January 2023
The Inouye Family

Aloha from the Inouye Family! We are Mark and Lorinda Inouye, parents to Toby (8) and Taryn (7). 

Mark and Lorinda are both public high school teachers. Mark teaches math at Waipahu High School, and Lorinda is the Technology Coordinator at Kapolei High School and Senior Financial Fitness Advisor for FinFit Life.  Toby is an aspiring football player (or sports analyst) and botj kids attend Keoneula Elementary School. We have fully embraced dance family status as evidenced by the bobby pins, hairnets, and hair ties around the house!

Our dance journey was not as smooth in the beginning (we are still navigating, by the way). We joined PDD in 2019 when Taryn was still three years old. After noticing her love of music and dance, we enrolled in Creative Movement to foster that joy. The first class, however, was a bit rough! After 20 minutes in fetal position, Lorinda had to dance with Taryn until she warmed up to the idea of moving in class. Two classes later, Taryn decided she could do it on her own (which was a good thing because mom is rhythmically challenged). 

Taryn continued to thrive in the dance environment moving on to pre-jazz and pre-ballet with Ms. Reyna, and was invited to join Petite Jazz and Ballet company after auditioning this past summer. Being part of the company has been an incredible ride so far. It is a commitment that takes time, patience, and lots of driving, but we have seen Taryn improve her skills, confidence, and passion. Beyond that, Taryn is surrounded by other dancers who love what they do and is building life-long friendships with them. 

PDD has provided Taryn a venue to express herself and build relationships with others. We are truly grateful for the mentors and teachers who have supported Taryn in her dance journey. Special shoutout to Ms. Elle who always welcomed, comforted, and encouraged Taryn since she was a toddler. It was because of mentors like her (there are so many, all of whom serve as role models and support systems), the incredible administrative staff and awesome and talented teachers, that Taryn has found her feet. And thanks to other dance moms and dads, we are finding ours! 

For newer dance parents, be patient with your children. It will take time for them to be comfortable, but watching them dance on stage or perform a new skill or even stand a little taller makes every sacrifice worthwhile. Ask for help when you need it, and someone will have the answer! Also, you might want to send your kid to dance with a few dollars because they absolutely LOVE the vending machine (and they’re always hungry!). 

We appreciate the opportunity to share a little more about our family and our journey. Thank you, Ms. Wendy and Mr. Jeremy for your vision and support. We are very blessed to be part of PDD, and we look forward to Taryn’s continued growth here!