Pomp And Circumstance

It happened.
We have a graduate, I have pictures to prove it.
WARNING: Picture overload ahead.
Notice that I have no pictures of the graduate and his parents.  You know the ones who had many sleepless nights, interesting conversations with his teachers, and threats of dire punishment if he did not at least make an attempt to work to his potential.  How I have no pictures of the 3 of us I will never know.  I am hopeful that someone somewhere has a picture of the 3 of us.

No matter how I tried to avoid the inevitable, time marched on and the man-child marched to Pomp and Circumstance.IMG_0021Chil-laxing before the ceremony.IMG_1339Keith has done the welcoming and opening prayer for the past 9 years.
It was kind of different when it is your own child. Many people said they heard a catch in his voice.IMG_1354One of C’s good friends was across the aisle from me.
IMG_1358One last lesson.  Chosen by the class, he delivered one last lesson.10402833_10202661222944542_6913061250129936727_nOn his way to collect honor roll award.IMG_1364Lining up for diplomas.  10406944_10154250755915232_2983695069347511575_nA hug from his dad.IMG_1368This is how it looks when your eyes are filled with tears.10367602_10154250757815232_8657659414630601770_nAnd just like that he is an alum.IMG_1387Pictures with his principal and the headmaster.IMG_1402Pictures with his grandma, and English teacher.IMG_1397Pictures with his other grandma.IMG_1386Pictures with his dad and grandpa. IMG_1405Pictures with PS.IMG_1395Pictures with O.IMG_1394We told C he had to let R hug him.  R was funny he wanted to know for how long, we told him 5 seconds,  He counted.IMG_1399Favorite Sister.IMG_1408Pictures with sweet A.IMG_1415And Pictures with J.

Just like that it was over.
We are now the proud parents of a high school graduate and a college student.

I’m going to say it again.  Hug your kids because when you blink it is over.
jen

Ladies and Gentlemen May I Present the Class of 2014

Ladies and Gentlemen, may I present the class of 2014.
Just like that it is over.
With those 10 words we have a graduate.
With those 10 words he is finished with his education at LCS.
We have been driving car line for 13 years.

Ladies and Gentlemen…

That is me, that is us, that is family and friends who have come to celebrate this monuments occasion.
We are so proud.

I look back over his time at LCS, I see teachers who loved him.  I see shadows of our lives as I walk around the campus.

As a student he has memorized close to 700 Bible verses at school.

He was mentored, he was loved, he was corrected, he was taught.  Through that whole experience Christ was the center.

May I Present…

I remember cramming my legs into his kindergarten table, laughing as the child next to him belonged to a classmate and one time neighbor.

I remember finding a costume for book week in first grade, helping with his lego diorama in fourth grade, buying PE shorts for middle school.

Sitting through plays and musicals

Yesterday I was in a senior parent meeting.

Now the Headmaster wants to present to me a graduate?


The Class of 2014

Some of these children are going to go out to serve in quiet in their churches and communities, some are going to grow families, some are going to grow crops, or careers, or their own financial gain.  This class of 2014 is unlike any other class it is my son’s class, my son’s friends.

This is it, the class of 2014.

I cry as I type this.

Ladies and Gentlemen May I Present the Class of 2014

My son is no longer a high schooler, he is a graduate.  He is an Alum.
I am so proud.

Go hug your kids because Graduation is right around the next corner.
jen

Music That Makes Me Cry

You all know by now that I cry.  I cry at commercials, I cry at birth and wedding announcements, I have cried at graduations and Baccalaureate services for years as special people have graduated.  I had no real idea how this Baccalaureate service would make me cry.  I laughed as one of the kids threw an entire box of kleenex {with lotion} into my diaper bag.

What is it about the sound of the Graduation March that puts a lump in my throat?  Is it change, is it hope for a future, is it growth?  I think it must be the change.  I don’t like change, for me, my family or my friends.  I know growing up is a part of life, but I like life-like it is, I don’t like the changing of seasons of life.

One Sunday in June I heard the graduation march and the tears did not stop.IMG_0006This Man-Child came smiling down the aisle.
I criedIMG_1321He sang his final choir song,  I criedIMG_1323During our Baccalaureate service the students names are read with their parents names.  The students then present a rose to their parent[s} and give a hand shake, high-five, fist bump, hug, whatever, to their parents.  I have cried during this presentation for years.  I cried.IMG_1324I actually have so many tears in my eyes I don’t even know where the camera is to look at it.IMG_0015Before I knew it, the whole thing was over.

The students were given a challenge from a classmate CV {seen on the left} gave the challenge.  Then the class was given one more Bible lesson, they chose a former teacher to come in and challenge them from the scriptures.  I cried during both presentations.
I think the reason that the Baccalaureate service is so emotional is the emphasis on one last Bible lesson, one last time to be a child of So-and-So, one last time to sing together, and worship together before they go out in the wide wide world.

IMG_0012Little A loves EC, who will be going to a local university so at least I can see her!  I mean so A can see her.IMG_0010We have been friends since EC and C were only 3.  We have laughed and cried about our children {mostly the crying was me, she is much stronger}  We have celebrated no school Mondays, with wings since they moved to our state many years ago.  They are some of our closest friends, confidants when we need someone to listen and pray, to offer encouragement and correction.  We watched these children grow from toddlers, to gap toothed children to almost adults.  We have not aged, they have.10334456_10203188191159469_8519534207801237158_n-1Almost the whole Overholt and O family came to celebrate C.IMG_0008My Man-Child and his father.

That box of Kleenex in my diaper bag you ask how empty it was?  It was significantly lower, although I did pass a few to the mamas and grandmamas sitting behind me and in front of me.
I have two years to rehydrated before the next one.

Go hug your kids and tell someone you love them change is constant and sometimes hard to accept.

jen

Finding Balance During Graduation

Graduation consumed our minds and thoughts for the last month.  We made plans or canceled plans according to graduation.  We cleaned house, planned meals and shopping according to that little HUGE event in our lives.  I could not RSVP to a party E was invited to until the week of the party, because of the unknown.  We are now a week out from graduation, I am quite surprised to see how we have all survived.  The house has again fallen apart, I have decorations stacked ready to return, and the thank you cards are almost all written {by the man-child without too much prodding}  Of course it helps that I would not let him deposit the $ or spend the gift cards until he wrote out the thank-you…

Quick Question?  If you give a room or even a closet a good cleaning do your kids instantly gravitate to that clean area and set up camp to play there?  Seriously EVERY TIME at our house,  if I give a good cleaning to anything (desk, laundry room, closet, etc.) the little kids decide that is the best place to play in.  Why is that?  I gave the laundry room a deep cleaning, we don’t have a garage or basement so all the junk gets shoved into the laundry room until it comes to a danger zone trying to get around games, boxes and tools.  I pulled everything out, cleaned up/threw out/put away everything, an hour later I had 2 little kids happily playing in there.

Here is a short view of recent events.  Yes most of them could have been blogged about individually,  BUT there is the computer issues…  So thankful that Keith is letting me use his computer.  Although I am a bit nervous that I am going to break this one too.

IMG_1054C was nominated, but not a winner of a volunteer community service award.  He was nominated in the Technology Category.  {Can I brag for a minute on that man-child?  He has set the school record for community service hours, at a grand total of 1,336 hours.  Yes you read that right.  They begin counting the hours after the completion of 8th grade.  That is a lot of time he has given to serve others.} IMG_1058We went and registered for baby things for baby girl “Tallulah”  {how does that work?  I’m still trying out nick names for baby girl}  Yes we were crying.  This is so happening and we are so ready!IMG_1059The Art Show at school was a huge success E with her mixed-media cow.IMG_1060J and his flowers in a vase still life.IMG_1069A wet and hot field trip to a natural spring this is by far one of my favorite field trips although that day we had something else happening in the evening so we left as soon as possible.IMG_1078This kid was nominated for American Legion Award and won.  We are so proud of him,  here he is with one of his friends who also won.IMG_1080Ballet finished up for the year, we decided with graduation and the chaos of the month we would not be in the recital.  IMG_1086The very last choir concert, I cannot believe that was the last concert I will hear these seniors.  IMG_1110PS enjoyed the concert, how sweet is she!IMG_1130Sad and happy after the last concert. IMG_1166Awards ceremonies.
We are so proud of how hard the kids work, and how much effort they put in to their classes.
R was up on stage quite a few times.  He is a hard worker and it shows!IMG_1172Highest honor roll for that girl!  She would accept nothing less.IMG_1179Someone is 5 months old now!IMG_1184Popsicle at the pool.
Both E and J had their class parties at the city pool.
These are our favorite class parties!  No prep work, just bring the sun screen.IMG_1193I did not count, but J must have jumped a million times.  IMG_0002These boys love that baby!IMG_1329J and 2 of his friends did a song/dance routine during the 4th grade talent show.  They were very funny, I do not know the song, something about being men and underwear?  and who knows?  but they had fun and came in 3rd place.IMG_1417One last awards ceremony.  Honor roll for J, proud of that boy!IMG_1422Someone could not nap because she wanted to pick up the design on her basket bedding.  She worked and worked at it until she finally fell asleep.  {Don’t worry I moved the pink stripe animal and lambie before she was sound asleep.}IMG_1225We are very sad to see this family go.  Mrs F was C’s 5th grade teacher, O and R both had her for history.  Mr F has been a volunteer in our school library since his retirement.  But Mrs F and this little girl, have a sweet bond, and they are moving.  Moving up to be with their children and grand children.  We are so very sad.  E has loved going to her office to visit this year, E has studied spelling words or Bible verse with her this year.  When we spent those long days and nights in the NICU they fixed meals for us and made lunches for J and E, continuing on even after we were released.  She has loved on my kids and listened and offered advice.  I am not happy about their move, and E cried herself to sleep when she found out.  Purely selfish on our part, that we want them here and not with family.  The only goodness {for us} they are right on route for our trips to see C in college so we will have a nice place to sleep when we get tired.

Wow that was a busy last month.  I’m glad for summer vacation to sit and relax.  There are a few kids begging me to take them to the library, C has 2 jobs that he has interviewed with and is waiting for an offer from either or both of them, O is working part-time for maintenance, the little kids are at music camp.  While I am taking care of a very sick baby.

What about you was your last month super busy?  Do you notice the kids gravitate towards a newly clean zone?  I will admit I do keep looking at my laundry room it looks so good now!

go hug your kids because when you turn around summer vacation will be over.
jen

Party Like A Graduate

Saturday May 31, was party day!  As most of my readers all 20, {I have more now!} so all 20 of you know C is finally a graduate of High School.  As with most life events this was celebrated with a party.  Or open house to be exact.  I’d show you the invitation, which O designed, it was an event ticket, and since he is going to study acting and film production in that college in KY a ticket to the event was appropriate.  And I must say it was so cool!  But, it contains too much personal information I cannot include it on this site.  Once we decided to go with the movie ticket, a theme presented itself and I love a theme party!  I love a party and I love a theme I’m all set!

I took props from some of the productions that C was in, and used them to decorate my house, I have a good friend whose game room, is decorated in a hollywood theme and borrowed from her and a teacher friend.  My total costs for decorations were about $15.00.
Food followed along the movie theater theme.
C asked for 2 things for his party.
1 to be at home.
2 nachos.
That is it.
How simple.

We had a busy week leading up to his party which made me even more thankful for the easy party.

Fair warning Picture Overload ahead… IMG_1201A few ribbons from his short time on city swim. IMG_1202The red feather is from Peter Pan
the tiny frog from SLU trip
the arrow from Robin Hood
The movie reels and sign are borrowed from a friend.

IMG_1203As you can see, the arm band, from Sound Of MusicIMG_1207The hat from Willy Wonka
tiny flower home to the family that Horton heard
one of the pieces of art from Peter Pan.IMG_1208Horton’s FlowerIMG_1209More Wonka
the advertising poster
the cane he carried, which became an extension of his own arm.IMG_1210Captain Hooks hat.IMG_1211The food table
We had popcorn, candy and nachos, how much more movie theater could we get?IMG_1214Edmond’s sword and some more fun things.  Check out a captive Tinkerbell in the lantern.IMG_1219Some of his friends who were mostly (not all) in plays or musicals with him.IMG_1227His Aunt S and Uncle K so thankful that they were able to fly down for the weekend.IMG_1243I don’t even know what is so interesting in the bathroom?IMG_1244My sisterIMG_1273Captain Hook and the founder of his fan club.
He captured TINK and then Hook helped her find TINK, he also gave her a pirate hat of her own.IMG_1311The sign of a good party, balloons on the mail box, unfortunately a strong wind came along and snatched the balloons from the mail box and took them up to the power lines.

So we survived C’s grad party with no tears.  I was pretty confident I would do fine, I love a good party and I love to host parties, so I knew I would be happy and exhausted so I would not cry.  The house was loud there were people everywhere, and family and friends came to love on C one last time.  He has some pretty amazing people in his life.

What about you?  Have you hosted a graduation party, or just gone to them to celebrate the education of someone near and dear?

Go hug your kids, because I am shocked at how fast we went from kindergarten to graduation.  Shocked.
jen