received these 5 pics from my
sister-in-law in April (2005)...hard to describe what it's like to be given new photos
i've never seen...new glimpses of my girl...am so grateful for such surprises...yet miss
my girl so much
below is a photo given to us
by Katie, who was on Rachael's mission trip to Australia. Katie sent us a card with
this photo in it...most grateful. Here's what Katie said in her card about
is a picture of the team Rachael and I were on in Australia. The trip wouldn't have
been the same without her. She was an incredible blessing to everyone."
in this photo, Rachael is kneeling, her head
right under the clasped hands...the most beautiful young lady there...the one with the
most beautiful smile.
she was SO thrilled to be on this mission trip...she set her goals early, worked
hard, raised the funds...just awesome. I can still remember so clearly her first
approaching me, with that look in her eyes of being bold about what she was going to say
yet not being certain about my reaction to it. "Dad...I want to go on a mission
trip to Australia." She was planning way ahead, setting her sights on a huge
goal, yet it was well-thought-out, well-grounded, and something that held the promise of
spiritual growth. It was a go. I cannot tell you all how proud of her I was
for how hard she worked to make that mission trip happen.
I just found this photo (below) of her while cleaning out the garage today...I wish
I could always, for the rest of my life, receive such pleasant surprises as finding photos
I didn't even know I had or had lost or forgotten about...(as well as receiving photos,
like Katie's, above) ...in the photo below she was in 5th or 6th grade, dad was her
principal back then, our school was at an all-day track and field event...looks like, from
the slant of the sun, we had just gotten there in the morning and were trying to get
things organized and setup.
here's a pic I took of Rachael
doing one of the things she did best..my intention, at the time, was to take it to remind
her later on in life what she looked like as a teenager
it was so fun hearing her talk and laugh...she
had such cute ways of saying things and her laugh just warmed your heart and was so
Here are a few of the pics we
took on our mini vacation to St. Louis. We--Alan, Rachael, Ed and I--had a tradition
of taking a trip on labor day weekend. Ed had to stay home and work during this
trip, so it was just 3 of us.
on the way to St. Louis, at Meramec Caverns, I
witnessed Rachael doing something rare: totally wasting money (but only this once!)
at the base of the arch
...so dog-gone tall she could put her arm over mine when we stood side-by-side like
...she enjoyed that
in the museum
at the top of the arch, looking down on the city
another pic in the gardens
dinner at a sidewalk cafe downtown
back home, working on a forest fire's worth of
candles on dad's birthday cake
this pic was sent to me in
February 2005 by Rachael's accountability partner at the Honor Academy: Cathryn.
Cathryn had just found some old rolls of film from a year ago back at the HA, had them
devoloped, and discovered one of them had Rachael in it. as the phone calls and
emails have dried up, this is just the type of wonderfully pleasant surprise this dad
needed. this photo was taken at their home church in Garden Valley, where they all
attended the HA, on Valentine's Day weekend. they all went out to IHOP after this,
one of Rachael's favorite places.
....i miss my girl