Ahhhhhh, it was so nice to have today off for "Veterns Day!" God bless our veterans and I don't remember ever getting that day off before so.......I LOVE MY NEW JOB! And speaking of veterans reminds me of a military supporter - Robin Meade! Therefore, I have an awesome new book to recommend today! It was sooooooooooo good I read the entire book in two sittings. It's called "Morning Sunshine" by Robin Meade - Anchor HLN Morning Express with Robin Meade. In my younger (and much thinner) days, I had the pleasure of being friends with Robin. Over the years life has gone on and I've lost contact with her, but I wish I could tell her how much I LOVED her book and how I had no idea she struggled as she did. I hope you read it and enjoy it as much as I did. I'm so honored to have ever known this amazing young woman! I ought to actually drop a note to her parents and ask them to let her know how inspiring (and humorous) her book was to me, and how I want to talk to those high school girls who weren't very nice to her - they had to just be plain jealous of her and her many blessings.....perhaps I'll do just that! Goooooo, Robin! Thanks for writing a wonderful book! I'm so proud of you!
I had the pleasure of meeting and becoming friends with beautiful Robin during my late college years. We roomed together when we completed for Miss Ohio. (Of course she later went on to win, but I had a great time spending the week with so many amazing and downright fun and intelligent young women.) During this time she used to joke she was going to become a broadcaster and have her own TV interview show and she'd have me on as a guest! What a hoot! I was a young teacher trying to win scholarship money for my Master's Degree - which I'm proud to state was FULLY FUNDED by my winnings in the Miss Ohio Scholarship Program, where entry fees are never charged and volunteers run the incredible organization.
Robin doesn't mention this in her book but when she writes about her husband's joking comment regarding some frozen yogurt she was eating I had to remember driving home from Cleveland with her one time, just the two of us in my little car, and I went through the drive-thru at McDonalds for our dinner. She asked, "Do you ever just get yogurt for dinner? I'm going to do that." I said, "No, it never even crossed my mind." Then she ordered TWO
cones, managed to balance them and ate them both - this little (less than 100 pound) gal. What a hoot! When she talks in the book about her previous poor eating habits I had to laugh because I remembered that. What a cutie! I love how in the book she talks about her home and her parents because it put me right back to standing in her home and spending a bit of time with her parents. They are so loving and supportive - amazing people; it was great to learn so much more about them while reading her book.
With our awesome host mom I still keep in touch with before the style show. While staying with her during my three years of competing, I knew our host family had lost a son in an accident, but it wasn't until Christi's battle with cancer that it really hit me and I wished I'd asked her more about her son. Check out Robin in her "hot pink" outfit - she was the sweetest (and prettiest) competitor by far. I remember wanting to walk and she wanted to jog sooooooooo, she jogged backwards while I walked (that's talent!).
(Photo: Miss Ohio Scholarship Program Week in Mansfield, Ohio) I remember competing together for the Miss Portsmouth pageant (I still can't believe she didn't win - she should have!) Regardless, it was a "local" pageant which, like all other local Miss Ohio pageants, qualified the winner to compete in the Miss Ohio Scholarship Program in June. We drove together for practices (I always drove because she said when she was little she wouldn't take naps so her mom would drive her around until she fell asleep and now when she's in a car she falls asleep. In the book she talks about her husband not liking her driving and I had to smile and laugh about that! Anyway, we roomed together in a hotel for that pageant and I decided that night my bangs were too long so she cut them for me. We joked that we must really be trusting friends because otherwise one would never let another competitor cut their hair the night before a pageant. Funny! That was also the night she decided she was going to straighten her curly hair to compete the next day. I remember her parents reaction when they saw her at the pageant the next night, they weren't happy. She really looked so different and now I cannot imagine her with that big beautiful curly hair. As she says in her book, "Back when my hair was bigger than my butt." Oh, I've laughed at that one over and over - so true, so true! Those were the good old days, hee hee!
As Robin shares in her book, she was suffering from voice problems. This did not stop her from being the beautiful singer at our wedding. She was amazing and I remember being so disappointed that she did not win Miss Ohio that year because she really should have. She kept saying, "It's ok, my voice just isn't healthy." I couldn't believe she was so at peace, but she was. Thankfully, she later got her voice back won Miss Ohio and did FABULOUS competing at Miss America too! She really should have won!
May God bless you, sweet Robin Meade! Thanks for an awesome book! You are a gem - a rare and precious find - now keep your clothes on and keep your job so I can keep watching you while I do my sit ups! You're inspiring!
I don't know why I don't have a picture of Robin and Tim at their wedding; I definitely remember it - without a doubt it was the BIGGEST wedding we'd ever been to and everything was absolutely perfect! I remember being on the campus of Ashland University with Robin, after she met Tim. They were getting ready to go to a costume party and I thought, "Oh, wow! A guy who will dress up in a costume to go to a party, he's a keeper!" When they got married I thought they were the most gorgeous couple I'd ever seen, totally movie star like.
Robin gave me a HUGE compliment one time when she arrived at my home and said, "Your neighbors must think I'm you - you know, big brown hair driving a little white car, they all waved at me."
When I had a teachers' meeting in Chicago in 2000, I went to visit Robin and Tim in their incredible home. I remember walking in and thinking I was in a hotel lobby only to soon realize it was their living room! In the book she talked about her home decorating and I got to see some of her amazing work while I was there. (She also showed me how to do a "crooked part" on my hair as I thought, "How does she learn this stuff? I'm changing diapers and she's doing all of this great stuff!) Reading about her struggle during this time period in the book was shocking as I had NO IDEA she was suffering so during our visit together. What a lady!
Of course, Robin - wearing jeans and HIGH, HIGH heels helped me get back to my hotel when our visit was over by holding my hand, walking my down the street, putting me in a cab and telling the driver where I need to go. Of course I was a bit scared in the city and also so amazed at her "city sense". I didn't know this little lady from "the middle of the cornfields" had such a confident demeanor when she need to have one. (Christi used to tell the nurses that was where she was from, "the middle of a cornfield". She never knew it was an expression of Robin's but that was where I first heard it and I still use it today to describe where I'm from.) I remember Robin one time telling me it was like, "Children of the Corn". I've never watched the movie because she said it was scary. I think that was the same trip we took together when she told me to put down the windows so she could listen to the crickets. When I read that she loved that sound in her book I nearly cried because it all came back to me.
So shortly after this time I lost touch with Robin. She was busy becoming famous and I was busy being a mom of a 3 and a 1 year old - both crazy things. I emailed with her a couple of times after Christi was diagnosed, but lost contact with her after that. I wish her all the best! I'm so proud of her and so glad I have great memories of spending time with her. I hope you read her book!