Friday, June 30, 2017

One For The Record Books

As many of you know, our boys will not be going to college right after High School, they will be going into the military.  Let me be more specific... The Army!  Is there anything else?? ;)   At least that's the plan for now...

On site we have a lot of friends, who have served our country, who have been very generous giving our boys advice on how to navigate their military service... get in/sign up, Ranger school, Special Forces, etc.  A few of the guys told the boys what the PT (physical training) requirements were for Ranger school.  So the boys got it in their head to to a 12 mile "ruck" march to train and to see if they could actually do it.  For those who do not know, a "ruck" march is just a 12 mile hike in full military gear with 25 lbs of weight in their backpacks. (Well at least I think it is...  I listen most of the time... ;))

Well they did it!  They ordered most of the gear to have it ready when they arrived from Malaysia.  They geared up and left the lodge, one Friday morning, at 4 a.m., a little before sun up.

Everything went as planned until they got about a mile out from Glenham.  There were some nasty mean bulls in a field just across from where our land is.  The bulls didn't like the camo covered soldiers, so they started huffing and puffing and staring down the boys.  The boys thought to avoid a mishap with the bulls they would jump our fence and walk the field back to town.  Avoid the bulls!

It just so happens that as the camo covered "soldiers" jumped the fence a car drove by on the highway.  Well, you can just imagine what they were thinking, in this heightened state of alert we live in... At least I can... "Why in the heck do we have "military" boys sneaking around the fields of Glenham SD?? Are we under attack???  Are they actually not Americans, but intruders into this country???"  I'm sure there were way more thoughts than that!!!  Anyway, the concerned citizen of Walworth county, did their civic duty and notified the county Sheriff!!

The boys are just arriving back in Glenham when the Deputy Sheriff "pulls them over"!!  "Are those weapons loaded?"  "No ma'am" and they showed her.  "What are you boys up to?" "Well, we are training to go in the military and we decided to do a 12 mile ruck march, For. The. Fun. Of. It!!" "Oh, ok boys.  We got a call of suspicious activity and needed to check up on it.  How old are you?" "Seventeen and fifteen." "Oh, ok.  Well you can go."  And the boys finished their "walk" home.

The suspicious "activity" finishing up.

They were a bit tired but look great and just a little tough. ;)

And then this...  I knew since the Sheriff was called, they would make the newspaper and be famous!!  Well, I was not disappointed!  My sister-in-law found it and sent it to me.

Read Friday, June 16, 7:27 a.m.

I'm pretty sure these boys are already legends!  You don't do this and make the paper in small town America without people talking and rumors flying the moment the "concerned citizen" got off the phone with the dispatcher. LOL!!  I still laugh every time I think of them doing this!

So for all of you in Walworth county who are curious...  These American boys, who lived in Indonesia and now in Malaysia, who visit Glenham for two months every summer, are not terrorists.  The are just good ole Americans who want to take serving their country serious and are ready to get things started!

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Senior Tea - Mersades

Senior Tea.  Another first for me in the scheme of life...  It's a night for the Seniors and their families to come together and listen to toasts/speeches from one special teacher in the Seniors life.  I do believe that the students are asked to write a short list, maybe three, of the teachers who have had the most influence in their lives at Dalat.  After that, I'm not sure how the teachers sort out which student they are toasting, but they do, and they turn the night into a very enjoyable evening.  An evening where you learn another small piece about your boarding school kid.  

Mom and dad ready to escort Mersades to the event.  We left the other hoodlums with grandma so we didn't have to listen to "Are we done yet??" ;)

As I have stated before, Mersades has really become known for her baking skills at school.  A previous teacher of hers, asked if she would be interested in making his contribution to the nights event.  (There were soooooo many goodies that evening... and yes, we tried most of them!!  Major sugar overload!!!)  So being the overachiever that Mersades is, instead of just baking a regular cupcake, she decides to come up with this cookie dough stuffed chocolate cupcake with cookie dough icing.  On top of the cookie dough icing sat a miniature chocolate chip cookie along side a shard of white and dark chocolate. (I don't have that pic with me, but when I get it from Marz, I will post it.)

I have the pic now.... ;)

Here is the inside of the cupcake.

Mrs. Chinn, Mersades English teacher from the start of Mersades' days at Dalat, wrote Marz an Ode.  

Mrs. Chinn and Marz

This is Mrs. Allen and Marz.  Mrs. Allen was Mersades' bible teacher this year and was on Mersades' short list as a speaker. Both Mrs. Chinn and Mrs. Allen were huge influences in Mersades life at Dalat and for that, I thank them!

And you just can't waste the night of being all dressed up without doing a photo shoot! ;)  I have to document that I can actually do these things! LOL!!


Friday, June 2, 2017

Graduation 2017 - Mersades

This is the day Mersades has been working so hard and diligently for the last four years.  Graduation Day, June 2, 2017!  She had set a goal, in the 4th grade mind you,  to get accepted into her top college pick and she has not only met that goal, but has also exceeded it by getting a half ride scholarship to her top choice!

Marz, you have worked so hard and you definitely can be proud of the fact that you earned every bit of your 4.3 grade point average!  You really are "smart, for a white chick!".  But not only that Marz, you worked hard at people relationships.  Even though you may not see it or have felt it, you have touched so many lives with your kindness and generosity.  You have also walked away with the "most famous baker" award!!  Everyone loved your special treats and will definitely notice their absence next year when school resumes.  You truly have touched the lives of so many people, young and old, and that is greater than any grade point average you will ever receive.  Dad and I, along with so many other people, are so excited to see what you do with the numerous gifts God has given you!  The world is your oyster!

Here's one last picture of our beautiful girl as a Dalat International School student.

She's off... ready to get the show on the road and her future started!

Commencement, 2017

Notice the guy on the stage???  Yup, that's her daddy!  It's an interesting story of how he came to be on that stage.  A story for a totally separate blog... But in short, Chris was asked to give the prayer at commencement. :)

The final student walks in, of the Class of 2017.  Nothing like having a last name that starts with "Z"!

Only five more to go....

And finally, last but definitely not least... Mersades Rhian Zimmer!!

Now, you can't really see it all that well because of the video camera placement, but Daddy stands up to give Marz a hug as she crosses the stage.

Marz and the superintendent.

Here she is, a graduated senior and now alumni of Dalat!

Awe... that look...  If I had to guess, there probably was a gleam of a tear in her Daddy's eye.

A family picture...  Yup, "A", the only one... for the whole week...  sigh...

Proud parents!

Grandma Schlomer flew all the way from the US just to attend the graduation!!  Thank you grandma!

Grandma with her favorite grandchildren!! LOL!!! ;)

Now for the after party.  It's called the Wailing Wall.  It's known as this, because back in the "old" days, before the world became small and social media became big, the graduates, underclassmen, family members, and guests, would go down to the cafeteria to say their goodbyes.  It was very difficult them because those that were saying goodbye, knew it was a firm good bye.  The students would get on a plane the next day or so and fly to all corners of the earth.  The only communication was with either an expensive phone call or snail mail.  It was truly a good bye!  Hence the wailing...

Fast forward to today... it's still the same in the way that the graduating class scatters all over the world, but the world has become so much smaller with social media, Skype, FaceTime, you name it...  The wailing isn't quite what it used to be.  However, there are still those classmates that may never see each other, in person, again just because time and distance will separate them.

I thought about this yesterday, as I was waiting for Mersades to finish up.  The difference between her graduation and mine was that I knew the next day, and into the summer, I would still see my friends and hang out.  Marz and the other students, for the most part, don't get that.  Many of them, like we did this morning, will get on a jet plane, the very next day, and fly away.  Their time at Dalat is cut off.  Done.  Finished.  These are some mentally strong kids!

Here is Ted and Gavin with their roommate Joe.  Ted and Joe have been roommates since Ted started at Dalat.  Joe has been in the same dorm as Marz since she started... well, minus her first semester, but close enough. ;)

Sarah, Mersades' first roommate at Dalat, who graduated last year, came back for a quick visit.  That was special for them both.

Dorm parents Uncle Craig and Aunt Betsy.   
Kids also go to the Wailing Wall to sign yearbooks for memories.

Marz and a special teacher, Ms. Grad.  One day, Ms. Grad may just ready a novel by Marz... maybe Ms. Grad will write the introduction... ;)

Mom and dad taking a breather and enjoying the sound of the ocean waves. 
Midnight has come and time for the kids to go their separate ways.  The last four years have been a mixture of emotions, good and bad, but as we always tell the kids, God has a plan.  It's better to go with it than to fight it.  Dalat was God's plan for Mersades.  And what a great plan it was!!

Congratulations Marz!!  Your future is so bright!!  Go out and do God's will! xoxo