Graduation...it's an exciting moment in one's life. Freedom, relief, fear, joy and satisfaction are some feelings that graduates experience. For a few others it's also a scary and confusing time because so many life-altering decisions are expected to be made when they have barely experienced or lived a full life. I think Adam Kotsko summed it up perfectly when he tweeted,
"We ask 18-year-olds to make huge decisions about their career and financial future,
when a month ago they had to ask to go to the bathroom."
Graduation is also a time for celebration and to cut loose from all the stress school has caused both the child and parents. So naturally we had a party. Due to conflicting schedules my son's graduation party was scheduled the day before Father's Day and a couple of weeks after his 18th birthday. In order to make things easy, my family decided to combine all 3 celebrations (graduation, birthday, Father's Day) into one party.
I'm a frugal person at heart and to avoid the cost of stamps on 2 separate invitations I decided to make these tags to be mailed along with the graduation invites. I know I could have really saved money by sending an electronic invite but I am old school and I still love paper. I shudder at the thought of electronic wedding invitations. I am sure companies like Josten's and paper companies are happy that people still mail graduation announcements too.
Note: I'm not being rude asking others to bring a side dish. We have a huge family and our gatherings are always potluck. For outisde-of-the-the-family friends I made a different tag that did not ask to bring food.
My son's name is Alec. I made a play on words "Such a Smart Alec" for a sign I placed above the dessert table where I also displayed mini copies of his certificates and awards. To be honest we were not even aware of some certifications.
As always we had so many desserts.
I made custom bingo cards using school references. In order to avoid having double winners in the same game I made 20 cards to have a good variety. While trying to make the cards my eyes started to get googly scrolling through 20 tables and I started to get confused. I noticed some of the cards had the same word on them. So I erased the words and started over. This time I made a list of words and then I scrolled through and randomly placed the words one at a time. This way I didn't have the same words on one card and had a complete list of words to call out during the game. For the game piece to cover the words I used mini stamp cut outs. I bought small prizes such as $5 Starbucks gift cards for the winners. It was such a pain in the booty to make these so if you're interested I can email the Word file for these cards. Just leave a comment below or send a private message.
To highlight moments of Alec's progress in school, graduation and our family life I hung pictures around the house. I used twine and miniature clothes pins to hang the photos. When the party was over family members were allowed to take whatever photos they wanted for their own photo albums.
Note: I actually left the twine up and used it to hang up Christmas cards later in the year.