Monday, March 30, 2009

Our Family Grows...

Well, the Smith family now has 2 of their 4 children married off. We spent this past weekend in Tampa for Dave's little brother, Casey's, wedding. It was such an honor to be there as it reminded me so very much of Dave and I's wedding only 3 years ago. The ceremony was in the backyard with the beautiful lake in the back ground. Dave's dad, Pops as we all call him, and Rebecca's dad built a wooden platform around a large oak tree for the ceremony. Minus the 30 mile per hour wind, it was a beautiful ceremony.

The reception was in the front yard under a large white tent. The decorations were beautiful, as they did a beachy theme. The music was great and the people were fun. Uncle Richy played their wedding as well, but they did have a great addition that we didn't have, Mark Gaignard, who is an amazing singer. He is the one who sings Flawless, the music video Dave and I are in that I posted a while back.

It is such a wonderful tradition to me to get married at the Smith house, not that all the siblings have to follow in our path. There is just so much love to be shared there and for Dave & I and Casey & Rebecca it is where our relationships all started. We both spent that first summer we met our husbands on the lake at the Smith house, building a love that will last a life time. There are so many memories there that having our weddings anywhere else wouldn't have felt right. Rebecca, if you are reading this, please know that I am so glad to have you as a part of our family. I know we have had our differences in the past, but God works in mysterious ways and I really feel he used certain things to bring us closer together. Thank you for sharing your heart with me.

Four days of festivities are over. Bachelorette/bachelor parties, showers, and luncheons are in the past. We now have a wonderful future to look forward to with family, babies, vacations, and time to spend together. Welcome to the family, Mr. and Mrs. Casey Smith! We love you two!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Founder's Gallery

While Dave was in Nicaragua he took 1,600 photos to capture the life of the people who live there. As part of a project for medical school he picked his favorite 20, edited them, printed them, framed them, and put them up in the Founder's Gallery at Shands Hospital this past Monday and Tuesday. The above picture is one of my favorites because of the vibrant colors and how adorable this little girl is - full of life! Tons of people walked through the gallery and were very impressed with his artsy side. On Monday afternoon he got a call from the Dean of the College of Medicine asking if David could give him a special tour of the photos and if David would mind being interviewed by a few local magazines. Of course, David was thrilled. This small project for medical school has turned into a major event. The pictures are amazing! He uploaded the pictures onto his website. Yes, he has a photography web site if I haven't mentioned that before - a side of him I bet you never knew. :) Here he is standing in the middle of the gallery. I am such a proud little wife. :)

Check out his website for more incredible photos ...

Friday, March 20, 2009

Peds Residency - Here we come!

The wait has finally come to an end. Thursday was the long awaited Match Day! All the graduating seniors gathered Thursday morning at the Paramount for the day they have been waiting for since they stepped over the threshold of the doors of UF Medical School. This day is even bigger than graduation to most because it solidifies a job for the next few years and it solidifies graduation. The day began at 10:30 with breakfast for all and the ceremony began at 12:00 for all graduating seniors around the country. All the envelopes are put into a box and the students are called at random one at a time to come read where they will be working for the next few years. Most were very excited, but a few were a bit shocked as they matched at a place father down their list than they would have liked. David and I were very pleased to match at our first choice - UF! :) It is so funny to me because if you would have asked us this time last year where we wanted to go for residency, Gainesville was last on our list. We thought we wanted the adventure of living somewhere far away and experiencing a different kind of life. But, turns out we love living here in G-vegas. We have great friends, a great church, I have a great job, and David will get great training here. The training & faculty here are by far the best of the residency programs we interviewed at. Oh, what a wonderful pediatrician my husband will be. :)

So, four years of medical school is almost over and we look forward to 3 years of PAID training. Gainesville has very much become our home and we are so excited!

David in the Gainesville Sun!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

What a Beautiful Day!

I, Danielle, take you, David, to be my husband, my best friend, and the love of my life. I will trust you and respect you, laugh with you and cry with you, and love you unconditionally in good times and bad. I give you my hand, my heart, and my love from this day forward as long as we both shall live.

I, David, take you Danielle, to be my wife, my best friend, and the love of my life. I will trust you and respect you, laugh with you and cry with you, and love you unconditionally in good times and bad. I give you my hand, my heart, and my love from this day forward as long as we both shall live.

Well, 3 years ago today I walked down the aisle and married the absolute love of my life; my prince charming. It is crazy to think 3 years has already come and gone. But, they have been the best 3 years of marriage I could ever ask for. I have such a sweet and Godly husband who sweeps me off my feet each and every day; and chooses to love me no matter what. God has truly blessed our marriage and I pray he continues to bless us for the next 80+ years of our lives! Here we are, 3 years later with so much love under our belt. :)
One of my dear students wrote me the sweetest note for my anniversary today. I loved it so much I took a picture of it and thought I'd share it with you. I can't wait to have these letters all around my house one day when we have little ones of our own. Three years of marriage and the baby fever kicks in hard core! :)I pray God blesses you as much as he has blessed us. Marriage is AMAZING! Thank you Lord for creating us, giving us life, teaching us how to love, and giving us someone to share that love with.

And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love. 1 Corithians 13:13

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Happy Birthday Dr. Seuss!

Last Monday, March 2nd was Dr. Seuss' birthday. My 1st graders and I celebrated this joyous occasion on Friday with multiple book readings, some delicious green eggs and ham for breakfast, making our very own cat and the hats, and my kids even wrote a poem in honor of good 'ole Dr. Seuss. Check 0ut what great poetry writers they are below! :)I was doing some reflecting on my way home from work that day about how stressful teaching can actually be at times, but it's moments like this that make it all worth while. I wouldn't trade my job for anything in the world, except maybe becoming a mommy! :)

Sunday, March 1, 2009


Last week was week 6 of my Beth Moore study on the book of Esther and I am learning so much. In class on Wednesday she talked about the reversal of destiny - how at one point in our lives we are on one path without God in our lives, and then once he swoops in and takes hold of our hearts, our destiny is reversed forever. This really made me stop and think where I would be right this very moment if I never allowed God to come into my life. Would I be the person I am? Would I be married to my amazing husband? Would David be a believer? Would the relationship with my family and friends be the same? There would be so many uncertainties. This reversal is the hinge of our lives and without it we may never truly know God. It is the resurrection of our lives.

I am sure many of you have heard the saying, "We have to die to ourselves before we can truly live." I am also sure many of you wonder what in the world that means. There was a time when I didn't understand it either. Dying to ourselves is the reversal; the resurrection of our own lives. Obviously it is not physical death, it's realizing that the way we are without God isn't good enough. Without God we are worldly individuals, concerned with the things of the world, rather than the things of God. Like Esther, we have to put on our royal robes because we will NEVER ordain our God given identities if we are straddling the fence. We have to let go of certain things in our lives, let the reversal happen, and see how amazing it is when we live our life for Christ instead of for ourselves. After all, we have to live in this world, but we don't have to be of it.

Here is a great song by Nicole Nordeman called Legacy. It truly makes me think about the purpose we have here on this Earth. I hope I can leave a legacy that points others towards the things that really matter.

I don't mind if you've got something nice to say about me
And I enjoy an accolade like the rest
You could take my picture and hang it in a gallery
Of all who's who and so-n-so's that used to be the best
At such'n'such ... it wouldn't matter much

I won't lie, it feels alright to see your name in lights
We all need an 'Atta boy' or 'Atta girl'
But in the end I'd like to hang my hat on more besides
The temporary trappings of this world

I want to leave a legacy
How will they remember me?
Did I choose to love? Did I point to You enough
To make a mark on things?
I want to leave an offering
A child of mercy and grace who
blessed your name unapologetically
And leave that kind of legacy

I don't have to look too far or too long awhile
To make a lengthly list of all that I enjoy
It's an accumulating trinket and a treasure pile
Where moth and rust, thieves and such will soon enough destroy

Not well traveled, not well read, not well-to-do or well bred
Just want to hear instead, "Well Done" good and faithful one...

You can hear the song and check out the video at