We had Anjelica baptized last month on Long Island. We don’t belong to a Catholic church here, so we asked the Father at the church Lou’s dad worked at before he died last year if he would do it for us. He reluctantly agreed, but it was unusual because we didn’t go through the normal procedures. After the ceremony we had a nice dinner at a nearby restaurant. Lou’s mom was there, and a lot of his New Jersey cousins and aunts and uncles, and of course, Nico and Mia and some other friends. My sister and my parents came, as well as Jeff, one of my close friends I kept in touch with from Stony Brook. I gave everyone little crystal Angel figurine Christmas tree decorations as a take home gift. My dad took two
and wore them as earrings. He was in a great mood. Everything went well, and I think everyone had a great time. Lou is still not talking to his sister, so she and her family weren’t there, even though they live very close. Hopefully, they will be able to get past what happened and co-exist peacefully. There’s always a fight with someone in his family. I don’t have the energy to fight like that. At least his dad can be at peace from all the family battles.
We’ve settled into the parent thing fairly well after all. Lou seems happier. I almost feel like we had two babies this year – Anjelica and our book, Frontline Teamwork, One Company’s Story of Success[i], which was dedicated “to the spirit of Howard Roark,” which, I suppose is fitting for Lou. Both of our names are listed as co-authors of the book, but he never asks me to sign them when we send out autographed copies. It’s all about the consulting business anyway, so it really doesn’t matter that much, but it would be nice to be recognized for my contributions. Lou’s obsessed with book sales. We bought a bunch of them that we are selling ourselves. I tell him not to worry so much about the profit margin we get on each book, but to just focus on getting it out there. The profit will come from the consulting business he’ll get as a published author and recognized authority in his field. He still is tracking book sales and watching every penny of profit. He tracks our finances the same way. Every month, he updates his spreadsheet with all the latest stock prices and values for every investment, and every dollar in every account that we have, and then he adds another data point to our net worth chart so we can see exactly where we are financially. He has another chart for cumulative income from his consulting business. I don’t think he likes to chart the income monthly because then he’d see that some months and years it is much lower than in others. He likes the charts that go up, up, up. Actually, I don’t think there’s a chart for anything else. Although I wouldn’t doubt it if he had a mental chart for a lot of things he keeps track of. Every month he shows me the net worth charts and I say how great it is. And just about every month he reads me, and points out in amazement that I really don’t care. It’s not in a bad way that I don’t care; it’s just that I know we have enough money, and that based on what we have coming in and what we spend, we are fine. When we didn’t have enough, I worked more hours and jobs to make sure we’d get by. I don’t spend a lot of money, and I don’t need money and things to be happy. We have the best educations we could get, I have a great job, he has his own successful business, we have two nice cars, a beautiful house, and enough to pay a full time nanny to take care of our daughter at home. I don’t need a chart to show me that we are in good shape. What more could we want?
[i] Frontline Teamwork: One Company’s Story of Success, by Louis W. Joy III and Jo A. Joy, Business One Irwin/McGraw Hill Companies, July 1993