Friday, September 7, 2007

A Wedding, A Speech and Toastmaster Friends

Tomorrow morning I will be flying to Mississippi to attend my cousin's wedding. I hope to have some good pictures to post sometime after I get back. My aunt is going to be the photographer for the wedding and I hear she is wonderful.

I hope C.J. and Michael have a beautiful day for their wedding. The weather predictions are not as favorable as we'd like, but then again weathermen (or women) are not necessarily known for their accuracy. My Aunt Terry has wisely decided that a tent would be in order, so I'm sure we'll be covered.

This wedding was an excellent excuse for my grandmother and me to go shopping! Having just been sent home from the hospital days earlier, I really didn't think Grandma would be up for a big shopping excursion, but I should have known better! Six hours after we started out, Grandma's purse was a little lighter and my bunion was screaming at me!

Seriously, we had a lovely lunch and then had a wonderful time finding Grandma the "perfect" dress for the wedding. Leave it to Grandma to not only find ONE perfect dress, but TWO! Now tomorrow she will have the difficult task of deciding which lovely dress she'll wear.

The past several days have been very busy planning for this trip, shopping and working on my speech (oh! and being a mom to two busy boys and homeschooling Alex!). I gave Part II of a three-part speech that I started last week at my local Toastmasters Club, Texas Stars Toastmasters. The three 10-minute speeches will add up to the one 30-minute speech I'll be giving in Miami next month. So far my Toastmaster friends have been awesome. Their advice has been right on and their comments are boosting my confidence in what I've put together. This is making me even more excited about going to the conference!

I really believe everyone should join Toastmasters at some point in his or her life. It has been such a blessing to me to be able to practice my speaking and leadership skills. I also feel that I have made some life-long friends in the process. I think one of the things I like most is that, in my experience, Toastmasters are there -- not only to improve their own abilities -- they are there to help and encourage others. In that spirit, Texas Stars Toastmasters will have their regularly scheduled meeting next week and then a group of them will go to a local restaurant for dinner and an opportunity to help me by listening to my 30-minute speech uninterrupted. I'm even going to bring the dress I plan to wear to the conference to get their feedback.

I am so excited about the opportunity to go to another CHD conference and to meet new CHD parents. I'm thrilled with the way the organizer for this event has worked with me. She has been wonderful about explaining exactly what she wants in me as her speaker. That has made planning so much easier and fun! I will post some pictures of the event on the website when I come back.

That's all for now. I feel lucky to have something wonderful like a wedding to look forward to, a goal to achieve (writing a great speech) and friends along the way to help me get where I need to be. Thanks Texas Stars Toastmasters!


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