Mixed Emotions and a New Adventure

This time of year has me glued to my computer screen as I look for photos, updates, Tweets and admittedly, voy board gossip as the new class of Miss America contestants converge on the Las Vegas strip to rehearse and compete for 10 days for the opportunity of a lifetime- becoming Miss America. Until last spring, I had spent the past decade VERY involved with the Miss Minnesota/Miss America Organizations and attended several Miss America pageants in Vegas.
I had wondered how I would feel when Miss Minnesota left for Miss America and I essentially had nothing to do with her going. In previous years I had spent hours every week helping prep our titleholder to compete for this title and now- nothing. I can safely say how I am feeling is pretty much what I expected, like I'm missing out on something, like my best friend is accomplishing something great and I cannot share in her excitement. It is a strange thing to feel and I'm working my through it, finding where I fit in this new place. I think that if maybe I didn't have a connection outside the pageant to the current Miss Minnesota I wouldn't feel so removed from the big event. Siri and I share a hometown, a really fantastic small town in northern MN. We were both Jr Miss and Miss Becker County fair queens, held the same local title of Miss Northwest and my aunt serves on her local pageant board.
Without going into detail (because the past is the past and I am surrounding myself with good things, people, thoughts, etc, etc, etc) the last several months of my state board involvement was really bittersweet and it left a lot of hurt feelings. With that said, I cannot imagine not being involved with this organization. There are things I would like to change about it but overall, I think there will always be a part of me that gets this little girl excitement when I see a crown placed on the head of a new titleholder, or the last two contestants are standing center stage waiting to hear who has won. So...when my dear friend Carissa decided to become the director of a local pageant, I knew I had things I could offer to her to help build a strong program with her. Our pageant, Miss City of Lakes/Miss West Metro (we crown two titleholders) will be held February 16 at the Paul and Shelia Wellstone Neighborhood House in St. Paul. Please come support the contestants and the two of us as we embark on this for the first time together.  And be sure to watch the Miss America Pageant LIVE on ABC January 12. Plus... vote for our beautiful Siri Freeh for her to make the top 16 semi finalists! Just click here.

Now- my "New Adventure"
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