them.  This is a well traveled trail and I believe the moose are used to people being around them.  Also, I'm pretty sure people do not know the concept of "zoom" on a camera.  Just to clear that up.

The day did not stop there.  It actually got to be a very long, exhausting day.  Half of our group disbanded after the Albion Basin hike.  The rest went to Snowbird, another ski and summer resort that is located in Little Cottonwood Canyon but closer to Salt Lake City.  We had lunch and then went up the tram to the top of the mountain.  We hiked along the top of the mountain which I believe is called scrambling.  I am an expert at scrambling.  The view was pretty great.

Continuing on, we then went to the other canyon - Big Cottonwood Canyon.  Out of the two, I think I like Big better.  It is a little more rough and would have been carved from a river rather than a glacier.  There are two ski resort areas in Big Cottonwood Canyon - Solitude and Brighton.  We also did the Donut Falls hike which is before the ski resorts.  Near the Brighton ski area, there is a lake - Silver Lake.  I went their earlier in the Summer and took some pictures there.  We made a stop there and then went up the mountain to what is Guardsman Pass, another place I went to earlier this year.  That is the top of the mountain pass.  From there, we drove down the other side to Park City.  I have been around Park City, but had not yet been on main street where all the cute shops are.  We just drove around there for a little while and then finally headed back to Salt Lake City.  It was such a long day!!!  It was about a twelve hour day.  I was horrifically sunburned because initially we were just going to hike Albion Basin and that was all.  If we had just done that, we would have been done before eleven.  My phone had died back at Donut Falls.  When I got back to my car, I found out that I was wanted to fill in for someone for a wedding the next day.  If I had known that I would be working a wedding, I would not have done all that I did on that Friday....

I got back that evening and was hot, tired, sunburned, and dirty.  I took a shower and then put as much lavender oil on my burn as I could.  It did help, but I did spend the next two weeks peeling.

The next day was the wedding at Red Cliff Ranch which is near Heber.  I had been wanting to do this wedding all Summer!!!  I was excited to be part of it; however, I felt so tired from the day before.  Unfortunately, this wedding was outside and had three different locations to it.  The ceremony site was in a meadow, the reception and cocktail hour were in the stable, and the dancing was in a pavilion near the stable.  I had to walk numerous times up the long, slightly elevated dirt path to the meadow.  I was not thrilled.  Workers at Red Cliff Ranch said that this particular day was the hottest day it had been in several years.  There was no A/C anywhere at this venue.  I felt sorry for myself and my sunburned arms.

This had been a wedding where we had anticipated George Clooney to be at; however, he did not attend.  It still was a stunning wedding to be part of and the New York Times was there to cover the story of the wedding.  I enjoyed seeing horses and cows and we did get a great dinner.  I was starving!!  I was so hungry that when I was eating some fish, I didn't realize right away that there was still skin.  I was horrified and still am.  I had kale for the first time and it was kind of spicy.  I really liked the table setting for this wedding reception and it still is one of my favorites.

A funny moment from the evening was when the guests were being seated for dinner.  Some of the tables were in the actual horse stalls and one man asked me, "Which stall am I in?"  While this is in a stable and there are real horse stalls, this is not a typical stable that is dirty and smelly.  I do think the stalls are used sometimes, but I also think that it is more for show.

The next day, I'm not even sure how long I slept, but I was exhausted!!!  So, that wraps up July.

More pictures can be found on Facebook at this link:

Sunday, July 27, 2014

A Donut a Day

It seems that I am always behind in blogging.  Or I am over-posting.  The past week has been a crazy one.  Let's start at last Sunday.

Last Sunday, I went up Big Cottonwood Canyon and there was the July birthday party with the Layton family.  We had some great food and there was even a little squirrel that came and ate some of the food that we set out.  He liked watermelon and took some up the tree with him.  It had been raining off and on throughout the afternoon, but it did stop once the evening came.

We were just about to leave the cabin and I thought I would go to the bathroom since we were going to hike to a waterfall.  I got in and closed the door, and the lights went out!!  This was a very dark, little room with a sliding lock.  I grabbed my phone and darted out the door.  Because the cabin is used mainly on the weekends, the power is shut off when it is not in use.  This always happens to me.  Many times, on planes, I will be in the restroom when there starts to be turbulence.  The lights shut off in the bathroom on planes and then the alert comes on.  Not fun.

We left and headed up the canyon to go on a hike to Donut Falls.  This was a hike that was about half a mile to the waterfall.  The creek gushes through a donut-shaped hole in the mountain.  There is a cave under the "donut".  The waterfall goes through the "donut hole" and into the cave.  Really neat!!!  I loved this.  It was a perfect day.  Despite it being Summer, as we got close to the waterfall, I could see my breath and also see my breath in the cave.  It was pretty chilly!!!  This was my first climbing experience.  We had to climb to get to the waterfall.  It was worth it.  I was super sore for two days afterwards though.  We also had to maneuver our way across rocks and logs in the creek.  This was kind of difficult for a flatlander.  I basically gave up and walked through some areas of the creek.  My shoes were soaked!!!  When we were climbing, Alex kept saying that it was like walking on stairs.  All I could think of was that I don't know any stairs that are like this!!!  I am getting better at being outdoorsy.

The rest of the week, I was doing some busy car things.  On Tuesday, I finally got some things done at the DMV.  I have to get a safety and emissions test though since I am in Utah.  On Wednesday, I spent three hours getting my car worked on.  After hours, I still did not pass the emissions test - which means that my poor little flatlander car is harming the air here.  It is single-handedly causing smog in the Salt Lake Valley!!!  I will continue my car quest tomorrow.

I will continue on my blog catching up tomorrow.  This was three days worth!