Just because....

“Oh, The Places You’ll Go…”

“You’re off to 

great places!

Today is your day!

Your mountain

is waiting so…

Get on your way!

–Dr. Seuss


It never ceases to amaze me how the older I get, the faster time seems to fly by. Four years ago I was blessed to watch my oldest son graduate as valedictorian and share in his excitement as he was not only accepted into an Ivy League school, but received a four year scholarship!!

As a mom I had always dreamed of the day I would get to take my son to freshman move in and his little brother and I made the trek across the country to help him get settled into his dorm. We were all in awe of the beautiful campus which quite honestly still looks like Hogwarts to me! 🙂 As our cab drove away I watched thru the back window as he waved goodbye and my eyes filled with tears. No longer my little boy… this was the start to his own life, his own dreams…  I said a silent prayer asking the Lord to watch over him and bring him happiness and joy.

Cornell, Ivy League, Graduation

Now, four short years later, I traveled back to this absolutely stunning and beautiful campus. This time thrilled to be going to see my son receive his hard earned Ivy League degree, his little brother and I once more made that trip across the country…

Boo ran straight into his big brothers arms the moment we saw him! After a big hug my son came and grabbed me up in a giant hug too! Long gone is the young kid who started out his life 4 years ago and now I look up at a 22 year old man who has the world in front of him…

Cornell, Ivy League, graduation

We were blessed to arrive a day before the ceremonies  so my oldest gave us a fun tour of the campus! We visited his favorite places on campus such as the Chapel he attends Mass and the library he works at.

Cornell, Ivy League,

ILR school, Ivy League, Cornell

Ivy League, Cornell, graduation

Boo was thrilled when big brother took us to The Dairy Bar where Cornell sells their own brand of ice-cream made right on campus! I adored seeing the original crystal ball the Wicked Witch of the West used in The Wizard of Oz!

Cornell, Ivy League, wizard of oz

There were 2 days for graduation…

The first day was the Commencement Recognition  Ceremony where I had the joy of watching my son walk across the stage and be awarded his diploma… It was a beautiful ceremony and I’m so grateful Boo and I could attend this and share this moment with him!

Cornell, Ivy LeagueCornell , Ivy League ,graduationIvy League, Cornell, graduation

Soon after this we headed across the street to Schoellkopf Stadium to gather with our graduates and listen to the Commencement speakers… We were so blessed to have Ava DuVernay as our key speaker! She is a film director, producer, and screenwriter. (She directed the 2018 film A Wrinkle in Time) Her speech was not only lovely, but powerful. I feel so lucky to have had the chance to hear her speak and I can’t help but think that her words to these graduates of 2018 apply to us all… “Live as the director of your own story….”

Cornell, Ivy League , graduate

The next day was the 150th University Commencement!!! Excitement was in the air even as rainclouds poured down on us! 🙂 The rain didn’t stop our smiles or joy as we watched this graduation class march onto the field and prepare to have their lives changed forever…

Cornell, ivy league , graduation

The rain mixed with my tears of joy as I heard the University President announce the commencement of my sons class and I felt so proud of him!

Ivy League, Cornell, graduation

Cornell, graduation, Ivy League

Ivy League, Cornell, graduate

So…. I am now mom to an Ivy League graduate… At 22 years young, the world is his to explore and discover. These past four years  slipped by so quickly and yet now I can’t wait to see what the next four years bring….

Ivy League , Cornell, graduation

I’d love to hear from my readers– What happy memories do you hold from your own High School or College graduations…

Ivy League, Cornell, graduation


  1. Awwwww I can imagine as a mom how proud this moment must be and the sense of accomplishment must be great. All the best to your son for all future endeavors.

    1. Thank you Vyom! 🙂

  2. Congratulations to your son first of all and thanks for giving me an inside scoop on Cornell. But now lets get down to business the original crystal ball from the Wizard of OZ….Ahhhh can you say amazing. I would have loved to see that. I’m a huge fan of the film.

    1. Hi Cia! It was truly amazing to be able to see this piece of cinematic history! 🙂

  3. They have their own ice cream? That is so incredibly cool. I think that would need to be a daily stop for me had I attended there! That library was impressively cool. That seems like the most pleasant place to get lost in the books. Congratulations momma you must be oh so proud!

    1. Aww thanks so much Danielle!! 🙂

  4. Omg congrats to your family! This is such a huge accomplishment and it must be so exciting for your entire family! Wishing him the best of luck!
    xx Jen

    1. Thanks Jenny! 🙂

  5. Such a touching post. As a mom of 4 little ones this moment feels so far off, yet I know it will be upon me sooner than I can imagine. Congratulations to your son!

    1. Thank you Nicole! 🙂

  6. You must be so proud! That looks like such a beautiful campus to visit. Graduation day is such a wonderful celebration of a achievement 🙂

    1. Thanks Suzanne! 🙂

  7. Elizabeth O

    Congratulations to your son on his graduation. How awesome! It looked like you had such a good time exploring his campus and those libraries look amazing! You must be so very proud.

    1. Hi Elizabeth! We had a lovely time exploring he beautiful campus!

  8. Linh

    You must be really proud of your son. 4 years of hardwork has been paid off. Congratulations on his graduation!

    1. Thanks so much Linh!

  9. What a lovely day for you all and congratulations to your son. I would love to see the Wizard of Oz ball. I’m going to use that quote in my journaling too.

    1. Hi Kerry! It was so amazing to see and honestly I was in awe of the technology they used in this movie way back in 1939!!

  10. Kristin

    Congratulations you you and your son! I love your photos. My son has one more year at Cornell Law School. Such a beautiful campus to visit.

    1. Hi Kristin! Congrats to your son too!!! That is such a wonderful accomplishment! You must be so proud!! 🙂

  11. Wow! What a proud moment for your family. Thank you for sharing it with us

    1. Thank you so much Meghna! 🙂

  12. Stephanie

    Congratulations! I can only imagine how proud you must be. That is a beautiful library. Thank you for sharing the pictures with us.

    1. Thanks Stephanie! yes… I wanted to move into that library LOL!! 🙂

  13. Oh wow mama I can’t even begin to imagine how PROUD you must be of him!!! That is such an amazing achievement and one I hope I can come close to with my own son! What a gorgeous school…I don’t know that I’d want to leave!!

    1. Thanks Ayana!! This school is absolutely stunning! I never wanted to leave!

  14. Congratulations to your son and I wish him the best of luck! I graduated with my B.S. four years ago and I honestly can’t believe that the life I am living is mine sometimes. He has so many wonderful experiences to come!

    1. Thanks Katie! And congratulations on getting your B.S. too! 🙂

  15. Marcie

    Oh what an accomplishment for your whole family! I bet that was so exciting! Congrats!

    1. Thanks Marcie! 🙂

  16. Congratulations! You must be a very proud mom. That school is so beautiful! And you’re right, it totally looks like Hogwarts.

    1. Thank you so much Melanie! 🙂

  17. Congrats to your son on his big day! What an amazing accomplishment. I wish him the best!

  18. Congratulations to your elder son on his graduation. Love that the brothers are so close. One of those library pics is so stunning!

    1. Aww thanks so much Doreen! 🙂

  19. Congratulation to your son, four years of hard work paid off 🙂 you must be very proud of him 🙂 certainly a beautiful campus 🙂

    1. Thank you Nina! 🙂

  20. That’s a great accomplishment! And the campus looks absolutely amazing:)

    1. Thank you so much Karolina! 🙂

  21. Beautiful campus and gorgeous library.

    1. Hi Kemi! I adore that library so much! 🙂

  22. Congrats, that’s so exciting and looks like it was a wonderful day to celebrate graduation. Loving the photos and that you shared this special day with us!

    1. Hi Brandy! Thanks so much for stopping by to read our memories! 🙂

  23. Congrats to your son and good job for raising such a fine young man! That campus looks really beautiful.

    1. Thank you Phoebe! 🙂

  24. Congrats! My parents sat through 2 college graduations for me (under grad and grad school) and they were so proud of my accomplishments. I know you feel similarly and have done a great job raising both of your boys. Nothing but the best to you, Shell. <3

    1. Aww thanks so very much Danielle! 🙂

  25. Congratulations to your son for graduating and hats off to the proud mom as well!! What a wonderful milestone shared by the whole family! Wishing him the best as he moves forward in his career!

    1. Thank you so much Stephanie!

  26. This looks like one amazing time! Many congrats! I love looking through the photos and seeing those smiling faces!

    1. Thank you so much Brandi! We had such a lovely time! 🙂

  27. Tonya Michelle

    Congratulations to you and your family!! What a beautiful campus! I can just imagine the day I will do this with my daughter.

    1. Aww thank you Tonya! 🙂

  28. That Dr. Suess quote is one of my very favorites. It pertains to so many times in our lives. Huge Congratulations to your son, you must be so proud.

    1. Hi Jessica! That’s one of my all time favorite quotes too! 🙂

  29. That is a great milestone! Wonderful moment for your family. Congrats!

    1. Thanks so much Cristina! 🙂

  30. I agree time flies super fast as you get older. Congratulations what a proud moment!

    1. Thank you Sandy!

  31. wow what a gorgeous campus this is! a friend of mine just went there for a tour sand said almost the same things! how wonderful!

    1. Thanks Cait!! 🙂

  32. Congrats to your son on growing up and becoming a man with a whole future ahead of him. And he sounds like such a great good brother. I really would love seeing that crystal ball from the Wizard of Oz too.

    1. Aww thanks so much David! Ya I thought that was totally awesome to see too! 🙂

  33. Vivian

    So fabulous to read about your son’s amazing success! Congratulations to him! It’s a lovely campus indeed~

    1. Thanks Vivian! 🙂

  34. This is so great – congratulations to your son and you!! I’m sure you’ve had so many proud mom moments watching your son go through school and graduate from an Ivy league! Looks like your family had a great time at the graduation.

    1. Hi Emily! We had a fabulous time on our visit! 🙂

  35. Congrats on his amazing accomplishment. You’re a proud Mama!

    1. Thanks Mary!! 🙂

  36. Geraline Batarra

    This is such a great personal story and I admire you that you raise a good, intelligent and independent man like your son. Congratulations to the both you!

    1. Thanks so much Geraline! 🙂

  37. That is a great achievement to graduate from a such a great school. He’ll go far because he graduated from a great school.

  38. Sam

    Congrats to your son on his graduation! Cornell looks like a beautiful campus! That’s so awesome that the commencement speaker was Ava Duvernay. It rained during my college graduation too. I had already walked across the stage and had been back in my seat a while before it rained. It was still a wonderful day!

    1. Thanks so much Sam! Ava was such a joy to listen to! It was an honor to be there!

  39. Vasundhra

    It must have been such a proud moment for you and your family! Congratulations and wishing your son best of luck in all his future endeavours!

    1. Thank you Vasundhra!

  40. What a lovely campus! I miss being in college. Life seemed easy then, haha

    1. Hi Madelain! So true… I think back to when I was 22 and life was so much simpler then 🙂

  41. Chastity

    That is awesome, congrats to you and your son. It’s such a wonderful feeling to see when your child is doing well. My memory would actually be the same being the first to graduate college. It’s exciting and so worth the experience, best of luck to him and your family!

    1. Thanks so much Chastity! 🙂

  42. Wow congratulations to your son for a job well done. Graduation is certainly a great milestone and marks a crucial beginning of what life ahead. And to graduate from a Uni like this must be a privilege and an honor.

    1. Thanks so much Mitch! 🙂

  43. Looks like an incredible journey and how awesome that you could share the big moments together – that’s what good memories are made of – knowing that your family was there with you. 🙂

    1. Thank you so much Pooja! 🙂

  44. Shubhada Bhide

    Congratulations to your son on his graduation. That is a huge achievement. and you all really enjoy your family adventure.

    1. Thank you Shubhada! 🙂

  45. Oh ma’am! This sounds very awesome. Having your son scoop an awesome diploma at Cornell, an Ivy League that almost everyone is dying for is no joke! What any parent would feel proud of. And we congratulate him so much.

    1. Aww thanks so very much Dalene!!! 🙂

  46. Congrats to your son! You must be one proud mom! Graduation is always such a bittersweet time. It’s exciting to be done, however there’s just nothing like being in college. I do miss my friends and all the places we would go together. I miss being on campus.

    1. Thanks so much Nina! …and thank you for sharing! 🙂

  47. Donyell

    Wow, congratulations to your son!! I know you are a proud momma!! My daughter is only 2 so I have a long way to go until then but I’m sure it will come faster than I expect!

    1. Thank you Donyell! 🙂

  48. Congrats on your son’s graduation! It looks like you had a great family time. I love your pictures. 🙂

  49. My oldest just finished his freshman year in high school . I have done so much reflecting as we embark on college visits ! It truly goes by too fast ! Thank you for sharing ! I try to embrace each new season and sometimes it is hard !

    1. Hi Rebecca! Sometimes it’s hard to embrace the changes but each new season of life brings such amazing blessings! 🙂

  50. What a campus!!! It looks like your son had an amazing time at Cornell. The library alone is stunning and, I’m sure, an invaluable resource. Congratulations to your son!

    1. Thanks Lalia! 🙂

  51. Hannah Marie

    You must have been very proud. And I am teary eyed while reading your blog. I always have a soft spot for things like this.

    1. Aww thank you so much Hannah!! 🙂

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