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Welcome to the Melberg family website!

Here’s a bit about us:

Rorik works as a computer programmer at ICU Medical in San Clemente, CA. (For anyone who has visited us, that is the beach town with the happy hour on the pier.) He works mostly in San Clemente, but travels every once in a while to Salt Lake City and to Mexico.  Rorik loves spending time in the garage on his woodworking projects (see some of his work on the “Rorik” page) and doing nearly anything outdoors (everything from biking to hiking to backpacking to swimming in the ocean).

Julie is a mostly-stay-at-home mom, spending her days with 4-year old Sophia and 1-year old Henry.  She teaches 2-1/2 days a week at Concordia University in Irvine as a resident faculty in mathematics, and loves the moments where she is able to sew (see some of her work on the "Julie" page), plunk on her piano keyboard, chase the kiddos and spend time gardening & outdoors.

Sophia keeps both of us busy, but is a fun and usually easy little girl. Sometimes we marvel at how quickly she grows….sometimes she seems to grow overnight.  She has completed her first year of pre-school (which she loves) and loves to spend time outdoors, riding her bike, swimming and playing with her little brother.  She loves books (her favorites include Charlie & the Chocolate Factory and Charlotte's Web), doing artwork and playing games.

Henry is also growing quickly.  He's learning to communicate (through both words and motions) and LOVES to be outdoors, playing with his sister and exploring.  He loves playing at the playground (no slide is too big), "helping" in the garden and reading books.  He and Sophia have a special bond which is very fun to watch...they make each other laugh like no one else can.  

We also have two cats: Cinder, who is about 15 years old, and Leonardo, who is 7 years old. The kids love chasing the cats, who are both very tolerant of the kids.  Leo is still a little scared of the kids...only Cinder will let the kids come within petting distance. 

We hope you check back frequently for updates and more photos!

The Melberg Family Blog

13/9-09 16.36 RJM
Trip to the San Deigo Wild Animal Park

It has been a long while since we have posted on our blog.  All is well, Henry is 6 months old (he might be a contributing factor to no blog posts).

 We went to the Wild Animal Park with Suzy, Lanz, Barb, and Mike and had a great time.  Suzy, Lanz, Julie and I went on the Photo Safari and took some great pictures.  See them on our photos page.


10/1-09 20.47 JAM
29 Weeks and Counting...
Well, bedrest is not what we were planning on for this pregnancy, but it appears to be working.  We first went to the OB at 24 weeks, 1 day and discovered that things were going wrong....and here we are 5 weeks later, at home and still pregnant.  Even though bedrest is no treat, we're very glad that it appears to be working and that Baby Boy is still where he's supposed to be.  We are blessed to have so many people helping us, especially our moms...and more recently our sisters.  Julie's sister, Mindy, is here for 2 weeks, followed by Suzy for another one.  The "village" that we have working for us really helps keep our household together, meals on the table, clothes clean and so on.  We are thankful!  Our goal is to make it to the first week of March on bedrest...that's when we'll be 36 weeks and our OB feels it will be safe to relieve the bedrest and let the Baby Boy come when he's ready!  We appreciate all the thoughts and prayers from everyone...and we'll keep you posted!
14/12-08 10.35 JAM
A long road ahead....
Well, many of you know by now, but just in case you don't....my pregnancy is considered super-high risk because of my pre-term delivery of Sophia.  Because of that, my doctor has been extremely conservative and cautious, making sure that everything is going well with the development of this baby.  Just this last week, my doctor noticed that there have been some complications, and it seemed like my body was preparing for another pre-term delivery.  SO....he has done a little procedure that will (hopefully) ensure that the baby stays in a lot longer.  In addition, he has ordered me to strict bedrest...only getting up to use the restroom, eat quickly and shower every few days.  My only outing is to his office; we're still determining how often I will need to visit him.  SO....we're working to have all our friends & family help out with Sophia (now 30 months), keeping our house in order, keeping us fed and keeping all of us sane.  SO...it's going to be a long road....my doctor would like this to hold until early March.  So please keep us in your thoughts and prayers, that we can survive bedrest and keep this baby safe until it's full-term!
02/10-08 21.21 JAM
Fall update...and wager your guesses!

Well, we're officially in the 2nd trimester of Melberg Baby #2, and things are looking good so far. Our OB is super conservative, so is doing his best to keep this one in a little big longer. I think with all the visits we will make there in the next 6 months, we'll be pretty good friends by the end! We don't know the gender of the baby, so thought to make it a little more fun as we wait the next few months, to have a little game to see who can guess our baby's birthday, size and sex the closest! See the above link (or go to www.expectnet.com and enter game name "MelbergBaby2" to guess what and when we're having! The winner will receive a very special homemade treat from the Melbergs!

We've also decided to sell our house, so it officially went on the market today. We realize that it's not the best of markets to sell a house, but figure it will only take one buyer! We would like to move to a larger house to meet the needs of our growing family....so please say a little prayer that we can sell this one and buy another one smoothly in this economy!

Other than that we're all very good. Rorik's new job is going well, Julie's enjoying her term at Concordia (and looking forward to having a term off next semester) and Sophia is very "2". She's very verbal right now, singing and talking up a storm. She still enjoys her music class we attend weekly, and still has a great group of other toddlers we play with a few times a week. She loves spending time with her two grandmas, who luckily live nearby. We've both done a lot of house projects lately, getting the house ready for selling and (hopefully) moving. Neither of us have found much time lately for hobbies, but hopefully soon.....

28/8-08 13.33 JAM
Sophia's Gonna Be a Big Sister!

Well, it's official.  Sophia's going to be a big sister soon.  Hopefully in March 2009.  We visited the OB this week, so got to see our first little peak at the little baby.  All is looking good so far!  Of course, with my history, my OB is going to be super-conservative this time, so it looks like I'll be on a special progesterine shot (to prevent pre-term contractions like last time) starting in a few weeks.  The plan is to take them for the middle 22 weeks of pregnancy, and hopefully get this little baby to full-term.  So say a little prayer for the baby and us, that we can keep it safe til March!

31/1-08 15.31 JAM
January 2008

I can barely believe that as I write this, it is the last day of January 2008.  It seriously seems like yesterday that we were putting away Christmas decorations, now tomorrow is February 1!  So far, 2008 has treated us well.  Rorik just took a new position at ICU Medical in San Clemente, where he will be doing internal web-programming work.  I just started another semester at Conordia, teaching their general education math class, which is a lot of fun.  Sophia continues to grow and thrive, enjoying playing at the parks, singing at her music class, doing anything outdoors and "helping" Daddy in the garage.   Last time she was at the doctor (at her 18-month check-up), she was in the 80th-percentile for her height and 25th for her weight.  (I wish the same were true for us!)  It's unbelievable to me that next Wednesday is Ash Wednesday, and we are well on our way towards Easter.  Sophia really enjoyed Santa Claus at Christmas, and I'm sure she'll enjoy the Easter Bunny as well....

The excitement for this month is that my grandma, 89 years old, made another trip to California from Southern Indiana.  It's been two years since she's been here, and required my aunt, who lives near her, to drive her to Indianapolis (Thanks, Jane!) and required my mom flying back and forth across the country to shuttle her, but it's great.  Sophia is my grandma's only great-granddaughter, and Grandma really enjoys watching Sophia play. 

Also, for those of you who haven't read my friend Brian's blog, you should do so.  Their son is a year and a bit out of a bone marrow transplant, and is thriving as well.  (See their blog at www.cure4treebeard.org.)  It's truly an inspiring story, medically as well as spiritually.

We're trying to be better at updating our blog and pictures....stay tuned this weekend for Valentine's pictures of Sophia!


12/11-07 23.15 JAM
The holidays are coming!

For those of you who have tuned into the news in the past few weeks, we survived the wildfires.  They were too close for comfort...but we are all fine.  It was closest to Rorik's parents house in Lake Forest, then moved south and east, towards us.  We are thankful for all the hard work of all the firemen and fire crews who kept homes safe.  When we have driven through the canyon recently (about 5 minutes from our house) we can see burned brush.  There were homes destroyed, but luckily no one we knew.

Sophia as a monkey (Oct 07)Halloween with Sophia was fun.  We didn't take her trick-or-treating, but instead had our friends Peter & Debbie (with son Owen) and Susan over for the evening.  We made pizza, drank some wine, and answered the door for all the trick-or-treaters.  Sophia loved seeing all the costumes, even the ones that I think were a little disturbing.  She had a monkey costume (see the photos page) which she absolutely adored.  Every time she sees it, she makes the monkey sound "ooo-oooh" and gets super-excited.  It's hilarious.

We can hardly believe next week is Thanksgiving.  We are thankful that our parents are having Thanksgiving together again, so we get to spend time with both our families.  My sister Suzy (from Monterey) can't come down this year, but we think that Rorik's brother, Derek, and fiance will spend the day with us as well.  Sophia loves turkeys; she hasn't quite mastered the "gobble-gobble" sound, but she thinks they're fun.  Hopefully she'll enjoy some turkey dinner this year too...instead of the mashed-up baby food she was eating last year.

We've realized it's the longest possible "Christmas season" (Thanksgiving to Christmas), but we're definitely looking forward to it.  As we've shopped the last few weeks, it's nice to see all the decorations, trees, wreaths, etc. being put up.  I think Sophia is really going to love the tree.  (We're having a tree decorating party with our siblings Derek and Suzy.  It should be a highlight of our season, complete with Rumple-Mintz schnappeling.)  As Sophia has seen the lighted trees in stores, she points excitedly, so when we have one in our home decked out with ornaments, I'm sure it will be even more exciting.  We're looking forward to sharing it with her this year.  We're also looking forward to sharing the story of Christmas with Sophia...we might even take her to a live nativity.

We hope that each of you have a wonderfully long and wonderfully joyful holiday season this year.  Enjoy every moment of decorating the tree, sitting by the fire with hot cocoa and singing the Christmas carols and hymns!  Remember, it's the "most wonderful time of the year"!  Happy Thanksgiving and Happy Advent!

23/10-07 14.00 JAM
California Wildfires

Well, if any of you have watched the news in the last few days, you'll know that there are twelve different wildfires burning across Southern California right now.  This is the typical "wildfire" season.  Well, this is a picture from our front porch this afternoon.  It's been a long time since we have had measurable rain in Southern California, and right now we have Santa Ana winds, which make conditions worse.  (Santa Ana winds happen when the air flow reverses.  Usually, the wind comes from the west, in off the ocean as cool ocean breezes, but currently the winds are coming from the east, directly from the desert.  The winds are hot and they are strong.)  The last few nights we've both been awakened as the strong winds blow our house.  We can hear the windows rattling and the wind blowing through the attic, making its whistling noises as it does so.  It's amazing how strong winds can be.  In some places, they were hurricane-grade winds, just dry and hot.

The fire nearest to us is called the "Santiago Fire".  It was started in three separate places in Irvine, about 20 minutes from us, and is assumed to be arson at this point.  The three "hot spots" have converged and now it is one big fire.  It's burned from Tustin to Foothill Ranch.  A friend of mine emailed this morning and asked if the wildfires are near us.  I've lived in Southern California for almost ten years, and every other time that question has been asked, I've answered "no."  Well, today the answer is "yes." 

I have a good friend who lives in Irvine.  The fires were within 1/2 mile of her house two days ago, so she has evacuated to her parents' house.  Yesterday, the fires were in Foothill Ranch (where Rorik's company, MCS Golf, has their office, about 15 minutes from our home).  The fires burned right up to the homes yesterday.  My friend, Samantha, who lives in Foothill Ranch voluntarily evacuated yesterday afternoon.  I was over at her house today, and there are ashes everywhere in the air.  The fire has now moved closer to our home.  As I drove to Samantha's today, I passed two different very distinct plumes of smoke, which is how you can see where the hottest spots are.  It's only a 15 minute drive, and the fires were definitely in between our houses.  Another friend lives in between us, and she was under mandatory evacuation; she said the flames were burning 100 yards from her back porch, but so far, they had been kept at bay.

The winds are supposed to die down soon, and the firefighters have done their best.  We were watching the news last night, and they were reporting from the backyard of a house which overlooked a canyon.  The backyard had lightposts (with the globe lights) in it; they shot a clip of the lights, which had been melted.  That's how close the fire got to the house, but the firefighters stopped it from encroaching the house.  As I drove home today, I passed 4 or 5 firetrucks, each from a different town from around Southern California.  It's amazing how many people mobilize to help fight these fires.

So please all pray for the best.  We are hoping that the winds die down and that the fires are able to be controlled soon.  There are tons of people who have evactuated from their homes, and many who have lost homes.  We feel blessed that even though the air quality is horrible, that our house is safe (so far) and that our parents homes are too.  We just hope that the firefighters are able to contain the fires soon, so that everyone will be safe and will be able to return to their homes!



16/9-07 20.24 JAM
Fall is in the air!

Well, things are changing around here.  People say that California doesn’t have seasons, but I can tell you it does.  Not the same seasons as the Midwest, but you can feel fall in the air!  We took a walk this evening, and it was chilly by the time we got home.  We both loved it!  School has started, which means that our evenings get a little crazy sometimes.  Julie’s still doing BTSA (supporting new teachers) and is teaching her night class at Concordia.  So Rorik & Sophia have some good father-daughter time a couple evenings a week, while Julie is off teaching lessons and supporting the new math teachers in Tustin.  And, we know that all our regular TV shows are coming soon….it’s almost premiere week.  (The Office premieres Sept. 27….we can’t wait!)  Fun, fun….yes, fall is in the air!

Sophia learned to climb up her slide today.  It was hilarious to watch her.  She makes it to the top about one of every five times, but the rest of the times, she slides back down on her belly, which is even funnier.  She’s very into “hide and seek” right now too….covering her eyes (well, she actually peeks through her fingers, but is at least pretending that she is hiding her eyes) and her favorite is hiding in closets (either behind the curtains in her closet or behind our closet doors).  Either way, it’s so funny to watch.  She’ll run and hide behind them, and she’ll stay completely still…until she thinks that either no one is coming for her or she cracks herself up so much she can’t stay there anymore.  She makes us laugh so much!


She is definitely making attempts at communication, but we’re having to interpret a lot of “bop,” “bup,” “dat” and “doh” sounds (which is a lot better than the whining she tries to do!).  The things she says pretty clearly:  “woof-woof” (anytime she sees a dog), “dat” (for cat…she hasn’t mastered “meow”), “oo-oo” for monkey (which actually sounds quite a bit like her “woof-woof”) and “ooh-ooh” for an owl (which again, sounds like either a monkey or a dog….context is everything).  I can’t tell you how many times we’ve been in a store and she’ll start making a sound….so I have to hunt and find what she is looking for.  She’s equally excited by balloons, which it seems like they have in every store nowadays. 


We’ve already received our October issues of our magazines, complete with Halloween costumes & ideas.  I know the mommies group is going to have a party for the little munchkins….wait til you see Sophia’s costume.  She loves it and looks adorable in it.  We can hardly believe that it’s almost that time again….it seems like only yesterday Sophia was dressed up as a pea!  Like they say, time really does fly!  We’ll post some more pictures of everyone (especially Sophia) soon!  Happy Fall to you all!

13/8-07 18.04 JAM
Our Wine Tour

We just spent the weekend with our good friends Peter & Debbie Berg in San Luis Obispo and Paso Robles (central coast of California). We’re celebrating our third wedding anniversary tomorrow, and Debbie & Peter are celebrating their second. So we packed up ourselves and our kids (Sophia and their 4-month old baby, Owen) to SLO and to wine country for a relaxing weekend. We had a great time. We were able to tour our favorite wineries as well as some new ones. Here’s where we stopped: Dark Star, Eagle Castle, Peachy Canyon, Doce Robles, J. Lohr, Tobin James and Hug. We’re hoping that both Sophia and Owen will grow up to be wine connoisseurs; we think they had a great start this weekend, and we were able to sample some great wines. So now in addition to the pack-n-play, stroller, car seat and Baby Bjorn that we had to pack into the car, we’re now also toting our nearly full two cases of wine. Thank goodness we brought the X-Terra!

Our neighbor had told us to taste wines at his favorite winery, J. Lohr, which turned out to be one of our favorite experiences this weekend. Not only was the wine great, but our server told us the vineyard right outside the tasting room had ripe grapes and she suggested that we go try a few and take some pictures among them. We did…and Sophia quickly discovered that wine grapes picked right off the vine are incredibly good. I think she must’ve eaten about a hundred of them, one by one, right off the vine and into her mouth. And I think every single time, as she bit into the sweet inside, she looked at one of us with a satisfied look on her face and said, “Mmmmmm! MMMMmmmmm!” Of course we had our camera there, and I think we shot about a hundred pictures of her in the vineyard.

Peter & Debbie had scouted out a fantastic hotel for us, as they had made a similar trip last year. We stayed at the Petit Soleil (www.PetitSoleilSLO.com) in downtown San Luis Obisbo. It was awesome, decorated like a French countryside inn. The rooms all had their own personality (ours, the Tournesol was decorated with sunflowers everywhere). Peter & Debbie had raved about the breakfasts and the hors d’vores every evening, and they were right. We had homemade cinnamon French toast one morning, and ham and asparagus strata the second. Our appetizers included artichoke bruschetta one evening and goat cheese toast the second, both with spicy almonds with fennel seeds and local Paso Robles wines. The service was fabulous, the owners were very personable and were very accommodating to all of our needs. We were able to walk to downtown SLO to a whole variety of restaurants and stores, and the very cute downtown area, where the streets are lined with trees and outdoor cafes. It was a great trip and a great way to celebrate our three years of marriage.

Some lessons we learned:
1. Kids don’t want to sleep in wine country. They might miss some of the tastings. 2. Winery cats who are missing their tail don’t appreciate a 16-month old trying to take its eyes out and will retaliate. 3. Sometimes the least friendly-looking animals (kittens and German shepherds) are the most tolerant of kids and actually enjoy kids running up & petting them. 4. If it seems like it’s a bad idea to go out to dinner after both babies haven’t had naps, order pizza delivered to the hotel. And if on the second night, the kids haven’t had their naps again, DEFINITELY order pizza.

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