Getting By with a Little Help from My Friends

With a lot of help from my friends – particularly Mrs. tVM, youngest son Jesse and his wife Erica, and friends Dwight and Halen – we see the fruits of our labors.  My broken leg has kept me on the sidelines, but together, my inner circle has collectively prepared the land, put in irrigation, seeded, …

Dealing with Cancer #6, It’s Okay to Cry… It’s Better to Laugh

Lesson #6 It’s okay to cry… it’s better to laugh The day I learned that I have cancer, I was driving from my urologist’s office to Dwight’s for supper.  Marie and I were in between houses; she and Clarence were staying in the Phoenix area with Brad, Felicia, and the kids, and I was staying …

Dealing with Cancer #5, Pray

Lesson #5 Pray The power of prayer is obvious in each of our lives whether or not you are free, open, and willing to acknowledge it.  For years on our home page, we have featured a quote from the late Irish poet, writer, and spiritualist John O’Donohue. “Prayer is the presence that holds harmony in …

Dealing with Cancer #4, You Can’t Go It Alone

Lesson #4 A reliable support system is mandatory.  Despite how physically, mentally, and spiritually tough you think you are, you cannot face this challenge alone. In his 2017 life manual Make Your Bed, Admiral William McRaven discusses 10 things that ‘can change your life and maybe the world.’  Number 2 on his list is ‘You …

Dealing with Cancer #3, Chemotherapy

Lesson #3 Chemotherapy is not fun, and its effects are cumulative.  Don’t be lulled after the first or second infusion into thinking, “This isn’t that bad.”  Be prepared for the physical, mental, and spiritual challenge that will grow more intense with each session.  Regimens and side effects are different from one person to the next, …

Dealing with Cancer #2, PSA

Lesson #2 There is no substitute for PSA testing when a man reaches 40 years old.  Knowing his PSA level at that stage in a man’s life and beyond is MANDATORY along with the digital exam for early detection and treatment. Based on my primary care team’s prostate assessment in January 2022, I considered myself …

Palm Sunday and the Third Fall

The fourth part of my personal credo may be the most important… I am called to emulate Jesus… I am reminded of the magnitude of that aspect of my belief most strongly on Palm Sunday as I prepare to share with millions of people around the world the final steps of Christ’s final journey. Up …

The Alphabet School – A Literacy School for Adult Education

Five years ago, we first wrote about the “education triangle”, and we updated the original post in 2022 when we opened The Barefoot School. Speaking from experience, Mrs. tVM and I spent countless hours at the kitchen table helping our children with their schoolwork and encouraging them to complete it.   I say with 100% certainty …

Toilet

Our Barefoot School has not had a functional toilet since we moved in last summer. Hygiene is as important as food and knowledge, particularly in an environment like Cité Soleil which has been experiencing a cholera outbreak in recent months. We have many things to focus on at our Barefoot School.  Justin and Benoit wisely …