“If all the rich and all the church people send their children to the public schools they would feel bound to concentrate their money on improving these schools until they met the highest ideals.” – Susan B. Anthony

In the words of Billy Eckstein, “If I caused you pain, I know I’m to blame, must have been insane, believe me from the bottom of my heart, dear I apologize.”

“Color me father.” Living for the weekend forgot to wish the fathers a happy Father’s Day “round midnight” I started texting Father’s Day messages to my friends. It’s late but the message is sincere, “happy belated Father’s day.”

“A good man leaves an inheritance to his children’s children.” – Proverbs 13:22

I know when Nate Trader graduated from Hampton University 50 years ago, he never dreamed that when he returned to his alma mater with his wife Gwen to walk in the graduation processional honoring his class’s 50th anniversary at this historic HBCU that the commencement address would be delivered by President Barack Obama, the first African-American president of the United States. Congratulations to Nathaniel “Globe” Trader on being inducted into the Emeritus Class. Nate and Gwen will also celebrate their golden wedding anniversary July 2. Gwen we know you were a child bride.

“There is nothing in a caterpillar that tells you it’s going to be a butterfly.” – R. Buckminster Fuller?

Living for the Weekend is proud to salute the achievements of our youth, their graduations and their success in life.

Our graduates are Leah Jones graduated from Edmondson Heights School and will attend Franklin Middle; valedictorian Eric Stewart Jr. graduated from Cross Country Middle School, he will attend Polytechnic High School; Marc Curry Jr. graduated from Deer Park Middle Magnet School, he will attend Milford Mill Academy International Baccalaureate Program; Leah Parrish graduated from Baltimore City College; Devin Dawson graduated from Milford Mill Academy; Jullian Brown graduated from Roland Park Country School; Justin Carney graduated from Milford Mill Academy he will attend Pennsylvania College of Art & Design; Bria Hamm graduated from Western High School, she will attend the University of Maryland; Courtney Miller graduated from Marriott Ridge High school, she will attend Emory University; Jessica Jennings graduated from Roland Park Country School, she will attend Loyal University; and Jason Jennings Wright graduated from Loyola Blakesfield High School, he will attend Carnegie Mellon University, his Uncle Larry Jennings’ alma mater.

“You can never learn less, you can only learn more.”- R. Buckminster Fuller

Christina Johnson received a Bachelor of Science degree in Management Science from Coppin State University; Erika Octavia Brown received dual Bachelor of Science degrees in Accounting and Marketing from Salisbury State University; Brittney Shanay Ryans graduated Cum Laude in Education from Winston Salem State University.

“I am the captain of my fate; I am the master of my soul.” – William Earnest Henley

We are proud of our graduates and their accomplishments, however, two graduates are in the spotlight.”

Karrie Woodlon graduated from Milford Mill Academy’s International Baccalaureate Organization in the top 5 percent of 318 students. She will attend John Jay College of Criminal Justice. She received a signed letter from President Barack Obama congratulating her on receiving the president’s education award.

Salim Council graduated in the last class of the historic Cardinal Gibbons High School. he will attend Bowie State University.

“One thing I know; the only ones among you who will be really happy are those who will have sought and found how to serve.” – Albert Schweitzer

Congratulations to my grandsons Gregory Packer on being elected vice president of his junior class and eighth-grader Matthew Packer on being elected representative to the Student Government Association at South County Secondary School, Fairfax Station, Va.

Randallstown’s David Wright is playing soccer with New Zealand. Proud granddad Willard, Aunt Brenda and Uncle Ralph Wright are beaming with pride.

“Ain’t that good news.” Congratulations to Lt. Gen. Lloyd J. Austin III on his appointment to the rank of general and his assignment as Commander of the United States Forces-Iraq, OPERATION IRAQI FREEDOM!! The first time in history two African-American four-star Army generals are serving at the same time.

More good news, congratulation to Walter Hill III on his promotion to Captain in the United States Army; CPT Hill is currently stationed in Fort Hood, Texas.

We pray for our soldiers as they protect our future and our youth. Amen

“Celebration time.”

“It’s a family affair” Cheryl and Greg Smith celebrating their birthdays and 34th wedding anniversary. Happy birthday Linda James, June Brown, Roxy Umphreys and my main man Bill Massey.

“That golden time of the day.” It was beautiful watching the Summer Solstice sunset on the longest day of the year. We were at bay café along the waters edge, watching the sun lingering over the water. What a sight.

On Saturday I was the guest of The Honorable Kurt and Dr. Pat Schmoke at the Maryland Science Center’s Summer Solstice Gala. “Money, money, money.” More than 650 guests attended and raised over $300,000 for educational programs. The rooftop reception provided a splendid view of the inner harbor.

“Some enchanted evening.” The main event featured “American Idol” finalist John Stevens, and the Beantown Swing Orchestra was under the tent extending into the courtyard decorated in the swing era with circular red velvet bars, chandeliers and food stations throughout. Guests enjoying the warm muggy night were Jacqueline Fulton, Ron and Joy Owens, Irene Reid, Essie Sutton, Danny and Delle Henson, Marcia and Frank Coakley, Rhonda and Joe Haskins, Marsha Jews, Nancy and Lou Grasmick, Robin and Joseph Locke and Dr. Ben and Candy Carson.

Happy fourth of July!

-Valerie & the Friday Night Bunch