Monday, June 12, 2017


Graduation for our high school's class of 2017 was held today at 4pm at the Bob Carpenter Center at the University of Delaware. Julia will continue to go to the high school as a "super senior" until she turns 21, at which time she will transition to a work programs run by the county. But in the meantime, she got to walk with her class, have her name called, go up on stage and get a "diploma".
Julia walking in

It was a hot day outside, but fortunately they had the arena chilled to refrigerator-like temperatures in anticipation of the crowd to come. There were a few songs by the orchestra and chorus as the crowd was filing in, and then the march in music for our ~400 seniors.
Class of 2017

There were brief remarks by the district superintendent and chairperson of the school board, followed by the reading of the 400 names, at which time the students filed across the stage to get their diplomas. The students were organized into the seats by height, not by name, with the order going from shortest to tallest. Odd, but whatever. This did have the effect of making you pay attention to where your kid was so you didn't miss the photo op of the big moment. Julia was in the second row out of about 14 or 15 rows, so we had to pay attention for a brief time, and could then sit back, relax, and cheer whenever we heard a name we knew.
My graduate and my girls

Following that, there were brief speeches by the salutatorian (a.k.a runner-up valedictorian) and valedictorian, closing remarks, and then it was over. Coincidently, the salutatorian was the son of a woman I went to high school with (1 year apart). She is someone that Amp has become good friends with as part of her time doing costumes for the plays, and being associated with the Drama Club folks. Small world. Although I guess not really that small since I grew up and went to high school maybe 10 miles down the road.
Gina, Grace and Julia

The whole thing took about and hour and a half, of which an hour was the name reading and diploma giving...

It was a joy-filled day, and I couldn't possibly be more proud of Julia and what she has been able to accomplish in her high school years. She has come a very long way, and best of all, is a happy and well adjusted young lady. She has had many great experiences, and made many good friends.

We are very proud of her.

Graduation Day

It's easy to get lost in memories as I sit here with a cup of coffee on the morning of the day that Julia will graduate from high school. Mainly, I suppose, I just have the same thought that every other parent in the same situation has ever had - how in the world did the time go so fast?

At 4pm today at the Bob Carpenter Center at the University of Delaware, Julia will march with the rest of her class. Her Mom will cry. I will tear up. Grace will ask "when's this gonna be over?"

It will be a good day.
...and Now

Even if it's just not possible.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Dwarven Sorcerer WIP

I had enough fun painting the Ranger figure that I have started on a Dwarven Sorcerer figure. It is one of the two Dwarven Wizard figures from the new WizKids D&D unpainted range.
Back WIP

The figs come primed and ready to paint, and are nice sculpts. They are a little less detailed than high end metal figs, being cast in a bendable plastic, but are still good quality.
Front WIP

For this figure, I am going to do light brown robes and green trim. Not sure about the rest yet.

Friday, June 9, 2017

Senior Awards Night

In the interests of not making the Commencement Ceremony take all day, there was a separate senior Awards Ceremony at the high school tonight.

Over the course of two and a half hours (yes, 2.5, not a typo), awards were given out for academics, sports teams, scholarships, service awards, clubs and all manner of other things. Seniors who received an award were invited, and Julia was among them.

She received the Drama Club's service award for female in the fall musical. This we knew about from the Drama Club banquet a month or so ago.
Senior Awards

The second one was for being a founding member in 2014, and four year leader, of the Get Fit Get Connected club. This is a weekly after school social club mixing typical kids and special needs kids for exercise (mainly walking the track and hiking the school grounds). They also hold outside of school events, such as movies, the local trampoline park and other things. Julia was a freshman when they started the club, and one of the few to consistently take part all four years. It was nice to have her recognized, and cool that they would do so in the midst of the sea of academic achievement that was most of the rest of the evening.

Some of the awards were impressive. We had an all-national violinist. Someone who got a full ride scholarship to Bucknell University (the school of her choice) worth ~$228,000. And perhaps most impressively, two students accepted to the United States Military Academy at West Point.

As a side benefit, Commencement will take 1.5 hours and not 4.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Human Ranger

We have a need for a human dual-wielding ranger in one of our D&D games, and the affected player sent me a Reaper/Warlord miniature named "Gildan Elven Vale Ranger" with the request that I paint it for him. After attempting to "de-elf" the ears, that is...
Tygon, human ranger

The figure was very nice, similar in feel to a Games Workshop figure (nicely sculpted, bulky, oversized, and highly detailed).

It's been way too long since I have lifted a brush, and it was very nice to work on a single figure as opposed to doing the assembly line painting of historical miniatures that I am more accustomed to.
Tygon, better lit...

Without putting an undue amount of effort into the figure, I think it came out nicely, and I am happy with it.