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Sunday July 15th the girls and I were lucky enough to have four inspiring women speak to us. The women ranged in careers from gymnasts to dentists! As the mentors walked in, they each exuded poise and confidence.

Melani Chong

The first to speak was Melani Chong. Melani has led a life many girls dream of. As a model she has traveled around the world, modeling for Armani, Gucci, and MAC cosmetics. While modeling, she noticed there was a lack of skin care products free from harsh chemicals. Melani decided she wanted to do something about that. Melani went back to school and developed a skin care line that incorporated fashion, beauty, and health. At the end of Melani’s speech she offered advice to all of the girls; she reminded us to always keep learning.

The second speaker at the event was Katrina Hadden. Katrina arrived in a stunning floor

Katrina Hadden

length, aqua dress. Her presence was infectious, while she was talking I couldn’t’ take my eyes off of her, (I almost forgot to take notes!). Katrina spoke about being bullied, overcoming eating disorders, and making her own place in the modeling industry. Katrina is a size 12, too big for petit modeling but too small for plus size modeling. After taking a leap of faith and moving to Toronto, she landed a job in Toronto Fashion Week where she said she had a career high light. As she started strutting on the catwalk, the crowd applauded! Katrina’s piece of advice is to “Use what you have”. I think this piece of advice is perfect for this competition because the competition encourages the girls to “Be your own kind of beautiful”. It only makes sense that people should be themselves because nobody does it better.

Alexandra Orlando

The third speaker is former Olympian Alexandra Orlando. Alexandra competed in the 2008 Olympics for Rhythmic Gymnastics. While speaking about her journey to the Olympics, she explained to us how much she had changed between 2003 and 2008. She said she learned that its not always about winning, but about the experience, and that you are much stronger than you think you are.

The final speaker at the mentor night was Natalie Archer. Natalie Archer is a dentist, mother, and an inspiration for women’s rights. Through her dedication to her education she has successfully broken the glass ceiling. Natalie Archer focused her speech on motivating everyone to keep as many

Natalie Archer

opportunities open as possible, especially educational ones. She said “Nobody can ever take away your education”, which is a very true and empowering statement.

Although each mentor had different anecdotes, there was one commonality; whatever you do, do it to the best of your abilities! Every speaker encouraged us to be our best and take every opportunity we can! The mentor night was full of funny stories and great advice, I am very glad I was able to be apart of it!

Written by: Danielle Hawthorne Tagged with:, , , , , , ,
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My goal is to make everyone feel special, I always try to hold the door for people or smile at strangers as they pass. I would like to host a TV Show where I am able to make kids feel special.

Possible Rockstar Transformation

The TV Show would be titled “Dreams Come True”. People would write in to the show about a certain child having a rough time, they may be dealing with bullying, the loss of a family member, or any other stressor they are faced with today. After profiling the child, they would be asked what their dream is. Some kids may dream of being a rock star, and others may dream of learning how to surf. With the help of the Miss Teen Canada World sponsors, these dreams will come true.

For a child that wants to be a rock star they would be enrolled in Zack Werner’s Idol School, MAC cosmetics would transform the child’s appearance. After a weekend chock full of singing and dancing the child would put on a concert for family and friends. After the weekend the child would be profiled again, to show how the experience changed their outlook. Maybe the child will be more confident, or more open to new experiences. The goal of this show is to help children, give them the strength to carry on through rough times.

The program would air on CTV, to promote Canadian television. It’s time slot would ideally be somewhere from 5:00pm to 9:00 pm; early enough for kids to be able to watch it with their parents. Reality television has become very popular in the last ten years, and many people, including myself, prefer reality television. Sponsors such as Zack Werner’s Idol School, and MAC cosmetics would benefit because of advertising, and it would showcase the expertise of the staff. 

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While on my way to work last week I drove by an odd sight, a man portaging with a pink canoe! If I hadn’t seen him on the news the night before I might not have stopped, but learning about his story and his motivation behind his portage endeavour is incredible.

Meeting Andrew Metcalfe

Andrew Metcalfe has felt the effects of breast cancer, his Mother, Grandmother and Aunt were all diagnosed with it; unfortunately his Aunt passed away from it. Andrew knows how difficult it is to see someone you love battle such a terrible disease, but he says he can’t imagine what it actually feels like to go through it first hand. To support the fight against breast cancer he is raising money by portaging through Ontario in 40 days. It’s a 1200 km trip starting in Kingston, then going to Ottawa, Huntsville, Barrie, London and finally ending in Windsor.

It has been estimated that 40% of women and 45% of men will face some type of cancer diagnosis in their lifetime; cancer doesn’t discriminate, it can affect anyone. When I met Andrew it was a very hot day, almost a temperature record breaker. But the temperature didn’t stop him from his goal, he kept walking with the pink canoe on his shoulders. Andrew is truly an inspiration, it is clear that one person really can make a difference.

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Little Brianna

Looking good, doing good, and feeling good all go hand in hand. This summer, Aveda Institute posed a challenge to the Miss Teen bloggers, make a video that showcases you looking good, doing good, and feeling good. I enjoyed this challenge because the possibilities of activities to do where endless! At first I thought about helping an elderly person cross the street, picking up trash, and planting flowers but none of these seemed quite right. I was stumped about what to do until a friend of mine told me her little sister hadn’t learned how to ride a bike, perfect!


 On a beautiful Tuesday morning I went to my friends house to teach her little sister how to ride a bike. I only had an hour before little Brianna had to go visit her Grandma so I knew she wouldn’t be riding without help just yet. I did my best to make her comfortable with the bike, at first she wouldn’t even sit on it! By the end all she wanted to do was pedal down the sidewalk.

Helping Brianna was a lot of fun, she has a sweet personality and we’ve already made plans to ride bikes again! Maybe next time I’ll rethink the dress and high heels, they weren’t really bike riding material!

Click here to watch my Look Good, Do Good, Feel Good Video!

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MS Walk with Jamie and Tara

On June 30th I was able to do something I had never done before, go on the radio! After meeting Jamie and Tara from Chay Today at the MS Walk back in April, they invited me on their show. I was ecstatic to be on the radio because it was a great opportunity to promote my platform anti-bullying, the fundraiser, and myself. I listened to Jamie and Tara all through my high school career; they kept me updated with the weather, latest music, and school bus cancellations every morning. Needless to say my favorite mornings involved school bus cancellations!


With Jamie at the interview

I woke up bright and early for the 8am slot I was scheduled. I was a little nervous and very excited to be live on the radio, we didn’t rehearse so I didn’t know what to expect! Jamie and Tara were wonderful hosts; they joked around with me and made me feel very comfortable. I loved every minute of being on the air, including when they quizzed me with pageant related questions! Thank you Jamie and Tara for a great experience!


Click here to listen to my interview!

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June 28th, 29th, and 30th I held a cupcake decorating fundraiser for Free The Children at Holly’s Sweets and Eats in Barrie. Free The Children is the official charity associated with the Miss Teen Canada World organization; the charity’s focus is on children helping children through education. Founded in 1995 by activist Craig Kielburger, Free The Children has been awarded the Children’s Nobel Prize and the Human Rights Award. Recently, friends of mine were able to go to Kenya and help build a school through Free The Children. Friends described the experience as life changing, I too hope one day I can volunteer with Free The Children.


While planning the Decorate A Cupcake fundraiser, I found that people were very charitable. I would like to thank Grand & Toy for printing the colorful posters,  TPH The Printing House for producing the raffle tickets, Huronia Art Glass for the use of their studio for the fused glass Canada Day and cupcake themed plates I made, and Our House for donating a cupcake themed gift basket. I’d like to thank Holly’s Sweets and Eats for supplying all of the delicious cupcakes and hosting the event.


Enjoying the Cupcake

The fundraiser was a lot of fun; my favorite part was talking to the kids that came to decorate cupcakes. I was told all about their favorite school subjects, friends and pets! A high light was when one little girl whispered in my ear asking, “Are you a real princess?” One thing I learned is that there is no such thing as too much icing or candy on top of a cupcake. The Decorate A Cupcake fundraiser was a lot of fun, very messy, and a success.

At Promenade Days

Canada Day Weekend also coincides with Barrie’s “Promenade Days”. The main street in downtown Barrie is closed off for entertainment, midways, activities, and local shops to set up stands outside. Every year since I can remember I’ve gone to Promenade Days, its always a lot of fun; this year especially because I walked around with the crown and sash! My Canada Day weekend was chock full of fundraising, and making appearances and I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way.

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Beautiful Spain

¡Hola! That’s exactly what I would say if I was in Spain, my dream vacation spot! My dream vacation would consist of beautiful beaches, my closest friends, and a chance to try new things! I dream of going to Spain because its one of the most exquisite places in the world; not only home to some of the most beautiful beaches, Spain has terrific mountains and historical cities that I would love to explore.

My dream vacation would start by waking up and having a lovely breakfast with ocean view. I love the water, especially sparkling ocean water when it contrasts with pristine white beaches. After a leisurely breakfast I’d spend my day at the beach. I’ve always wanted to learn how to surf and so on my dream trip I’d learn for sure! I can almost feel the warm sunlight just thinking about it!

Surfing in Spain

Flamenco Dancer

After a day of surfing, lounging, and swimming I’d head into town. I would love to explore cities, trying out new food and talking to locals, (of course I’d have to brush up on my Spanish first!). I love trying new things, especially food. No matter how exotic the food looks I’ll try it, how do you expect to really feel like you’re in Spain if you’re only eating hotdogs and hamburgers? I’d love to end each night with dancing, even though I’m not very good! It would be incredible to learn how to flamenco, I think the way flamenco dancers move is sexy and romantic.

Each day I’d do something new, exploring mountains, visiting old castles and museums, learning about Spanish history and culture, and feeling like a real Spaniard. I’d save Barcelona for the end, although it’s not the capital of Spain I think it’s one of the most beautiful cities I’ve ever seen. The architecture, rich history, and legend of Hercules founding the city truly make Barcelona one of a kind.


My good friends Charmaine and Cabrina

The great thing about my friends and I is that we are all so similar. Although some may prefer stir-fry while others prefer sushi, a trip to Spain would suit all of us perfectly. My friends and I have never had an opportunity to travel together; being in university it is very hard to find time or money to do special things. To go on a once-in-a-lifetime trip with my closest friends would be indescribable. It would be the perfect opportunity to catch up and make new memories!

Evening Gowns at Miss Teen Ontario World 2012

I had a blast writing this blog post, letting my imagination and curiosity run free was exciting. Although a trip like this isn’t something I can see happening in the near future, (unless I win this contest!), I hope when I’m a little older I can make this trip happen. Thank you S Trip, for donating a trip to one lucky girl in the competition! Every girl in this pageant is an amazing young woman and I’m very excited to meet everyone this coming week.

S-Trip! takes student travellers on unforgettable adventures around the world. Celebrate the exciting conclusion of high school in the Dominican Republic, Mexico, Cuba, Costa Rica or Bahamas with all your friends onGrad Trip. Spend a weekend skiing or snowboarding at one of Canada’s premier mountain resorts on Ski Trip. Experience culture, sightseeing and events in Montreal or Quebec City on Busaway. Make a difference in an underdeveloped country on an impactful student Volunteer Trip. Explore the culture and history of Europe on Euro Adventure. For more information visit www.s-trip.com.

Now as they say in Spain, adios!

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The Miss All Canadian Pageant organization holds pageants throughout Canada focusing

Outfit of Choice

on girls and boys ages 0-14. I was lucky enough to help out at two pageants put on by the organization, the Easter Darling Pageant, and the Diamond Jubilee Pageant. The Easter Darling Pageant occurred on April 1stat the Kozlov Mall in Barrie. Contestants 0-4 were judged in 3 categories, their Sunday best attire, Easter Bonnet, and Outfit of Choice. There were some babies as young as 2 weeks competing in this category! My favorite category was Outfit of Choice because the costumes were outrageous! Unfortunately I could not stay for the entire day, I had an allergic reaction and had broken out in hives the day before the pageant! I had tried to cover up the hives the best I could, but the allergy medication made me very drowsy. Kind of ironic that I would break out into hives the day before helping out at a beauty pageant, hope none of the parents thought I was contagious!

0-4 Winner at Easter Darling Pageant!


High Point Winner!

The Diamond Jubilee Pageant was a two-day event held on June 23rd and 24that the Kozlov Mall. The Diamond Jubilee Pageant was similar to the Easter Darling Pageant but the outfits were a little fancier and there was also a talent option! I was impressed with the girl’s performances, some had choreographed dances and others sang. It was great to see young girls so confident and comfortable in their skin to perform in front of a crowd of strangers. At the Diamond Jubilee Pageant I was not the only Miss Teen Canada-World contestant, Lolah Gifford Miss Teen Simcoe County-World was also helping out. It was great to see Lolah again; together we handed out medals, trophies, and crowns.

Lolah and I with some crowns and trophies


I loved helping out at the pageants because the smiles on the girl’s faces were priceless. Every time they strut down the runway, danced and sang on stage, and had their names called their smiles grew more and more. Even if some had a few teeth missing the smiles were full of excitement and happiness. The pageants were a lot a fun, it was fun talking to the girls and hearing all about their pets, school projects and friends. I will be helping out at the finals coming in August, where the competition will be even more fierce!  Good luck to all contestants!

7-9 Year Old Girls

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Automotive Students

The Nissan Leaf

On a rainy Saturday afternoon I was able to visit the Georgian College Auto Show. The Auto Show showcases vehicles from different manufacturers; these manufacturers included Honda, Kia, Nissan, Porsche and many more. Many of the volunteers at the different car tents

were Georgian College automotive students. These students were able to answer all of my questions about the cars on display and even posed for some pictures with me!

One car that was particularly interesting was the Nissan Leaf. While approaching the Leaf I noticed there was a plug instead of a tailpipe. The Leaf is 100% electric and produces zero emissions. After a full charge costing roughly 3$, the car is built to go 160km. The Nissan Leaf has received numerous awards such as 2011 World Car of the Year, and it’s the most fuel-efficient vehicle in its class for 2012.

Sitting in the Ferrari

The auto show also had exotic cars on display. I was lucky enough to have the chance to sit in a Corvette and Ferrari. The auto show also had a fire truck and a Police Emergency Vehicles on display. The Georgian College Auto Show allowed people to look at new cars without any sales pressure and speak to knowledgeable people. 

For more information on the Georgian College Auto Show click here


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