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Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Miss Lights of the Delta 2012

It has nearly been one full month since I was crowned Miss Lights of the Delta 2012, and in that one month it has been busy! I have a lot to catch you up on, so get ready!!!

I'll start with the most recent...

Sunday, I performed at the Miss Arkansas Wardrobe Preview for Miss America. Unfortunately, I can't give you the top secret intricate details of her fabulous wardrobe, but I can tell you that I'm pretty sure none of the other state contestants will be able to compare! I, and I know Kristen feels the same, am so blessed to be a participant in the Miss Arkansas system. I would dare say that no other state could rival the amazing support from sponsors and volunteers that we enjoy.

I decided rather late to sing instead of play the flute for yesterday's entertainment. I chose to sing "The Impossible Dream" because Kristen has already surpassed one seemingly impossible dream, the dream I know she has dreamed for years, by becoming Miss Arkansas. I know that she may very well do the "impossible" again, and become our next Miss America. I wish her the best of luck! I am so disappointed that I can't be in Las Vegas cheering her on, but my thoughts and prayers will be with her from training camp in Atlanta. Be sure and keep up with her blog, newly redesigned and a wonderful way to get to know our lovely Miss Arkansas, secondchanceskg.blogspot.com. Here is a photo of this year's top five at the preview showing our support!

Top 5 2011: Sloane Roberts, Lauren English, Kristen Glover, Simone Mullinax, and moi!

Last weekend I, along with five other 2012 titleholders volunteered at the Arkansas Children's Hospital Miracle Ball. There is so much that I could say about the event from the decor to the wonderful people I had the privilege of meeting. But the most important thing I could mention from the night is that I can't think of a more worthy cause. The proceeds from the evening will go to funding isolettes for the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, or NICU. One thing I learned from my time working with the March of Dimes Chain Reaction Youth Council is that in Arkansas 1 in 8 babies is born premature. That's the same as the national average, and in my opinion, much to large a statistic. The isolette machine enables babies born premature to have a fighting chance at life. It was an honor to be involved in this year's Miracle Ball.

Volunteers with Miss Arkansas, Kristen Glover, former 1st-Runner-up to Miss Arkansas, Mrs. Isom, and former Miss Arkansas, Sharon Bale!

And the week before my trip to Little Rock for AR Children's, my fellow sister queens and I enjoyed a little Christmas cheer by riding in the Blytheville Christmas parade and then volunteering out at the Lights of the Delta display! It was a great time for my new sisters and I to get to know each other. It is such a joy to get to be the "big" to Miss Lights of the Delta Outstanding Teen (or LOTDOT for short), Kelli Collins, and Miss NEA Outstanding Teen, Haven Cagle!

At the Lights of the Delta entrance! Haven Cagle, Myself, and Kelli Collins

Earlier that week, I got to be on my first radio show bright and early in the morning! Thank you so much Charles Moody for asking me to sing with you and promote the Light's display. I had a fantastic time, and I am looking forward to returning. (hint hint)

The Chuck and Steve Show
The night before the radio show, I was asked to attend the Blytheville Tree Lighting Ceremony. I had the privilege of meeting the Mayor for the first time, and the joy of singing Christmas carols with a group of kids.

With Mayor Sanders of Blytheville

And right after Thanksgiving came the night that made this post possible...and that of course is the night I became Miss Lights of the Delta 2012! It was a busy weekend. I passed on the title of Miss NEA on Friday evening, traveled through the light's display on a hay ride with all of the NEA and Lights' contestants, and then woke up early Saturday to get ready for interview! I was so excited in the afternoon to be awarded the swimsuit award and that evening I also received the talent award. I've mentioned it when blogging before that this pageant was my last opportunity to return to Miss Arkansas next summer because of my mission trip this spring. (Which you can read more about by viewing my other blog idwellinhope.blogspot.com.) And to say that I was nervous would be a bit of an understatement. I am so honored to represent the Northeast Arkansas area again this year to Miss Arkansas.

Thanks for reading! More to come soon!



Thursday, November 24, 2011

'Tis the Season...Almost!

So it has been awhile since my last post! I've been very busy with Uganda planning and, recently, with pageant preparations! For those of you who don't know I'll be competing in the Miss Lights of the Delta pageant this weekend, and I couldn't be more excited about it! But I'll get to that...

First, I want to say what a priviledge it has been to serve the entire Northeast Arkansas area as Miss NEA this past year. I can't believe that my reign is so suddenly (it feels like) coming to an end. This Friday night in Blytheville I will crown the new Miss NEA 2012, and it is a very bittersweet thing for me. Not only am I so thankful for the amazing year that I have had, and with that my top 5 placement at Miss Arkansas. But the people who make up the Miss NEA Pageant Association have become family to me, and I'm so grateful to them for all of the time and energy they have poured into me to not only make me a strong competitor, but also to help make me the best kind of representative that I can be!

As you now know, I will be competing for the title of Miss Lights of the Delta this Saturday! (Busy weekend!) This will be a wonderful pageant weekend and I hope some of you will be able to make it out to Blytheville for the pageants. This is also a pretty difficult weekend for me. You may have already done the math and noticed that this Saturday is the last preliminary that I am eligible to compete in this year, as I will be in Uganda throughout the Spring pageant season. My decision to go to Uganda was not made lightly. It is my last year to be able to travel with this group as it is a program for 18-22 year olds and this summer I will turn 23. One of my biggest considerations when deciding whether or not to go, was the Miss Arkansas Organization. This program is a huge part of my life and I knew at the end of the Miss Arkansas pageant this year that I wanted to go back and try again in 2012. It is difficult finally coming down to this weekend knowing that this is it for me this year, but I have complete faith that the right girl will be chosen for the job of Miss LOD. If that is not me, then I will support the winner, and I'll be back at Miss Arkansas this summer cheering on my friends. If the title comes to me this weekend, then (I will be ecstatic!!) I will consider it an honor to get back to the state competition! I have worked very hard in preparing for Saturday night, and I can't wait to be back on stage!

So the title of this blog is 'Tis the Season...Almost and the reason for that is, this past Monday night was the opening of the Lights of the Delta festival in Blytheville, and I, along with my sister queen Courtney Welsh, had the joy of volunteering to collect toys for the group Ignite, who collect toys for needy children during the holidays who otherwise wouldn't get a visit from Santa in December. This is my second year to work the opening of the Festival, and yet again, the Lights of the Delta board has prepared another wonderful lights display to help ring in the season! Here are a couple of photos from Monday night! Wish me luck this weekend, and I promise to update you on how the weekend turns out! Thanks for following my blog, and I hope you and your family have a HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!!

Courtney and I handing over our donations to Santa and Mrs. Clause!

Us with the "golden voice" of Northeast Arkansas! Thanks for all of your support and the time you donate, George!

Me and Courtney together one last time before we give up our titles!!!