Pomp and Circumstance

In a galaxy far, far away (well, really it was the same galaxy but just a period of time that was long, long ago) I graduated from college. Twice, actually. I earned my bachelor’s degree in 1977 (when dinosaurs walked the earth), and my master’s degree in 1993 (by that time, neanderthal humans were around). I didn’t walk across the stage when I earned my undergraduate degree, something I can’t really explain and regretted almost immediately. So when I earned my master’s degree, I made sure that I walked across the stage to receive that hard-earned piece of paper, and that my son Court saw me do it.

I know just how hard it is to earn a college degree while working because I did it for all of the years in college. Poor me. But that is just to say that I couldn’t be more proud of my niece Brooke, who graduated this past Friday from Arizona State University, where she earned a degree in Education, and she worked the entire time she was in school. She will start teaching Kindergartners in a few months. Now that’s hard to believe, because she’s just a kid herself, isn’t she?…..

My justifiably proud bother and sister-in-law Dave and Sami, with ASU graduate Brooke.

Brooke poses with her little big sister Jessie, who last year at this time was receiving her own degree from Northern Arizona Unversity.

Graduation ceremonies are funny, because they take hours, and you really are only interested in about 20 seconds of that time. The 20 seconds when your loved one’s name is read, her name goes up on the big board, and she goes up to receive that hard-earned degree. As Brooke’s time to receive her degree neared to within seconds, the woman sitting directly in front of us stood up to take video of her darling son or daughter receiving their degree. My dissatisfaction with her choice was obvious as I groaned (quite loudly, I’m afraid), “No, no, no, no, no, no, don’t stand up!” Her husband quickly encouraged her to sit, and we managed to get this……

In celebration of her graduation, some of her family and friends gathered for (what else) a meal….

….this time, chicken wings. Nothing says graduating cum laude from a major university and being within months of the first teaching job like chicken wings…..

And on Saturday, the rest of the family gathered to honor Brooke at the home of Erik and Josey, where there was, of course, lots of food and lots of cousins/grandchildren/nieces/nephews…..

And speaking of those little ones, I think college graduations from this side of the family are finished for a few years. Next time, we will be attending graduations of these little ones.

And it will come before we know it!