Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Check out my new blog!

Hello, friends! I've missed posting here, but after much prayer and the encouragement of my husband, I've started a brand new blog!

Find it here: Perspectives in Parenting: Grace, Connection, and JESUS

The Bergey Bunch was heading in so many different directions (family updates, adoption, parenting, ministry, etc) that I was struggling with knowing where to focus. Perspectives in Parenting is a brand new blog with a focus on Christian parenting.

You'll find tabs on everything from older child adoption to co-sleeping, special needs parenting to child training techniques, connected discipline to missions and ministry parenting!

Eliana (13) even has her own section just for teens and she's gathered quite a bit of attention with her new posts on modesty and choosing friends wisely. :)

For the very first time, I've shared publicly about how I was almost aborted. You won't want to miss that post!

If you've enjoyed the Bergey Bunch over the years, make sure you go FOLLOW my new blog right now so you don't miss a single new post!

I also have a Facebook Page for Perspectives in Parenting. Don't forget to "like" the page so you can keep up with new posts, pictures, and join in the conversation. :)

I will still be blogging here with family updates and pictures. Blessings to you, my sweet friends! Hope to see you on the "other" side at Perspectives in Parenting!

Selina Bergey

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Crazy Day (Day Camp, July 2015)

Because of our deputation ministry, our summers are different than before.

There's no long break from school. 

We homeschool year-round in order to allow time to finish our work while traveling so frequently and attending so many missions conferences. We've visited zoos and science museums in just about every state we've been to so far and that's been one of the fun parts of the "traveling life". :)

Anyway, one of the highlights of this summer for our kiddos was a Day Camp at Eastside Baptist Church in Mebane, NC. Not only does this church support our ministry, they also have full hook-ups for our travel trailer and have allowed us to park there several times. Since we were parked there during their yearly Day Camp, they invited our children to attend.

They had a blast every day, but CRAZY DAY was definitely their favorite day. :)

It was a fun memory from this summer. :)

Monday, August 17, 2015

Happy Birthday, Titus!

Titus turned ONE today.

Sigh. A whole YEAR, gone, just like that.

We weren't near family or friends, so we just celebrated with the children. Titus didn't seem to mind (but Mommy wishes everyone could have been here to enjoy our little boy).

Nathaniel bought Titus a light-up ball. It was a HIT.


The siblings may have been more excited than the birthday boy. (OH, the joy of big families. So much love going around!)

"What is the creation that you are PUTTING RIGHT IN MY REACH???"

"Oh my---I can touch it! And eat it! YAY!!!"

"HEY---I wasn't done with that yummy, messy CAKE!" :)

His toes. Sweet, tiny little toes.

His favorite part of the party? The BUBBLES!

Titus, you were loved, wanted, adored, and cherished from the moment of your conception. You are the best thing that has ever happened to our family. We adore you and rejoice in this, your very FIRST birthday!

The Bergey Bunch :)

Titus Alexander Bergey, One Year Old Pictures

He's gorgeous. He's cuddly. He's chubby and soft and spunky. He brings JOY to the entire Bergey Bunch. 
We love you, Titus Alexander!

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Surviving to Thriving: Refreshing Tips for Successful Older Child Adoption

I wish that parenting came with a perfect "how to" handbook. I REALLY wish adoptive parenting came with that handbook. :)

I've been asked to share what we've learned so far in our adoptive parenting journey. Most of this applies to adopting an older child, but some of it is helpful with the younger crowd as well. Johanna has encouraged me to blog these things, and I plan on getting her to participate in the series. (We've got a great plan for an interactive video, too!)

There are so many things we wish we had known when we first brought Johanna home, things that have literally made the difference between us making it or not. I'm always learning and willing to share what I've learned---so, here goes. :)

(Please remember that I'm not THE expert in this field, and that all of my advice may or may not work for you and your child.)

Let's start at the beginning with number one. :)

1. Focus on the Essentials

Often families are struggling because of a focus on non-essentials.

Here's the thing: Kindness is an essential skill.

Eating oatmeal is not. 

Respect for authority is another esssential.

Throwing toilet paper into the toilet (and not the trashcan or floor) is not. :)

Communicating needs and feelings in English is an essential skill.

Reading in English is not. 

Bonding and forming healthy attachments with both parents and siblings is an ESSENTIAL skill----Education is not. 

Yes, they need an education. Yes, we want them to "catch up". Sadly, many families focus on catching up with education MORE than they focus on catching up on healthy attachments. 

If you're more stressed about what workbook/curriculum/online program/school your child needs than you are their ability to fully communicate with you in English, you are likely focusing on the WRONG SKILL. 

And here is where you find frustrated families, because a child with no healthy attachment skills will more than likely NOT CATCH UP on their education. So you're pushing, and forcing, and stressing, and the child could care less because the skill they need most is an attachment with you, not an education.

My number one advice for families adopting an older child is for them to FOCUS ON THE ESSENTIALS. 

Early essential skills worth focusing on:

---Kindness to both people AND animals.
---Communication of needs in new language.
---Healthy sleep and eating habits.
---Family rules for chores and safety.
---Playful interaction between family members.
---Loving touch is a GOOD thing.
---Parents are primary and NECESSARY for meeting needs.

Behaviors NOT worth focusing on in the beginning:

---Public behavior (even when it's incredibly embarrassing, lol).
---Gross habits (nose picking, burping at table, wiping snot on their sleeve, etc).
---Hygiene (daily showering, changing of clothes, brushing teeth, etc).
---Food preferences.
---Unhealthy attachment/idolization of past relationships or country.
---Heart change. (More on this one later.)

Now, of course, many of the things on the non-essential list are able to be addressed while still focusing on the essentials.

But anytime you find yourself overwhelmed or upset at your child, ask yourself--"Is this an essential skill I'm stressing about?" 

If the answer is "no", consider easing up, letting go, and returning to the essentials for awhile. :)

Friday, May 15, 2015

Mother's Day, 2015

I have a ton of pictures to share, from Ethan's 6th birthday to our sweet Mother's Day celebration.....BUT I don't have a strong wifi signal here this week, so I'll wait and upload all of them at once next time I have a good connection speed. :)

For now, I'll share two of my favorite pictures ever! I feel SO blessed to be Mama to these eight gorgeous children! :)

I'm working on Part 3 of the Residential and Results series, and should have it up by the end of tomorrow. Blessings!

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Sweet Seven Months Old

Titus woke up with a cold this morning. I took him outside to grab a few pictures for his "seven month birthday", but the WONDERFUL, BRIGHT, SUNSHINE was too much for his little blue (watery) eyes.
He wanted Mama and only Mama. :)

So, I recruited Eliana to take the following pictures, and I scooped up my baby and gave him Mama kisses.
Cold and all.
Cause I just can't ever get enough slobbery baby kisses. :)

 He grabbed me and pulled in!

Happy Seven Months, little one.
You bring utter delight to each member of our family.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

For My Daughter

Dearest Eliana,

Yesterday, you turned THIRTEEN. 

I could go on an on about how fast the years have flown by, or reminisce about all the adorable things you did when you were a baby, but instead, I want to take a minute and share my heart with you. 

I want you to know that I am proud of you. You are a born overcomer. There have been many things that life has thrown your way that have been challenging, and yet, you have overcome each one.

You are a forgiver. Only your family truly knows the things you've faced, but each time, you were given two options: become bitter, or forgive. I am overwhelmed with gratefulness that you chose what God wants---forgiveness.

You are an example. I love that I can tell the little girls to "be like Ellie" and it's a GOOD thing. :) I watch the way you mother them, and I listen to the way you speak to them, and I can hear Jesus in you. Always choose G-R-A-C-E in your dealings with children. They look to you for an example.

You are loved. From Aunt Rhonda (pictured above) to the rest of your extended family, from Johanna down to Titus, and especially from your Daddy and myself---YOU ARE LOVED. Wherever life takes you, never forget that we love you. Right now, at 13, you may take it for granted, but someday you will wake up and find yourself lonely for the chaos that is your f-a-m-i-l-y.

And we will be there for you. (Hopefully that's a reassuring thing. LOL)

You are beautiful. I look at you and stand in awe of your beauty. I love the fact that the inside is as beautiful as the outside.

It won't be long before young men start noticing the lovely young woman you've become. Don't waste your time with those who are more interested in your outer beauty than your true inner beauty. Save your heart for that very special young man who is waiting patiently for YOU.

Remember that there will always be someone "prettier" than you, "thinner" than you, more "popular" than you, and that seems "happier" than you. Don't fall into the female comparison trap. You'll never please everyone anyway.


The one God created in my womb thirteen years ago.

The one who fills our days with such delightful J-O-Y.

You're radiant with the love of Jesus. Remember that serving HIM will bring you true joy in life.

Money, fame, popularity, and plenty of STUFF will try to distract you from serving Jesus. Keep your heart close to HIM so His voice is louder than all of the distractions.

People say the "teen" years are hard. I know it has to be hard to feel stuck between child and adult. :)

Your Daddy and I are there for you as you navigate this path to adulthood. We aren't perfect parents and you won't be the perfect teen---but you will ALWAYS be the perfect teen for US.

I'm not sure I'm ready for you to grow up. I've never walked this journey before. It's exciting and scary all at once.

I know the time will come (sooner than I'd like!) when you will examine all that we have poured into you and determine what YOU truly believe. Your faith and your purpose in life will be brought under deep scrutiny.

If you only come away with one thing, my prayer is that it's a vibrant love relationship with Jesus. None of the rest is important if you don't LOVE HIM.

You could not do or be anything that could make us any more proud of you than we are right this very minute. You are our precious first-born, our miracle child, the child we begged God to allow us to have.

You are a delight to both Daddy and me.

I will love you forever.

Happy 13th birthday.