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May 20, 2012
Bernice Volkens , Reinbeck Courier

The peonies are in bloom and it's graduation time. Just like the peony plant that opens and blooms; just so does our school send forth another group of splendid young people. We had three special graduates this year; Craig and Jamie's son, Brent, graduated at mid term and because he plays lacrosse is already in college in Kansas. Jess, Vicki and Steve's son, graduated last weekend from ISU and is working at Garst experimental farm, a place he worked since high school. Ryan, Kevin and Michelle's youngest is graduating from G-R, Sunday and will be going to ISU this fall. So you can see that May has been a very busy month for us.

To get these young people this far I know there have been many busy years - some hectic, frantic and maybe this last year has been occasionally traumatic for both kids and parents. When the strains of "Pomp and Circumstance" has faded and the cap and gown company has reclaimed the robes, that is when the graduates will be facing the real world. I only hope sometime in the future, not to far away, they'll realize what it took, their parents work and toil to get them this far. While raising children all parents worry too much and usually we're worrying about the wrong things. On Sunday there will be a great deal behind every cap and gown that marches down that aisle. We worry if they walk or talk too late. We worry if they talk too much (that comes later). I've even heard concerns over too early walking. It's probably true as parents we spent too much time and energy worrying about things we couldn't do anything about anyway. Raising children is a complex thing. Physically our kids do pretty well. Much like trees they each have their own schedule. Sooner or later they all grow up. Their happiness and even their success depends on so many of us.

"Happy Graduation" to all or G-R seniors and to all other graduates this year and especially moms and dads. They made it! You made it! The ceremony, the speeches and the celebrations are focused on the graduating seniors, but the greatest pleasures belong to the parents.

I did get some questions about rolled sandwiches, or fancy sandwiches this week. I know it is too late for graduations but here are a few tips you can use when you do want to make them:

A one-pound loaf cuts into 30 slices, 1/4-inch thick.

An uncut sandwich loaf (3 lbs) cuts into 68 slices.

Day old bread is best for open face and ribbon sandwiches.

Fresh bread is better for rolled sandwiches.



Cut all crusts from a loaf of bread. Slice bread in thin slices lengthwise. Spread each slice with the desired filling. Roll length of bread, like a jelly roll. Wrap in waxed paper. Place in refrigerator at least 2 hours. Slice like a jelly roll.



1 avocado

1 Tablespoon lemon


1/4 teaspoon salt

Mash pulp of the

avocado. Add lemon

juice and salt. Spread on



1 cup cooked ham

1/4 cup minced

sweet pickle (squeeze out

the juice)

2 Tablespoons


Mix all together.



6 hard-boiled eggs,

chopped fine

Mayonnaise to moisten.



"Make each tomorrow a better today."



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