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MTC HAS STARTED!!!!!
After not sleeping for 24 hours, two plane rides, and a bus I finally arrived at the hotel where pageant week started. First off, I love every one of the pageant girls, I only met some my first day but I just keep meeting more and more and I just love them all.
The first night at the hotel we got to dress up in a cute cocktail dress and have our sponsors party, it was a good way to meet the girls. When we first walked in, I guess I was more shocked at the fact of how many people were in the room with me. After doing the MTNL pageant, we only had 11 girls but they were all family by the end of the weekend, with MTC I walked in to be greeted by 58 other girls. I’m sure my family will expand again by the end of this weekend but it was a little overwhelming but I was excited to jump right in!!
After we were all settled around 5:30pm we had a couple speeches from Rob, Michelle and get got to meet the INCREDIBLE reigning Miss Teenage Canada, Samantha Pierre. She is an absolute doll and made us all feel so welcomed, just as beautiful on the inside as the outside. We then got welcomed to travel around the room and visit the different tables set up. Just as soon as we grabbed our sash with our home province on it because that would now be a part of us for the week to come, we cannot go anywhere without it.
We got another little introduction from Judy, a music teacher at the Wandering Minstrel Music School in Mississauga. She had a wireless karaoke microphone where she invited all of us to come up and perform using one of the musical instruments, take a video and post it on Instagram with the #MTCSongSoloChallange. So many girls preformed throughout the night, I had no idea there was so much talent in the room with me!!! The girl with the most likes on her video would win the microphone!!
Of course, the first thing I went too was Nine West because they had shoes, and I’m definitely a shoe person. Nine West is one of our incredible sponsors that supplied us with our shoes for the pageant; they are beautiful strappy black heels that we were all drooling over. I’m so excited to wear them and bring them home!!!! We didn’t get to take them Monday night but later that week we would receive them. I was so impressed with all the small to medium businesses Miss Teenage Canada is sponsored by!! We took some amazing pictures with the shoes; one is featured to the left.
Next, I moved on to the jewelry. Up to the Time Watches had a table set up which had a bag for every delegate with a necklace inside, mine is so beautiful!! Also, a case with watches inside from their collection which we could try on and post on social media for the chance to win one!!! Mine was a beautiful gold face with a blue band, such a gorgeous watch for everyday or more formal.
The famous Toronto dentist Dr Natalie Archer is a local business woman who inspires woman in the sciences. She had a table set up that was run by Rob where he gave us toothbrushes and toothpaste, such a good idea!!! She has been one of the sponsors for many years.
Suber Adorbs was next!!!! This is an incredible company with all types of accessories for any type of occasion, they had a table full of different headbands, hair clips, purse tags, everything! But of course everything was different so we all got some unique assessor to walk away with! We also had a social media challenge which invited us to post pictures of us wearing the assesories and the delegate with the best social media coverage would get a $70 gift card to spend at Super Adorbs!!
Also, as one of our blog posts we got the chance to blog about fashion in our town and explore the different types of fashion. It was a great experience for me to get me out of my comfort zone and do something I never thought of doing before! The link to my post is posted below!!!
Lilly Liao from Street Chic Fashion magazine was there to speak to us a little about the posts. She gave us a pair of earrings and mine were a silver gorgeous pair of simple studs that I can’t wait to wear!! Her magazine is amazing it is really a capture of the teenage era of these times, it is written for the people by the people. Any advice I would give Lilly would be to try and expand her magazine a little more to the smaller town, rich history places because then the rich history can come out in the clothes to speak for the writer.
Hashtagio social media aggregator was available for us to hashtag MTC2017 to keep all of our posts together and to be collectively displayed. Pictures have been continuously posted on this hatshtag and it is great to see all the pictures of the girls and myself on our day to day adventures!!!! This has been sponsored by Standard Telecom and all week we’ve been posting on instagram, facebook, twitter, any social media we can!!!
Overall the night was so incredible, I met so many girls and took so so SO many pictures. It will forever be a night to remember. From the pictures, to performances, to cake, there wasnothing I didn’t enjoy!!!
Love Jess xoxo
HOW DOES PAGEANT WEEK START TOMORROW???
This has been the experience of a lifetime and I can not WAIT to get into Toronto tomorrow!!!!
Anyways, this is something that really needs to be talked about. In 2013 I almost lost my best friend, my role model, my light in the dark days, yes; my mom. She stared her battle with breast cancer in a hopeful mindset but there is something about the word “cancer” that can make it seem a million times worse. She is 100% the strongest woman I have ever met and I will forever idolize her, if I can grow up to be half the woman she is then I know I’m doing something right.
When I lost my dad in 2004, at the time I didn’t realize because I was so young but my life had just been changed forever. I would grow up without a dad to teach me how to ride a bike, teach me how to play baseball, or pick me up when I fell down. I would have this hole in my heart that would forever be empty, or so I thought.
My mom didn’t think so, she was the one to teach me how to ride a bike, play baseball, and when I fell she picked me up and hugged me until my tears were gone. She will forever be the reason I am the person I am today, she gave me the strength to keep going. So, after losing my dad at such a young age, when my mom got sick it became so much more real to me that I could lose her too.
After two years of Chemotherapy, mastectomy, and reconstruction she is in remission. She is as healthy as a horse now and has more energy than me most days, I’m not sure where it comes from. But never the less, she still surprises me everyday with her strength and compassion, this is where my platform was started.
Being only 13 years old, I always involved myself in anything that had to do with the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation or Breast Cancer Awareness. My mom and I use to attend Zumba, a dance/exercise class together until she got sick; a “Party In Pink” was then organized which is a fundraiser for breast cancer. My aunts and myself danced our hearts out in support for my mom, she had always done everything for us, it was our turn to do something for her.
After I was crowned MTNL 2017, it became easier to reach events regarding this platform, like the “Pink In The Rink” fundraiser. This was the Under 12 Female Provincial Hockey Tournament held in Stephenville. I got the incredible honor to attend the opening ceremonies and drop the puck to signify the opening of the tournament and represent my mom as a breast cancer survivor. The ceremony was absolutely beautiful as it was emotional but it was amazing to see the sea of pink clothes and decorations in the stands around me.
MTNL also gives me the incredible honor to attend the CIBC Run For The Cure on October 1st, 2017 in St. Johns, NL. I will be handing flowers to all breast cancer survivors as they cross the finish line- I know, I could cry just thinking about it.
Breast Cancer Awareness has always been something I’m incredibly passionate about, even before it became a “platform”. From “Party in Pink” to the “Relay for Life”, I’ve always been as involved as possible because it is something that is important to me. Without my mom catching her cancer at the time she did, my life could have turned out completely differently, catching it early is the most important part. From giving yourself self examinations to getting a mammogram regularly, it is all so incredibly important. I would not be where I am right now if my moms fight went differently, so it is beyond important the word be spread so someone else’s mom, daughter, sister, family member can have the same positive outcome as my mom did.
This is why this blog post is coming now, where I am leaving for Toronto in a couple of hours I wanted to officially say I’ve decided, based on the overwhelming support from my sponsors that the $480.00 I fund-raised from one of my 649 draws will be donated to the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation.
I will be keeping the donation until October 1st when I attend the CIBC Run for the Cure where I will present it to them in hopes that this will remind someone to be preventative and give them a chance of a positive outcome.
Thank you guys beyond words for the support I’ve received on this journey, I couldn’t have done it without you.
Love Jess xoxo
Last night my home town of Stephenville put on the Music Festival that featured local bands and a DJ. I had the incredible honor of speaking in between bands, it is truly the best thing I could have done before leaving for Miss Teenage Canada!!!
It was so great to see so much talent and to feel the love and support from everyone I talked too, I can never thank you guys enough!!!!
Love Jess xoxo
Check out Jessica live on stage at Music Fest 2017 – The Friendly Invasion! A big thank you to Trevor Stagg for having her be a part of this incredible event!
Posted by Miss Teen Newfoundland & Labrador Pageant on Sunday, August 6, 2017
Thank you to absolutely everyone who has supported me continuously throughout this journey, I wouldn’t be where I am today without you guys.
This journey has been an incredible ride, this is my way of giving a part of myself to you guys, hours of hard work and paint covered clothes is worth it to give someone this painting and Free The Children this donation.
In some ways my journey is finished but it has also just started by leaving for Toronto tomorrow morning. Pageant week here we come!!!
Love Jess xoxo
Jessica wanted to send out her sincere appreciation to all of those supporting her on her journey to Miss Teenage Canada! We are so very proud of her! Also, here is the official draw for her beautiful painting!#MTC2017 #roadtomtc #missteenageeastcoast
Posted by Miss Teen Newfoundland & Labrador Pageant on Sunday, August 6, 2017
When I first arranged this photo session with my girls, I’m not sure what they were more excited about, the fact they got to dress up in the fanciest clothes they could find, or that they were both going to have a million pictures they could post on Instagram. They are absolutely incredible, and a big thank-you goes out to the both of them for not only doing this for me, but doing it so well.
Mackenzie; 17 years old, favorite sports are volleyball and running away from her phone when I’m looking for her, face of an angel and a heart just as pure. Mackenzie, or Kenz is one of the kindest souls I’ve ever met, but her saucy personality will always keep you laughing. She’s one of my greatest friends, and I do not know where I’d be without her.
She jumped at the chance to dress up, even if it was only for a couple pictures, as we both work with a kids’ summer program and make-up is a foreign object that is not heard of while working with kids. She jumped out of her athletic wear and into a gorgeous piece by Nightway. This long romper is composed of a composition of a form fitting top and lose bottom, 95% polyester and 5% spandex blend this is the perfect jumpsuit for casual or a more fancy occasion. The wide straps make the fit comfortable, while the mesh deep v-neck gives this jumpsuit style and flare, the form fitting waist line accentuates the waist to give her an incredible shape. The flow from the hips to the ankles give this piece sophistication, the black is, well- black will always be the best color to wear. This piece was purchased from Winners for a price of $49.99, on her feet was a chunky, floral wedge from Spring.
Sarah; 18 years old, I don’t know what she enjoys more; spending money on makeup or David’s Tea, but she will make you laugh until your stomach cramps without even trying it. Sarah has been a best friend since we were younger and never will there ever be a dull moment with this sweetheart, still she is one of the kindest humans I know and I cherish our friendship to the highest.
Where she works as a life guard, also at the summer program with me and Mackenzie, she was thrilled at the chance to dress up. Sarah slipped into a stunning black summer dress, thick straps again for comfort, an elastic at the waist to accentuate her amazing waist line, a lace finish all around the bottom for style and an open back concept to bring out the true feeling of summer. This polyester and spandex blend was purchased at Garage for a retail price of $39.99. This dress was just as flattering as fun for Sarah but it was the floral kimono that truly brought out her personality. The black kimono with white and pink accented flowers gave the look a flow and pulled forward Sarah’s outgoing and incredible personality, the pictures surly speak a thousand words. The kimono was purchased from Pseudio, a 95% polyester and 5% spandex blend was made by My Beloved and purchased for a sale price of $29.99. On her feet were a strappy black velvet sandal with a small chunky heel that tied up the ankle.
“In the streets of my hometown” I wanted to take this phrase abstract and literally. First I took the girls to Port Harmon, for those of you that have not visited Stephenville, this may be the most popular place to take an evening drive, walk, cycle, even roller blade. It is a very long road along the shoreline that leads to a smaller area of cabins and a dock for larger shipping vessels. Since we came from a fishing community I thought this would be a good place to have the girls show off their fashion and also represent where we came from. We started taking pictures here around 8:30 pm because the sun was not completely set and it made for an excellent background to the pictures, the mood was perfect.
Around 9:15 pm we relocated to Bruce Boulevard Street when there was still some light left in the sky but the flash on the camera could bring out the girls to highlight their outfits rather than the surroundings. This street is where our high school is located, Stephenville High School. After just graduating high school in June, it made me realize that most people in my town spent the better part of four years in this building, whether they were a good or bad experience it will always be a place people remember. So, having the girls model in the dusk on this street was also a good representation of our small town. The simplicity of just houses, cars, and street lamps in the background really just capture the small town feel, we are not very extravagant in Stephenville but still special in our own way.
I’m sure I had just as much fun taking pictures of these girls as they did getting their pictures taken, never do I stop laughing when I’m with these two dolls. It was such a fun, different experience and I love how much this journey has influenced me to try new and exciting things.
Ever since I was little I was always told to look at the bright side of things, because the glass is always half full. Even if the world seems like it is ending, there is always something to hold onto.
The glass was half empty on Tuesday morning in 2005 for my hometown of Stephenville when tragedy struck as the rain filled rivers flooded the streets and houses of all low lying areas. 200 of the 8,000 residence’s were evacuated from their houses as a state of emergency was called. The devastation of this flood still remains in the hearts of the residence’s to this day; even I, being 5 years old, will always remember trying to cross the bridge to make it to school Tuesday morning but there being nothing but water. The following is the link to the CBC news story following this event.
The link below will direct you to photographs taken of the town during this devastating time.
In 2011, the Walk-A-Ways Parks and Trails Committee decided it was time the glass stopped being half empty and put some beauty back into our town. The flood zone, map inserted to the left, is known for such because it is where former residence’s were relocated from due to the flood of 2005. This committee has worked tirelessly to transform something full of devastation into something that can be appreciated by all of the people of Stephenville and any who come to visit.
It is now transformed into Blanche Brook Park, filled with walking trails, fossils, a garden and the river that flows alongside the park. This is a place where people can come to learn about the heritage of the 2005 tragedy and also appreciate that bad things can become beautiful with a little bit of work.
For the obvious reason, this is my favorite place to be because it is incredibly beautiful. The garden is filled with many different types of flowers that explode with color, it is breath taking to be so visually appealing but also have an aroma so sweet. It is the perfect place to go for a walk with a friend, maybe your dog, even just somewhere to sit down to enjoy the scenery. It is literally a place to stop and smell the roses.
For the not so obvious reason, this is my favorite place for what it represents. This is a place that was destroyed by a natural disaster, people’s homes were taken away from them, a place they lived, made memories, and grew every day. Things they cannot get back, some material but some more abstract. This was something that no one could control or prevent, which is why it took such a toll on the people of Stephenville.
Living in such a small town, everyone is affected or knows someone affected by such a tragedy; but it brings out the best in people. This place represents so much destruction but it is full of the most natural beauty you can find. It is a place given by members of the community for members of the community. It is a place that was associated with grief but now it is turned into something beautiful. I admire the people who made this place a reality, they had the mind set that the glass is always half full, there is always a bright side to any circumstance, it is truly inspiring. To walk through this park and think about all the hard work put into this place just to bring some joy to members of my community will forever be another reason why I love representing this community so much.
I fell in love with this place on evening walks with my mom, it was hard not too. Now it will always be place for a walk, somewhere to spend time with someone else, but mostly somewhere to think. No matter what is happening in your life, the best thing you can do is get some perspective; to take five minutes out of your day to walk through or sit in this park and realize the things in your life you have to be grateful for.
Blanche Brook Park will always be my favorite place in my community, it is a place of beauty of all sorts and it is a place everyone needs to experience!!!!!!!
Thank you to every incredible person that made this place a reality!!!!!
Love Jess xoxo
Hey guys!!! WHAT IS A BUSY SCHEDULE??? I can tell you its being Miss Teen Newfoundland and Labrador, working a part time job, playing softball and competing in Miss Teenage Canada! There is no down time because there is always something to be done. I’m currently in the jeep with my mom driving to Grand-Falls Winsor for Salmon Festive Family Day and writing this in Microsoft Word to post on my blog whenever I get Wi-Fi! Busy doesn’t even cover my schedule but it is still the best experience of my life!
I love being Miss Teen Newfoundland and Labrador, let’s just start there. I work at Kippens Rec which is a kid’s summer program during the week and getting to tell those little girls that I get to be a princess sometimes is definitely the highlight of my day to see their faces light up in disbelief. I also extremely love my job. I love kids; I love a lot of things. But yes my mom and I are driving three and a half hours to go to an event to walk around, talk to people, take some pictures and then jump back into the jeep to drive another three and a half hours home just so I can be at work for 8:30am tomorrow morning. We may be there for an hour or so but the people we will meet and the children who stare at my crown in absolute awe will make the entire trip worth it.
I finally finished grade 12, how crazy is that? I wrote four publics and another exam and I think I’m still recovering. There wasn’t much time to be lazy because the same day I finished school I was on the boat that night crossing to PEI for a trip with my most amazing friend and her family. This is the second family trip I went with them so she told me I’m basically adopted. Two days home and then another eight hour drive to St. Johns for Canada 150!!!! This was the most incredible day, I was up at 4:00am to get ready, and we were on signal hill for 5:30am for the sunrise ceremony then a little nap and back out to more events! The atmosphere from 5:30am to 4:00pm never changed, every person I could see the pride on their face for being Canadian.
So, FUNDRASING!!!! I just finished a lotto 649 fundraiser where I sold blocks for $20, the winner receives $500 and I get $480 to donate to an amazing charity! This year the charity is “Free the Children”. The fundraiser went absolutely amazing, all the blocks sold in TWO DAYS. I can never thank those of you who have continuously supported me through this journey, you guys are the reason I can do this and make me proud to represent Newfoundland and Labrador on a national stage.
New fundraiser coming up!!!! I decided that, like last year for my provincial pageant Miss Teen Newfoundland and Labrador, I would really put a piece of me into my fundraising and do a painting which I can sell tickets on and all the money raised can be donated. Last year we were fundraising for the Lupus NL association so I painted an abstract colorful lion to represent all the courage of the fighters, survivors, and families associated with this disease. This year, where I am going to a national pageant, I wanted to include my roots into this painting, so I decided to paint a Newfoundland scene. After looking for ideas, I realized some of the best views of Newfoundland were captured by a local photographer in my area named Gerard Gale. After contacting him for his permission I started on one of my favorite photographs that he has taken and went to work. It is almost done so I won’t be giving any sneak peeks yet but keep your eyes open for when tickets will be available!!! One for $2 or three for $5!!!!
Also, I will be posting an official thank you for all my sponsors but as I just received four this morning I want to genuinely thank First Choice Vision Centre, Ben’s Pharmacy, Kip Kaus, and the Co-operators Stephenville branch. Every single thing helps on this journey to Miss Teenage Canada; I could cry I’m so thankful!!!
You are all so amazing and thank you for the support and being the reason I am proud to represent Newfoundland and Labrador.
Love Jess xoxo
Hey guys, I’m so beyond excited to say this is my first step to start off my journey of Miss Teenage Canada! I know for a fact it will be a roller coaster ride so strap in and get ready because I’m not quite sure what I’m doing yet but that is okay. Right?
The journey of Miss Teen Newfoundland and Labrador has been one I will never forget, it will always be an experience that changed the way I look at the world. From pageant weekend with the most incredible ten girls, to the Ronald McDonald Tree Lighting Ceremony, to being asked to take a picture with my crown from the sweetest looking little girls and boys. I’ve done more in this past year that would even fit in this blog post, but the fancy dresses and the gala’s are not why I treasure this experience. It is the people I get to meet, you will never meet more down to earth, kind souls than those in Newfoundland and Labrador, these people make me proud to put a sash on my right shoulder to represent them. Even though the dresses and the photo shoots are pretty amazing working with Sara Rostotski, who is an absolute doll, was an incredible experience. I’m still not over this picture!
No, I haven’t always been a pageant girl but I appreciate that this title has given me the opportunity to reach out and make a difference with as many people as possible, because you never know what someone else is going through. It was the hardships I’ve experienced in my life that pushed me to find the best opportunities to help people, which has inspired me to take the career path of pediatric medicine. I realize this will be a challenging career path with hard work and financial challenges, which is why I am so fortunate to have received the Terry Fox Humanitarian Award this year.
Onto the mushy stuff, but if you want to know me you have to understand where I came from. I lost my dad in a tragic accident when I was four years old, at the time it was hard for me to understand but as I grew up there was always this little green monster of jealousy who watched my friends play basketball with their dads and I missed out on those experiences everyone else had. I never really missed those opportunities because my mom or poppy was always there to fill those gaps, they never let me fall.
Which is why when my mom was diagnosed with breast cancer my world was flipped upside down, inside out, every way it could possibly turn. She is the light of my life and the strongest woman I know to this day, I aspire to be even half the woman she is. Being so young most kids wouldn’t understand, but after losing my father, the possibility of losing her too was only too real.
Next, we underwent another life altering event when my sister battled with an opioid addiction for the past four years. Actually, battles, because this is a life long struggle that comes with a new obstacle every day. Even though at some points I found it difficult to be around the sister I love because of her behavior while she was addicted, I will never be more proud of someone than her for choosing to fight her condition, obtain sobriety and speak out about her experience. It is not easy living in the same house as your sibling while they’re experiencing addiction as it will make them do things you never even knew was possible. It is real, it is harsh, and it is something people need to understand before they make assumptions.
Why am I giving you my life story? Because you need to understand what a person goes through before you understand their ambitions. I went through most of this before I started high school, as a kid you run away and try to hide but that just makes everything worse. It took me so long to realize that figure skating, the sport I love the most, was the best way to deal with stress and anger. I realized that volunteering in my local Can-skate program was a way to give these kids the skills necessary to be a figure skater, or hockey player, and they now had the ability to cope with stress in a healthy way. It was my way to give back, to stop another to feel what I had felt. I realized my friends do care about me and they don’t want me to put on a smile just so they wouldn’t have to deal with my problems. I have been more than fortunate to experience this support from the people that love me.
So I- I was going to say “stand before you” but I’m currently sitting behind my laptop, so I sit before you to tell you that you are never alone. I am the kind of person that will listen to you talk until my ear falls off, I will give you my heart until yours isn’t broken anymore, and I will always make sure you are okay. I strive for greatness, I will not take no as an answer, and you will never tell me I can’t do something. Why? Because that is how my experiences have shaped me. I could have took the pain and ran, but the thought doesn’t even make sense to me. To run? No, you fight for yourself, for your mother and father, sister and brother, your best friend, everyone you love.
With lots of love,
Miss Teenage East Coast xoxoxo