December 17- 20

Janell’s Graduation from Colorado State

My sister gets her Masters of Science Business Administration, Global Social Sustainable Enterprise. from Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colorado. Me and my parents attend the commencement ceremony for Graduate Studies on Friday, December 18.

Day 1 - Thursday, December 17

Me and my parents wake up bright and early at 4am at the house in Milpitas. Mike brings us to the San Jose airport for our 6:25am, Frontier flight to Denver. The flight left on time and arrived in Denver as scheduled. The weather was cool yet sunny and bright. Our reserved Greenride van picked us up outside baggage claim at 11am and drove us up to Fort Collins which is slightly over an hour drive. As we approached Fort Collins we can see snow blanketing the ground. The van dropped us off at our hotel, the Hilton Fort Collins just outside the University. Janell met us at our hotel room shortly after we checked in. It was already past noon and we were hungry for lunch, we drove over to Panera for a soup and salad lunch. My sister was in the process of moving out of her apartment and putting all her belongings into temporary storage. She needed help moving some of her larger furniture pieces. We went to pick up the moving truck from the storage facility and we moved all the furniture. We then unloaded it into her storage unit. Needless to say I was exhausted after minimal sleep, flying to Denver and moving. That evening we decided to eat at the hotel's restaurant where we had a delicious meal. After dinner my sister headed back to her apartment to continue packing where she stayed the night. Mom, Dad and I went to bed early.

  • Janell meet mom and dad at the Hilton room 622

  • Mom, Janell and Alan.

  • The lobby and restaurant of the Hilton

  • Snow covering Edora Park heading toward Janell's apartment.

  • Jane at her soon to be vacated apartment.

  • The loading van is here... start MOVING!

  • Dinner at the hotel's "Toscana at the Park"

  • Dinner at the hotel's "Toscana at the Park

  • Fwee by the hotel's Christmas tree.

  • Me and my sister by the tree.

  • Janell, Mom and Dad.

Day 2 - Friday, December 18

We wake up mid morning on a bright Friday. My sister joined us for the hotel's breakfast buffet. After breakfast we went to Palmer florist to order an orchid corsage, then Whole foods where we bought something lite for lunch. Janell left to get ready for graduation. Later that afternoon the hotel shuttle brought us to Moby Arena on the campus of CSU for the 3pm ceremony. CSU had numerous commencement ceremonies spread out between Friday and Saturday. My sister's was the Graduate Studies ceremony for those who attained a Master's Degree or a PhD. The ceremony lasted roughly 1.5 hours. After the ceremony we went to a post graduatation party at the Student Union in the center of campus. At the party we met many of her classmates and a couple of her advisors while snacking and having drinks.


  • Moby Arena getting ready for the Graduate Studies ceremony.

  • Tim, Janell, Zubaida

  • Manuel, Aseel,Tanisha, Jim, Janell. Inset: Janell and Aseel

  • Can you find my sister?

  • Janell getting her diploma.

  • Janell is a graduate with a Masters in Business Administration.

  • Alan, Janell, Mom and Dad.

  • "I DID IT!"

  • The happy graduate.

  • Janell and Alan... who's diploma is it?

  • Mom and dad proud of their daughter's accomplishments.

  • After party at the Student Union with Sanghamitra. Inset: Ana and Manuel

  • Facebook Fanatic Award!

  • Jane with graduate advisor Sandy Dahlberg

  • Jane with her department head


Day 3 - Saturday, December 19

On Friday, I hit the hotel gym early that morning before our special graduate breakfast buffet at the hotel. After breakfast we drop off my sister back to her apartment so she can finish packing and cleaning up. We use my sister's car to tour the city of Fort Collins. From my sister's apartment we head to downtown or "Oldtown" Fort Collins. Downtown had a pedistrian mall with partially frozen fountains, numerous sculptures from local artisans, specialty shops, cafes and restaurants. We explored numerous shops while listening to holiday singers by the frozen fountain. At one end of the pedistrian mall was a small ice skating rink. We went to an outdoor adventure store where my dad bought some rappelling gear. We then stopped to warm up at Starbucks for some hot chocolate and a couple of vanilla soy lattes. After our downtown tour, we headed over to New Belgium Brewery which makes numerous beers like Fat Tire beer. We sample numerous beers in their tasting room. To our surprise dad buys a jug of 1554 black ale. After the brewery we head over to Prospect Park and their frozen lake. One end was closed off for ice hockey. That evening we tried to have dinner at a steakhouse but the line was long, so we had dinner next door at Macaroni Grill.

  • Me and mom by the frozen fountain in Old Town Fort Collins.

  • I loved the running water against the icicles and frozen pond.

  • Numerous sculptures dotted the outdoor mall.

  • Interesting old buildings and vintage wall paintings throughout downtown.

  • Downtown had an ice skating rink and horse drawn carriages.

  • Beer tasting at New Belgium Brewery.

  • Alan having a beer or two.

  • Dad and his jug of 1554 beer!

  • Alan by the frozen lake in Prospect Park.

  • Snow covered the ground all around the park.

  • Mom and Dad get into a snowball fight.

  • Mom and Dad in the hotel's lobby.

  • Jane and her Bellini, me and my lemonade.

Day 4 - Sunday, December 20

We had a full day of just hanging out at the hotel. We got late check out at 3pm. That morning I worked out in the gym before brunch in the hotel's restaurant. We watched a couple of footgames in the hotel room before we needed to checkout at 3pm. We then watched football at the hotel lounge while ordering drinks. We had a late lunch (or early dinner) before our van arrived. Greenride picked us up exactly at 5pm and drove us south to the airport in Denver. We had a late flight at 9:10pm back home to San Jose. The flight left on time and arrived in San Jose as scheduled. During the flight I watched the inflight movie "Up!"

  • The snow covered ground as seen from our hotel room.