First meal after getting in to Mesquite was Tex-Mex, of course. We went to Brad's favorite hometown restaurant, Tino's. We hung out with Teri and Jared, and went to see The Dark Knight Rises that night. Good movie...this was our first time seeing a movie in theaters since the Aurora shootings, so I have to admit I was thinking about that...
On Friday it was time to head to Waco! We went on campus briefly to pick up my doctoral robe, love coming home to Baylor (and I'm pretty jealous of the next class of freshmen coming in for Welcome Week right now!) That evening was the doctoral dinner, where each of the graduating doctoral candidates spoke for a bit about our Baylor experience and where we're headed now. I got to see my advisor there and it was nice to give him a word of thanks during my speech -- I really couldn't have asked for a better advisor.
Matt got into town on Friday night so the festivities didn't end after the dinner -- we went out for drinks with a few people once he got in. Then I got up early Saturday morning for graduation! The ceremony went by pretty quickly - I guess the August commencement is probably the smallest - and my colleague Hua and I were the two last people to walk the stage.
Then...party time!! With all of our family that came in town, we knew it'd be hard to find a restaurant to seat us all together (especially with all of the competing graduates and their families!) Brad's great-aunt Virginia was kind enough to have us out at her place in Lorena. She and Dick have a party room where they often host friends; it was the perfect place to set up our own little shindig. My mom brought lasagna and king ranch chicken, and Mimi's friend made an awesome cake!
It was so great to see everyone, even if for just a couple hours. I was melting in that robe for the photo ops!
After the party, I drove back to Dallas to stay at Brother Dave's house (he had a late-night band practice, but I at least got to say hello/goodbye!) I got Whataburger for dinner -- had to get that honey BBQ chicken strip sandwich while I was in TX -- and went to bed pretty early...had to get up at 3:30 AM to head to the airport!
Brad flew in on Thursday, so I had a few days alone at the apartment. Tried to get everything put away and cleaned up before he got in, but I didn't get very far! Thursday evening we went to a "GM Staff BBQ" put on by my company's Newcomer's Club. We got to chat with the general manager for a little bit, which was cool :)
More updates to come, but it took two days to get Blogger to load these pictures (annoying) so I'm taking a break!
Thanks again to all of our family members who came out to see us at my graduation. We're looking forward to a Christmas visit!