Fun / Other

What I’ve Been Up To

Hi Lovelies,

I’m realizing I probably should’ve told you all about this back in October when it happened, but I am Miss Omaha 2017. I will try to give you the short version. For every little detail you can check out my public Facebook page.

It all went down on October 8 and I’ve been trying to maintain balance in my life ever since. You should also know, in an effort to not make things any easier on myself I also took on the role of president of my sorority in January. Call me crazy because I am a little crazy.

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Me trying to balance everything my life. Ha.

But in all seriousness, I’m a firm believer that if you love what you’re doing you won’t feel stressed and hate your life. My schedule might seem a little insane and some people do call me busy, but I just don’t see it! I’m so happy and I feel blessed by all of these opportunities.

Life as Miss Omaha is unusual to say the least.

One day, I was standing in line at Chipotle grabbing food super quick before an appearance and I had my crown on. The worker looked at me and said, “birthday?” and I almost burst out laughing, but awkwardly explained in five seconds or less that no it isn’t my birthday… it’s my job…and I’ll take a kids meal with veggie tacos to go.

It’s true! This really is my job, and it’s the best job.

 

The highlight of my year has been spending time with kids in the Omaha area. They teach me about their fidget spinners, show me new dance moves and ask the most off-the-wall questions in the world.

“What’s your favorite dinosaur?”

“Do you like cheese? Do you like burritos with cheese?”

Seriously, life could not get better (and yes I like cheese on my burritos).

I’ve been to over 30 schools and spoken to over 2,400 students in the past eight months about my platform, “Mindful Schools: Peace Begins with Me.”

Some days I worry that what I’m doing isn’t enough or maybe it didn’t “work,” but I’ve heard so many stories from teachers, parents and students themselves about what mindfulness has done for them that my doubts have faded.

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I can’t stop doing this work. It will never get old hearing how a student feels after taking a few mindful breaths, even if their response is “that was weird.” It will never get old hearing a group of kids repeat “peace begins with me” until they really believe it.

I was so sad last week when Omaha schools were out for summer because what am I going to do with all my time!?

Then it hit me I actually have quite a bit to do with my time, like preparing for Miss Nebraska (she’s the one that goes to Miss America by the way).

This time next week, I will be in North Platte, Nebraska with 15 other women from across the state who all want the job of Miss Nebraska. It’s the week we’ve been working toward over the last few months.

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Photos by Jenn Cady, Hair by Kara Caudill, Makeup by Ashley Gaa

A lot of people have asked me what preparation looks like. For me, it’s a lot of reading, meditating, exercising, practicing my violin and eating healthy (but also enjoying ice cream and cookies sometimes because being hangry is no fun and it’s summer so #treatyoself).

No, I am not nervous. I trust that I am where I need to be and that my preparation is enough. God has a plan and I’m here living it out. What will be will be, right?

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Needless to say, the past eight months have been a whirlwind. I’m not sure being Miss Omaha 2017 is something I will ever completely adjust to. The whole thing still feels impossible to explain to people who have no idea what a pageant is. A lot of people seem to think I’m Miss Universe or something, which is cool and I will accept I suppose. Amidst all the confusion, it will never get old having a kid run into me at the grocery store and tell me I visited their school and give me a huge hug.

 

This year is nothing like I ever expected and the future is so so so uncertain, but at least I’ve learned about present-time awareness so I’m just grateful to be here, right now, doing this whole deal.

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My Miss Nebraska little sister, Emelia.

Miss Nebraska is bound to be an exciting week. I won’t be posting a lot, but I’ve been scheduling some #content so you shouldn’t have to miss me too much.

If you want info about watching the Miss Nebraska pageant online or in person the Miss Nebraska website has you covered!

For live tweets/updates during the week your best bets are the Miss Omaha/Douglas County Twitter and Facebook pages and the Miss Nebraska Facebook page!

I will possibly occasionally post to my Twitter, Instagram and public Facebook page.

To learn more about what I’ve been doing here are some links to stories about me:

KMTV, WOWT, Brandi Peterson’s Blog

To learn more about mindfulness check out Mindful Schools.

If you want support me by donating to Children’s Miracle Network you can do that here.

OH MY GOSH THAT WAS A LOT.

Until next time…

xx,

Wellesley Lauren

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