BIRTHDAY WEEK! You know the coolest thing about having a birthday on a Sunday? Getting to spend the entire week in anticipation of celebrating the joy this life has given me.
On Tuesday, I drove up to Aberdeen to have lunch with Tori. Fun fact – it was also Tori’s 18th birthday! What a way to celebrate. I talked with Tori about her interests and the upcoming Dinner Dance at Roncalli. Tori’s sister, Maleah, competes within the Miss South Dakota Organization. Maleah has the most intriguing talent, American Sign Language. I always look forward to seeing it at local competitions.
Wednesday morning I was up at the crack of dawn to visit with Shawn and Kamie at KSFY about the upcoming Miss SD Competition in Brookings. Shawn is returning to the Miss SD Competition as the host and emcee.
Saturday was the SDSU State-a-Thon for Children’s Miracle Network. I drove up to Brookings to participate in the event and say hello to some of my favorite Miracle kiddos. Baylee Dittman, Miranda O’Bryan, and Sylvie Larson joined me for the event. State-a-Thon does an event called Kiss a Goat, and guess who got to participate? ME. The goats were so adorable. I kept thinking, “Who wouldn’t want to kiss and snuggle this adorable animal?” Congratulations to State-a-Thon for raising over $179,000 for Children’s Miracle Network.
Sunday was a big day. I was turning a quarter of a century old. The big 2-5. My perspective may change as I get older, but I honestly love birthdays. It is a reminder of God’s goodness and the grace He continues to give to me daily. I spent the morning getting breakfast at my favorite place, Josiah’s, with my parents. Then we went to church at Ransom.
I spent the afternoon at the Miss Amazing program. It was my first time attending this event, and I loved it. The Miss Amazing program provides opportunities for girls and women with disabilities to build confidence and self-esteem in a supportive environment. Young women come together to push themselves into the best version of the person God made them to be. I admire the women that competed for Miss Amazing immensely. They dare to do great things. They harness their courage to step into the field. That is admirable.
Week 44 started with a memorable appearance. I’m a little embarrassed that it took almost the whole year to make it happen, but that didn’t make it any less significant. On Monday, I went to Brookings to have go to lunch with Ray Peterson, the producer of the Miss SD Competition for over 50 years. We went to a Ladies Luncheon that happens every month in his neighborhood. At the end of the lunch Ray and I talked about the Miss SD Organization and answered any questions about the upcoming competition. It is fun to see local Brookings residents intrigued and excited about the competition.
On Tuesday I visited Beresford Elementary to talk with students in Miss Cowan’s classroom. Courtney and I went to USD together and were a part of Kappa Alpha Theta together. It was a first-grade classroom. I love the younger grades. They are always captivated by the crown and rhinestones.
Later that week I drove out to Hot Springs for the Miss South Dakota Cake Auction. My mom travelled with me. Every time we go back to Hot Springs we reminisce about our memories in this treasure of a town. The Miss South Dakota is a big fundraiser for our organization. People donate all kinds of cake and desserts that are auctioned off. Miss SD Outstanding Teen, several little princesses, and I walked around the room with the beautiful cakes. Jessica and I tag teamed the final cake, which was adorned with an older Miss SD crown. That thing was heavy. Oofta. Thank you to the Miss SD Board, the volunteers, and the residents of Hot Springs that made the Cake Auction a fond memory from the year. Being in Hot Springs fills my heart with joy.