Happy Monday, everyone! I hope that you all enjoyed this weekend as much as I did! It was on Friday that I traveled home for the first time in a month, and I was really looking forward to all that was planned. Friday evening, I met my family for dinner at my grandmother's house - Jean's Beans, yum! For those of you who don't know about Jean's Beans, I am so sorry - while it is definitely a "once-in-a-while" treat, it is quite popular among the residents of the Thousand Island's region, especially during Lent because its specialty is Fish Fry! My mom, who is just as busy as I am, thought that Lent had already begun and planned the Fish Fry dinner a littler early - nonetheless, it was great to spend time with family, and stuff ourselves with delicious Watertown treats! After dinner, I spent time with my boyfriend, Tony, and his sister and brother-in-law. It is always so nice to spend time with my friends and family when I get the chance to come home, even though it can be hard to fit everything in to just a few days!
The weekend really started to get busy as soon as I woke up, bright and early, on Saturday morning when my mom and I went to our friend Allison's Zumba class, at LaFargeville Central where they both work. Even though I'm not always happy to wake up early, it really is great to start the day with a work out! Saturday afternoon I met up with Jessica Renzi, Miss New York 2003, at her house in Watertown for a modeling lesson. Jess has been so supportive of me in my year as Miss Thousand Islands, and is always willing to help! I so appreciate her and her valuable insight. We worked on "the walk" and of course, afterwards, we had a little pageant talk! Thanks for everything, Jess!
Sunday was the 4th Annual Teens for Miracles Fashion Show held by A Touch of Grace to raise money for our local Children's Miracle Network Hospital at Samaritan Medical Center. I was so honored to be the hostess of this amazing event, especially after having been a volunteer model for two years. The event is really fun for everyone - the models AND the audience. Those who watch the fashion show get to see all of the most popular prom styles of the season, and the models get to dress up and get their 5 minutes of fame, almost like a second prom! And there were male models, too! They borrowed tuxes from Nelson's Formal Wear and really did a great job! Ticia Marra's Stage Notes was there to provide entertainment, along with For Pete's Sake Entertainment and Production. It was so wonderful to see so many people come out to support the Children's Miracle Network, and I really had a blast! A huge thanks to Kathy & Kristan Letteire for inviting me to host the event and for all of their hard work in planning the event AND for the beautiful dress I wore, as well as all of the sponsors and other volunteers who were there to help out! To all my pageant sisters, I highly recommend A Touch of Grace for all of your pageant wardrobe needs!
With Madison Draper, one of our Miracle Children, who performed yesterday with Ticia Marra's Stage Notes!
With one of the models, Miracle Child Kaitlyn!
With friends & my brother! From left to right: Alex Weston (former soccer teammate), Tommy Barber (co-worker & neighbor), Skyler (my brother!), Olivia Speno (best friend!), Jake Speno (Liv's brother), and Lindsey Barber (neighbor)! It was great to see them all come out and donate their time to this cause!
With surrogate little brother, Zach Lanzar, and real little brother, Sky!
My dad and I! :-)
Mom & I! :-)
My pageant family, Gary and Sue, and I, minus Shelbs!
With my mom's best friend, Yasmin, and nanny Ruth!
Friday, March 11 - North Country Goes Green Irish Festival and the Miss Ireland Pageant!
I am so excited to watch the Miss Ireland pageant this year! It has become tradition for my mom and I to go and watch the pageant at one of the North Country's most popular events, the Irish Fest! Last year, one of my good friends, Bridgette Sharlow (Miss Ireland 2009) was able to crown one of her sisters, Brittany Sharlow, as her successor. I'm looking forward to see who Brittany will pass her crown onto this year!
Sunday, March 13 - Irish Fest Parade!
Before I go, I also want to congratulate two new members of the Miss New York Class of 2011! Colleen Gagne was crowned Miss Empire Rose 2011, and Jennifer Pollard was crowned Miss Empire Star 2011 at the two-title pageant on Saturday! I am looking forward to meeting my new sisters! Congratulations, girls!
Also, I would like to wish all of the ladies competing in the upcoming pageants good luck! I wish that I could be there to root you all on in the coming weeks!