Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Ice Pictures

Just thought I'd share some pictures that Jessica took last week after the "ice" arrived! Enjoy!

Crunchy grass is really fun to walk on!!

Yumm...Juniper juice?!?

Anna thru a sheet of ice

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Ahhh...Snow Days!

I admit it...I LOVE SNOW DAYS!! I tend to be a bit of a "homebody". So when we have weather like this I don't have to feel guilty about staying home. As long as there is food in the pantry and diapers for Joseph...I'm set!!! I know there are those of you out there that HATE winter. I guess I must apologize for being so excited in your misery. I've lived in Indiana my whole life and I know with Indiana winters comes Indiana snow! I can't change that...so...let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!! Welp, all that being said...time to go out and enjoy. Anna and I are off to play in the white winter wonderland! ~Jaye~

Ha! Looks like Joseph needs a kleenex!!

Some inside fun!

Sunday, December 9, 2007

The End of Another Kind of Season

This weekend brought the end of another kind of season at our house....the Holland Birthday Season!! I am reminded that God does have a sense of humor. At least it seems that way when He planned the birth of our children!!

Wesley starts off the festivities with his 13th birthday on October 21st. He enjoyed a family dinner of his choice...t-bone steak. This had to have been the biggest, thickest steak I've ever seen!

grilled to perfection...

Success!! He did have his "peeps" over for some football and video games!!

Jessica's birthday is on November 16th. She turned 15 this year and hosted a "sleep" over with 8 of her closest friends!! Wow...that was a LOT of teenage girls in one space!!!

Joseph's 2nd birthday came on November 21st. He chose a quiet celebration with his family!!

Enjoying some birthday cake!!

Being 2 is hard work!!

Anna finishes up the birthday year on December 8th. She turned 7 this year. She also had a two day celebration by having her friends over on the 7th.

Then she opened our presents on her real b-day, the 8th.

Wow!! She all the sudden looks so old in this pic! :(

Well, all done for another year! Now we can sit back, relax and focus on the most important birthday of all!!! I hope you all are enjoying this joyous season!! ~Jaye~

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Seasons over

Well it's all over. What a disappointing season. Bears lose to the skins tonight 16-24. Augh.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Another Roof Job

This weekend I spent most of Saturday working on another roof. Anna brought home a school project...so we built a ginger bread house. It was so much fun. Anna is a girly girl and we don't often get to really connect on a lot of things. But this weekend it was all Daddy and his little girl. I had a blast. It was pretty cool being able to work on this with her. I know what your thinking but the project was for us to work on together and to be creative. So we did and we were. You'll notice the first picture is the little house that was sent home with Anna. She had a bag of candy, a cup of frosting and that little house.

Well, we decided to do a little addition. You can see we added a front door, a couple of windows, shutters, an overhang above the door, sugar plum light poles and a complete first floor. Anna was pretty proud of her little project when we were all done and I was proud of her creativity.

And yes, we have working lights! The light poles outside and one light inside.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Go Bears

What a great game, GO BEARS! How about the come from behind victory? Devin Hester is amazing! What a great night of football. I wish I could have seen the entire game, I am thankful for the NFL network and NFL GameDay. We made it home from church with about 4 minutes left in the game and were able to watch the last few minutes of regulation time and the entire overtime. Jaye was home watching a movie so Wes and I invaded Granny house to catch the end thus Granny got to enjoy the end of the game with us. I'm happy.
After Robbie Gould's 39-yard game winning field goal

Thursday, November 22, 2007


What am I thankful for?
The important things:
  • My amazing wife. She is the best and I don't deserve her. This year will be 20 years :)
  • Four great kids. They are healthy, wise, funny and all around super. The best kids in the world!
  • Many good friends. I'm blessed with some great friends. You'll never know how much I appreciate you.
  • A great church. The best ever! I'm very blessed for this church family.
  • A great job. I'm a youth pastor, I couldn't imagine a better job. Well, maybe chaplain for the Bears, but I don't think I'll be getting a call from Lovie very soon
Less important things:
  • The garage roof is finished! Wesley and I got up there this week and finished it up. We worked all day, but it is finished. Joseph shares our EXCITEMENT. (I just have to finish the front porch)

  • I'm still driving my first car. It's almost 40 years old, can't believe it.
  • My fancy new lap top computer. Thank you Dell, nice work.
  • Mt Dew. Nothing tastes better.
  • My tools. Thanks Dad for the many donations. Thanks Jaye and the kids for my fathers day gift...craftsman 19v cordless.
  • A huge turkey fryer. Thanksgiving dinner was amazing because of it.
  • Sleep
I really wanted to mention all the things I'm thankful for but I think my list would look much like yours. Plus, it would be a really long list. Things like, X Box 360 and the time I get to hang out with Wesley playing it, a big tv to watch football, my Chicago Bears, being able to take three weeks vacation, hanging out with my district buddies, watching my teens grow up to be great adults and seeing them make a difference for God's Kingdom, music and the list goes on and on..... So what's on your list? ~Brian

Monday, November 19, 2007

A Mom Moment

The other day as I was making dinner, Anna came in wanting to help. Anna loves to help in the kitchen so this was nothing new. She wanted to help me peel potatoes. I handed her the peeler and let her go at it. She looked over at me realizing I was peeling three potatoes to her one. She said, "That's not fair. You're so much faster at it than I am." It was right then that I remembered telling my mom exactly the same thing when I was younger. I remembered her answer to me many years ago and I passed that same answer on to Anna this weekend. "I've been doing this for a long time. You keep practicing and you'll be fast at it too!" I guess my mom was right...I'm now a pretty fast potato peeler. Boy, I just wish I could cut up a whole chicken to fry like she does!!

Saturday, November 17, 2007

It's Here.

Well, he did it! We now have an X box 360 in the house. Wes was able to get it this weekend. So Wes and Dad have been playing all weekend.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

The Advance

This weekend Jaye and I spent time with some of the greatest people we know. Our district church hosts an event for youth workers called "The Advance." It is a weekend designed to help us, encourage us and train us in youth ministry to keep moving forward. I have to say it was a great weekend. I love hanging out with these people, not only the group from my church but also others from around the district. I wish that the rest of our youth team were able to go. I think next year I'll work harder getting them there.
We shared in a service on Friday night in which we
youth pastors were able to show our sponsors that we appreciate them. I am blessed professionally to be able to work with a great group of adults. I wish I could somehow share with them the way I feel. The speaker used a clip from the movie "Field of Dreams" where Kevin Costner played catch with his ghost Dad. Great clip. We then were able to say "thanks" to our team for "playing catch" with us. I gave them a baseball with a little "I love you" kinda thing written on it. I really had all kinds of things I wanted to say but didn't get to because I got a little emotional. We have the best at Chapel Pike. I appreciate them and couldn't do a good job of ministry without them.
I'm also pretty blessed to have a great group of friends working ar
ound the district as youth pastors. I love the group of youth pastors around here, their friendship means a lot to me. The guys and gal do a great job.

Part of our youth team.
My heroes and me

Friday, November 9, 2007

How Cute

One of my favorite pictures of JR, he's not too happy.

Little Brian not happy about getting a picture taken.

This was taken
before I was in school. It's one of the only little kid pictures of me.
Now if you wanna see about a million little kid pictures of my brother or sister, we have tons of those. Pictures of me as a child are rare.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Band Concert

I love going to watch high school football when I know some of the kids on the team. But what I like better than that is watching my daughter play clarinet in the band. I love the way the music all comes together and the huge sound that a high school band brings. That's what I think is so cool about music. It must be great being a part of something so big. I like to try to listen for each type of instrument and to pick out what that sound brings to the song. Jessica is a great kid and has always had a "thing" for music. I remember when she was little and just learning how to talk. One day she was watching Sesame Street and the song "These are the People in your Neighborhood" started to play. Her eyes lit up and she ran to her bedroom and grabbed a wind up toy that played the same song. Now here we are 12 years later and she is playing in the band. I'm so proud of her. She is a great kid! Jaye and I are truly blessed to have such great kids.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

X box 360

My son has been saving his hard earned money to by a X box 360. He is the type of kid that will work hard, save every cent and then make a big buy. He saved up his cash for a DS, another video game at one point. I am really proud of him. The silly 360 cost a ton of money, I keep telling him save that money you will be needing to buy a car sometime in the near future. He wants the video game. When it come times to get a car, he'll probably save up and get a corvette or something like that. Hes a great kid. I just wanted to brag on him a little bit today.

Friday, November 2, 2007


Kids at youth group this week doing homework

I often tell my kids....I hate homework. Let me tell you why...my kids get on the bus at 7:15 and return at 4:15. That's 9 hours...9! So between 4:15 and bedtime that leaves us as a family about 4.5 hours depending on which kid you're talking about. We eat dinner together, spend some family time together and just about everyday there is homework. I don't mind studying for spelling or doing a quick worksheet. But there are days that the kids can spend the entire evening working on a project for school. I want so bad to show up at the school one day and go to the office and say, "I'm here to get my kids we are going to go outside and shoot some hoops. When we are done they can go back to class." But I don't, they would be embarrassed and I'm sure the school wouldn't allow that. I feel that if school cuts into our family time it is only fair I get to cut into their time. After all they only get my kids for 9 hours a day.
All that being said, I want my kids to learn that Jesus comes first. Serving in the church, spending time with their family and friends is way more important than math homework. It's easy for me to say this knowing all my kids are super smart and are honor roll students. Now don't get me wrong!! This is not a jab at all those wonderful teachers pouring their hearts into our kids, or is it about their commitment to teaching them. For that I am extremely grateful. For their influence, for their skill, for their investment....I wouldn't trade that for anything. I applaud that!! This is just my gripe about homework. I hate homework!

A prayer: Lord, help us as a family to keep the proper balance so our children grow up loving You and wanting to keep You #1 in their lives. Help them as they grow to know that You should be first. First before school, work, relationships, and just goofing off. Help us to model this in front of them so that when they grow up, move out and start their own families they will choose to get up on a warm, sunny Sunday morning and take their families to worship You at church.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

This Week

I spent some time working in the youth room this week. Check out our new improved media area. Yea, we have a large group of gamers in the youth group. This week a family in the church donated a 52 inch tv to the youth group so we had to make some room for it. Thanks Pete! Our "bowling seats" came from Gas City bowling alley. They are vintage 1950's bowling seats. A nice addition to our room.

I've also been doing some work around the church this week getting ready for youth group. We are having a Maze Daze tonight. Some of our youth leaders got together on Monday night and made a giant cardboard maze. It is huge. As you may already know we have gotten rid of our church pews in the sanctuary and set up with chairs now. Because of this we now have the flexibility
to create some room for youth group on Wednesdays. This week we have been able to fill the entire space with a maze. Check out the pictures.

The view from the stage area...the maze winds under
these huge sheets of cardboard

View as you walk in...of our cardboard cafe'

View from up above

Friday, October 26, 2007

Argh!! What's that Word!

Okay, it's driving me NUTS....and I'm driving my family nuts! What is the word for going thru the corn fields after the harvest and picking up the left-over corn cobs. I'm guessing you use the corn to feed the squirrels...I personally have never done this. I've been trying to figure this one out for days and I can't STAND IT ANYMORE!!! BTW...I know the word is not "stealing"...as Wesley suggested!! Any other suggestions....~Jaye~

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Corn Maze II

We had a great time at the Campbell's Pumpkin Patch.
We took around 39 people last night for youth group to a pumpkin patch in Wabash, In. It was a great time. We started out the night at the concession stand; pumpkin bread, pumpkin muffins and pumpkin pie. Wash all that down with some hot or cold apple cider...good stuff! Of course the guys had to load up on hot dogs and loaded nachos. They had good prices and good grub.
After the food we went on a scavenger hunt. The Campbell's Pumpkin Patch staff had little objects hidden around the property. The youth group was given clues and set off to find them. It was cool.
After the scavenger hunt...the corn maze. The moon last night was full or almost full so it was pretty light in the maze. Most of the teens didn't have too much trouble getting through the maze. A couple of youth sponsors sneaked in the back way to try and scare some of the teens....it was too bright.
We ended the night with a hay ride. A packed hay ride.
A good time was had by all.
We took the camera, didn't take any pictures.

Monster Cookies

Ahhh...nothing says fall like a batch of Monster Cookies!! Way back when...when Brian was in college his mom made a batch of these to take back to the dorm guys. I don't know why but every fall since then it has become a tradition of ours to make these cookies. The recipe came from Brian's sister, Bette...be prepared it makes a huge batch of cookies. I don't have a bowl large enough to mix them in so I always get to buy a new tote for that purpose...one can NEVER have too many totes!!

4 c sugar
18 c quick oats
2# brown sugar
1# chocolate chips
1# butter
1# m-n-m's
12 eggs
8 t baking soda
1T corn syrup
1 t vanilla
3# peanut butter

Cream butter and sugars together. Mix in remaining ingredients, using a very large bowl or pan...or new tote!! For large cookies, drop by ice cream dipper onto ungreased cookie sheet, six per sheet. For regular sized cookies, drop by teaspoon onto ungreased cookie sheet.

Bake at 350 for 12 minutes...do not overbake. Cool about 3-4 minutes on cookie sheet, then remove to racks to finish cooling. Makes about 8-10 dozen regular size cookies. Be prepared to be baking for quite a while...we have stored the dough in the fridge for up to a week.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Campbell's Pumpkin Patch

Tonight I take the youth group to the corn maze. I'm looking forward to going, last year we had a blast. I'll be sure to let you know how it goes.

Monday, October 15, 2007


I have been going to church most all my life. I grew up in Merrillville, Indiana across the street from the pastors house. He invited us to church. My brother went for a while, my sister was very active, and I went. I started out just going to Sunday School. After Sunday School I'd head home and watch The Lone Ranger and The Cisco Kid. That was pretty much the routine each week as I grew up. It's kinda funny, my parents never went but I can't remember not ever going. Maybe Sundays were a break from the kids for them. Once I hit my teenage years I started staying for the worship service. Now a million years later here I am a youth pastor. I still go to church every week. I can't imagine not going. I love church, I love the people, I love most everything about it. I have watched over the years people leave the church. They get angry, lose heart, whatever the reason. I don't understand sometimes why they do it when we go to the same church with the same people. Why don't they feel loved and accepted? How is it that they can't seem to find what they are looking for? I know in life as well as the church you get out of it what you put into it. ~Brian~

5 Free Itunes Song Credits for Facebook Users

Facebook is giving away 5 free itunes songs. Follow these steps:
  • Log in to Facebook.com
  • Search for “ticketmaster live”
  • Join the group
  • Redeem the 5 free songs link (or send me an e-mail with the code so that I can redeem the 5-free songs link!)

  • Thanks Stevan for the hook-up!!

    Thursday, October 11, 2007

    Letter to Britney Spears

    Dear Britney,
    I have noticed the last few weeks that things in your life have been spiraling way out of control. I have been concerned about your life and have an offer for you. I understand the celebrity life style causes one to really question if someone has your best interests at heart of if they are trying to get a little fame or get your money. My offer is free of charge, and hopefully won't draw attention from Hollywood. You are welcome to come stay with our family, learn from my kids and go to church with us. Oh, it's what I would call a regular lifestyle. It might be good for ya. There are no drugs here, no alcohol and just some old fashion living. We've got a great church family that would be willing to invest in you and your children. I've also got this friend I'd like to introduce to you, he's all about unconditional love and forgiveness. You are welcome any time and for however long you need. Hope you take us up on this offer.
    The Hollands

    Monday, October 8, 2007


    Bears 27 Packers 20
    Today is a good day~Brian

    Wednesday, September 26, 2007

    More Pics from Jess

    Here are a FEW of my favorites... ~Jaye~


    One of our many bonfires...interesting wood formation just kinda happened

    Okay...I finally quit pulling the milkweeds from our yard and we
    had MANY beautiful butterflies because of it!!
    do whap diddy whap...

    Thursday, September 20, 2007

    Return the Roaster Days 3-4-5-6

    The roofing continues...Wednesday, Day 3...The Dumpster arrives!! Brian did tear some more shingles off but since it was church day not too much got done!!

    Thursday, Day 4...Brian was up on the roof all day tearing off...around 4 ish the help arrived!! Yeah!! Thanks to Fred Ellis, Pastor Steve, Brian Kushman, Kevin Standfest, Rich Street, Tony Parandi, Anthony Hargrave, Anna Huey and Eric!!! We all worked until 8:30...talk about using your night vision!!

    Friday, Day 5...Bright and early the supplies arrived from Carter Lumber!! Let me just say Carter Lumber is the place to go for all your home improvement needs!! Brian figured out an estimate for everything he needed to do the roof. He took all his "figures" to the home improvement stores to compare. He got the BEST service from Carter..they seem to go above and beyond to help us out. One of their sales reps came out and measured...actually spent over an hour at our house covering all the bases with Brian. He called back a couple hours later with an estimate for our supplies and it was only about $50 more than what Brian figured. The difference was their "delivery" charge. Pastor Steve and Brian Kushman showed up again to help for the day!! Yeah for great, servant hearts!!
    Saturday, Day 6...Pastor Steve and Brian were up on the roof "before God was even awake"!! Kent Santee came later in the morning to help finish up the project!! Yipee...the roof is complete!!

    Tuesday, September 18, 2007

    Return the Roaster Day 2

    Day two brought some help...Wesley joined his dad on the roof today. Too bad it's ISTEP testing or I know a boy who would be staying home from school!! Good news, the dumpster comes tomorrow and the new roof supplies come on Friday morning. Brian said today, "I'm not as young as I used to be." There will not likely be any trips to the gym this week :) The guys did get layer #1 off on one side! Yeah!! They stopped there because they are just making a big pile on the edge of the roof waiting for that dumpster. Plus, as Brian said, "It's like a million degrees up there in the sun."

    Monday, September 17, 2007

    The Roasting Pan

    Jaye wants her roasting pan back. You see for the last two years I have been using her pan to catch rain water in the attic, along with about six or seven other buckets and pans. Our roof has been leaking for quite some time. In order to return Jaye her pan I started working on my roof. We have three layers of very old, brittle, ugly shingles. The top layer, black, the middle green t locks, and the bottom layer green three tabs. I started my quest to return the pan by driving around Marion looking for the best deal on a truck load of shingles. I did the usual stops...Lowes, The Home Depot and I even went to a place that is out of business as of September 12th. None of these wonderful establishment would be able to place my truck load of shingles on top of my roof, for that is a very important service I need. I really don't want to lug the bundles up the ladder myself. Carters Lumber will conveyor the load up for me for only .50 a bundle. What a great deal! Join with the Hollands this week as we blog the progress of retuning the pan. I'm working on it all week, so if you wanna show us some love please feel free to stop by and lend a hand.

    "King of the roof"

    Sunday, September 16, 2007


    This summer we got a new camera. Jessica has kinda taken over the photo duty here around the house and has come up with some pretty cool shots. During the summer I challenged her to get 100 "wow" pictures from around our house, the rule; they must be taken from our property. I wanted to share some of the 100 with you. ~Brian