Saturday, January 30, 2010
The Top Ten reasons I am thankful for Rich:
10. He is extremely cautious in all areas of life. Decisions, and plans for the future are weighed carefully. The safety of his family is always on his mind. In fact, if he errs - it is always on the side of caution.
9. He is a tightwad - he always has our future in mind - he does not like to part with money. He is all about saving.
8. He is generous. He is very likely to put what he wants on the back burner so that he can help someone in need.
7. He is loyal in all aspects of his life - home, family, friends, and work.
6. He is a great cook. He taught me how to cook without recipes!
5. He is a diverse person. He can fix anything that needs fixing, remodel a home, he is a philospher, an engineer, a VA Tech and Pittsburgh Steelers football fan, and a Pittsburgh Penguins hockey fan. And even better. . . he'd be the first one in line to take me to a performance of the Mozart Requiem should such an opportunity present itself.
4. He has many, many skills. He can and does fix anything that needs repairing. He is a computer wizard. So, I never have to worry about how I am going to get anything fixed around the house, nor do I ever have to worry about what to do about computer issues. We never have to call a repair man for anything!
3. He is incredibly responsible with our finances and is committed to providing not only for our present, but also our future. I have never spent a single second worrying about money since we've been married. He always takes care of everything for me. When he wants to buy something out of the ordinary, he spends several weeks talking it through with me, and even calling a friend with great knowledge in the area of finances(Tony) for advice and wisdom.
2. He models strong leadership for our children. He expects immediate obedience from our children and has challenged me continually to train our children to be obedient. He is consistent with them and that consistency never leaves them wondering what is expected of them.
1. He is my best friend. He is a take charge kind of a guy, he is a leader, and he doesn't hesitate to let me know how he wants things to be. However, he is just as interested in how I want things to be. We are in this life together and he always wants to know what I think. I am thankful that we are a team and get to spend our lives serving God together.
Thursday, January 28, 2010
27. I became the choral director at Woodside High School. I taught 9th through 12th grade chorus. I had an unauditioned Girls Chorus and Men's Chorus, a select Women's Ensemble, a select mixed chamber chorus, and a select Jazz Choir.
28. I loved that job.
29. Rich quit Cox Communications when he was called to be pastor at a local Baptist Church in York County.
30. I took Katie to Petsmart twice a week - just for fun - what else in the world did I have to do?
31. Rich and I used to take vacations. We went on a road trip to New York State. We had an idea of where we were going and what we wanted to do, but left the itenerary wide open for surprises! We went to the fingerlakes, stayed in a bed and breakfast, and then decided on a whim to drive up to Toronto to see the Hockey Hall of Fame. On the way back, we stopped at Niagra Falls. Then at the last minute decided to drive home a different way and stopped in at Rich's grandparents house near Pittsburgh. It was one of our favorites memories.
32. We planned another vacation the summer of 2000. We planned a trip all around being able to take our dog. We found cabin in the mountains of NC where our dog was welcome. So, we spent a week in this cabin in the mountains - no television - just lots of quiet time - reading - sitting on the porch looking out at the view. We went on hiking trips, took Katie swimming at a mountain lake, went to an olympic site where they did the white water rafting. It was a fantastic vacation!
33. We lived about 10 minutes from my sister and her family. Her husband is a pastor too, so we were unable to go to church together. We were both so busy that we didn't get to see each other much. She was busy with her children and I was busy with my job and church.
34. We met Tony and Marsha Ingraldi at the church where Rich pastored. They have become like family to us. We try to spend time with them every chance we get - they live in Virginia.
35. Rich taught me how to cook. My mom would have taught me lots of things if she could have ever pulled me away from the piano - so, after we were married Rich helped me learn the art of cooking. He still enjoys giving me pointers.
36. I miss living in Virginia. Although I grew up military,and moved around quite a bit, Virginia has always felt like home.
37. We were married almost 5 years when our first child was born. We spent those entire first 5 years planning for me to stay at home when we had children. So, even though, our income dropped by almost half - we never had to change our lifestyle. We always lived as though we only had one income.
38. Rich is brilliant with finances. I never touch our finances. He does all the bank work. Thank you, Lord!
39. We live well below our means because we want to pay cash to buy a house. We plan on renting until we can buy a house without a loan.
40. Rich is one of the most diverse people I know - I am not diverse.
41. The tragedy of 9/11 came shortly after we found out that we were expecting our first child.
42. I thought that because no woman in my family had ever had morning sickness - I wouldn't have it either. I was wrong. And for me, it was all day sickness - and lasted for 16 weeks, and got worse with each pregnancy.
43. When we had our 20 week u/s, they told us that it was a 96% chance it was a girl. They were wrong. I knew they were wrong. My feeling was boy. It left me feeling very confused.
44. Martin Emery was born in 2002. He was named after my dad and Rich's paternal grandfather.
45. I was a completely inexperienced mom. I'd hardly even held a baby for more than a few minutes. I felt completely inadequate - and that I didn't even have any motherly instincts. I discovered that I just needed to figure it out myself, and stop listening to everyone else and their advice.
46. Rich's Mom and Dad came to Virginia and spent a week with us after Martin was born. Rich's dad cooked all of our meals that week. (amazing cook that he is!) We were lost when they left. We were afraid we would starve because I couldn't figure out how to cook a meal and also take care of a baby. (4 babies later - that now makes me laugh)
47. Martin had colic. He screamed 24/7. He only slept 40 minutes at a time. He did finally grow out of it by about 6 weeks old.
48. My parents moved to the town where we lived the same week that Martin was born. It was a blessing to have them so close to us!
49. We moved to NC almost a year after my parents moved to our town to be close to us. We had no idea it would work out that way. Thankfully, my sister and her family were and are still there within a mile of my parent's house.
50. I did not want to move to NC. I knew that it was the right move for Rich. I knew that he needed to get his PhD, and that this was the next logical step for our family. But I was not happy about leaving Virginia.
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
Monday, January 25, 2010
2. A dear friend of mine, who happened to be my 7th grade Sunday School teacher back in 1986 is the one who invited me to her church and the one who introduced me to Rich.
3. We both knew that very night that we would marry each other one day.
4. Since I had just graduated from college that same year with a degree in Music Education - and the movie Mr. Holland's Opus had just come out - I thought it would be perfect to have the last name Holland.
5. Rich proposed to me in January of 1997 - just 2 1/2 months after we met.
6. My mom and I went shopping for a wedding dress on the day that Rich proposed, and we found the dress and bought it.
7. I was teaching middle school chorus at the time of my engagement.(in Virginia Beach) My mom planned my wedding. She would ask me how I wanted things to be, and I would always reply, "I don't know, how is it supposed to be?" I was never the little girl who always dreamed about the wedding. My mom did a great job planning it - everything was perfect.
8. The one thing that I planned about my wedding that actually was important to me - the music! We had a string quartet, trumpet, organ, and piano. It was perfect!
9. I also wrote a song and sang it to Rich at our wedding as a surprise.
10. He was very surprised.
11. I didn't cry when I sang it.
12. Rich spoke at our wedding - he did a gospel presentation.
13. We married in July of 1997 - 6 months after the engagement - we went to Orlando for our honeymoon.
14. Rich was still an engineer officer in the army when we got married. He was also working on his MDiv at Southeastern. (commuting each week)
15. The first time we ever celebrated one of my birthdays together, we had already been married a couple of months.
16. I got a job teaching elementary music in Newport News and I started about a month after we married.
17. I learned very quickly that I did not like teaching elementary music. I preferred teaching chorus.
18. Rich and I bought a house 5 months after we got married.
19. We got a 1900 square foot house in a great neighborhood for $89,000. It was assessed for about $30,000 more than that. It was built in 1964 and still had the original wallpaper. We had alot of work to do on the house, but it was worth it. It was a beautiful house.
20. Rich renovated the house, and we we sold it 5 years later, we sold it for around $137,000. Pretty great profit margin for 5 years!
21. Rich gutted the kitchen of that house from the floors to the ceiling, did electric work, ran new water lines, put in a dishwasher, garbage disposal, new cabinets, new flooring completely updating the kitchen. It was beautiful when it was done. I was only able to enjoy it for less than a year before we moved. But it was good while it lasted! When we were selling our beautifully renovated house, Rich comforted me by saying, "don't worry, honey, you are taking the carpenter with you!"
22. Rich commuted to Wake Forest two days each week the first several years of our marriage to work on his MDiv.
23. I plugged away at the elementary music job, but didn't love it. The school system wouldn't transfer me within the system until I had been there for 3 years, so I quit. I was rehired by the same school system at as a high school choral director. I think it would have been easier if they had just transferred me.
24. Rich began doubting the whole MDiv process and stopped going to school for about a year. In that year away from Seminary, he got a job working for Cox Communications and was also hired to be the interim pastor at a local church.
25. The local church where he was interim wanted him to be their pastor. He accepted the call to be their pastor and went back to finish his MDiv at Southeastern. (commuting back and forth)
***look for 26-50 in another post***
Friday, January 22, 2010
Thursday, January 21, 2010
Martin is loving his ice skating lessons!! This week I took him along with the other three children. As you can see, he is still somewhat timid - but he is improving - and more importantly - he loves it! My friend Shannon is behind Martin in the video. She was helping him out today during the free skate time.
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
Monday, January 18, 2010
2. I didn’t have to walk out of the church service with Rosalie yesterday. This was a very big deal. It was hard work to keep all of them in the church service, but Rosalie has definitely been the hardest. Martin was a close second. Aaron and Jonathan almost always fell asleep on me during the sermon, so it seemed so much more manageable in that respect. Rosalie, will not fall asleep on me, and she wants to talk to everyone all around her. While, I’d like to think that my ability to keep her quiet yesterday is a new trend that will continue. . . I am far too realistic to believe it. So, I’ll just say, I hope she does well next week - and leave it at that.
3. Jonathan has turned into an incredibly sweet little boy. I have walked through the fire with that child. He is strong willed, determined, and tough as he can be. I determined early on that he would not win. And he was a tough opponent - but he was no match for his daddy - I would say me, but I tend to be a pushover. Not long after he turned 3 - he became incredibly pleasant, joyful, and sweet. I am so thankful for his sweet smiles and constant, “I love yous”.
4. Aaron wants to be a restaurant worker when he grows up.
5. I am continually amazed at Martin’s tender heart and generosity toward his siblings.
6. I miss singing and playing the piano. Theoretically, I could still sing and play - I do, in fact, still have a piano, and I do still have a voice. I don't, however, have the time.
Friday, January 15, 2010
Thursday, January 14, 2010
My mom bought a set of legos while we were visiting in Virginia last fall. Martin sat and played with those things for hours upon hours. Since returning home, we got a couple sets of Pirate legos for him. He will sit down and play with those legos for hours. It takes him a long time to just build them. After he's done building he will sit and play with them for hours. It's been fun watching him enjoy the challenge and follow the instructions.
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
Tuesday, January 12, 2010
Monday, January 11, 2010
I have awoken many times in the past month to find Jonathan all curled up on the couch with his baby and night-night. I have no idea at what point in the night he comes down. Many times his cup of orange juice is sitting on the end table next to him. I suppose it's possible he gets up thinking that it's morning, goes to the refrigerator, grabs his OJ, and waits on the couch for everyone else to get up. . . and eventually falls back to sleep.
Friday, January 8, 2010
2004 - Rich continued to work very hard for the family at Sears, while plugging away at the PhD, Aaron was born in December!!
2008 - Rich began to see the PhD as a never ending process unless we made drastic changes. He decided to quit his job and ONLY write his dissertation. Thankfully we had enough in savings to live on while he did this. A month and a half after he quit his job, we were very surprised to be expecting our 4th child. Still homeschooling. Rich finished dissertation and graduated in December!!!!
2009 - Our 4th child and daughter, Rosalie was born. Easy delivery and easy recovery. Rich worked from home teaching online courses through several Universities. We were so thankful that after many years of him being away from us most of the time. . . he was able to work from home and be with us all the time. What a huge blessing! Still homeschooling - Martin and Aaron.
What a busy decade we had! It was full of lots of change and lots of blessings!
Thursday, January 7, 2010
Learning balance while trying to pick up a stuffed animal
Successful attempt - stuffed animal in hand
Martin's first day of ice skating was yesterday. The Ice Skating rink in our town offers special classes in the mornings specifically for homeschoolers.
He said that it was hard, but he really liked it. He wants to learn how to ice skate so he can play ice hockey one day! Oh, how his Daddy likes to hear that!!
Tuesday, January 5, 2010
Monday, January 4, 2010
Friday, January 1, 2010
We had an appetizer dinner. Hot pizza dip (thanks Marsha!), spinach dip, and meatballs in italian sauce. For dipping, we had celery, carrots, broccoli, potato chips, pretzel crisps, and white italian crusty bread.We ate our appetizer dinner on a big blanket spread out on the floor while watching Walt Disney's Swiss Family Robinson.
The boys had only one thing to say before they went to bed, "Can we have another party day tomorrow?"