Monthly Archives: December 2010

Very special gifts

I’d like to tell you about four very special women in my life. Women who started out as Mrs. Oklahoma but ended up being very special friends to me.

In our first year, we crowned Brookie. She was young, between the boys in age, but she was oh so strong and oh so amazing. Our first year with the pageant was lean. We were just being restored from losing all of our material possessions prior to our move to Oklahoma. The pageant is not a money maker but we are very grateful if it pays for itself. That first year, it almost did. But we didn’t have money for extras.

As we drove to Chicago, in a rented Durango, it was very, very dark on the road. Every time I tried to put the bright lights on, I’d accidentally turn on the windshield wipers. We were laughing so hard. While we were talking about hopes and dreams for the pageant’s future, I told Brookie that I was sad that she wouldn’t get any of that she said, “But we’ll always have this.” And we laughed some more.

Rachel, oh Rachel. I could not have gotten through 2009 without her friendship, help and prayers. A beautiful and quietly determined young woman, Rachel was my rock while my mom was sick. She kept things going, talking to potential contestants, helping me out, while I was in Illinois.

We have a lot of fun. Rachel is my go to gal and I love that I can bounce ideas off of her. She loves the International system and I’m so grateful for her continued involvement in the pageant and in my life.

In the middle of June, Heidi was thrown into my life, and my car, as Mrs. Oklahoma. With a scant three weeks to get her ready to compete at the Mrs. International pageant, it seemed like we were joined at the hip. After we got back from Nationals and didn’t see each other every day, it seemed weird, like something was missing.

Through our mad dash to Chicago, we became friends. Heidi is smart and savvy and she never lost her composure even though there was so much to do an such a short time to do it in. Heidi loves what the International system stands for – marriage, family and community service – and works hard to make sure other people see these qualities in her.

Although I was never her director, Shelly is most definitely my friend. When I took directorship of the pageant, I didn’t have a reigning titleholder. As Mrs. Oklahoma International 2004, Shelly was the one  who had most recently held the title. I knew her from another pageant and I asked her if she would serve as my reigning queen. She has been “in” since practically the first minute I started directing.  I call Shelly my field general and I wouldn’t want to do the pageant without her.

These four  special women are very special gifts in my life.  At this Christmas time, when I’m thinking of my blessings, I count them right at the top of my list. My wish for you is that you have people in your life that are as special to you as these ladies are to me.


Lauri 🙂

Peace, love and joy

The other day on twitter, my friend Prabhu Balan asked, “What is your expectation from life?”

I love twitter. I have fun on twitter talking about all manner of things but that question struck me, initially, as a heavy ask. And he wanted me to answer it in 140 characters.

On second thought, though, I realized that it wasn’t that hard at all. What I want out of life is peace, love and joy.

Really. It’s that simple.

So what do you want out of life?

While you’re thinking about it, I want to wish YOU peace, love and joy this holiday season and always.

Lauri 😀

No one ever listens to me

We’ve been taking apple cider vinegar every day for several years.  I have read a lot of information about it and I know it does its part in keeping us healthy.

The last time I was sick was in 2008 and it had been 17 years since I had been sick before that. When I got sick in 2008, I started taking more apple cider vinegar and it immediately made my throat feel better. I think I was sick for a shorter time because of taking it.

So how do you take it? Well, now we put two tablespoons a day into our protein drink. You can’t taste it but it does add a nice tang. Our morning protein drink is the vehicle we use put all of the good things we want to ingest but don’t want to take in pill form (i.e. MSM, glutamine, Vitamin C, flax oil and our Juice Plus capsules).

If I were to start feeling sick, I would immediately put two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar into a glass of water and chug it. It’s only gross for as long as it takes to go acccck acccck. Then it’s over.

To continue helping myself get well, I’d make a hot apple cider vinegar drink. For this, you’d take two cinnamon sticks and four whole cloves, pour boiling water over them and let them sit for a while. Then, when you want to make the drink, pour two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar into a cup with a little of this spice mixture, add stevia and hot water and Voila! Healthy, healing hot apple cider drink.

We buy Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar by the gallon. It contains “the mother” of vinegar which occurs naturally as strand-like enzymes of connected protein molecules. This apple cider vinegar is unfiltered, unheated, and unpasteurized.

So this is my advice to you. I give it to everyone who is sick and no one ever listens. Probably because I’m not a doctor and I don’t play one on TV.

But, I am healthy and I’ll take my apple cider vinegar to stay that way. 🙂