I cannot believe the Miss America Pageant is just two months from today! It has been a joy to serve as your Miss Delaware for the past five months, and what an honor it would be to be crowned your Miss America.
As we near closer to the pageant, my schedule has become even busier. I was recovering from a sinus infection last week, which slowed me down a bit, but I kept my focus all week long. Tuesday, Nov. 9th, I tried to rest and still be productive before judging the Phyllis Wheatley Middle School's Dress Code Fashion Show alongside MDSO Board Member, Chuck Ivins! I had a great time, and any chance I get to be with children always brightens my day. The kids did such a great day turning their school uniforms into a more personalized and unique outfit they could wear outside of school. Not many public schools in Delaware require uniforms, which made this an opportunity for me to learn how it impacts the students. Congratulations to all of the students for a job well done, and for all of your hard work!
My mom and Chuck treated me to dinner at my favorite restaurant in Sussex County- Jimmy's Grille! Their Limas and Dumplings are to die for- especially when you are feeling under the weather! It should also be noted that I passed up my favorite dessert in southern Delaware, Banana Cake! It is the best.
Wednesday I tried to take it easy since I was still on an antibiotic and steroid for my sinus' so I worked out at the gym, drafted a blog, and worked on my Quality of Life Application. Thursday was one of my favorite days this week! I had an interview in the morning with Craig from www.hairloss.com and from there I rushed to Dover Downs for a lunch with Emily, Lexi and their mom's! Emily is from NY and she, too, has Alopecia. Her best friend, Lexi has decided to make a film about Alopecia Areata and post it online for their peers to see so they can learn about Emily's condition. Emily was recently diagnosed, so this is all new to her and she is blessed to have such a fabulous mother and best friend by her side. Her positive attitude shined through the whole time we were together, and I see so much of myself in her. I know she will go on to do great things with her life, and I am glad we will keep in touch so I can be a part of it! The staff of Dover Downs is just terrific- they let me show the ladies around and even see the ballroom where I was crowned Miss Delaware a few months ago. We then filmed an interview where I shared my story and a little information about Alopecia for Lexi to include in the video. Spending the afternoon with the ladies was such a great time, and I felt like we instantly became friends :) When Lexi's video is complete I will be sure to post it on here for you to see!
Friday morning, my mother and I drove to Tinton Falls, New Jersey to help prepare for the "Let Your Hair Down" Event that evening. Perhaps the best part of the day was seeing my favorite girls- Lilliana and Isabella. Their mother, Donna, puts on this incredible event each year and has raised over $50,000 for the National Alopecia Areata Foundation. For the past three years, Donna has included me in the event and I speak each year to share my story. This year, I spoke about the importance of loving yourself exactly as you are. In my heart, I know the greatest gift you can give yourself is love and acceptance for the person you are.
We all have something that makes us different, and thank God for that, because otherwise, the world would be a very boring place. 'Perfect' is boring. You may have issues with your height, your weight, your skin, your smile or even your hair. But in the grand scheme of things, none of that matters- and it should never hold you back from being the person you want to be. Look yourself in the mirror, and love what you see. It may not happen overnight, or in a fortnight. But, I can promise you, the day will come when you accept yourself will be the day you open your heart and open your mind to other beautiful things in life.
That night I was seated near the adorable Joe Sernio, from "All My Children", and the protective Artie Pasquale from "The Sopranos". Artie had me laughing because he was so interested in my preparations for Miss America, and our dinner arrived, he looked at my plate and said, "You aren't going to eat that roll now are you?" Then when dessert was delivered he gave me a hard time for eating my cake! But, he obviously has a sweet and generous side because he later brought me a plate of chocolate covered fruit from the chocolate fountain. He was sure to tell me that there was only fruit on the plate- "no marshmallows and what not" :)
Another highlight of the night was meeting Christie Maruka for the first time! Christie has generously offered to dress me for a few events before and during the Miss America Pageant week in Las Vegas! Christie owns Fashion Fix, the "ultimate mobile shopping experience"! She has dressed lots of celebrities and has years of experience in the fashion industry. Be sure to check out her website to learn more. Trust me, her BMW Van is filled with fabulous clothes that I wish I could have in my closet!
After a late evening, my mother and I woke up early Saturday morning to drive back to Delaware. That day was the Governor's Fall Festival and I had a meeting with George Lee that afternoon at Dover Downs. I went home to change and take care of the dogs before I was back at Dover Downs for the Wine Festival! Mrs. Kemmerlin was my travel companion that evening and we had a delightful time meeting and greeting guests and even chatting with Theresa McMaster for a bit!
Sunday- sick again. I should have rested more when I first started the antibiotics, because it finally caught up with me! But I slept for most of the day, so obviously my body needed it. And today is a much-needed catch-up day! Please keep me in your prayers as I recover and continue to prepare for the Miss America Pageant. Two months left! Too soon for a countdown, right?
Have a beautiful day! Don't forget to mark your calendar for my Miss America Send-Off Celebration at Dover Downs on December 12th from 2-5pm. Tickets are $25 reserved and $15 for children ages 12 and under. Please contact Faye at firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve your tickets! This is your chance to see all of my Miss America wardrobe and send me off to Miss America with love and positive thoughts.
Love, your Miss Delaware,