"I didn't really plan on it becoming a family tradition," Ronda said. "I just thought it would be neat for April to wear it on her first day of school. Then, when Jennifer grew into it, she wanted to wear it, too."
In both April and Jennifer's case, the family fireplace became the backdrop for their first day snapshots; separate memories adding to one cute storyline for the dress.
"I remember feeling like a 'grown up' for wearing a dress my mom wore," April said. "I don't remember if any kids said anything, but I do remember my teacher and several others saying how much they liked my dress. I felt very important telling her that it was mom's outfit from when she was a little girl."
"Wearing the dress for myself was just another day," Jen added. "I think it means more now that two of my kids have worn it as well. My husband and our kids have moved a lot so we don't hold on to things like my mom does."
Ronda put the dress away once more, this time for nearly a decade and a half until a chance return trip to Dublin by Jen and her family put
Ronda's oldest granddaughter Emma in position to carry on the tradition once more.
"When it came time for my granddaughter, Emma, to start school, I remembered the dress and asked her if she would like to wear it," Ronda said. "She did and she was so proud. She told everyone she was wearing her 'grandma's dress."
"It was important to my mom so why not?" Jen added. "She came over on the morning of Emma's first day and took a million pictures."