Monday, July 2, 2012

Congratulations Graduate! We're Off to the UK

I wanted to take this opportunity to publicly acknowledge all the hardworking medical school graduates.   As a first generation immigrant who was the first of my 6 brothers and sisters to graduate from college, I thought my path was a difficult one.  I never made it back to get my masters even though I had planned to-- I just didn't have the drive.  That experience definitely makes me appreciate people who do.

My experience doesn't compare to watching the sacrifices my daughter made to go to medical school.  She had the determination that had to start in high school in order to meet the rigorous requirements she faced.  She sacrificed so much of her personal life getting the grades, test scores, research work and volunteering required by all medical schools.  Once she got there, she was surrounded by 167 of the finest academic minds and dedicated classmates with the same fine credentials.   I remember a family reunion cruise to Alaska she had to give up because she had been accepted into a research program and they wouldn't let her take off for it. Instead she had  ACL surgery and was in extreme pain standing all day 3 days after surgery.  We should have known she was a tough one.

Four years of studying and working, putting her personal life on hold, means an incredible amount of dedication.  You have to admire the individuals that go into medicine.   Being able to attend graduation and  share the joy of their achievement was an awesome thing.  I would like to thank all my family and friends who recognized her achievement.

Beaming Graduates waiting in line to receive their hoods and diploma

My smiling graduate receives her hood
Graduation is a great milestone in her life and we can't wait to see the next chapter of her life unfold.  We continued the celebration by taking her on a cruise around the UK:  our ports included Ireland, Scotland, England, Guernsey and France.   

Digital cameras are a terrible thing---I got home and found I'd taken 4,500 photos.   I am busy sorting through them to figure out what to share with you.

We found the emerald isle (Ireland) is really emerald.  I can't believe the shade of green everywhere!

My husband said we travelled 7,000 miles to find a country that looks like Oregon.
We saw lots of castles (and castle gardens)
Chirk Castle in Wales -- a great garden!
We went to lots of churches
St. Patricks Cathedral in Dublin
We paid our respects at Omaha Beach in France on June 6.   Honoring the people who fought for our country
by coming here was an experience I'll never forget.
We were on the Isle of Guernsey looking for Victor Hugo's house when I had to stop and admire the beautiful wisteria in bloom.

In London, we squeezed in some shopping.   Don't you love all the white houses!

In the Cotwolds, Hidcote Manor was loaded with visitors, I couldn't get many photos without a few photo-bombers in it.
My fascination with gates (this one at Hidcote in the Cotswolds) was only surpassed by all the sheep, EVERYWHERE.

Sheep in Wales

I haven't even covered all the museums we went to.   The trip was during the Jubilee Celebration, and all across the UK we saw decorations.
Isn't this cute!  It was in front of Buckingham Palace.  You can see the scaffolding top right
from all of the stands left over from earlier in the week.

I will share more later.  I have to organize my pictures first.

Hope your summer is going well!   I am off to garden for a few days.  My inspiration?  Last week my daughter and I were in Santa Barbara.  San Ysidro Ranch is a must stop if you are in the area.
Who would have thought an old wagon could look so good loaded with flowers!
Hope you are having a Happy Summer!