Sunday, May 22, 2011

April 10- April 17

Hello friends!

Thank you for checking in with me to be a part of my year as Miss Delaware. I have been having the time of my life and have loved every minute! I cannot believe my year is almost over!

I know I begin every update by letting you know how busy I have been. So I will just let you assume that my schedule has kept up the pace! April 1st I celebrated April Fools Day at the Grande Opening of the World Cafe' Live's The Queen Theatre in Wilmington! If you have not yet visited The Queen, you absolutely must. It is one of the oldest theatres in Delaware and is such a big part of our history. WCL has restored the theatre and revamped everything so it is a beautiful marriage of historic architecture with a modern touch. Be sure to check out their schedule of upcoming concerts.

That Saturday (April 2) I had quite a long day! It began when I sang "God Bless America" at a local ribbon cutting and then rushed over to the Stargate Diner in Harrington to speak to a group of 40 teen girls called "Agape Love" about "Embracing Beauty Within". These girls were so inspiring and so receptive- I knew I had the chance to make a real difference in their lives that day. I signed autographs for everyone, had a bite to eat and after I spoke I was on the road again. By this time it was mid-day and I had to run home and change quickly before driving up to the University of Delaware's campus in Newark to speak at the Odyssey of the Mind Competition's Award Ceremony. I was looking forward to this all week because I had competed in the Odyssey of the Mind Competition from the time I was in 8th grade until I graduated high school. OM was one of my favorite activities and was the perfect venue for me to channel my creative side. My team and I even placed 6th in the World at the International OM Competition in Boulder, CO. Such great memories!

Thankfully, I had the chance to sleep in the next morning and spend the day with my family. Monday and Tuesday were filled with more doctors appointments and another test with disappointing results. But Wednesday morning I woke up with a smile and held my head high as I posed during my photoshoot for the cover of Delaware Today's May Issue, which is on stands now! Bridgette (my bichon maltipoo) tried with all her might to get in the picture. But, unfortunately she didn't meet the criteria ;)

Thursday (April 7) I tried to be productive during the daytime before attending the "10 of the Best" Event hosted by the Milford Chamber of Commerce with MDSO Board Member and my friend, Chuck Ivins. I served as the keynote speaker that evening and chose to speak about the importance of making the commitment to be involved in your community. Thank you Lorna, and to the Milford Chamber for inviting me to speak! I so enjoy every chance I get to be in my hometown!

Friday (April 8) was a special day as my family and I were in Penn's Landing, Philadelphia to celebrate the marriage of my mother's best friend's daughter, Sara to the love of her life, Jake. The wedding was held at Jake's restaurant, the Moshulu. If you've never been, you really must check it out! I suggest trying their brunch- it is my personal favorite! Sara was the most beautiful bride, and I've never met a couple more in love than she and Jake. Congratulations Mr. and Mrs. Wade! May you have a lifetime filled with love and happiness.

Sunday (April 10) I attended a bowling fundraiser in Wilmington to benefit my platform, the National Alopecia Areata Foundation. It is not often that we have NAAF events in Delaware and so I knew I couldn't miss it! I cherish every opportunity to advocate for Alopecia awareness or to just meet others who have this condition as well. My parents were kind enough to ride upstate with me to be a part of this event.

Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday were filled with quite a long to-do list, a rehearsal for the Hocker's Jamboree and another (anxiously awaited) facial at one of my favorite sponsors, the Hockessin Day Spa! Thursday (April 14) I was in Fruitland, MD to speak at 97.5fm CAT Country's event Celebrating Community Heroes at the Black Diamond Lodge. After dinner, I shared my story and my love and commitment to service. Thank you to Delmarva Broadcasting for inviting me to speak and be a part of this incredible event. It is not often that regular community members are honored for their generosity or service and this event was the perfect way to do just that.

Friday (April 15) I was in Wilmington to attend the "Evening with the Masters" to benefit Meals on Wheels of Delaware. As a self-proclaimed "foodie" I was absolutely in my glory as I tested samplings from a plethora of local caterers and restaurants. Love me some food! :) And I loved running into the King of Cakes here in Delaware, Food Network's "The Next Great Baker" winner, Dana, owner of Cakes by Dana. His orange dreamsicle cake is to-die-for. You must try it.

Saturday (April 16) marked the third anniversary of the Virginia Tech massacre which is a day of horrific memories in our family. My fiance', Kevin attended VT and was on campus that day. His mother and I could not get hold of him for hours and we were both in a terrible place until we finally heard from him later that day. Thankfully, he and all of his friends were safe, but many lives were lost that day and on that day I was sure to say a prayer for the families of the victims of that day.

That morning I was glad to be a part of the Miss Delaware Contestant's First Orientation where I was able to speak about the job of Miss Delaware. Letitia Pusey, Miss Delaware 1994's mother, Linda Pusey, who is one of our board members, was asked to speak instead of my own mother, to share what it is like when your daughter becomes Miss Delaware. Thankfully, the parents chose to contact my mother directly and ask for words of wisdom!

It was at orientation that I realized- my year is almost over! It was definitely emotional to hear Debi speak about what June would be like for the next Miss Delaware. The best word that I can describe my feeling is bittersweet! I will truly miss my job, but I know I will continue to be involved in my community and I will forever have the memories of this year. I still have quite a few chapters left in my book :)

I left orientation in Georgetown and headed to Dover to attend the "Power of One" event at the Dover Art League. Thank you to Angela Tilley for inviting my mother and I! From there I left promptly to be able to drive back down to Sussex County to uphold a longstanding tradition of Miss Delaware performing at Representative Gerald Hocker's Jamboree in Dagsboro. I sang "Stand By Your Mine" as per the recommendation of my father! I had the best time and experienced singing with a live band for the very first time!

What a long day that was! I went home that night and slept for a few hours before I had to be up and ready to celebrate at my best friend, and former Miss Delaware, Brittany Dempsey's, Bridal Shower! She loved every part of her shower and I know she was thankful to have a day to celebrate her upcoming nuptials with people who love her. My mother, who is superwoman, made the cake from scratch and decorated it to match the beach theme of her shower!

Thank you all for being a part of this journey. Your support has meant the world to me, and I wouldn't have been able to get this far without all of you behind me!

With much love and gratitude,

Kayla

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