Gosh, where to begin....hold on, I am going to go turn on some Yellowcard to help me concentrate...
When I was Miss Rehoboth Beach, I got the opportunity to attend and walk in a "GoRed" fashion show to help support Women's Heart Health. Talk about an event that was made for me...While there, I had the opportunity to meet so many wonderful people, teach them how to do a proper runway walk and pose. I was invited to attend another event a couple of months later. Little did they know, I would be coming as Miss Delaware 2011 (although when I got there, they told me that they had a feeling I would win! How kind!). I arrived at the incredibly beautiful Baywood Greens to attend a luncheon and fundraiser. Not only did I get to help with the silent auction and meet some of the funniest and kindest people to date, but I also got to learn about women's heart health and how important it is to recognize symptoms and be aware of when it's time to seek medical attention.
Yeah, camera. Go ahead and act like you took this picture in 2009....
The next day, it was off to perform at the fundraiser "Delaware's Got Talent", put on by Artistry Representative, Michelle Falla! Not only did I have the opportunity to perform my talent and raise funds for Children's Miracle Network, but I also had the opportunity to talk about the wonderful experiences I have had at the hospitals and share some personal stories from those visits. (Not to mention that I met a former Eagles football player, among others....pretty cool.) Thank you SO much, Michelle, for an awesome event!
One of my favorite appearances to date was when I attended an event with veterans of World War II and the Vietnam War! I spent hours with them just listening to their stories, asking questions, laughing, and taking an occasional picture. Hearing specific examples of their different experiences in war was definitely an eye-opening experience for me.
One gentleman, Norm, became my best friend by the end of the day. He was a World War II veteran who just laughed at me all day while telling an occasional story. One of my favorites was that during the war, he never used to drink or smoke - unlike any of his buddies. He said that he was the "babysitter" of the group. When they all went out and got drunk, he would steal their wallets and not tell them for a few days - that prankster! A man after my own heart... Needless to say, picturing Norm doing this had me laughing for hours.
He then said that he hoped he would live long enough to see me on television and, hopefully, win Miss America....WHAT. A. SWEETHEART.
NEW BEST FRIENDS! I LOVE NORM!
I had the opportunity to emcee the Little Miss Harbeston Pageant. It was unlike anything I have EVER been to before and had an incredible time. Anyone that makes me participate in a hula hoop contest off the cuff like that pretty much guarantees that I will have a great time.
One of the next big things on my agenda was the Wings of Hope Teal Ribbon Luncheon. This fundraiser, to support Ovarian Cancer research, was incredibly eye-opening as well. I had the amazing opportunity to speak to the entire room about the Miss Delaware Organization. In telling the group about my life and experiences, I had the opportunity to share my personal story of losing a good friend to texting while driving and about almost losing my older sister in an accident of the New Jersey Turnpike. My message? Live every single day to the fullest. I sat at a table with survivors of Ovarian Cancer and listen to their stories about survival and beating the odds. It is very inspirational to hear that even though research for a cure for Ovarian Cancer is one of the single most underfunded programs today, they are able to put that aside to bring awareness to this cause.
I've also had the opportunity to speak at the Delaware Safety Council Luncheon about my platform and my goals to expand it. A HUGE thank you to Harry Roosevelt for bringing me on-board with the Council while I was Miss Rehoboth Beach. I also recently spoke at my first of many high schools the other day and the response was fantastic!!!
Another of my FAVORITE appearances was attending the Dover International Speedway for the Nascar Sprint Cup Series!!!! YES. I don't think I have ever had my picture taken that many times in my entire life....but I guess that it what happens when there almost 100,000 people at one single event. I was interviewed on the huge Sprint Cup stage and talked about my year as Miss Delaware and my platform, Project 16-26: Drive Safe, Drive Smart (which was perfect, considering the event!). The craziest moment was after I received my tickets to watch the race , I started walking to my section of the track. There began a crazy amount of cheering and screams of "MISS DELAWAREEEE!!!!!" Talk about a humbling experience! WOW! After I took another million pictures, I got to watch most of the race and bond with the ladies next to me about our love for Dale Earnhart Jr. Talk about a good day...
Other events I have been a part of include events for Children's Miracle Network Hospitals, workouts with my trainer (talk about not being able to walk the next day...), training for Character Counts, photo shoots and interviews with Wilmington University, appearing on the Tim Qualls show, recording PSA's for 93.7 WSTW, fundraisers, and TONS of dance classes.
Getting ready to dance for the Tim Qualls show....boy do I have a story about this....I will blog about it next time.
I have so much more to blog about!! AHHHH!! A HUGE promise that another one will be out this week! : )
Stay chill and play McDonald's Monopoly (Oh, yes....I went there)
P.S. All politics aside, I sat next to Vice President Joe Biden in church the other day. (Just in case anyone wanted to know....)
"Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God."