It was another full week as Miss South Dakota. At the beginning of the week I went to Wolsey Wessington School to have a lunch date with an incredible 5th grader. I arrived in Wolsey and met Lydia shortly before lunch started. This lunch date was particularly special, because Lydia’s mom was my high school teacher when I went to Huron. I remember when Mrs. Cook’s daughters, Cora and Lydia, would come to her room after school. Now, her oldest daughter is 17 and Lydia is in 5th grade. Time flies. Lydia spent the lunch hour introducing me to her classmates and telling me all about her summers showing animals.
The next day I was off to Tulare to visit the 7th and 8th graders in the Hitchcock Tulare School District. We played Money $heep Jeopardy and learned about the Five Foundations of Financial Literacy. The teams were so competitive, which added to the fun. This visit was particularly exciting, because it was sponsored by Heartland State Bank. Danielle Nowell, Miss Once Upon a Festival’s Outstanding Teen, goes to Hitchcock Tulare High School. Lucky me, I ran into her during my visit. Her mom, Kasey Nowell, helped me arrange my visit and the partnership with Heartland State Bank. Thanks to Kasey and Heartland State Bank we donated a copy of Mr. Money $heep to all the kids.
After visiting the high school, I drove to Hitchcock to see the elementary school students. I talked with kindergarten through 2nd graders and 3rd through 6th graders about financial literacy and Money $heep. They told me about their own savings accounts and how they could use a budget in their own lives. I cannot thank the Hitchcock Tulare School District and Heartland State Bank enough for welcoming me into their community and school.
Later in the week I went to the Coyote games with my parents. They were the last home games of the season, as we head into the Summitt League Tournament next weekend. I have loved getting back to USD for the games this year. And of course, I particularly love spending the games with my favorite little YOTE.
On Sunday, my parents and I hit the road for Des Moines for my final photo shoot as Miss South Dakota. I was so excited to shoot with FELS photos. The day was packed with hair, makeup, and tons of camera time. I will cherish the pictures in my Miss America wardrobe. My experience at FELS was simply incredible.
This week also brought March 1 – exactly three months until I pass on this opportunity to another young woman. As the weeks pass by, I cling to the small moments that fill my heart with so much joy. The Lord has been too good to me, and I want nothing more than to share that goodness with others.