Monday, January 30, 2012

"She's Beauty and She's Grace....."

So we have been in pageant mode this weekend! My sister competed in Miss Alabama USA and got 1st runner up!! (She should have won, but we will get to that!). My cousin Sara and I headed down to Montgomery to the Renaissance Hotel Friday afternoon to cheer on our girl. (I have to stop here and say that I prepared the night before by having sushi with Laura, Julie, and Kate, and watching Toddlers and Tiaras!!). That night, the preliminaries were held. Last year when she competed, we couldn't really tell much about the girls. I mean, you can tell who is pretty and who knew what they were doing, but it was hard for us to differentiate between the ones that were really doing the best. This year, we were armed with our pageant knowledge, and we could tell instantly that our girl was definitely one of the top girls in the Miss group! It was so much fun to scream and cheer and wave our signs for Mary Margaret!! We left the theater (the same theater where I was sworn into the Bar--how different can you get?) feeling like she had left it all out on the stage and that she had a great chance of winning!! I could hardly sleep that night, and when I did fall asleep, I kept dreaming about the pageant. The morning couldn't come soon enough!!

That is her behind the screen before swimsuit!

With Mom after prelims

Sara and I cheering on our girl!

The final pageant wasn't until late Saturday night so I made plans with my friend Sarah Bell Wills to meet for lunch. I haven't seen Sarah in a while since she lives in Montgomery, but she recently announced that she was expecting a baby girl so there was no way I was going to miss my chance to see her while I was in town!! She selected the Deli at Alley Station, which was right across the street from the hotel! It was wonderful to see her and I just can't believe that she is going to be a mommy in just a few short months! Congrats!!! I brought her a cute pink stuffed elephant (Sarah went to Auburn for college and Bama for law school--I thought the baby needed to understand the difference!) and some of those adorable socks that look like shoes! We had a fabulous time catching up and we liked the restaurant so much we ordered dinner to go as well!
Me and the mommy to be

Sara (McCord), Mom, and I spent the rest of the afternoon, napping and resting---we needed to be top drawer for the pageant! MMM wanted lots and lots of cheers! We did manage to make it to Mass before the pageant (I insisted that we walk, which might not have been the best idea, considering we were down town and it was dark, but we felt really safe--way to go Montgomery) and prayed for God to have his hand on MMM and that his will be done in the end. That is all you can ever really ask for, right???
That night, MMM's boyfriend Matt joined us along with Aunt Fran, Mimi, and 2 of MMM's sorority sisters, Allison and Margaret. We made a great cheering section! After opening number (Feathers, Fur, and Sequins themed), they announced the Top 15. They did the teens first and then the Miss, so we had to wait extra long and we were SO nervous!! We felt like she definitely should make it into top 15, and she did! That didn't reduce the decibel of our screams, though!!!
The top 15! She is to the right of the girl in the red dress. That is her opening number outfit!

The top 15 then got to compete in swimsuit--and if you have seen my sister in a swim suit, you know that this event is nothing to her---she looks completely amazing, so amazing that even I don't like walking down the beach with her!! I felt sure that the judges would not eliminate her based on her swimsuit performance and I was right--top 10!!!
Again, she is in the middle in the black swim suit. The winner is the 2nd girl on the left, also in black. See what I mean?? 

When they called the top 10, they would call 1 girl and then she would immediately compete in evening gown. MMM was the 2nd to be called, thank goodness! She looked fantastic in her custom made dress (actually made for Miss MS to wear in Miss USA next year, but she ended up not wearing it an offering it to Mary Margaret!). It was definitely worth all of the drives to Nashville!! After a LONG LONG wait, they finally called top 5. Our hearts were pounding...when they called her name the people in front of us jumped because our screams were so loud. So sorry about that, actually. We literally had no control!!!
The top 10 in their gowns
Top 5, sorry it is blurry!!

The top 5 got to do an on stage question and MMM selected the Judge that played football for UA! Go figure! His question was about his 13 yr old daughter wanting a smart phone and should he get it for her. She basically said that children probably need phones to call their parents but that it can be dangerous for them to have smart phones with all of the access they afford. That wasn't want she said but it is my paraphrasing of the best answer!! Seriously, people around us were telling us that she nailed it. After they called the teen winners, they began with the Miss runners up. I thought I would be sick because I knew she had done so well and could actually win!! When it got down to her and the other girl, seriously, people around us were already congratulating us, saying she was definitely the winner because she had the best answer. That made it a little hard to hear that she came in 1st runner up, but we were super proud of her!!
My beautiful sister!!

Last year she was 3rd runner up and she had worked so hard and been able to earn a higher place. Now, don't get me wrong--the winner was very beautiful and looked fab in her swimsuit and I don't begrudge her at all (and her name was Katherine--haha). I just thought based on her answer, MMM was the best!!! Otherwise, it is really hard to tell when it gets down to 5--they are all pretty and look good in a swim suit--how do you choose? She got lots of congratulations and well wishes and even was able to laugh about her being "the best loser" in the pageant. She had a ball and was definitely proud of herself!! We really appreciate all of the support she received from family, friends, and even strangers! After the pageant, she and her entourage came up to our room and we laughed and told stories and watched Toddlers and Tiaras pageant videos on YouTube til way after 1am. It was an exciting day with a great outcome and we were exhausted.
On Sunday, before we headed home, we stopped for lunch to celebrate Sara's 17th birthday!! I can't believe she is so grown up!!! I took a nap once I got home and when I woke up, it was back to life as usual!!
Are you worried about what Forrest did all by his lonesome??? Well, don't be, because he was a man about town the whole weekend! On Friday night he went to Nessa's in Collinsville with Justin, Farrah, Jonathan, Denise, Sarah Kathryn, and Mark. He said it was delicious so now I have to find a reason to go! Then on Saturday he did a 50 mile ride with the Etowah Roadies, and that evening went to a cookout at Jays. He ended the weekend on Sunday by watching a Cyclocross race in town. What a very busy guy!!
I hope you all have a fun week planned! We should be fairly low key this week, which is great! I hope the weather stays warm so we can actually take advantage of it!

Want to help my sister win a spread in B-Metro Magazine? Please go to the following facebook link.
Then click "wall" and on the wall go to the link for the Birmingham Fashion Week Calendar Shoot. Then "like" her picture (she is Miss September, sitting on monkey bars holding balloons). Then "share" the link on your wall and ask your friends to vote for her! Let's help her win!!!

Her calendar pic! I snagged this off of B-Metro's site--I did NOT take the pic nor am I taking credit!!

1 comment:

  1. First, gorgeous!! Second, it was so fun to wait on FB for the updates!!


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