Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Nothing is constant in life, except change

Hello Readers!

You may (or may not) have been wondering what I've been up to lately. If you're reading this, I'm going to assume you're interested....some life changes have been taking place, primarily in the last week and I'm still adjusting:

  1. I'm moving. No worries, it's just down the street; but, it still throws a kink in the usual routine. The last few days I've been packing a few boxes here and there to move my stuff out of my current room. With the move I've realized two things: (1) always be prepared for change and (2) I'm glad I don't have a lot of belongings that I feel attached to. When I moved up here (the day after the 2012 Miss VA pageant) I was proud that it took less than two car loads of belongings to make me feel "at home." I left a lot of odds and ends in the 757 and I don't believe I'll be going back to collect them any time soon.
  2. My position at work is being eliminated. Wait - don't freak out, let me explain! I was in a rotational program: which means that I was suppose to be on 3 different teams for 6 months a piece (for an 18 month period). However, my Company has decided to no longer support this initiative; and, as of April 1st I will be applying for a new position (within the Company). This has rocked me a little bit because I was hoping that the rotational program would give me a better sense of what I want to do with my career - and I'm still at a loss. The good thing is that I have built some very strong relationships in the past 8 months (and during my previous summer internship), so I am not worried about actually finding a new position.
  3. Miss Virginia Workshop is 17 days away! Again - it's okay, I've got Mariah to help me through this one. I picked out my talent gown. (*Leans in and whispers* and between you and me - it's one heck of a dress!) Now, it's on to paperwork - lots of paperwork, choosing my head shot, practicing my talent piece, and asking folks to sponsor me and donate money...
So you want to donate some money? LOL, but no, seriously. As Miss Hanover, I am also an advocate for the Children Miracle Network Hospitals (CMNH): the commonwealth of Virginia is home to 5 such hospitals (they are located in: Charlottesville, Lynchburg, Norfolk, Richmond, and Roanoke). The goal of CMNH is to save and improve the lives of as many children as possible. How do they do this? With the money that people like you and I donate, CMNH are able to support research and training, purchase equipment, and pay for uncompensated care for thousands of children every year. Partner with me today, and let's make a difference together. I have already raised $400 this year, and I need just $250 more to qualify for Miss Virginia. Every dollar counts. Thank you in advance for your support (your money, and your prayers)!

Xoxo (Hugs & Kisses),

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Oz The Great and Powerful

This weekend was amazing. Just what I needed. By God's beautiful planning, my sister, Tanya, and my best friend, Cassi, were both planning to come into Northern VA this weekend; so, Tanya was able to ride up with Cassi, Deven (Cassi's hubby), and James (Deven's friend). Friday, Tanya and I walked just about ALL of Tyson's Corner Mall (Tyson's I) - she says that the small corners of the mall that we did not visit this time, we will get on her next visit, along with Tyson's II (where the rich folks go). After shopping for several hours we headed to Reston Town Center and ate a French restaurant called "Mon Ami Gabi." T and I got the seafood platter - it was fabulous, and so was our waiter :) Dinner was followed by a movie: "Oz, the Great and Powerful." The movie was definitely more of a comedy than I expected, and T and I would recommend it.

There were a few, key take-aways in the movie for me. The first being that: dreams - good dreams - live beyond the original dreamer. The original king of Oz had a dream and a wish for the people of his kingdom, one that he was unable to see fulfilled during his reign. However, because of the faith he had in his dream and the people of his land, one of his daughters worked to continue his dream and to see it come to fruition.

I often like to relate a lot of life's lessons to pageantry... Many times, judges will ask you about your "legacy": what you want to leave behind when your reign as Miss So-and-So is over. I pray that many girls hope to inspire others to either carry on the torch that they currently carry, or that they inspire others to pick up their own torch and be a champion for their own cause(s). My platform regarding volunteerism and community involvement has certainly done this. I have watched numerous girls spread their wings and join civic organizations, partner with others to raise money for a good cause, or step up to lead an initiative because that realized that by being involved (in their communities, schools, churches, peer groups...or wherever!) that they can truly make a difference.

I was also challenged to examine the difference between "goodness" and "greatness." For the entire film, Oz desired to be great and admired for his magical skills. But at the end of the film, he was told that he had something better than greatness in him, it was goodness that he truly possessed. Oz was good because he chose to do the right thing; he helped others and forsook his selfish ways; he was the man that others needed him to be.

I think this can be applicable in my "office life." I can strive to be great in corporate America, but I cannot afford to neglect to be good. I was visiting my Grandma's church in Manhattan several months ago, and one of the ladies in church told me that she believed the business world was full of corrupt and lying people and that it was not the place for me, as a Christian woman, to be. My Grandma, being the lady that she is, held her tongue until she and I were alone. In that quite moment, she told me not to believe a lick of what that woman had said. That I was a gifted and talented young lady who knew right from wrong, and that I could be a strong, Christian woman in an environment that some, clearly, do not see as honest or positive. Greatness is nothing worth admiring, unless there is goodness included as well.

So, readers...
Are you dreaming a dream that others can continue to dream once you are gone? (RIP Michael Crawford)
Are you living with a desire to be good? as well as, to be great?