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Sunday, June 24, 2012

Nicole and Jordan: Utah Open House

The newlyweds are currently enjoying Jordan's 60 days of leave in Europe (like we did -- check out our European honeymoon here). I don't want to entirely steal Nicole's wedding posting thunder, so I'll try to focus more on the family side of the wedding events and less on the bride and groom. And don't worry, when she gets home and posts all of her gorgeous pictures, I'll be sure to let you know!

Nicole and Jordan opted to do a more casual open house for their Utah friends on the Friday night before the wedding. They got married in the Salt Lake Temple on Saturday afternoon and had a dinner reception with their closest friends and family on Saturday night. Then, two weeks later, the lovebirds capped off their wedding celebrations with a reception near Jordan's home in Southern California.

The open house had a beautiful backyard garden wedding feel to it. Nicole wore an incredible lace dress that my mom made for her (yes, my mom is amazing!) and Jordan wore his service dress uniform. The tables were adorned with varied arrangements of wildflowers and the culinary highlight, per request of the bride, was rainbow chip cupcakes. It was a lovely night!
Day 1 of 3 "Horrible Days"

Friday, June 22, 2012


It was so not even funny at all, that it's actually kind of funny.
In the week leading up until Jordan and Nicole's wedding, both of our entire families caught the flu. And not just any flu, but the most violent, horrific, awful, persistent flu ever. I don't know if it's possible to make you truly appreciate just how horrific this was. We are talking eighteen people here. Eighteen! And we're not talking just any old week. This was Jordan's graduation in Colorado and their wedding in Utah that we'd been looking forward to for 2.5 years. All the travel, all the events, all the anticipation, all the preparation, all the excitement... We'd waited so long for this! And we were dropping like flies.

It wasn't for lack of quarantining the sick or sanitizing the heck out of everything within a one mile radius of said sick or trying every old wives' tale in the book. We figured out that people were contagious and infected others with this before they even showed symptoms themselves. It was a lost cause. First, it was the little neighborhood friend. Then it was my little brother. Then it was all of my brothers. Then it was me and my sweet baby. Then it was my husband, parents and sister. Then it was the entire Rozsa clan. Jordan's mom, Melissa, was throwing up after the open house on the night before the wedding. You guys. It was crazy.

But guess what? Jordan and Nicole were the only two out of the twenty of us that never got sick. Talk about having prayers answered! The wedding day came, and all was well with everyone. We believe in miracles -- even little ones on wedding days.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

USAFA Grad Week, Round Two: Jordan's Graduation

There is honestly nothing quite like an Air Force Academy graduation, especially when you know everything that went into the four years leading up to that one incredible day. Matt's graduation will forever be one of my favorite, proudest, and happiest memories. I blogged about it -- and explained the whole process -- here, in one of my favorite posts. To appreciate this post, go read that one first!

Jordan was ranked 19th academically of all the graduating seniors and was also one of only 18 to make the Superintendent's List -- meaning he was in the top 10% academically, athletically and militarily. (Yes, they are graded and ranked in all three areas!) Basically, he rocks. And so does my USAFA graduate! Matt threw up for the last time at 5 a.m. and left for Jordan's graduation an hour later, achy flu and sleepless night and all. He said he wouldn't have missed it for the world.

One of the unplanned perks of our Colorado trip was running into so many of Matt's old buddies. The most fun one was seeing Matt's freshman roommate when we walked into the stadium for graduation. Forrest is stationed in Germany right now, so that was definitely a surprise!
 At 10 a.m., the seniors began to march onto the field.
Photo by the Associated Press.

Every four years, the president speaks at USAFA's graduation and then personally congratulates each graduate. I'm far from being a fan of Barack Obama, but I have so much respect for the office that he holds. It was really neat to be in the presence of the man who leads our beautiful country.
Picture on the right by the Associated Press.

The seniors who are ranked in the top 100 academically receive their diplomas first, in order of rank. Then, Squadron 1 goes in alphabetically order, then Squadron 2, and so forth, all the way until Squadron 40. And oh, you should hear the cheers when Squadron 40 is announced. All that name reading can get a little... long. Just ask Jakey.

After the last graduate walks across the stage, the seniors can hardly contain their excitement. They know it's any minute now! The entire graduating class stands and repeats the Oath of Office and then claps along anxiously as the Air Force fight song is played. Then come the signal and the words, "Class of 2012, Dismissed!" In that perfectly-orchestrated instant, the graduates toss their hats into the air as the Thunderbirds roar overhead.

It's an iconic moment that always yields an iconic picture. This year's picture landed on the front page of the New York Times. And check out the star! We were pretty stoked.
Photo by the New York Times.
While Jordan was celebrating on the field, Nicole was rushing down the stadium steps to find her fiance. He was finally hers! I'll let her be the one to share those pictures and that part of the story.

They basked in the moment for awhile and then made their way back up the stands to celebrate with the families. It was the sweetest thing when Melissa congratulated Jordan. She was one proud mama.

Normally the Thunderbirds show commences with the hat toss and continues for nearly an hour. This time, though, the air space had to be clear for about 20 minutes while President Obama took off. Christian kept us entertained while we waited. You wouldn't believe the number of compliments he got on that shirt.

At last, the show began! The video screen featured a live feed of the cockpits as the Thunderbirds performed their stunts. It was awesome, and the little boys were in heaven.

We let the stands clear a bit and then took our pictures. My family is BFFs with Jordan's (they're the ones Matt and I stay with like every other weekend), so it was extra special to support Jordan all together. We're all so proud of him!

Sisters and our former cadets:

Plus a future cadet:

And then it was all over -- again. Seeing the Air Force Academy in the rear view mirror is always bittersweet.
But there was really no time to think about that with a wedding in just three days! The party continues next!

Monday, June 18, 2012

USAFA Grad Week, Round Two: Commissioning

The night before an Air Force Academy graduation is a formal affair consisting of a commissioning ceremony for each squadron and a graduation ball for the seniors and their guests. Read all about it here. Our dear friend Steve Hendricks commissioned Matt three years ago and drove from Florida to commission Jordan. It was a lovely evening!
The Hendricks family and their cadets.
After the ceremony, we walked across the Terrazzo to Arnold Hall for the ball. We indulged in the classic USAFA dance chocolate fountain and then hit the dance floor. I had dreams of repeating Matt's graduation ball and dancing all night. Sadly, that only lasted one song for the three of us due to a tired baby and a queasy husband. We wound up in the parking lot where Jake practiced walking and Matt threw up twice. Not exactly what we had planned! My poor husband then sat next to the toilet all night and still made it to Jordan's graduation the next morning. He is such a trooper. And yes, that means the graduation post is coming up next!
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