My grand-niece, Jadyn Mortensen is a complex girl. She has many sides, and many talents. I think that first and foremost, Jadyn is her parents’ daughter. She loves her mom, Amanda Reed and her dad, Sean Mortensen very much, and she is very loyal to them. Jadyn is their only child, and they love her very much too. She also makes them very proud. There seems to be nothing Jadyn can’t do when she puts her mind to it, and she wants to experience life to the fullest.
Jadyn loves horses, and she has a way with them. She is a very talented barrel racer. I have watched her career from vantage point of the pictures her family takes. Jadyn is very photogenic, and Jadyn on a horse is just amazing. She loves her houses and they love her. The two together are a perfect team, acting in unison.
While Jadyn is an excellent equestrian, she is also great at just about every other sport there is, or at least the ones she is interested in. She loves the snow, and snow sports, she loves the water and being at the lake with her parents and their friends’ families. The summer weekends are always full of activity, most often at Seminoe Reservoir. Jadyn fits in with children and adults alike. She always has.
The Covid School Year stole so much for our students, but it was more for the high school students, because they missed out on prom, graduations, sporting events that might have meant scholarships, and so much more. Nevertheless, for the ones, like Jadyn, this year was a second chance at the things they missed before. Jadyn got to got to prom this year, and she looked stunning in her gorgeous red dress. She is a beautiful girl, inside and out, and really looks stunning in a prom dress or a pair of jeans, shirt, and cowboy boots. I’m sure rodeo was different too. Many events, if they were held, were without spectators, and that is sad. Parents should be able to watch their child perform. For our kids, we can never go back to such a thing again. Nevertheless, Jadyn has continued to excel, and she has a bright future ahead of her. Today is Jadyn’s 17th birthday. Happy birthday Jadyn!! Have a great day!! We love you!!
My grand-nephew, Xander Spethman is the eldest child of my niece, Jenny Spethman and her husband, Steve. Xander takes his job as older brother very seriously. He understands that as the older brother, he has a responsibility to be a leader for his younger siblings. They look up to Xander, as do Xander’s friends. He really is a leader, and he takes that seriously. When Xander and his siblings, Zack, Isaac, and Aleesia are playing, Xander (and his brothers too) always make sure that Aleesia wins the games. She is the youngest, and younger by a few extra years, due to the passing of their sister, Laila less than a month after her birth. The boys are very protective of their sisters. In their playtime, Xander is the leader of the pack, so to speak. In group situations, Xander leads and the rest follow his lead. The younger boys look up their brother, especially in the area of how they should act. Xander makes sure that he leads by example…and always a good example. Xander is a great big brother.
Xander has always had a lot of friends. Part of his charm is that he treats others in the way he would like to be treated. More people need to learn to live by that rule. High school is not the easiest place to be, but Xander is good and kind, and while that doesn’t always protect him from the rudeness around him, it always makes those who know Xander proud to know him. Xander doesn’t participate in the rude pranks or comments of those around him. He is far too mature for the childness of some people, and that is something to be proud of. This year, Xander met a wonderful girl named Alli Simpson. They are so good for each other. They went to prom, and they looked so cute. Alli fits well in the Spethman family, and while they are young and in no hurry, they are very much loving their time together. Xander has fallen in love with Alli, and the family couldn’t be happier.
As Xander heads into his senior year of high school, his mom is starting to feel a little sad, because time always goes by so fast. Here they were, just living their life, and now…suddenly, Xander’s childhood years are almost over. Jenny and Steve rely on Xander, and they trust him. They know that he is honorable and truthful. Now, he is busy planning his future, and is considering going to trade school to become an electrician. Jenny says, “Is so hard for me to think about him leaving my house. I have tried to enjoy every moment with him.” That’s all a parent can do, and it won’t be the same once he moves out, Xander will come home for visits often, because that is where his heart is. Today is Xander’s 18th birthday. Happy birthday Xander!! Have a great day!! We love you!!
With the new school year just beginning, the reality is that the year’s end will arrive in incredibly short order. Football, basketball, and track will be over, and before we know it, the high school students are getting ready for prom again. Everyone wants their prom to be that wonderful dance that is unforgettable…one that they can carry the memories of forever. Proms are usually held in the school gym, or maybe at an events center, and on rare occasions, a hotel, but in 1975, in Washington DC, was held what could only be called the ultimate prom!! And don’t think your school could duplicate this particular prom, because they couldn’t. This particular prom was held at the White House!! It was the only prom ever to be held at the executive mansion, which makes it an odd event in White House social history.
Our president at the time was Gerald Ford, and he had a 17 year old daughter named Susan. Like most daughters, Susan knew that her daddy wanted to make her happy. So, she asked him if her high school could hold their prom at the White House. It was the first and only prom ever to be held there…and not something that is likely to happen again. Susan went to school at the Holton-Arms school. The prom was held on March 31, 1975, and President and Mrs Ford were on their way from Belgium to Spain as part of a diplomatic tour of Europe. In their place was the president’s sister-in-law, Janet Ford, “a small figure in a white lace dress, casting a tolerant but observant eye on the proceedings.”
Over forty years later, the students who attended the regal prom still carry those wonderful memories of a very special prom that could never be equaled. They even got to take a sunset cruise on the presidential yacht. Many parties have been held at the White House, but none quite like this one. The White House was rockin’ that Saturday, with Susan Ford. her classmates and their dates, dancing the bump and the hustle in the East Room until 1:00am. Susan had been a student at the Holton-Arms School, an academy for girls in Bethesda, Maryland, since her freshman year. “The members of the class of 1975 paid the cost of the prom…$1,300, after raising funds at bake sales and school fairs. Tablecloths were made out of floral pink and yellow sheets. The menu included Swedish meatballs and quiche, as well as a nonalcoholic punch made of tea, lemonade, soda, grape juice, and sugar. Susan and her classmates assembled the centerpieces, candles in a setting of daisies, tulips, lilies, sweet peas, and ming fern.”
“The girls wore long dresses, light makeup, casual hairdos, and, in many cases, orchid corsages,” the Associated Press reported. “Many of their escorts, in black or white tuxedos, wore boutonnieres and below-the-collar length hair.” “Susan, at that age, was strikingly beautiful,” says Sally Alexander, a retired English teacher at Holton-Arms, who was one of six chaperones. “And it’s a great deal of fun to watch a bunch of beautiful young girls with handsome young men, all dressed up. They were clearly excited about being where they were, but they were not uncomfortably awed. It was a beautiful affair.” And of course, the media was there to document the entire historic prom. So, if you want your prom to be this cool, you had better start planning now…or maybe several years ago.
As the time for the school dances arrives again, I am reminded of my oldest daughter, Corrie and her husband, Kevin, and the dances they went to. They fell in love when Corrie was just 15 years old, and one of their favorite things to do was to go to the Co-Ed Ball and Prom. They went to both of them each year from the time the began dating until Corrie graduated. They were like Cinderella and Prince Charming. Theirs was a fairytale romance…love at first site. My beautiful little girl was becoming a beautiful young lady. She looked so pretty.
The pictures done, they headed out to their romantic evening, with eyes only for each other. Love blossomed at those dances, as well as their other dates, but it is always those special evenings that stand out in your memory. The dance committees had created an evening of moments with balloons, crepe paper, cardboard, and spray paint. An evening to remember.
With each new year and each new dance, they grew and changed…blossomed really. I remember that I was always so proud of the handsome couple they made. But, along with that thought was the little feeling of sadness that my little girl was growing up so fast. You know the one. That feeling that you suddenly want to put on the brakes and slow down time, but you know that you can’t. So you smile and wipe away a tear or two, and send them on their way to their evening to remember.
Every year these dances come around, and a new set of students head out, all dolled up. A new group of parents think back to the day their child was born and wonder how it could be possible that they are already heading out for their high school prom, or other such dance, and wish they could turn back the clock, so that their little one could still be their little one.
When we are young, we think that life is a long time. We wonder when we will get to be the grown up one, heading out on that special date, and before we know it..we are already sending our own children out on an evening to remember.