The Graduate

Josh wasn't Dustin Hoffman this past weekend, but he was a graduate. An official graduate of the University of Oregon Law School. Three cheers! Hip Hip Hurray! Hip Hip Hurray! Hip Hip Hurray! For he's a jolly good fellow! And all that jazz.

Yes, we are all excited. Josh even got excited once finals were over. Graduation called for big time celebration. All the families convened to make this one dang special event. My parents and Josh's parents all flew up for the ceremonies and festivities. Although it rained, it did not rain on our parade (I really need to stop these pop culture references, huh? I think I'm so clever sometimes).

My mom was the first to arrive on Thursday late afternoon. Before we did the Josh-centric weekend, we took a few hours to have mother-daughter bonding time. Although my mom's flight was a few hours delayed, we managed to get our mani/pedi time. While we were indulging a bit, Josh's parents arrived. While my mom and I were bonding, Josh spent some parent-bonding time as well. Thursday dinner I took my mom on a Heather favorites spree - Yi Shen for dinner and TCBY for dessert. Then we did mini / pseudo shopping at the Dollar Tree. Thursday was just the beginning of the fun though.

Friday I had to work in the morning until 10:30am. That's no biggie though (plus I still have to bring in the big bucks - I refrained for saying SBux). We all gathered at our little place and headed out to a lunch in the wine country. I had made some lovely reservations at King Estate Winery. I had been there previously and it was quite enjoyable. This time wasn't quite the same. We look back and laugh, but our food took forever and it wasn't that tasty. However, we did get a free bottle of wine - not too shabby (and make some of us happier). The view was also nice.

After a ehh-lunch experience, we headed to Prince Puckler's to get ice cream (this place was revealed to Don Thursday night apparently and it was love at first bite). We breaked afterwards for some R&R (I have been getting up early a bunch lately and needing nap time). During nap time, my dad arrived too.

Friday dinner things continued and we headed to Humble Beagle. We all enjoyed our first celebratory meal (meaning everyone had now arrived). And this was also the first meal that both sets of parents were together and it went splendidly. Afterwards it was gift time. Josh got to open cards and gifts. I have to say my gift a hit. I just asked Josh as I was typing what his response was and he replied, "overjoyed!" The gift was a Fossil leather laptop briefcase. I also got it a set of ampersand bookends - very artsy and Josh loves ampersands. In addition, the parents got some generous gift certificates and the like. I think Josh felt very happy - see picture.

Saturday was the big day. We started with a hearty breakfast together at Midtown. Josh had to be at the ceremony location, The Hult Center, by 11:30am. We had a bit of time, so we did some roaming at the 5th Street Market. The ceremony began at 1pm. Nada took the lead and I was her trusty right-hand man on getting prime seating in the orchestra area. As the graduates progress to their designated seating, they walked right past our row. Josh almost tripped as we  yelled his name while passing us. Then he got mixed in the sea of jester-like hats below. I spend a large portion of the beginning seeking him out. I found in about the fourth from the right and 2-3 row up - Brown last name you know. A then B (yes, I can spell).

Yada yada yada at the ceremony. Some speaking and reasons why to love law and "go get the world" type stuff, then cheers and progression out. It was blur of photos and smiles, then we were off to the reception. We met some more law friends and ate the small cheese and fruits. Once the formalities were over, we headed to dinner at Red Agave.

It turned out that Josh's two law friends, Katherine and Anne, also reserved tables at Red Agave. We basically took over the restaurant. We all sung Happy Graduation to each of them (think the Birthday song but insert Graduation instead). Dinner was delicious and the drinks tasty - all very much enjoyed.

Saturday concludes the graduation celebration. Don and Nada headed back to Portland airport Sunday morning to head home. However, before driving up they stopped for a fabulous breakast at a place with superb servings: Valley River Starbucks. I'll write a post next on the photos and visits. My parents also joined the fun.

My parents weren't headed out until Monday morning, so Sunday was a low-key but fun day exploring Eugene. I had to work again that morning, but I was able to finish by noon. We ate some lunch, did a tiny hike with views and trees (classic Oregon), and then ended it all with a lovely dinner at Marche.

Oh, I surprised Josh with a graduation banner, balloons, and outside sign with "congrats grad" written everywhere. Cute, right?

Now that graduation is over, it's on the the next phase: the bar. Dun dun dun. Josh has a few days of freedom, but then it's back to the grind. Finishing the bar will require more celebrations, stay tuned.

For you to live some of the celebrations, I have some videos and pictures to share...

The Progression:

JW Brown JD from Nada Brown on Vimeo.

Getting the Degree:

Josh Law Graduation from Heather O'Neill on Vimeo.

And check out some pictures on Flickr.