Talent Presentation at the Miss America Pageant

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Happy November!

Hi everyone!  Well, another week has gone by and I have several exciting things to update you on!

Last Tuesday I visited Children's Hospital Orange County (CHOC) and had the opportunity to spend time with several children in the playrooms.  Breanna was a great tour guide, thank you so much for setting up this visit!  I painted with Karen, colored with Wendy and had a ton of fun with Serena.  Serena and I painted plates to decorate for Halloween and she had to help me cut out the center of my plate... that sure is harder to do than it looks!  We also played air hockey (sadly she beat me...) and of course she had to try on the crown!  We even found a little mirror in the playroom for her to see what it looked like on her!  This hospital is especially close to my heart because they not only saved my brother's life when he was a baby, but CHOC has also been an integral part of the lives of many close friends and I really appreciate everything that they do.  They have a special program at CHOC called "Radio Lollipop" which is a radio station that is actually located on the ground level of the building.  The children love going to this and they all gather in front of the recording studio when it is in session.  This is such a neat thing to offer for the children and definitely provides a great distraction for them!  Breanna even told us that the request for pain medication goes down during this time- that is awesome!

Serena trying on my crown... look at that great smile to go along with it!
With Serena painting our Halloween plates
Me with Wendy coloring our pumpkins 

I did a little bit of shopping with Nikki in the middle of the week (always so much fun!) and had several rehearsals for the Nutcracker and the Glory of Christmas.  On Friday, I had an interview with Rachel Berry, the current Miss City of Orange, at Chapman University.  We filmed a webisode for the "Rachel Berry Project".  These webisodes can be seen at  http://www.therachelberryproject.com/  It is an wonderful project and she is just as sweet as can be!  It is so incredible to see what these local titleholders do and how ambitious they are!  Thanks again for having me Rachel, I had so much fun chatting with you!  Continue to check out her website as my webisode should be posted in the next few weeks :)

On the set of the "Rachel Berry Project" with the current Miss City of Orange

Today (Tuesday) I had a marathon Miss California day!  :)  It included 7 hours in the car, a visit to Children's Hospital Los Angeles, a phone interview, personal training with Mike, and dinner with Bob!  Whew!  And now I am ready for bed!

My day started with a wonderful tour of Children's Hospital Los Angeles.  CHLA is truly incredible and I was amazed at all the ways they really go above and beyond basic patient care.  The hospital has really focused its attention on providing both the patient and the family with everything they could possibly need to have a successful recovery.  Simple touches like providing a kitchen to make meals in as a family to providing books and a special reading area and facilitating animal therapy make this hospital truly unique.  It is an extraordinarily large hospital and they see over 350,000 children each year!  Janelle took us on a wonderful tour of the hospital and we visited the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, the teenage playroom, the rehabilitation center and several other areas of the hospital.  Another special feature that I loved was that there was artwork all over the hospital that was all done by patients.  

In front of their wall of donors in the lobby at CHLA
Jesse had the most contagious smile!  What a sweetheart!
With Joanne in the teen playroom
About 150 miles later...  I found myself in my workout clothes and ponytail training with Mike!  He kicked my buns and I have a sinking suspicion that getting out of bed in the morning might require some effort :)  After the gym I went to dinner with Bob and then headed back home!  

Later this week I get to start the interview process to grant my first wish!  I am so excited for this and as an official "Wish Grantor" for the Make-A-Wish Foundation, I actually get to see the wish happen from start to finish!  We interview the child and then help plan out the wish and the party as well...  I can't wait!

Thank you all so much for taking the time to read my blog!  Look out for details soon about how you can vote me in to the top 15 at Miss America!!

Quote of the week: (Compliments of Chelle!)

"Never be afraid to do something new.   Remember, amateurs built the ark; professionals built the titanic"
-  Anonymous

Countdown to Miss America: 77 days!