Good afternoon readers,
It’s nearly the first day of summer! I can hardly wait to get the season underway. In fact, I am ready to hit up our dear friends Jacob and Jamie for some pool time! However, I must first reminisce on our most recent milestone as a homeschool family.
On June 3rd, 2016, our family celebrated a momentous occasion. Our senior, Kasidy, graduated from homeschool. She was the star of the evening. Because we live on a tight budget, our daughter and I had to come up with some ingenious ideas about how to host a party, as well as how to invite people. Being the age of technology, we certainly put Facebook to good use. But, because we are traditional in many ways, I wanted her to have the experience of mailing out invitations.
Have you priced those lately? Even for a minimal amount, we were looking at more than $50.00. That’s insane! We checked out the local craft stores for ideas but came up empty. We even priced them at our local graduation supplies store – outrageous!
Then, we found the scrap-booking aisle at Wal-Mart. Jackpot! After purchasing some standard A4 size cards with a silver matte finish, we began working on how to design the cover and the interior of the card. We needed a little color, so using some scrapbook paper we created a pocket for her senior picture, and used the PC and Word to create a sheet to attach to the inside with all the information. I also created a program to hand out at the ceremony. They turned out beautifully, don’t you think?
After the invitations, we needed to figure out where and when to have the party. Crunch time! My only wish (if I had to do it over again – wait, I will… in a few more years!) Alas, I digress.
I would have taken more time in planning. But as it was, I began using the handy checklist I created to put the final touches on the venue, food items, and music.
Oh! The music!
My daughter and I agree on most things, but there are a couple of exceptions: Movies and music. My idea of good music was changed to the ear piercing crash of Skrillex. The fast paced, razor-sounds that emanated from the speakers was not my idea of party music. But it wasn’t my graduation – it was hers and she deserved the music she wanted.
And if you are like me, you will do whatever you can to combine your traditions with their taste. Her graduation march was traditional Pomp and Circumstance, but it had a special twist about 30 seconds into it that only a fan of Skrillex would appreciate!
But I have a secret to share with you. I managed to get some Willie Nelson & Ray Charles, Prince, and Ace Cannon in the mix. Kids today (mine included) have little to no idea of how great these musicians are or what obstacles they have overcome to even have their music recorded. Even though my daughter has been through a course of music appreciation, and enjoys classical music just as much, they seldom hear the music for the words being sung.
It was only the morning after graduation that she asked to listen to the playlist again. Inquisitively, she asked me what the name of the songs were and if they were new. I explained to her the music she was enjoying was the instrumental versions of some of my favorite songs, some new and some old. I simply took out the lyrics. “Well what are they?” she insisted. I explained that one of them was entitled “Seven Spanish Angels”. A few of the others were “Take me to Church”, “Girl Crush”, “Flightless Bird, American Mouth”, “Most Beautiful Girl in the World”, and “Tuff”. She was listening to it just the other night as she cleaned her room.
The grandest surprise was the guest speaker. The person I asked to speak at her graduation was not the president of the US, or a famous movie star (not that I would want or could afford either of them). Her guest speaker was someone she has known since the 3rd grade in public school, and someone I have known since my high school days. Mrs. Sandra Hedge attended the event and spoke beautifully about our daughter, encouraging her to press on and to embrace her unique and eccentric self once she takes those steps into adulthood.
Below are some photos from her two graduations... Why two? Keep reading to find out!
The photos with the red cap and gown are homeschool photos, while the black regalia represent her GED graduation ceremony.
In addition to her homeschool graduation, she also achieved another goal: her GED. While our state does not require a GED for college enrollment, I wanted her to know that she was just as smart, if not smarter, than her public school counterparts. Sometimes, being a mom means allowing your child to assess themselves. And did she ever. With a score of 560 needed to pass the exam, she scored a 660 - and only two points away from college credits. She was also recognized as the graduate with the highest overall GED scores. She was chosen to speak at the ceremony, along with the oldest graduate - a woman of 67 years - who, even after life had dealt her several setbacks, she refused to give up on her education. What a wonderful surprise, eh?! I did manage to get video of her speech at the ceremony.
Yes, in all, the events that have recently occurred are certainly milestones that every teen hopes for and every parent cries for. I am certainly blessed to have been there to see her finish up her high school career. It amazes me that only 18 years ago, she was dependent on us for everything - now here she is, a grown woman, full of hope and inspiration.
These are the moments that take my breath away.
Until next time,
Welcome! My name is LaVonda. I am the wife of Rodney, the mom of 5 remarkable kids (well, 2 are adults now), an avid homeschooler, blogger, and graduate student. I am blessed with the ability to spend my time sharing our homeschool and life experiences with you. It is my hope to provide you with motivation, ideas, and some candid stress-relief through my blog - Mom's Scribe! Grab a cup of coffee, sit on down, and make yourself at home!