In line for diplomas (Allie at bottom looking up)

This past weekend, my daughter Allie graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, majoring in business marketing and minoring in global studies.  We adopted Allie from China just before her first birthday. She will surely encounter bumps ahead as she makes her way through life, but Allie has the determination (stubborn streak) to prevail.

Our extended family celebrated at a Brazilian grill in downtown Milwaukee. Just getting everyone to the ceremony and the restaurant was a challenging task.  The grandparents are getting up there in age, and all have mobility issues.  Julia's dad needed a wheelchair.  He's still able to walk but not long distances as was required this day.  Julia's stepdad, Bob, took the day off from his assisted living center, and was driven down from Appleton by Julia's brother, Scott.

Scott with his back to the wall on the left
Scott survived a brain aneurysm as a young adult. Scott was in an induced-coma for months.  The road to recovery was a long one and left him with some residual physical issues. During recovery, he went through a divorce and could not return to his job as a multi-color printing press operator.  Still, Scott never lost his lust for life, music, and good times.  He found a new occupational path, working part-time security and ushering events.  Scott's story is one of resiliency. His passion is music.

My parents don't travel well in the winter, so they weren't able to come from Iowa.  My dad was a professor for many years at UW-Milwaukee, and my mother received her doctorate there, so they are well-acquainted with the ceremony.

We had a good time at the restaurant.  None of us had eaten at a Brazilian grill before.  There's an extensive and rather fancy salad bar that even included marinated quail eggs.  Then the servers bring skewers of different kinds of meat to each table, where they slice off pieces for you to grab with your tongs.  Julia was quite enthusiastic.


  1. Congrats to Allie! And to Y'all

    My daughter subjected me to two commencements. As you may have deduced, I'm not fond of crowds, but the first was so big it was held in Minute Maid Stadium, home of the Astro's, in Houston. The second one, in Tucson for her masters in marketing, wasn't so big, but still, it was a crowd. . .

  2. I always cry at events like this.

    Happy tears for all of you and....Mega Congrats to Allie!


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