Where do I begin to tell the epic story of Katie's graduation?
Our youngest, graduated from BYU Idaho on Saturday, April 9th 2011. Her one and only request was that everyone in her family be there. Marc, Jesica, Tim and Peggy left on Thursday right after work in the newly repaired Suburban. It had just stopped dead one day and Marc had to have it towed. $1000ish bucks later, it was running, we hoped, reliably enough for the big trip. The big truck was chosen instead of taking two cars for two reasons: Jesica's stuff that needed to be hauled back from Utah and Katie's stuff that needed to be hauled back from Idaho....
Thursday night we drove to Cour de lane, ID and spent the night in a nice Best Western.
Next morning we switched drivers. As we were coming down one of the snowy passes, the truck engine stopped. Stopped, as in turned off while we were moving. Tim was driving, the power steering and power brakes were out, so he man- handled it down the hill 3 miles to a convenient rest stop.
Marc was unhappy but kept his cool. This was his one big nightmare. To top it off....no cell service! Fortunately, Marc had a bum load of quarters in the truck so he used a pay phone (yes, they still exist) and called a tow truck and a van to haul everyone back to Wallace. The plan was to leave the girls there, take a bus or something back to Spokane, rent a car, and drive to graduation while the truck was worked on. We sat for 2 plus hours waiting for the tow truck. After a short call to Jes's Dad (the original owner of the truck) to tell them that we would not be meeting them as planned, Marc began poking around under the hood and found a loose electrical connection.
He clipped it back together, the engine started right up. We thought the roads in Montana were rough, but wow! Marc made a quick phone call to the insurance company. Then we all jumped in the Suburban and dissappeared before the tow truck showed up!
Marc did call and cancel the tow truck out of courtesy...snooze you loose and we saved a bum load of money and time.
Meanwhile on Thursday, Tim and Sarah, flew into the SLC airport and arrived on the later side at G and G Bullock's home for the night. Tim couldn't find the key to get in the door and he didn't want to wake them up. He tried Kelly and Brian next door, no luck. So, in the end he had to knock. Friday mid morning, Tim and Sarah drove Grandma and Grandpa Bullock to Rexburg and checked them into the hotel for us. They all entertained Katie until we arrived around 6:30 pm. Pizza, a little talk and bedtime basically. Tim Jr and Sarah slept on the floor at Burch's, Marc and Jes stayed in the Walmart parking lot with Jes's family in their trailer. G and G Bullock with Tim and I in the hotel.
Heather and Ethan and family would not be joining us this time ...next morning it was time to watch our baby girl graduate!
Katie opted to not do all the speeches and commencement stuff planned for the day. She just wanted to walk. This is before the ceremony as we all gathered. She was a little nervous and testy but she was trying to be nice and let me take a photo of her.
This is her down on the floor looking for friends and a place to sit. They didn't walk in with a big procession. They just found a seat with their college and waited.
This is Ally and Katie. They did their practicum at the same elementary school and have become really good friends. They will both be student teaching in Utah in August.
So Marc had a brilliant idea. Since Heather, Ethan and crew couldn't physically be there, he could skype them there on his computer. This is a shot of them getting things set up before the ceremony started. Marc gave commentary through the headphones so they could keep up with what was going on.
As Katie walked up to receive her diploma cover, she was able to walk right by Marc and the computer and wave at the kids. It was pretty touching to watch.
Katie's back was to us as she shook hands, but here she is coming down after the fact. We had brought our cow bells and Heather et al in Colorado had their cow bells (a ritual moment in the family since Katie played high school soccer) and we were going to ring them like crazy when they read KB's name...but...they asked us not to... and to wait until the end...they wanted this to be a reverent occasion. Talk about a buzz kill...But we were finally given the opportunity to ring and yell and ee-oo at the end!
Then it was over. Short and sweet.Mom giving KB a hug and some flowers.
The after pictures! The graduates: Becke, Ally, and Katie
Katie and her big brother Tim; looking good (yeah you too Katie)
Tim Jr., Katie and Sarah. It was so nice of them to travel from Texas to be there.
Katie, Sister Kay, Ally. Sister Kay was Katie's favorite teacher and her boss too and probably a friend for life. (Katie was her TA and occasionally taught her class) Sister Kay made a point of finding us and introducing herself.
I am thinking Kindred Spirits
Josie, Katie and Peter Bullock. Just a day earlier, The elder Bullocks had been traveling home from a funeral in Meza, Arizona for Kevin's mom. They were very tired.
Katie and Grandpa. Peter looks good after his by-pass surgery. He doesn't care for this getting old part of life much.
Katie visiting with Heather, Ethan, Eliza, Liam and Afton. They all thought it was pretty cool.
Marc likes to pick girls up...literally... Marc, Katie and Jesica. It was really sweet of them to take time off from work and haul us all around to be there for Katie.
Here we are in K section (K for Katie...duh). Family is a wonderful thing. They will do things for you that no one else will. Thank you everyone for being there!
It was done! We all went to lunch at a favorite local place that Katie liked, the kids all went to play for an hour on campus with KB as tour guide to show everyone how much things had changed since they were students there and then it was time for Tim and Sarah to drive G and G Bullock back home. Tim and Sarah were up at 4 am next morning to get their flight home. The five of us stayed the night in Rexburg' We went bowling with the Jesica's family and then we all went out to Applebees for dinner.
Next morning were all on our way home! Wow! What a fast trip! So glad we got to be together! Thank you one and all for your love and sacrifice and support!
Kick it Katie!