Monday, June 8, 2015

*Monday Memos* (McKay's Graduation Edition)

 (If pictures are too small, just click to enlarge) 

dear busy week, all weeks seem to be busy, but this one was busy with a lot of BIG things all at once.  Talk about cramming a lot of big stuff into a few days!   This week McKay graduated from high school, went to the temple for the first time, and graduated from Seminary all within three days.  Oh, and he had an all night party thrown in there as well.  He leaves for his mission only 12 days after graduation and 10 days after seminary graduation.  It's been a whirlwind!  And we are still trying to get him ready for his mission.  It's coming way too fast!

dear last shopping trip with mckay for the mission, I pulled McKay out of school for a half a day on Monday because we just really needed to get the bulk of the remaining stuff for his mission and it really was the only day to do it.  He didn't mind!  Of course, being the last week of school I didn't think he would miss much, but he actually did have to make up a test and another large assignment.  But he is a great student and so no worries.  Since it was lunch time, our first stop was PANDA EXPRESS!  That is his favorite place to eat in the world.  Golden Spike Burgers come in second, but he loves his Beijing Beef and his Orange Chicken.   He says that is what he is going to miss the most while he is gone.  I immediately reminded him that he is wrong.  He is going to miss ME the most!  hah
He said today's Panda was the best he's ever had!  I was happy about that!

We hit a ton of stores looking for his second suit.  We went to the Layton mall and then to Ogden.  We went back to Holmes to exchange some shirts for a different size and the same girl waited on us that did the first time that we weren't really too impressed with.  He immediately told me he wanted to go back to Men's Wearhouse and get the suit there.  So we did.  I agreed with him that it was the better suit and a better price because we didn't have to pay extra for alterations. 
Lookin' good!
The seamstress measuring for alterations was from Austria.  She was very nice.  Let's just hope she knows how to alter.  What a relief to have that done!
We also got some shoes and socks and a lot of other things he needed. I really didn't want to go home until we had it all, but after about five hours, he was pretty much done.  Shopping and the Y chromosome don't seem to go together.  But I was okay because even though I could have gone another five hours, I felt like we accomplished what we needed to.  And... it felt like things were falling into place nicely today unlike how things have gone the past few weeks.  

It has really been a bear trying to get everything to work out as far as finding good deals and sales and even just finding what we needed.  I've bought several things I had to return and start, pants, sweaters, shirts (wrong size thanks to lady who measured wrong), etc. etc. I have spent so many hours shopping online for his sweaters that have to be a washable merino wool and for his thermals.  Those things were SO expensive!  I learned from other missionary moms to get the Under Armour kind and they were expensive!  One pair of pants was $67.  I searched so hard to find better deals. I ended up getting a great deal on the tops ($36 each!). And I also spent hours searching for the right socks.  He needs socks that will keep his feet warm when it's 39 degrees below zero!  They were all $25 a pair! I spent more on socks than I did on one of his suits!  But he needs them or he will freeze.  Anyway, I was getting very discouraged that I was having to pay top dollar for everything and really was expecting some great miraculous deals to fall in my lap because it's for a mission and all.  But it just wasn't happening until today.  It really was a miracle how we found his shoes.  We needed to get him Eccos for his dress shoes and the only place that sold them was Dillards and I was afraid they wouldn't have a big enough selection.  But as we were leaving the mall, I noticed a little shoe store and told McKay to go in there and see if they had any gym shoes.  Much to my surprise they sold Eccos! We would have NEVER even gone in there had we not saw the gym shoes in the window.  He found a pair he really liked too. Sigh of relief!  We found a lot of things we needed and it was pretty effortless this time around.  So nice! Huge sigh of relief!

dear mr. cat, ahhh....  no other words are needed.

However, THIS ↓ ticks me off!
That cat will jump up on Dave's lap and be all lovey dovey and just purr away like crazy and let him pet him and then fall asleep on his lap.  Yes!  Like a LAP CAT!  A lap cat that I have always wanted!  Will he EVER do that to me?  NAY!  He did jump up on my lap once or twice and let me pet him for a minute or so but then he was off as fast as he was on.  Seriously!  I am the one that feeds him, gives him treats, combs him, pets him, talks nice to him, takes him to the vet for his shots....hmm....maybe, that explains it.  Maybe he secretly hates me because I put him through the shot torture once a year.  Whatever it is, it is so wrong and messed up.  I think I will make Dave start taking him to the vet.  Yeah, that would be the day.  He won't even pick him up and so that would never work. LOL

dear thursday, I was supposed to go to another Women's Forum meeting, but I had so much to do I had to be excused from it. I called Joan and told her the scoop on my speakers and hopefully it will all pan out.  I had to run to Ogden and finish up some stuff for the mission and for family pictures.  I had to find clothes for everyone and decide on a color scheme. I originally chose eggplant, black and gray, but then I changed it to a deep dark turquoise (peacock) but holy cow it was hard to find that color.  I think I checked every store in O town!  I got some, but not sure what I am wearing.  I have to feel good in what I am wearing or we might as well bag it!  hah Family pictures have always been one of the most stressful things for me as a mother!  I hope this all comes together somehow!

I also went chair shopping.  I found one the day before at a local furniture store and so I bought it and brought it home but Dave said it wasn't high enough in the back for him. He is pretty tall and so I understood it would be uncomfortable for him.  So I decided to return it and keep looking.  I have been looking for two and half years now for a new chair and ottoman to replace the one we have that is literally falling apart!  The one in the middle is the one I bought and had to return. The others are ones that I was seriously thinking about.  I wanted a purple one but they are so hard to find that I knew I wuold just have to settle for something else.  Until.....

I ran in to John Paras and looked around and found one without an ottoman and so the salesman was checking to see if he could order one.  He told me they had some chairs and ottomans upstairs on clearance as well if I wanted to go check them out.  I wasn't even going to look because I figured they wouldn't have anything, but I did and...VIOLA.. I hit the jackpot! 

This gorgeous set was up there and it was on clearance.  But even on clearance it was more than the other ones I had been looking at.  I called Dave and sent him a picture and told him how much I loved it and it was tall enough in the back and it was beautiful.  The only drawback was the ottoman was huge!  But I still thought it would look okay in my family room.  Dave told me I could get it!  I was so happy!  FINALLY!  The search is finally over!  I actually found my perfect chair!  Things really have started to fall into place with everything!  What a relief!  Now if the family pictures will!  
I think it looks great!  It matches well and the green paint makes it pop.  McKay loves it and calls it "the throne".   I just love the color.  I know this find was a tender mercy (two years in the making)! 

dear runs this week, I found me some gorgeous purple flowers!  I wish I knew what these were called so I could plant a million of them.

And aren't these ↓ so pretty?

 I stopped and fed these goats a ton of grass.  They were loving it.  I hated to leave because they were just so excited for me to keep giving it to them.  Goats are such funny creatures.

Robin and I did a long run on Saturday.  Well, relatively speaking anyway.  We only went 10.5 and so that isn't technically a long run, but at this point in the training it is.  It was a nice day and it's always nice to chat with her and catch up.

dear manic manican, she was pretty manic today!  Sheesh!  That sign is in front of the house.  Pretty descriptive I'd say.  haha

dear last and final high school graduation (for this mom anyway!)...this has been a little hard to come to terms with for sure.  Mostly because McKay's my baby as well as the fact that he is heading off to Russia, in less than two weeks, for oh, let's say.....TWO LONG YEARS!
 My baby is a high school graduate!  HOW DID THIS HAPPEN?!
WHEN did this happen?!
 What a bitter sweet day.  More bitter than sweet though....
 I am so proud of this boy.  He has been my son that just exudes confidence and has since he was around the age of five or six.  He could've been the opposite with four older brothers that were bigger than him, but he learned to be tough and he is very self assured and self confident.
 He is also VERY obedient and VERY grateful.  That is one of his best qualities.  He is a very fun loving kid and has more friends than anyone I know. Everyone really loves McKay.  He is so hilarious and is always laughing and making others laugh.  He is also very kind and never excludes others.  I have been told many times how he will include others that need it.  He is also extremely smart and remembers things so well. He is just a great all around kid.  I am so proud of him. 

We wanted to go out to dinner before, but Dave couldn't get off early enough and so we just went to Panda Express because that is his favorite place to eat and it was fast.
 Once we arrived we took a few more pictures but the sun was in our eyes and so they didn't turn out too great.  Then he took off to get lined up.  Oh man. I just had to keep telling myself to breath.

 And then that music started.  Yes, THAT music.  That pomp and circumstance that plays at every graduation that says to me, "Life passes quickly and another one has now moved out of the childhood stage into adulthood...just like that."  I am not fond of that music.  It's kind of like the song Called to Serve.  Whenever I hear that, I can't help but tear up and usually start to cry because it says to me, "The time has arrived that you have prepared your son for.  It's here.  You are sending off one of your precious sons to go serve out in the big wide world for two very long years."   Well, guess what?  I get to hear BOTH of them at the same time with this one.  NOT something I would have ever chosen.  It's been pretty heart wrenching.
 And with THAT music they all walked in.  It always gives me chills and this one was no exception.  He was on the second to last row.  Perks of a last name at the end of the alphabet.
The speakers were really good.  In fact, this was probably the best graduation I have ever been to as far as really good talks.  McKay's good bud Mitch is in the top left photo.  He is the Student Body President and he should have given a speech, but just welcomed them.  Only one senior actually spoke.  Mr. Davidson (a teacher) gave a great talk about the three things he wanted them to remember.  They were #1 Work Hard #2 Play Hard and #3 Do Good to Others.  I loved his talk.  It applied to everyone in the audience.  One of the members of the Board of Education spoke and she did a good job as well.  This graduation wasn't as long as most and that was refreshing.

 There he is!  He was looking up at himself in the jumbo-tron.  So cute!
There he is on the jumbo-tron!

Receiving his diploma
I absolutely LOVE this picture!  The look on the faces of a couple of his best buds (Mitch Anderson and Carson Anderson - not related) is priceless to me.  They were sitting on the front row with the other student officers and so that was cool for McKay to have them cheer him on from the front.
I love these pictures too!  As he walked back to his seat (almost the very back row) he shook hands, hand butted, and did whatever boys do with a bunch of his buds on his way back to his seat.
They attempted to throw their caps in the air, but it was one of the worst I've seen. Haha.  But... there was still a lot of excitement in the air.  High School graduation is just one of those once in a lifetime things that is just so exciting!
The fam.  My parents and us.  Taylor and Bryce didn't get there until they were awarding the diplomas because Taylor had been working in Malad. Dave's parents took off right after and didn't stick around for the pictures.

 I was SO happy it was still light when we got out.  Taylor's started at the same time and it went longer and so it was dark by the time we got out and I didn't get very many pictures with his friends.

 I got some good pictures with McKay's pals.  He has so many friends though that I could only grab who was close by.
Top left: Carson Anderson, Mitch Anderson, Cody Anderson, Kaden Grover, McKay.  Top right:  Can't rem his name, Mitch, McKay, Kaden.  Bottom left: Chase Ferry Mitch A., McKay, Cooper Parson, Derek Wankier, Jonah W.
McKay had his own little fan club.  These three even have a hand signal for him. Bottom right - they are doing a M and a W for his initials.  One of them jumped in his arms as I was taking a picture.  They were crazy and will be graduating next year but acted like they were this year.  Everyone was just so excited after.

Top left: With buds Justin Price and Riley Burt.  They have played football together since they were 7 years old.  Riley has signed on to play for BYU this fall. Top right: The five who took their senior trip to California over spring break in April. Kaden, Hayden, the twins Carson and Cody, and McKay.  Bottom left: These four were in preschool together when they were 3 and 4 years old. 

Left: McKay and Hayden.  Middle: Natasha and McKay.  They went to Junior Prom together and she was named Jr. Prom Queen and is such a sweet thing.  Right: McKay and Coop with Derek.  McKay and Coop have been inseparable since they were in preschool.  Maybe even before!  Coop's family is moving in September and it's going to be sad that after their missions they will no longer live close.  McKay spends a lot of time at Cooper's house.  Things are going to be so different.

I had to add this one because I thought the lights looked so cool.  Riley was funny and told me he wasn't sure if he would show up in the photo because it was getting dark outside.  lol
And just like that...they're all grown up!

These guys have been such good buds.  So sad that everyone will move on now. But that is part of life!  They all have bright futures ahead of them.  Four of the five have their mission calls already.  How quickly time flies!

I made him this money lei.  I am not sure how much money is on it, but it took me a couple hours to do.  He loved it.  I felt really bad he didn't have the scholarship cords.  That was my bad.  He DID earn a scholarship, but I waited to turn it in until he took the ACT one more time in case he got higher and then he would have received a better scholarship, but I didn't realize the deadline had passed before his ACT came back.  And he did get a better score too.  Dang!! Mama fail.

After we walked over to the car, McKay told me thanks and gave me a big hug and said to me, "Only 12 more days Mom."  Ugh!  That felt like a dagger to this mama heart of mine.  Twelve days?  That is just way too soon.  He just barely graduated from high school and instead of thinking only of celebrating that huge milestone, his mind was full of his mission and Russia in 12 short days!  WOW!  There outta be a law!
 McKay changed his clothes at the car and then headed off to the Senior All Night party.  They asked me to help chaperone it but he told me he really didn't want me to.  I did for Taylor's but McKay was pretty insistent that I didn't. So I told them no. :(

Dave and I decided to grab a Tony's Pizza on the way home.  But we decided to go in and eat it instead.  That place hasn't changed in 30 plus years.
My emotions were all over the place tonight.  Happy, sad, excited, worried, concerned, proud, depressed, you name it...I was feeling it.  What a big change for me and for our family.  I feel like I have worked myself right out of a job.  This marks the ending of so many things in my life that I have done for over 30 years.  I am not a fan of change.  And this one is huge.  But, as I always do when I am struggling with things that are hard and sad, I will try and focus on gratitude.  There is so much to be grateful for.  I am grateful McKay did graduate and that he is healthy and that he is worthy to go on a mission and that the Lord trusts him enough to send him to far off Russia that is such a hard mission. I am grateful for each and every day that I have been able to be a mother to five wonderful and amazing sons. I am grateful that they are all doing good things and are happy and productive.  I am grateful that I don't have to attend any more...well, the truth is, I was going to say choir concerts or parent teachers conferences, but I will miss those things too. I really truly loved every event or activity my boys were involved in and I will miss attending those things. But I am grateful that I won't have to worry about their grades and homework anymore.  I am grateful that I won't have to help with Science Fair projects or study for the Spelling Bee anymore.  I am grateful that they had such great high school experiences and that they were great kids and so well liked and that they all achieved so many great things.  I am very proud of each of them.  Change may not be welcome, but I will accept it.  Um....well of course I will.  I have no other choice!  lol

dear busy saturday, I did my long run and then had three brazillion things to get done today.  I ran over to my friend Brooke's little guy's baptism.  She reminds me so much of myself when my boys were younger and I always went all out for special occasions.  I honestly wonder where I ever got the energy because at the time I had so many little ones.  I wonder the same about her.  I surely don't have it anymore!  I got tired just seeing all she had done.  But it was a really nice event complete with a slide show and amazing programs.  She is truly amazing.  I am pretty sure I have never met anyone that does everything with such flair and creativity and so well. 
I had to miss one of my high school friend's baby shower for her daughter because it was in Ogden and I just didn't have time to go that far.  I got a ton of stuff done and then it was time to go to the temple for McKay to take out his endowments.

dear temple with mckay, wow this came fast!  I seriously am not sure I have even known anyone that went to the temple the day after they graduated.  And the morning after the all night graduation party.  This may be a first!  Taylor and I arrived for the session time but Dave and McKay had to be there an hour and half earlier.  It was nice to see them when we got in the session room.  Dave's parents also came.  Our Bishop came and McKay's YM President and our friend Troy and his wife Carol was also there. I was really hoping for some peace and calm to wash over me while there, but it just didn't come to the degree I was hoping for.  Sitting in the Celestial room was very nice though. McKay said it was the most peaceful place he had ever been in.  We sat and talked to him for quite a while.  We were the last ones to leave.  We headed out and took some photos.  It was a gorgeous night.
Then we headed to Longhorn Steak House for dinner.  They really do have the best steaks around.  The boys had never been there and they were impressed.  It was fun to be together.  So much happening so soon.  I will keep seeking the peace that seems to elude me.
It s hard to see in the photo, but that is a heart in the clouds.  I felt like it was a little sign from heaven telling me that all is well and all will be okay.

dear sunday, another busy day. I had to teach Sunday School today.  It was fast Sunday and so it was fast and testimony meeting.  I had no intention of bearing my testimony at all but when Johnny started talking about all the changes in their life and about missionaries and then Laura talked about her missionary, my heart was just so full.  Actually it was pounding SO hard and SO fast, I thought I was going to have a heart attack!  I have learned that when I feel like way that it is the Spirit telling me to get up.  The next thing I knew I was standing at the podium.  I am not entirely sure what I said, but it was mostly about McKay leaving and how hard it has been to get him ready in such a short amount of time and how we have felt the adversary's influence trying to discourage us.  I said how McKay was the one to point that out to me when I was really getting frustrated.  I talked about how gratitude is what has helped me get through it and how it is a powerful principle.  I really wish I could remember what I said, but that always seems to happen.  Once I sit down, I have no clue!  I was almost embarrassed that I had got up because I feared that I came across as I was really struggling with all this, which I am, but I probably made it sound like it is worse than it is. Oh well, any missionary mamas totally understood.  Then McKay also stood up and bore his testimony!  He did a great job!  He said how he went to the temple yesterday and how it was the most peaceful place he had ever been.  He is such a cutie.  I am so proud of that kid.  Gosh, it hurts my heart that he is going to be gone for two whole years!  I think this feels harder than the when the other two left because I just barely got Taylor home and because I know how hard it is now and also because he is my baby and the fact that he is only 18 and going to Russia so soon after graduation.  We really need another week or two to just gather ourselves and to take a little vacay.  But, we don't have it and so we need to make the best of it!

My Sunday School class went well.  We did a mock ward council meeting. It was fun.  I love those kids so much!  Every single one of them!  I just love the youth!

dear seminary graduation, this is also my very last seminary graduation.  Wow, so many lasts.  I am not a fan of lasts!  At least when it comes to my children.  But, time marches on and we have no power to stop it so we must go with the flow and try and embrace it.  It was a great meeting and Dave did a great job.  He never ceases to amaze me how he can just get up there and be so calm and always say the perfect thing.  We had yummy cake after for refreshments.  And of course we had to take lots of pictures.  

Our ward's seniors. With the Stake President (Dave) and the Bishop (Mont).
I really loved this scripture on the program. It is what I needed.
I like this one better but it's blurry so I added the other one too.

These boys.  So silly and so fun. I loved having them in my Sunday School class.

I am so proud of this boy!

With the grandparents.

And the other grandparents.

More, some duplicates but my computer is giving me issues and I don't have time to re-do.  I love the one of my Mom on the top left.  She was actually waving at someone when I took this but it looks like she is saying, "YES!" that he graduated.  Hehe  She is a hoot.

McKay was VERY patient even though he just wanted to get home and watch the end of the NBA playoffs.  The game was intense and went into two overtimes!  I was kind of going a little crazy myself because I wanted the Cavs to win!  They ended up pulling it off.  Whew....

dear quotes this week,


Nancy Mc said...

I'mm glad that you are finally feeling that things are falling into place. I can't imagine trying to get a missionary ready in such a short amount of time. I know your testimony will help you through. Love all the pictures and the quotes.
How do you get kids to pose for so many pictures? Busy, busy and you still find time to run...Awesome!

Jodi Wilding said...

Thanks Nancy! It's been crazy!
Trust me my boys do NOT like posing for photos! I think they finally realized this mom always has a camera in her hand and so deal with it! I get a lot of eye rolling though. hahah

Audrey said...

All I have to say is "WOW"!


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