The WITS

Wit 2015Our Wit family started with two who became one family with four children. We are now nearly 4 families with 7 children and 3 grandchildren.

The newest addition to the family was Hunter Eli born to Nathan and Olivia Wit on February 23, 2015. Another generation of Wits.

Our newest ‘child’, Kendra, will join us in September when she and Ryan marry after a special +7 year relationship and become the fourth family.

Zane and Janell Donaldson with their two beautiful girls, Olivia and Kayleigh are also “Wits”… They just have a different surname!

And then there were 3….Lindi is the last one at home but not for too long. Lindi is in matric and plans to leave for the USA to au pair as soon as she writes her last exam and can pack her bags. It’s not that she wants to leave Dad and Mom at home alone, she just can’t wait to explore new opportunities!

We love our family dearly and feel privileged to have them all living close to be able to share the ‘family cup of coffee after church’.

We have all known and experienced the love and grace of the Westville Presby family for which we are deeply grateful. God could not have put us in a better place to serve Him than right here! We love where we are, enjoy what we do and treasure the life we have….

WIT : Nathan, Olivia & Hunter

Wit Nathan 2015We are a happy family. Olivia and I welcomed Hunter Eli Wit on 23rd February 2015. We are both so proud of our gift from God and loving the experience of parenthood.

Olivia is currently on maternity leave for a few months before she goes back to working as a Medical rep for Medtronic/Covidien. She spends most of her time working in theatres with anaesthetists and surgeons.

I work for an NPO called KwaPhenduka Projects. We implement various social development projects with a core focus on improving the Education system. We work with Schools on the North coast between Ballito and Mandini.

We love going to game reserves, breakfasts on the beach and days spent with family and friends at the Dam and looking after our 3 sausage dogs! (other children).

Westville Presby has been a part of my life since a young boy and Olivia since we got married 2.5 years ago and we love being apart of this great family!

WICKS : Keith & Margaret

Wicks 2015Keith and I continue to give thanks to the Lord for all our blessings.

Our big life adjustment is that Keith has retired and is really enjoying his time at home. I will continue to work for a few more years.

Taryn and Gareth bought a house a year ago and now we have 2 grand-cats and 2 grand-dogs but no grand kids. Dean is still so involved with his sport.

We are so thankful that our children live close by and for the precious time we are able to spend with them. They are our greatest gifts from God.

We are also so thankful for our spiritual family from the Church.

Vermaak Family : Jared, Janice, Isabella & Aaron

vermaak 2015We are truly blessed and are so grateful to God for our children and the many opportunities he has bestowed upon us.

Jared has since been promoted to Regional manager for KZN tiger wheel and tyre. He is doing so well and we couldn’t be more proud of his achievements. He is so dedicated to his job and always puts in 110%.

I’m still at Pinetown Medicross and my practice is slowly growing. I really enjoy it there, the growth, the flexibility and an awesome patient base.

Isabella is in grade R now, and next year will hopefully be going to Northdene preparatory school. She loves school and learning new things. She does ballet, swimming and modelling, loves the camera (taking pictures and has even learned the art of selfies) and is a confident, beautiful girl.

Aaron is also getting big and is such a cutie pie. Gives us a run for our money, but my oh my, he knows how to melt our heart. He has started swimming at school and enjoys being in the water.

There are some big changes that we may be facing in the near future, uncertainties we wish we had answers to. But, we are learning to trust that God is in control, hard as it may be. Grateful that we have support from an awesome church thou

van der Merwe Family : Ben, Mari, Joanna & Josh

vdMerweThis month, March 2015, the van der Merwe family will have been attending the Westville Presbyterian Church for 18 years. When we arrived our family included Mari’s mother, Tina Jessiman who couldn’t be missed in her wheelchair each Sunday.

Benny now works as one of the Horticulturalists employed by Thomas School. Every day he enjoys the amazing setting of the school and the wonderful view of Durban and the sea. Mari is the National Early Childhood Programme Manager for Save the Children South Africa and is currently spending a lot of time traveling all over South Africa addressing the needs of young children.

Joanna, our very special daughter who attends Pretoria University is now in her fifth year of study towards becoming a Medical Doctor. This is truly her calling and we are so proud of her. Joshua, our child who is our special blessing is now in Grade 6 at Atholl Heights School. Joshua loves his sport and music and tries out for and gives his best at everything.

We are members of the McCallum home group and from the group and other members of the church we receive much love and support.

SWANN : Brett

Swann 2015Hello, so quite a bit has happened since my last update! My family grew, Lisa and Jo got engaged in December 2012 when they were here in SA. The wedding was in August the following year in the UK, and it really was so special. I walked my sister down the aisle!

My Mom is having a great time down in Cape Town. She’s now doing some part time work as a receptionist for a doctor. I think she’s busier than me! I saw her, Lisa and Jo in December for Christmas. The time spent with them reminded me once more that family is such an incredible blessing God has given us!

I’m working at Conlog as an Electronic Engineer; I enjoy it and it keeps me busy! I started some Theological studies in November last year. I’ll probably finish the certificate mid next year. It’s been wonderful and challenging learning more about God and his Word. Christ’s words “are spirit and life”.

STIEGER : Des & Zillah & Phyllis McLennan

Phyllis lives in a flat attached to Des & Zillah’s house ~ our own little retirement village.

Des has been retired for a full year now and we have become accustomed to the different pace of life.

The big excitement of last year was a holiday with most of our family being together from 3 continents. It was wonderful to see our grandchildren playing together for the first time. In November, our family grew with the addition of our fifth grandchild.

 

Sobey : Roxanne

Sobey RoxanneOver the past three years I have changed careers and become a high school teacher at Durban Girls’ High School where I teach Geography and Life Science (known to most of us as Biology). Teaching has changed my life incredibly and has given me new perspective for which I am so grateful. I really enjoy my job, though it thoroughly exhausts me. It has stretched me and kept me relying on God.

Sobey RoxanneOn the family front, I now have a second beautiful niece. My nieces, Callie (4) and Cara (2), are such a joy! In the photos you see my father (Russell), sister (Abigail), brother-in-law (Roderick), nieces (Callie and Cara) and my uncle, aunt, and cousins, Keith, Isobel, David and Helen.
Sobey RoxanneWe were enjoying a perfect Durban day on a boat ride in the harbour. Family is a gift!

Thank you Church for your friendship, love and support.

 

SCHREUDER : Johan, Wendy & their families

Schreuder 2014Schreuder 2014We have had an extremely happy and exciting year! We thank God for all our blessings! We started off this year with me retiring or as I prefer to say “permanently on holiday”

Johan’s daughter Belinda, Emerald, Daniel, Caylea and Amber all came to visit us from New Zealand. What a joy to have them all here for Christmas. They spent a month with us and we were able to make many happy memories together.

Michael, Johan’s son lives on the Isle of Man and
fortunately works for a company who has offices in Durban and is sent here twice a year, so we do get to see him.

Schreuder 2014Johan and I have been very fortunate to have been able to do 2 very long road trips this year. What a joy it was to see the Namaqualand flowers – something that has been on both our “bucket lists” for a very long time. What a beautiful country we live in!

Brett (my oldest) Christy and Jess are happily settled in East London. They live in paradise – right on the beach!

Renee, John and Jack are in Westville – great to have them living in our own suburb.

Mark has been living in Trinidad and is coming home for good in January – yay!!

SCHNELL FAMILY : Greg, Christine, Robynne & Matthew

Schnell 2014We thank God for placing us in this church family 17 years ago. We are so grateful and praise Him for His perfect plan always.

Greg continues to travel frequently in his capacity as sales director for Paklite, an Australian based luggage company and Chris still works for HRG Rennies Travel as a corporate travel consultant so, apart from a few more grey hairs and wrinkles, not much has changed with us since the last update. The changes have been more emotional as we’ve had to get used to being without Matt quite a bit this year and I guess this is just a taste of things to come as he will more than likely be studying away from home next year. Not an easy adjustment – our home seems very quiet and bigger without him.

Matthew finished matric in 2013 (where did the time go?). After helping out at Westville Presby for the first 4 months this year, he embarked on a very exciting trip to the USA in May together with Luke Bartholomew. They worked at a Christian summer camp for 3 months and thereafter visited Pascal and Shannon in Florida for 3 weeks. He had an amazing time, having made some very special memories and friendships. He also left his heart behind (what IS it with these American girls? (Lol). Matt is hoping to start his studies in Marine Science in Cape Town next year.

Robynne is looking forward to finishing grade 9 this year. We are so incredibly proud of the maturity, wisdom and commitment she has shown in overcoming obstacles and the pressures that society places on our teenagers. She has done so well in her netball and softball, even with a few injuries in-between.

Our cell group continues to be our safe place – where we share our faith, our thoughts, our hearts, our prayers and much laughter.

Thank you Westville Presby for being a church full of grace, compassion, care and love.