Final Weekend of Miss Teen Minnesota International 2013
She invited me to come and present her with her banner and had me say a few words on the pageant system and what it stood for, along with what my platform is. I was very excited to meet another one of the contestants. I was glad to speak to her family and friends about my platform, Auditory Processing Disorder. They all were very polite and nice while I was up there.
Ayla spoke on her platform, Alzheimer’s Awareness. She has a great story and can’t wait for her to get her story out at the pageant and the work she will do before the time comes.
I helped over 100 people learn hands only CPR at the Go Red event at the Mall of America on Saturday, February 1, 2013. I helped kids from the ages of 5-15 and elders learn as well. Everyone should learn how to do CPR, one day you could save a life just by learning it. Even when a child is young and can only give 20-30% of the compressions necessary, it's better than not having the heart beat at all.
I was talking to people about the American Heart Association to woman who have never heard of the association. I gave them tips on how to live a heart healthy life and also helped them realize that they need to change their eating habits and get more exercise. I did a casting call for the event as well. It’s very personal for me because my grandpa has had strokes in the past and as also had open heart surgery. He’s my best friend and I have helped him change his eating habits and he is now healthier than he was before! Go Red for Woman is a great association that helps many learn more.
I also had the pleasure of learning hands only CPR. They have changed CPR, you don’t give the person a breath. I loved being a part of such a successful event. When we had lunch, they did a live auction and there were well over 450 women that attended! The silent auction was such a success.
Along with talking to the girls about modeling and posing; we also go to go to a tea party with the girls. At the Tea Party, we got to sign autograph cards and take pictures with the girls! It was beyond fun and I enjoyed talking with all of the young girls to the older girls as well!
This appearance was a fun day working with a woman who has autism that is working at socializing with people. She gave us a tour of the Catholic Cathedral in St. Paul and then to a dance studio for Irish Dance training. I am Catholic, so I really enjoyed hearing some of the history of the Cathedral building. Also, the dancing was one of the most fun times with my sister queens.
On October 12, 2013, I was honored to attend Groves Academy in St. Louis Park for the viewing of a movie called “Dyslexia – The Big Picture”. The auditorium was filled with parents and their children who had dyslexia.
Dyslexia is characterized by the difficulty learning to read fluently and with accurate comprehension despite normal intelligence. Some of the signs that your child may have dyslexia are delays in speech, letter reversal and being easily distracted by background noise. Many children with dyslexia also have a co-occurrence of ADHD. Both ADHD and dyslexia occurs in 5% of all children; however, 25-40% of children diagnosed with either ADHD or dyslexia also have the other learning disorder. It is also said that 50% of children with dyslexia also have Auditory Processing Disorder (APD), which is the platform I am passionate about.
The movie was educational and funny at the same time. Many adults asked questions of the Grove’s Academy director, John Alexander, after the movie as well as the director of IDA-UMB (International Dyslexia Association, Upper Midwest Brach), Kelly O-Rourke Johns.
After the movie and questions, people asked me why I was in a crown and banner at the event. I was then able to tell them my story with APD. One mother in particular was very interested in what I had to say because she has two children with a diagnosis of dyslexia and has gotten them help with it. However she said they have only improved about 40%. She asked me how to get an APD diagnosis and what help was available. I told her she needed to contact an authorized audiologist for APD and get computerized programs for APD that can re-train the brain for hearing what the brain is supposed to hear. She was very excited and I believe went home and called the audiologist I suggested right away.
It’s a great feeling knowing this crown is not only sparkly but also is helping kids get the help they need so they can be as successful in life as possible.
October 12, 2013 - What a great day for a walk!! The air is crisp, the sun shining and so many women dressed in pink. I was honored to be asked to walk at Lake Nokomis in Minneapolis for the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Fund Raiser. I was asked to be a part of Amanda Matthes team.
Also part of that walk team was Danielle Enberg; it was great seeing her again. I have had the pleasure of getting to know her as an International pageant sister – she has run in the Miss category while I was in the Teen category. The wonderful thing about this pageant system is the sisterhood. I have gotten to know so many great people who I now call friends and know I can count on.
I also met up with my high school counselor who is also a Vikings cheerleader. The cheerleaders were there helping cheer on the walk and helping raise money to stamp out this terrible disease.
LET’S GO VIKINGS! All I see are Viking jerseys everywhere; and then all of a sudden there is this big guy, wearing a Vikings hat and signing pictures of himself. It’s Randal McDaniel. He was a Hall of Famer. And all at once, we all come together to do one thing, to feed children who are hungry. Today was a very successful day of packing food at Feed My Starving Children. And it all started with people coming together to do one thing, and that is to pack meals!
I had so much fun with my sister queens and everyone else that came out to help! It’s so amazing to think that so many people are willing to give up a day just to help others in need. Andrea Bennett-Xiong and her parents were there at a different station. Charity Bess and her Girl Scout troop as well as myself and my mom were at our own packing station. With the help of those little girls, we made 23 boxes with the 7 of us at one station. THAT’S A LOT! We fed about 99 kids for a whole year. That’s 36,288 meals, 168 boxes!
I was at the state fair parade with my Mrs. Queen Andrea. It was so hot out that day as we entered the float among many other Ambassadors. I remember sitting there in my white sun dress thinking, “Wow it has got to be at least 100 degrees out” and sure enough it was. One of the hottest days at the state fair this year! Whenever I do a parade I get this feeling of accomplishment, it’s a feeling that will never get old.
On Tuesday July 30, I attended Twins Sparkle Night at the Target field. The Twins organization helped raised money for the Gillette Children’s hospital. My mom and I were taken down below in the stadium along with all the other queens and ambassadors from around the state. As we started walking on the field, there were small boys in the stands lined up to “high five” me as well as other queens. It was a great honor to walk the Twins field and create awareness and funds for Gillette Children’s Hospital.
Gillette Children’s Hospital was created in 1897 and became the nation’s first hospital for children who have disabilities. In 1897, children and adults with disabilities were given very limited options for health care, education and employment. I am proud to be part of this organization and was also very proud to pose for a picture by a boy named Ryan in a wheelchair. He was a very happy boy and I gave him a high five and he gave me the most dazzling smile.
Miss Henderson Royalty
On June 15, 2013, I had a great time with Krista Wanous in the Tator Daze parade.
Youthcare Dinner & Live Auction
Raising Awareness for a Deaf School
Buffalo Hospice House 5k Run
Hope Chest for Breast Cancer at the Galleria
Big Lake Ambassador Candidates Fashion Show
Metro Friendship Foundation
Bowling for Soup with the Timberwolves
Hmong Women Achieving Together
2013 Miss Teen Minnesota International Pageant
Miss Teen United States Minnesota Pageant
Go Red Event at the Mall of America
Meet and Greet - International Pageant
I also got to see some older friends that I have missed.
U of MN Audiology Department
Children's Hospital in Minneapolis
International Pageant in Chicago, IL
To the left is a picture of Jenny Monson, Sarah Bazey and myself.
Below is a picture of me, my fabulous coach, Cheri Kennedy and Jenny Monson.
Send Off Party at Leisha Gust's House
YES, I'M GOING!! YEAH!!
Tater Daze Parade
Donnell Rank Fund Raiser
On April 19, 2012, I spoke at Grove's Academy (for more information check out http://www.grovesacademy.org/) to the middle school girls about healthy self esteem and having a learning disability.
Night before the Pageant in March 2012
Listed in order from left to right:
Teen Get-Together at Jenny Monson's House
Go Red Event at Mall of America on 2/4/12
International Pageant Meet & Greet in December 2011
Co Speaking Engagement for UMB-IDA
Send Off Party for Jenny
What a fabulous evening. I absolutely love Jenny!!
Night of the Pageant
Go Red at MOA
Pageant Christmas party in December
School presentations are important
Had a Fabulous time at the Pre-pageant Party with my new "sisters".
STAND OUT STUDENT AWARD in Northwestern Metro - Helping a student with APD - Channel 12 News Films
Video of Megan on Channel 12 News
Osseo Lions Day Parade - September.
9-11 Firefighters Memorial Service
Brooklyn Park City of Commerce recognized Megan as an outtanding teen in BP with a proclamation on August 4.
"Helping Children with APD" Seminar presented by the NCAPD given in Bloomington, MN in May
UMBIDA - Upper Midwest Branch - International Dyslexia Assoc. - March 2009
Miss You Can Do It Workshop - February 2009
Alex Schmitt - 2008 Miss You Can Do It and I - assisted contestants for Miss You Can Do It with walking, standing, answering questions for their contest.
Volunteering at the Pacer Center - 2009
Go Red Casting Call - American Heart Assoc. - February 2009
Volunteering with other Mrs., Miss and Miss Teen International contestants.
Woman's Expo - American Heart Assoc Booth - January 2009
Volunteering at the January 2009 Woman's Expo at the Minneapolis Convention Center. Shown are Miss Teen Benton County 2009, Mrs. Ramsey County 2009, Mrs. Lakeville 2009 and Megan - Miss Hennepin County 2009
Woman's Expo - Minnesota Inernational Pageant Booth
Myself and Megan Herickhoff, Miss Teen Minnesota 2008