Yesterday was the biggest day ever in our family.
My baby brother (who you will soon see is not a baby at all) graduated from the Virginia Police Academy and is now a full fledged Virginia Marine Police Officer. Not to be confused with the branch of the military, the Virginia Marine Police are responsible for protecting and monitoring the water ways of the entire state. Unlike a county or city officer, the Marine Police have arrest jurisdiction in the entire watch out, this kid has been a rule follower since birth and he'll stick it to you for sure.

In all seriousness, Wayne has worked so, so hard (harder than I've ever cared to worked at anything) to achieve his dream and we just simply couldn't be more proud. Friends and family came from near and far to celebrate his accomplishment and to marvel at his semi-automatic weapon, now loaded with real bullets (scary!).

Of course, I took one billion pictures and have pared them down to the basics, but if you aren't family I won't judge if you skip the photo bomb ahead.

Congratulations, Buddy, you deserve it more than anyone on Earth.

Wayne and his girlfriend Katie, pre-graduation

Two of Wayne's biggest supporters, Daddy and Mr. Powell

My parents about to die with pride...and me about to explode with retained fluid.

And if the day wasn't big enough...

I'm getting a Sister In Law!
(my mom was in on the surprise and snapped these pics as Wayne and Katie made their way into his party to share their big news!)

Wayne proposed to his girlfriend Katie at a special spot on the way home from his graduation ceremony. It was perfect timing...her family, our family and our friends and family were waiting for them at his graduation celebration.

Katie was thrilled that her mother and daddy were there to share in her moment...her dad was in on the surprise but her mom was completely shocked! 

 I love the photo above...they are so stinkin happy!

Katie and Wayne,

We love you so, so much and can't wait to celebrate with you over the next year or so. You two are genuinely right for each other and have already stood by one another through so many trials and tribulations. We know that your marriage will be blessed and successful. Thank you for letting us be apart of your journey.

With Love,

Sinbad and Chocolate
(to you blog readers, Stephanie and Justin)

What a day, huh??

P.S. Thanks for everything Nastassia!
Image Map


  1. THIS IS THE BEST POST EVER. Seriously, just read it in class and grinned from ear to ear the whole time. Absolutely love all the pictures and all the people in them! Thanks for sharing :)

  2. Wow that an awesome day!! So happy for your family!

  3. aww congrats to your brother and his new fiance! xo jillian - cornflake dreams

  4. That is so wonderful!! Let the wedding planning begin!

  5. Love this! How sweet for your brother to plan that on his big day with all her family around! Looks like little Gray already has the first duty of a ring bearer!

  6. Such a big year for your family - baby on the way, graduation, and now a wedding! How fun!


  7. What an amazing accomplishment! And what a fabulous day all around for the whole family! Congrats to your brother and soon to be sister in law!

  8. Oh my goodness what an awesome day! I love that your brother planned the proposal while both families were there so they could share in the celebration & excitement. And what a sweet guy to take the attention off his big accomplishment and share it with his fiancé. : ) Lots of exciting things happening for your family this year. Congrats!


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