Graduation Party Fun

The next night it was time to party!
Mrs. Rose kicked off the celebration in a way only she can!  With a special donkey delivery. :)
Not everyone can say they have had a donkey deliver balloons.  We just love Mrs. Rose and the light and guidance she has provided to Hailey over the years.  They are two peas in a pod separated by 40 years.
We had a big party to celebrate the accomplishments of our girl.  My favorite part after getting to hang out with everyone was that we had a taco truck for dinner.  That meant no cooking or cleaning for me!
Graduation is a busy time, with everyone having more invites than they can attend.  So it was really special that so many friends made it over to say hi and eat some food.
Bailey and her boyfriend Devin.  We hosted Bailey last summer and she was a youth worship intern at our church this year.  She has a heart of gold and has been like a big sister to Hailey.
Friends of ours from kids being friends made time to hang out.
Many of Max's buddies from work came to help celebrate.
Even Hailey's favorite teacher, Dr. Koop came. :)
It was fun for our families to get to hang out with our friends for the night.
The kids' friends and their families came too.
Not long ago all these guys were just starting middle school now they will be sophomores.

Our cute middle school crew.
These guys grew up way too fast!
Our besties.
As we enter this new chapter, we were overwhelmed with all the blessings in friendship and family.  We are so grateful for all the family that was able to make it and for all of our friends that have grown close to us like family as we have made our way in the desert.
"We may not have it all together, but together we have it all."


Graduation day finally arrived!!
Even my Aunt Kathleen and Uncle Dan made it out for the big day.
Everyone came over for a quick dinner.  Since it is so hot here the graduation ceremonies don't begin  until 8pm.
I was still worried it might be too hot out on the football field, but it turned out to be a perfectly lovely night.
Our University of Arizona girl is ready to go!
With this cheering section we had to get their early be able to all sit together.
 It was fun to sit and catch up with everybody while we waited.
The cousins had fun hanging out too.
I love my sisters.  Alexia has been a part of our family since she was a second grader, so basically my sister. :) It was so sweet of her to make the graduation too.
I had to get pics with my Momma.  It was a big day for both of us.  Her first grandchild and my first child to graduate.  I am glad she was there to be strong for me like she always is.

My Mom #2 was also celebrating her first grandchild to graduate.  She and Monty had the craziest schedule of flying in for Hailey's Thursday graduation and then flying out Saturday to Michigan to Spencer's graduation!  What big weekend for everyone!
There's my girl.  She graduated with academic medals for all four years.  She has worked so hard all of high school and she always has conducted herself like a lady.  We couldn't be prouder!
No one gave her more studying grief than Dr. Koop, her Honors Biology and AP Human Anatomy and Physiology teacher.  He called me one day to tell me what an exceptional young lady we have on our hands.  He said out of thousands of students, he has never had one that thanked him everyday as she left.  Koop's teaching may have derailed our artist.  She is now heavily considering doing a prehealth major with the intent to go to Physician Assistant school.
I am so happy and excited for Hailey and all that lies ahead.  However, my heart is also torn that she is ready to fly.  No one ever said you wouldn't want them to leave.
We spent years dreaming and building this family.  It just won't be the same with a piece missing. Holding her as a new baby we couldn't have dreamt for more in who she turned out be as a graduating woman.  It is the strangest and most conflicting feelings to be bursting with pride and joy and also totally heartbroken.  Sure hoping I get better at this by round four.
Hailey made this video.  She is beyond and talented.  The arts will be sad if they lose her to medicine.  But as she says, there is no greater art than the human body.
We will never say Good Bye.  

Last Day of School!!!

Seniors got out a day early!  Somebody is ready for graduation!!
These guys were almost as excited as their mama to be out for the summer!!
I always like to see how much they have grown from the first day of school. 
We are all jumping for joy! I can't wait to spend the summer with these guys.

May Mayhem

 It felt like every night in May we had a celebration or event to attend.  The girls' track banquet was held at the park one stormy night.
Max raced home in the Jeep and hit a random downpour in May!  Its not often we have to worry about getting wet with the top off here.  But when it happens, we are not prepared!
They almost had to cancel the banquet because there was no shelter.  So we ate in the rain and tired to enjoy the cool weather.
We were treated with a beautiful rainbow.  What a symbol to end their one and only sport season together.  We sure loved watching them run and be on the same team.
The next day I taught my final WordMaster's class.  I have been teaching at the elementary school for 8 years!
I have been lucky enough to go in each week and teach the kids a set of 25 words and help them learn analogies with those words.  They take a nationwide test and are ranked against their peers.  I always promised them a pizza party if we won all three challenges at their school level.  I bought a lot of pizza over the years!
 I would give them WordMaster bucks for doing their homework and finding words in books and doing well on the test.  At the end of each challenge they got to shop for prizes.  Target is going to miss my dollar bin shopping sprees. :). I will really miss getting to see the kids master vocabulary and hang out with them.
The next day Kaitlin had her volleyball championships to end her season.
 She grew so much as a player and we loved cheering for these two and their teammates.  Unfortunately her coach's husband got a job out of the state, so she will be moving to a new club next year.  Hoping these two cuties stick together.
They had a great first club year!
The next week Kaitlin was inducted into the Nation Junior Honor Society. 
 They have a much more formal ceremony than the high school National Honor Society.  We are so proud of Kaitlin maintain a 4.0 throughout middle school.  She is excited to volunteer her time this year as a National Junior Honor Society member.
 With a summer full coming up we realized we only had two weekends that overlapped with our best friends.  We had to jump on a free Saturday to celebrate boat season!
Adults day only meant Mimosas and lots of time to float and surf.
 Cheers to summer and lake life!
 The next morning was Senior Sunday at church.
 They celebrated all the seniors with a little video and a luncheon.
 These three girls have held onto each other throughout all of high school.  
 Chloe is headed to ASU while Hailey and Grace will be rooming together at U of A.
I am grateful for our church helping grow their faith and develop a strong Christian foundation as they spread their wings and fly.
Our church does a Live Love month every year and this year they did it in May.  They had service projects all around the valley that you could jump in and love your community in practical ways.  We were so jam packed with events we could only squeeze in cleaning up trash at the high school one Saturday morning.  I have to applaud the kids for getting up bright and early, before it got too hot and picking up trash.  Hank and I got educated about all the various vaping and drug parafenilla of today.  I had no idea there were so many different modalities!  In our day it was cigarette butts and pipes.  I think we found only one cigarette butt.
 Hailey officially passed the torch of finals stress eating date to Karlie.  Hailey had her final date at Cinnabon and Karlie had hers at HB Wellness, which has smoothies and protein shakes.
One final push before summer fun!
 One night we took a family walk out in the desert so Hailey could take some photos for a senior video she was working on.
 Big changes are happening in our house.  I hope one thing that never changes is their love for each other.  I pray they always hold onto each other and make time for each other as life pulls them in different directions and fills up their schedules.  Family First.