HF's other love in life. This is a gourmet polish dog from a local hot dog shack. It has secret sauce, chopped white onions, sauerkraut, banana peppers, a dill pickle wedge, wrapped in a bun from a local bakery. Heart burn city, but it made many a man happy.
The cake: Funny story actually. I go to Costco to pick it up and it's got just the tan circle in the middle of the cake. No sprinkles. Nothin'. So being short on time, I take it home, and my brother and his wife, who is actually a wedding planner, decorate the rest of it. The ran to the store and got sprinkles, donuts, frosting for writing, the toy pigs and police toys. I think they did a pretty good job!
Here's HF talking to Daisy after the ceremony. He might make me take this off, but as you can see, I erased the info on his patch. I have no idea how to edit a photo, but I clicked on the eraser and crudely did away with his patch.
Okay. Let's get down to the nitty gritty.
HF was at the station Friday afternoon getting dressed and ready for the ceremony. We were going to meet him there, but he stopped at home on his way. It was the first time I saw him in full dress. My mouth gaped open and my eyes grew wide. I had no idea that seeing him in his uniform could cause such flutterings of the heart.
When we got to the ballroom, I had a great view of him the entire time because he was seated with the directors and other keynote speakers because he was giving the class speech. The cadets were all seated in the front couple of rows on the floor. When they called a cadet's name to come forward to receive their certificates, they would sit up on the stand facing the crowd. When it was HF's turn, his chief, and my brother (deputy dan) presented him his certificate. Then came the portion of the program where they awarded special awards to the cadets for specific achievements. For being the class leader, HF was given a gold, star-shaped paper weight with his name engraved, the date, and name of the academy and session. He was also given a benchmade griptonian (?) knife that he was really excited to get because I guess he had his eye on it or one just like it. The rest of the awards were given out for specific achievements.
- Top Gun (the best shooter)
- High Academic Award
- (name of fallen officer) Memorial Professionalism and Ethical Behavior Award (AKA: the Honor Man- voted by the graduating class through secret ballet)
- Outstanding Achiever (which is all around best in all categories)
It was amazing. They just kept calling his name. He was visibly touched by this which was so nice to see. It was really sweet when he received the Honor Man award which is chosen by the class. He looked over at his class and just shook his head in disbelief. He was really overcome by it all. I felt bad for the rest of the class for a second, but HF really deserved it. I was extremely proud and touched. It was obvious also that his classmates were happy for him and that they love him. They really bonded as a class and helped and looked out for one another. After the ceremony he was given another award. The director came up to him and said, "There's actually one more award for you, but I felt bad so I waited to give it to you afterwards". It was the Director's List award. He had the highest certification test score and earned a spot on the Director's list!
They played a fun game at the end of the ceremony where they called out a fact about any given cadet and whoever it was about they had to stand up and the audience would clap. I found out that a couple of the cadets had served in the military and most recently in Iraq. I was pleased to see that they got a standing ovation. I also got to see CJ in action! There will definitely be more CJ stories. HF had a lot of nicknames like General, Major, Seargant Major, Captain, etc.
Then he gave the class speech. It was pretty short, but he did an excellent job. He's not the type that gets nervous in front of people, and he can also improv if he has to. Maybe I'll see if I can post the speech later with his permission. Then we came home with family and friends and had cake. He got a few gifts. An off duty holster, handcuff carrier, a badge clip, a possee box, handcuffs, dinero, etc. My brother got him a box of Krispy Kremes so he could have his 'first' donut as a cop.
On Saturday, he went shooting with his brother. Then around noon we had a BBQ provided by his favorite gourmet hot dog shack, fruit, chips, drinks, salads, more cake, the kids played at the park, there was crime scene tape wrapped around our eating area, black plastic tablecloths with body outlines, some police themed toys for the kids to play with (cop and robber bobble heads, police figurines, a giant magnifying class that they quickly put to use "burning" things (now our 3 year old steers clear of it because he thinks it will burn him), that's all I can think of. I'm sorry I wasn't able to put more pictures of the ceremony and other things in here as we have elected to remain anonymous so far.
It was the perfect weekend. An amazing ceremony, where HF was recognized for the amazing person he is, good friends and family, good food, a new job, a raise, etc. etc.. We feel truly blessed and happy right now. What a great feeling right now in this transistion. This new chapter in our lives.
Favorite thing heard on Friday nightafter the ceremony?
Our 6 year old daughter said, "Today is the best day of my life".