It is crazy to think that in one moment your life can be changed forever. This just reassures that miracles do happen and I can not believe my journey is almost over! When I heard my name called as the 2013 National American Miss Teen Iowa, I was in udder shock. I couldn't believe all of my hard work had paid off.
I started my year off by donating school supplies and books to my old local elementary school where I talked to the students about character counts and achieving their dreams. During the Fourth of July weekend, I was honored to ride in two different parades. I was honored to help crown the 2013 Miss Monroe County Fair Queen and judge their prince and princess pageant. In August, I walked with my sister queens with the Susan G. Komen foundation in the Iowa State Fair parade to promote their Race for a Cure. Later that month, I got to spend time talking to Sheree's Flip Flop tumblers about proper diet and exercise. In September I rode in a local festival parade called Pancake Day. In October, I helped out at the local YMCA at their five year anniversary block party. Also, I attended the World Food Prize and got to package meals to send to third-world countries. With these many appearances, I did a lot of volunteering through the non-profit organization I began called Healthy Education and Living Awareness or HEALA. During the Fall, I also wrote and published my very own children's book called Petunia's Winning Plan to educate children about the importance of diet and exercise in today's world.
During the year I also went to two state pageants where I got to see two of my best friends be crowned. At nationals, I was able to make many life-long friends. National's week ended nicely since I made it into the top ten, my baby sister was crowned a national queen, and I saw one of my very best friends crowned the National American Miss Teen. I left Nationals with many amazing memories.This year would not have been possible without my family. I want to thank my three older brothers James, Ben, and J.T. for all of their love and support. I want to thank my dad for always being there for me on and off of the stage. Also, I would like to thank my mom. I would not have made it through this year with out her because she is my rock. I want to thank all of the rest of my friends and family that traveled out to California to watch and to support me. I can not tell you how much it means to me.
Finally, I want to thank Breanne, Ryan, Lani, Kenn, and the entire NAM staff for all of your help throughout the year.
To my sister queens Shae, Lemuel, Shayla, Hannah, and Alyssa, this year has been a blast! I definitely would not have had this much fun without you. I will treasure all of the precious memories we made.
To my successor: you are in for an adventure! You will have an extraordinary family and team behind you. Hold on because you are in for the ride of your life! Even the craziest of dreams can come true. Much Love!Your 2013 National American Miss Teen IowaMaddison Lange