2012 brought joy and pain for our family. Elise graduated from her Counseling program at Loyola, Greg continued to try to relive his athletic youth riding & running in just about every race he could, our kids grew and developed in ways that has been so much fun to watch.
In August, while on family vacation we received a shocking phone call. Our sister law, Maggie, passed away very suddenly and completely unexpectedly. This was a huge blow for our entire family. Maggie was adored by all of us. We miss her dearly especially during the holidays.
So we’ve learned to treasure those around us a little more. The stakes seem higher and life seems shorter. In spite of this pain, if quality of life is determined by who you love and who loves you we count ourselves to be very blessed to have all of you in our lives.
We have never been so thankful for and aware of our need for a savior. Thankful at this time of year when we celebrate Jesus birth.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year,
Greg, Elise, Caleb, Josh, Riley, & Seth
Greg finally went over the edge and became a “cyclist” in 2012. For those who don’t know what this means just ask him at a dinner party and you won’t need to worry about having things to talk about for the next 3 hours. At some point you’ll need to just slink away when he finds some other poor soul to talk to about how awesome life on 2 wheels is. He ran 2 marathons in October, raced mountain bikes, completed 5 or 6 centuries, and finished his first 1/2 Ironman triathlon (first any triathlon for that matter).
He joined the Adventures for the Cure team in May. AFC is an incredible group of athletes that competes for charitable causes and to raise fitness awareness.
He has 3 big goals for 2013:
- Compete in
- Complete Ironman Lake Placid (he’s even going to train to swim this time)
- Run 2-3 marathons
Blue Ocean Ideas has continued to grow in 2012. As Blue Ocean Ideas matured he continues to narrow his focus on helping clients with the brand building & leadership strategies they need to achieve the results they are looking for in 2013.
He’s still madly in love with Elise and loves spending as much time as possible with her and our kids.
Elise graduated from Loyola in May with a degree in Pastoral Counseling. She is now a licensed graduate professional counselor. She sees counseling clients at the Anxiety & Stress Disorder Institute (ASDI) and Safe Harbor Christian counseling.
In addition to her work at the ASDI and Safe Harbor, she is also building a private practice in Towson.
She continues to astound all of us as the world’s most capable juggler. Elise makes balancing family, work, and friendships look easy even though she works hard at all of it.
Caleb continues to love Virginia Tech. Finally committed to a major (Communication), is living off campus with a bunch of friends, leads Young Life at a local high school, lives off of protein powder & grilled chicken breasts, and doesn’t come home enough. Actually, he comes home enough but doesn’t stay long enough.
Oh, and he shaved his head a couple of weeks ago so you might not recognize him at first when you see him.
Josh is the second busiest Rittler after Elise. Since getting his license in August he has been on the go nonstop.
When he’s not in school, he’s working out getting ready for lacrosse season, working at Sweet Frog, participating in Young Life campaigners or club, playing his guitar, sleeping, hanging out with friends, and generally being with people he loves. Fortunately for him his brother broke us in for this lifestyle.
Josh has some terrific friends and loves spending time with them. Lately they’ve been recording music in one of their basements. Living the dream. Ready to go on tour.
Riley spent 2012 perfecting “the hand” which she has mastered to block about 50% of the photos Greg tries to take of her. You’ll notice in her photos an artistic look at the hand as a stye for photos.
She is enjoying being an 8th grader at Dumbarton, hanging out with her friends & taking care of our neighbor’s twin girls most other waking moments. They call it “camp Riley” when they get to hang out with her.
She and Greg still have breakfast every Friday at the Towson Diner.
Seth lives the full life of a 4th grader and youngest Rittler. In other words he has about 1/2 the rules we imposed on the other 3 and 3x the freedom.
Seth loves sporting events, rec sports, and going to movies. We all enjoy spending time with fun Seth.
Seth still wins the 2012 Rittler energy award. He’s on 24/7 it seems. Always up for something new and fun to do.
Blue Ocean Ideas is a gift. Greg wakes up each morning and works with people that he loves doing things that he can’t wait to do. He tries not to take it for granted. The Blue Ocean Ideas team continues to excel in helping their clients tell their stories to get the best results that they can.
Our parents are terrific. They are all healthy and engaged with our kids. Everyone is retired but still working. Elise’s dad is Towson High school’s most beloved substitute (which just adds to Josh’s cool factor). Greg’s dad finally moved into a semi-retired status when he sold his company this summer. Both of our moms are busy and involved with their churches, families & friends.
We are really grateful for them. They are a huge help and it’s a gift to have them all so close.