Life has begun to calm down a little, but I have been keeping very busy! Miss America was such an incredible experience, but life after has been just as rewarding. On our flight home from Las Vegas, I was recognized by a stewardess and congratulated repeatedly. The text messages and emails just kept pouring in, and I felt the love and pride overflowing from our state! Thank you all for supporting me on this journey and for wanting me to become Miss America as much as my family and I did.
After I returned from Las Vegas I spent about a week catching up on rest... I'm serious! I didn't read a single news article, I didn't spend half a minute in the gym, or at the dance studio. And, I loved it! The next week, I spoke at North Georgetown Elementary School representing the Miss Delaware Organization's Platform- Character Counts and also at East Millsboro Elementary speaking on saying "No" to drugs! Anyone who knows me, knows how much I love children- so this was the perfect way to get back into the swing of things!
That weekend I was in Washington D.C. for my other job with Barbizon, USA to be a part of my students' graduation from the program. I never realized how maternal I had become toward my students until I felt an overwhelming sense of pride seeing them walk the runway that day. After days of rehearsals and the culmination of the runway show, I was fortunate enough to spend an afternoon with one of my Miss America sisters, Stephanie, Miss District of Columbia! Stephanie and I became great friends in Las Vegas (along with a handful of our other favorite states!) and I can't wait to reunite when I move closer to her in the Summer!
The first week in February was my ultimate catch-up week. I had been avoiding my to-do list which included the hundreds of emails pouring in, and many important phone calls- and it was finally time to return to business! I had a teleconference for my new position on the Marketing Committee for National 4-H Council, and met with my Executive Director and Business Manager to refocus and talk about what our goals would be for the latter half of my reign.
Then, it was back to business-as-usual on February 4th at Thurgood Marshall Elementary School in Newark as I read to the first and third graders my own personal favorite book from childhood to celebrate "I Love to Read" month! From there I left immediately to model in the "Go RED for Women Fashion Show"! I sported my favorite red dress and shared with everyone how important awareness and support has become.
Saturday Febuary 5th was also an exciting day as I had the chance to meet with my favorite Celebrity Stylist, Christie Maruka of FashionFixNJ! Christie was kind enough to drive down to Delaware with her super fabulous store on wheels and restock my wardrobe for all the important upcoming local and national television appearances! Christie has been a god-send this year, and has sent me beautiful designer clothes to wear not only while at Miss America but also for most of my TV appearances and magazine photoshoots!
The next day was not about me at all, and I loved it! We were celebrating the college graduation of my best friend, Julie Gravatt and could not possibly be any prouder! Julie is now a full time educator and I am proud to see her achieving her lifelong goal!!!
What a month! All sorts of exciting things were happening and were in the works. Looking back on my schedule like this just warms my heart, and reminds me of how important my job is, and just how blessed I am to be in this position.
Thank you for supporting me throughout this year, and I hope to continue to make you all proud.
With sincere grattitude,