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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

USAFA Grad Week: Making a Splash

It's graduation week again at the Air Force Academy! Since cadets aren't allowed to get married until they graduate, Matt's graduation and our wedding six days later are forever intertwined as the most monumental two weeks of our lives.

More so for Matt, of course, since he was completing his "7-year plan" (1 year redshirt, 2 years mission, 4 years Academy), earning an engineering degree from one of the top-10 programs in the country, and commissioning as an officer in the United States Air Force. All while graduating from a university that requires a congressional appointment just to submit an application and has such rigorous academic, athletic and military standards that the Dean's List is set at 3.0 for all three areas (yes, they have three separate cumulative GPA's to worry about).

So if it were just a little event, I wouldn't bother documenting it. But USAFA Grad Week is really something special and I'd be remiss if I didn't share a few of the stories and traditions with you. So bear with me this week as I go back in time (oh, wait--I'm already doing that with the honeymoon thing, aren't I?) and give you a little peak at graduation for the Air Force Academy Class of 2009.
First things first: finishing finals. If you look back at our Ring Dance photos (scroll to the bottom once you click over), you'll see the lovely fountains in the Air Gardens. It's tradition for the seniors to jump into these fountains in their blues to celebrate the completion of their last final. Matt and his four best friends decided to wait until they had all finished and then take the plunge together, jumping in order of completion. And then, of course, they took it a step further with pink floaties and synchronized swimming, as seen in this video our BFF Mike put together:
Despite the freezing cold May weather (welcome to Colorado), I think it's safe to say they had a good time :-) Not a bad way to kick off the party!
PS: Boys, you should be happy to know that this picture is hanging proudly in our living room. We miss you!


  1. ah that is so great that their plunge was documented on video! NICE! loved the synchronized stuff. Was the water very cold? Congrats to all those that graduated..doesnt sound so much like a piece of cake, esp with THREE gpa's to worry about?! Very awesome!

  2. Love your blog. Love you guys. Thanks again for everything! :)

  3. Video was totally awesome! I loved the synchronized swimming. So interesting that you posted this today because my son graduated 1sst Grade today.

  4. That is a fun video. Your kids will enjoy this little video clip one day.

    I'm hoping we will get to relive all of this with Nicole over the next 2 years.

  5. Ry-We're all crossing our fingers for that one! Jordan is the best, and Jodie and I take great pride in arranging that little match-up :-) Just for the record, his family is amazing, too!

  6. Aww, how I love military tradition. What an awesome thing to capture. My sister and brother-in-law both got stationed at West Point. And my sister is taking my 6yr old niece to their commencement. She's soo excited about it and of course to see the President. I wonder if it will leave an impression on her? Perhaps she'll want to attend West Point one of these days. =)

  7. Nina-How cool for your niece (and sister and brother-in-law)! There's nothing quite like an Academy graduation, and she'll remember it forever. And I bet you're right about it sparking a dream for her--I know a few of my little brothers walked away from Matt's graduation wanting to be a part of something that meaningful.

  8. Wow! Loved the video and watched it twice just to get all the details. How fun is that and like Ry said it will be a family treasure. I think all these memories put to music and video is the coolest thing ever. Way to live it over and over again and bring back all those great, (sometimes freezing) memories. Loved the picture of the jets flying over head. I joked with your mother that she is going to have a complete military family with what great examples you and April are to all the little ones at home! Happy Memorial weekend!

  9. Soooooo great! I just love reading your blog, Ashley (and Matt!)... Haha! You make everyday it's own adventure - I can't explain it, but it's inspiring. I'm glad life is treating you right! :)


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