I interrupt life to bring you this blog post.  My one blog reader is bored with my blog posts. And I don’t blame him! April and May have been filled with a whole lot of living: senior recital, band concert, honors dinner, baccalaureate Mass, Confirmation, baseball, college graduation, high school graduation, moving two college kids home, cleaning apartments, moving one student back to college to work for the summer, funeral services, memorial concert….not to mention a wee bit of sewing.  This living has been filled with joy and grief.

Today, I will start with Annie’s graduation. My Facebook friends loved the picture of my mom hugging Annie. My mom is 85 and has made it to darn near every important event in her 18 grandkids’ lives. She is so proud of them!

Annie’s sister played piano for the ceremony. She spotted us in the last row of the theater and gave a stretch to let us know she saw us!

Joey was playing up at Mackinac Island and couldn’t be with us (much to Annie’s chagrin.)

Annie did tons of work preparing her display. She received some really nice scholarships – both from the school and a number of local ones.

Our dear friends provided a wonderful cupcake tree and a Barbie cake similar to Annie’s prom dress!

We even had a visit from Flash and all the alumni took a photo with him!

We have had a tradition of having a “Thank You” wall. We want the kids to work hard, but also to thank the people who help them along the way. Annie selected a quote and went the extra mile with scrapbook papers and photos of nearly every one who attended the party. Many people were moved to tears at what she wrote about them.

We had about 100 people attend the party (we have a big family!) We have a big back yard, but because we have to assume it will rain, we rent a tent and connect to the garage.  We also live in a raised ranch, which would require everyone going up and down for food. Because of that and because my husband thinks the best parties are when all the people are packed into one area, we set it up here. The kids played in the back and there were some chairs and tables in the back.

I used my water bottles filled with a few flowers as centerpieces. We also had balloon centerpieces.

My husband and I decided we should be party engineers…. We spent two days on our feet preparing! My husband even tapes up all the tablecloths….no detail is overlooked!

We thought it would be fun to display the dresses that Annie designed and sewed.

She included her original sketch and a photo, too.

Yes, that is a piano….we rolled it out to the garage because – well, when you have kids who are musicians, you believe in live music!  We couldn’t have my son’s trio play, so we thought my daughter could play some dinner music.

Annie’s blanket! 

Playbills from the musicals during her four years.

Annie’s friends are orchestra/choir/band/theater kids so we had them singing show tunes!

And one very sweet singer (the one on the right….)

My future nephew-in-law singing….can’t wait until the wedding next year!

We have had our graduation parties the first weekend after graduation. In this case, it was the day after, since the graduation was on a Friday night. It is a lot of work, but it is especially fun when you are riding high on the excitement of graduation.

I’m so proud of Annie. She worked extremely hard in her high school years and got fantastic grades. Her work ethic will serve her well in her college years.