Insights into these Shoes' Soul

Welcome to our blog! You'll get glimpses into the fabric of our lives... find out what is happening in our family, learn what our latest adjustment is to life in the US, find out what is going on in our minds, see what makes us smile, and hear what makes us tick. You'll also get ministry updates! We hope these insights into our souls will make you smile, keep you informed and challenge you to pray for us.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Dawn has graduated

May 22, 2009

Dawn & her diploma

That's her senior picture on the big screen behind her.  She earned the long blue cord by going on a student leadership trip.  She was excited, needless to say...and so were we.

The graduation parties have gone on and on, one after another - and she's attended them all.  We go on our week's vacation tomorrow, and Dawn's party at the beach is scheduled for Monday AND Tuesday!  Yep, a party animal.

My sister, Bea, from South Carolina, is here for 10 days.  She'll go on vacation with us.  She is the first family from my side that has come to visit us in over 20 years!  Congratulations, Bea, for being the first!


Sunday, May 17, 2009

Dawn is graduating!

Yes, it is happening and we want YOU to know about it!

Front a

Name card a

Inside announcement cropped

IMG_3916-Edit The proud senior!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

This is what we feel like

When I saw this on a friend's blog, I couldn't help but recognize it.  This is what we feel our lives are like right now...a mixture of gleeful joy, sheer terror, wishing it would stop but glad it hasn't yet. 

joy and terror

This week is the "calm" before the storm.  (Is this what "calm" is like?)  Dawn is furiously working on the last bit of schoolwork.  Friday is the last day of her senior year.  Monday - Wednesday are finals.  Friday the 22nd is graduation.   The next day, Saturday, we are taking a week of vacation on Ft. Myers Beach.  This way Dawn can have a week long graduation beach party.

Oh yeah, in the middle of that vacation week, one of my sisters, Brandi, is flying in for a 10 day visit.  (we have to go to Ft. Lauderdale to get her - 2 hours away)  The day she leaves, my mom comes for a 10 day visit.  [First time we've had any of my family come visit us in over 20 years!]  A week after she leaves, we have to head to North and South Carolina for church visits and our yearly dental visit.  That takes us to July!!

Almost forgot, Dan has some travel during June too.

Dawn is looking for a job for June and July.  We're pursuing students loans for Dawn for college and praying like crazy we can find a way to pay for college [please pray with us!!!!!!!!].  And we're looking for a car for her, too.  Only the Lord knows how we can accomplish all of this.  She'll also be getting ready for college in July.

Early August we'll be taking Dawn to college and getting her settled in.

Maybe August 18 we'll have a chance to catch our breath.  Why that date?  I don't know, I just pulled that date out of the hat. 

Now you can see what that photo grabbed my attention!

Roast Lamb and Mothers

They say that you should never try a new recipe onRoast lamb guests.  But we like to live on the wild side.  Slow roasting it for 2 1/2 hours or so resulted in a fantastic roast for our Mother's Day meal.  Out of the 9 people at the meal, there were 3 mothers. Dan's parents came, Dave, Rosie and Alysa (Dan's brother, wife and daughter) and Devon was there too!  We had a great time together.  We 3 moms got some great cards from our kids, some of which were funny and some serious but all meaningful.  After all these years of being overseas, it's especially nice to have family nearby and be able to get together!

As to the taste of tasted just like the leg of goat that I used to prepare in Haiti, but this was boneless and was all meat.  It turned out well!

Prom 2009

Proud parents that we are, we can't help but show you a couple of pictures of the excited senior (yes, she had a date with the same friend as last year, but since he was running late, the pictures are of just Dawn).




You are supposed to notice the new haircut and the absolutely perfect shoes that she found at the last minute.  [She needed flats because she is freshly out of her ankle brace and has to be careful not to re-injure it.]

She had a great time and is counting down the days to graduation.

[I guess it was a sign of the times.  While she partied away, Dan and I went grocery shopping and went to bed!  What an exciting life we lead.  :) ]

Thursday, May 7, 2009

If you saw what we saw yesterday would have been bursting with pride!  Dawn signed her official Athletic Letter of Intent to play volleyball for Trinity College of Florida (  It was a tough decision since several colleges were looking at her.  Trinity College is 3 hours north of us in New Port Richey, FL (just north of Tampa).  It is a small evangelical christian college whose main emphasis is ministry and missions.  It seems to be everything she's been looking for: not too far from home, christian college with missions major (she feels that God has called her to the mission field), in Florida, near the beach, not in a really freezing cold climate (remember where she was born and raised!  She couldn't bear to not be near palm trees), AND she'd be able to play competitive volleyball.

We made an overnight trip there last month.  Dawn was able to sleep in the dorm, meet some of the volleyball players and attend a couple of classes.  We were impressed with what we saw and heard, but more importantly, Dawn had a great time.  We toured the area before we left and found that the beach was very nearby.  That was important to Dawn - is it any wonder considering where she was born and grew up?!

Trinity volleyball coach, Mark Sawyer, was able to come to her signing event at her school. 

IMG_2286 Dawn and her 2 coaches, Liz Ferguson (senior year) and Tom Baxter (sophomore and junior year as well as 3 years of club volleyball).  She was so excited to have them both there!

IMG_2282 Congratulation hugs from her senior year teammates.

IMG_2267 The signing table, her various high school awards, the cake and a Trinity Tigers t-shirt.

IMG_2293 The moment of truth!

IMG_2296 Dawn was able to share a few words.

IMG_2299 Cutting that beautiful cake was difficult - but it was all gone by the end of the day.  A lot of classmates, teachers and friends showed up to help her celebrate.

IMG_2303 Trinity volleyball coach, Mark Sawyer, with Dawn and her Letter of Intent.

IMG_2305 She's committed now!  No turning back.  But no problem, she is very excited about it.

IMG_2306 What more can we say?

IMG_2311Devon and Dawn, 2 great kids to be proud of!


We left the decorations up and 3 hours later, we did a 2nd signing of the letter.  Her 2 volleyball arenas have been her school team and club volleyball.  The club's end of the season bar-b-que dinner was that night, right there in the cafeteria.  Club coach (and her former high school coach), Tom Baxter, has been the most influential person in Dawn's life since we returned to the states.  We have appreciated him, his dedication and willingness to work with Dawn.  He saw potential in her that first volleyball camp she went to the week after arriving in the US.  He took her under his wing, and in these last 3 years, has taught her the game and given her incredible opportunities to learn and advance.  He brought her from knowing nothing about the game, fresh from the outback of Haiti to being a fantastic player, winning a state championship and being capable of being a sought after player.  How can we thank him enough??

Since this was the end of club party and the end of Dawn's high school volleyball, he wanted to be able to recognize Dawn - thus the decision to have a 2nd signing.  It was just as exciting and happy of an event as the first one.  It was a novel idea, but to Dawn it was a perfect day!