Friday, May 31, 2013

“FAQ’s” with Miss Teen International

Since the crowning of the 2013 State, Country, and Regional Titleholders, I have received so much feedback from you all! I am so glad that I am able to answer your questions and help you through this process. I have compiled a list of Frequently Asked Questions that I have received to hopefully answer any further questions you may have! As always, feel free to contact me via Facebook, Twitter, or E-mail if you have any more questions.
Who is the best wardrobe designer?
I don’t really think there is an adequate answer to this question. So many different designers specialize in different aspects of the fashion world. Sherri Hill’s custom evening gowns will always be a favorite of mine. However, during competition week, I wore designs by Jovani, Fernando Wong, and even a BCBG dress I got at Lord and Taylor the day before we toured the Boys and Girls Club! The important thing is that you feel beautiful, classy, and comfortable in whatever you wear!  
Do former contestants have a better chance of winning a title over a first-time contender because they have competed before?
Absolutely not! I won Miss Teen International as a first time contestant with an at-large title. Although it may be helpful to have a director or know how competition week works, all contestants are judges equally. However, I do recommend pairing up with a girl who has competed before! One of my very best friends last year had competed before, and she was a tremendous help to us all because she could prepare us for each phase of competition! 
Are autograph cards really that important?
YES!!! Any item that is on your list to bring is an absolute MUST! Not only do you look unprepared if you do not bring the requested items, but you also take the chance of disappointing one of your many fans in Chicago. I have never seen children AND adults so excited to receive my autograph. It really makes their day, so PLEASE, PLEASE do not forget these!
What was the hardest phase of competition for you?
Fitness competition! I have always been very self-conscious about my body. I can’t tell you how many times I tried on my fitness outfit before competition to convince myself that I would not look completely awkward. I don’t think that any amount of crunches, early morning work-outs, or brutal runs can prepare you to flaunt your body in front of thousands of people. Again, it’s all about how YOU feel. There were TONS of girls with way more toned bodies than I had. Focus on being the complete package, rather than stressing over one particular event. 
What will you miss most about being Miss Teen International 2012?
MY SISTERS! Sarah, Krista, and I have gotten the opportunity to grow extremely close this year, and I will miss seeing them as often as I do. They are both so beautiful—inside and out—and I know God has amazing plans for the rest of their lives!
Caroline Crowley 

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Leaving my Mark in Chiang Mai

Creating community service art projects is another way that Cultural Canvas enriches the lives of children.   On my third day, I worked with some other volunteers to create a colorful entrance for the children of Hope Home.  Each volunteer artist was allowed to decorate a band of color that would wrap around the entrance pillars.  After a bit of brainstorming the message of my section was clear, I would write ART HEALS in English and Thai and incorporate the hand print logo associated with the organization that has given me so much inspiration, Free Arts Minnesota. 






It was so much fun painting this mural. It was a sticky, hot, muggy afternoon but we didn’t mind the heat. Our rainbow mural turned out to be a colorful and delightful addition to the Hope Home entrance. 

My handprint and a piece of my heart will forever be left in Thailand!
And, my heart will forever be left with these wonderful women I got to meet during my journey. I will miss you all!

ART HEALS!

Krista Wanous
Miss International 2012 

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Feeling Beautiful

I am so excited about the upcoming Miss Teen International Pageant! The more I learn about each of you and your respective platforms, the more honored I feel to represent such beautiful and accomplished young women. I want to thank you for the work you are doing to make this world a better place.  Winning the title of Miss Teen International 2012 is one of the best things that have ever happened to me. I have grown so much as a person this year, because I have been able to meet people from all walks of life. I have learned so many valuable life lessons this year, which I will cherish forever!

One particular lesson, I actually learned right before I left the hotel for finals night at the 2012 pageant. I have always been extremely driven, and I never settle for less than my very best! I am generally not one to get nervous, but believe it or not, I completely fell apart in the hair and make-up chair on Saturday night! I began to question everything I did to prepare for the pageant. I wondered if my dress would impress the judges, if I was adequately knowledgeable about my platforms, if I had done enough crunches, and if I had practiced my walks enough.

Throughout the week, looking at all of the beautiful young women around me, I began to almost feel inferior. I was not sure if I was even good enough to walk across that huge stage! My mom took me into the hall and read me this verse, Psalm 139: 13-14 “For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.”

I quickly realized that no matter if I came home with the crown or not, I am still on this Earth for a purpose and my Savior, Jesus Christ, will always love me. I know that sometimes it is difficult, but try to remember that no Earthly crown or reward is ever as great as the love Christ has for you! Although winning the title of Miss Teen International 2013 would be a dream come true, you will always be a princess no matter what because you are the daughter of a merciful, forgiving, and loving King!

All my love,

Caroline

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

First Stop Hope House

I cannot stand the thought of any child going without food, shelter or the caring arms of a loving parent.  But that is the reality for many children both in the US and abroad.  I was more than pleased to have the chance to bring a smile or a hug to these kids. My first week in Thailand I spent working at Hope Home, an orphanage for children with severe disabilities.


Most of the children living in Hope Home, were living in poverty in remote villages from the surrounding mountain areas highlands of Thailand. They are orphaned, abandoned or neglected and have no access to an education. These young children in Thailand are at risk of being sold into prostitution or child labor. Hope Home rescues these children from this sad fate by providing them with a place that they can call home.


At Hope Home I met Joy, a 6-year old who has spent her life in a wheelchair and whose only ability to communicate is through her expressive eyes and slight movement in her tiny fists.  For little ones who are limited in their physical ability, I can assist in the experience. I placed a worktable and paper across the arms of her wheelchair.  Then I place her tiny hand on top of mine.  Using a sponge to hold the paint, I made messy globs across the paper and watched her eyes follow every movement.  By making different types of motions on the page, and paying close attention to her eyes, I soon learned that Joy liked smooth long strokes best so she could watch the colors stretch and blend across the paper.  


Just because a child has limited mobility, does not preclude them from experiencing art in many forms.   Hearing music and other sensory stimulation can be very exciting for them.  Joy really responded to a simple tambourine made from a clean to-go box filled with bells and beads, which I used to keep a beat while I entertained her with any song I could think of! Her whole body would shake with excitement when I jingled the tambourine around her chair. We also gazed up at the sky through the tambourine at the colored beads rolling from side to side.


Toward the end of our time together we washed the children’s feet in buckets of cool water and sand mixed with beads and seashells, a very relaxing feeling.  In the Thai heat, the water is a welcome respite.  Since Joy seemed to like the water on her feet, I was soon sprinkling it lightly up her legs, on her arms and across her neck, which caused a her eyes to open wide in delight as she gave another little wiggle of excitement. 


Weary, but satisfied, I ended my day standing under the water of the shower, with several geckos basking in the spray.  Too tired to care, I moved to my cot thinking how little effort it takes to bring happiness to another person. Although this foreign place doesn’t feel like home yet, I feel very fortunate to be able to spend special moments with children like Joy who without the help of volunteers and orphanages in Chiang Mai would not have a home. 


I am looking forward to the coming days with other children’s organizations and watching their eyes light up with the new discoveries within their creative capacities. 

ART HEALS!

Krista Wanous
Miss International 2012 

Monday, May 27, 2013

Memorial Day Message

Memorial Day…unfortunately, when most people hear this phrase, they think of a long weekend off of work and possibly, a much needed vacation weekend. However, while these are all great ways to celebrate Memorial Day, the most important aspect of this holiday is the remembrance of those who have sacrificed their lives for our freedom.

My grandparents have a door hanger on their pool house that I have never really noticed until recently. It reads, “The land of the free, because of the brave.” I do not think I could describe our great nation in any better words. Every single day, men and women fight for our country not knowing if they will ever return to the safety of their homes. I believe that passion like this is the driving force of our country.

So, this Memorial Day, I encourage you to take time to thank God for these brave men and women. Remember not only the fallen soldiers, but also how blessed our nation is to be the home of such brave heroes!

Caroline Crowley

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Graduation Day

My mom says that I have always been so ready to grow up. On my second day of Kindergarten, I cried because my mom made me wear a bow in my hair, but the “big girls” did not. I began planning for my future wedding when I was about seven after watching TLC’s “A Wedding Story”. I would always try out my ideas with my rather large collection of Barbie dolls. Of course, as with any student in high school, I could not wait to graduate! Well….today was the day!

I have to say that when I walked out of the Dothan Civic Center with my diploma in hand, my feelings were a lot different than what I expected. Although I know that the faculty and staff at Ashford High School have more than prepared the graduating class of 2013 for what lies ahead, I was sad to turn the page on that chapter of my life.

However, I know that God has wonderful plans in store for my life. Although I will miss seeing my friends in the halls every day, attending school-wide pep rallies, and especially just being a Senior, I know that the time has come for me to “grow up”…. something I have always wanted to do!

My best friend AND college roommate next year! Watch out, world!

I will definitely miss my principal, Mr. James Odom! I will never forget his frequent displays of school spirit…complete with AHS black and gold Converse shoes on the first day of EVERY school year!

Caroline Crowley

Friday, May 24, 2013

Across the Globe and Back Again!

I have just returned from Thailand with so many stories to tell.  In keeping the with the mission of the International Pageant system, the last three weeks I have been working my platform Internationally in the city of Chiang Mai.  My future blogs will cover many of the unique adventures that I have experienced along the way.  I apologize for being M.I.A. the last month. I was so overwhelmed with the adventure of my trip I just couldn’t sit still long enough to write!

As I have written previously, this trip was not designed to be a public relations tour full of black tie dinners and meeting local organizers.  I never wore a cocktail dress, and never put on a pair of heels. This was a down to earth, hands-in- the-paint, no make-up mission with an emphasis of teaching new creative skills to children with little to no English language skills. Cultural Canvas, an organization focused on the meeting the artistic needs of children was my partner in this adventure.   They served as my host organization and connected me with orphans and under-served children in need of mentoring and artistic diversions.

My first eight hours were spent at the lovely Ping Nakara hotel where I ate one of my last “western style” breakfasts of waffles and sausage, which I ate at poolside.  By noon, I had arrived at the home where I would be staying to work with children without families. Here I would experience a less-touristy Thailand.  Here I would learn that geckos live indoors and that ants will find any stray crumbs even if they are inside of your pants pockets – yuck!  But I also learned to love and appreciate the Thai people and their emphasis on cooperation, patience, and peace.

Thailand is a Mecca of artisans, from pottery to woodcarving that is seen in the many arts and crafts offered in the night bazaar.  However, many children lack basic art supplies such as crayons, paper, paints and brushes.  Every day, for five to six hours, I was involved in the activities I love, showing children to make art, make mistakes and feel the joy of creating something with their own hands.  I found some of the kids had great intensity when given the right environment and supplies. One thing I found interesting is how rigid the schools and education systems are. There is very little room for creativity or imagination. Most lessons are taught in a memorization method without room for outside thought, challenging or interpretation. Because of this, I was even more driven to bring a whole lot of fun and playful creativity to my time with the kids.


This was my home for my month in Thailand. The windows on the second floor lead into my bedroom. It was a beautiful view every morning and I could even see the cross form the nearby Christian church when I opened my eyes each day. I lived with 8 other girls who were form all areas of the world, Germany, Lithuania, United Kingdom and few American girls from New York and Boston. I found them all to be so interesting. Most of them were younger than I was and had been traveling for many months and still had many places to visit. It was very inspiring!

Our house had no air-conditioning and very simple amenities. We were dependent on the cool breeze of a fan or the chilly drizzle of an ice cube from the freezer on days that reached over 100 degrees with was most days! The rain was a blessing at night and would cool off our house almost immediately. Often, we would shower in our pajamas just to stay cool throughout the night.


We rode around town in these red trucks. They were cheap and very quick! However, sometimes the driver didn’t know where he was going and would drop us of on the opposite side of town. In that case, we grabbed a Tuk-Tuk, a bit more expensive but the drivers usually spoke better English. I tried hard to learn the basics of the Thai language before and during my visit, but honestly, I wasn’t good. Most times, the Thai person I was speaking too would just laugh at me and say, “Pretty round eye from America,” and proceed to touch my blonde hair. They were very sweet and usually managed to figure out what I was trying to say. I have never felt like such an odd ball in the crown though. In America, I look like very other blonde haired light skinned girl on the street, in Thailand, I stuck out like sore thumb. I was gawked at more than I was at home parading around in a giant tiara!


I was happy to not be driving on these roads. The traffic is absolutely crazy. Mopeds, cars, tuk-tuk’s, and red trucks are everywhere and riding in the most unsafe conditions. In most cases, nobody is following any kind of laws from what I can tell, and sometimes they just drive on the complete opposite side of the road. The scenery was beautiful and I was thankful to have that to focus on during our “close calls”.



This is where our Cultural Canvas offices were located. It was a modest home with a big art supply closet and open yard to invite the neighborhood kids in to do projects. Although we traveled around the city to other facilities everyday, this is where we started and ended each day. 

More blogs coming soon!

Krista Wanous
Miss International 2012 

Thursday, May 23, 2013

World Travel is Not for the Faint of Heart

Our lovely Mrs. International, Sarah Bazey, makes jet-setting look glamorous and easy, but believe me international travel is not without its trials.

Challenge #1 - I had to pack for 21 days in an unknown city.  I find packing to be a challenge, I want to have a lot of choices, but my space is limited.  I have read all the articles on picking a color scheme and then choose items that you can mix and match.  Unfortunately, my wardrobe seems to be all over the place in terms of style.  I also needed to be sensitive to cultural customs of modesty, in which one is discouraged from displaying shoulders or too much leg – shorts and tank tops were not an option while volunteering.   After several hours of trial and error, I narrowed my load to two suitcases under the weight restrictions posted on the airline website.  If you travel, don’t forget to check the weight restrictions, I once had to pay $100.00 due to an overweight suitcase, and I was only leaving for 4 days.

Challenge #2 - I’m sure you are all familiar with that awful feeling that comes after too much time on a merry-go-round.  The spinning feeling makes your stomach sort of turn inside out.  That’s what flying does for me.  I’m not afraid of being in the air, but body just does not adapt well to the motion sickness.  Through some experimentation I found that Dramamine is helpful, but makes me feel like a travel zombie, groggy and dazed.   I was faced with 3 flights in 28 hours with the longest being 14 hours.   But I was determined that I was going, so armed with motion sickness tablets, crackers, Pepto Bismol and a lot of prayer for a smooth flight, I set off on my journey.

Challenge #3 - Adapting to a changing environment.  Let me provide you with some perspective.  The day I left Minnesota, our outdoor thermometer read 17 degrees and we received 7 inches of snow.  Twenty-eight hours later, I was met by a heat wave of 85 degree as I walked out of the airplane in Thailand, and that was at 11 pm.  The next morning the temps were soaring toward 100 degrees. For the first week I literally thought I was going to die from the heat and even showered in my clothes before bed to keep my body cool while I slept.

Challenge #4 – Culture Shock. Not only was I unprepared for the level of heat, but the vegetation and surroundings were distinctly different.  Even the air had a different feeling; it was filled with the smell of incense and open markets, and sadly, open sewers. Having left the frozen tundra of Minnesota, I found the landscape to be beautiful, with very lush, blooming tropical plants and emerald mountains in the distance.   The city structures vary from ancient temples to modern art galleries.

Each of these challenges brought me face-to- face with my own ability to adapt.  Even in pageants you have to be adaptable.  Sometimes you may rehearse in a particular way, then due to a last minute crisis, you are forced to re-arrange.   Sometimes you adapt by finding a solution, sometimes you have to tough-it-out.  Rarely will you find that the challenge was not worth the work to overcome it. The more flexible you can be - the more successful you will be.

Xo,

Krista Wanous 
Miss International 2012

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Dining with Royalty in Rome, Italy!

A dear friend of mine has been living a life that most would call a fairy tale, since she came to Rome in 2003 and stole the heart of a handsome Italian Prince! At the end of my blog, you will find a link to the story of how this came to be, and I hope you will take the time to read about the beautiful journey of Prince Nicolò Boncompagni Ludovisi and Princess Rita Boncompagni Ludovisi.

Princess Rita and Prince Nicolò Boncompagni Ludovisi in Villa Aurora

Joseph and I visited Villa Aurora, located near the famous Spanish Steps in the heart of Rome, several years ago when Rita and Nicolò hosted our Harvard class to a magical dinner in their castle filled with priceless paintings and frescos. As I was planning our European tour, Rita was one of the first classmates to offer to host an event in my honor...and she went far beyond anything I could have dreamed...

In attendance was His Royal Highness, Crown Prince of Libya, Two Serene Highnesses, Princes of the Holy Roman Empire, of which there were two and then countless other Princes, Princesses, Count, Countesses, Marquess, etc., and even an Archbishop from the Vatican.

The Archbishop blessed our meal and Princess Rita delivered a most eloquent introduction, as well as, a heart felt thank you to each of the guests. As I stood and listened to her speak, I could not help but feel as though this was a moment to treasure...one of those moments in life when I describe the feeling as "oozing with blessings!" When Rita finished, I shared my profound appreciation to my gracious hosts and to those who were kind enough to share in this exquisite luncheon.

The meal was as magnificent as one would imagine, but most importantly, each conversation was so very special and we will treasure this surreal experience for a lifetime!

Please enjoy the photographs!

Don Marco Elser, Harvard Club Italy and Signor Patrick Gallagher

A lovely conversation with Princess Elisa Massimo

Don Marco Elser, the Princesses and Prince of the Alliatadi Montereale family, along with a family friend and Signora Sandra Seagram

How appropriate that a Guercino fresco known as "La Fama" adorns the ceiling with the mythical Phoenix - rising from the ashes more beautiful than before...

Rita guides us through the castle, pointing out the only known Caravaggio painted ceiling with oil on plaster known as "Jupiter, Pluto and Neptune" from 1597

Princesses Mirtilla and Allia Alliata di Montereale

Princesses Mirtilla and Allia, HRH Princess Ana Maria Al Senussi, Princess Rita and Don Anthony Dobrzensky de Dobrzenicz

Princess Rita and Don Anthony

Dr. Paolo Federici and Prince Vittorio Alliata di Montereale

Marquessa Gianna Terzi di Sant' Agata and Marisela Frederici

Signor Joseph, Princess Rita, and Prince Nicolò

Countess Aline Dobrezensky de Dobrzenicz, Princess Rita, and Signor Joseph in front of the Coat of Arms

Count Harry Dobrzensky de Dobrzenicz

Princess Dialta Alliata di Montereale lives with her family in Hawaii

Princess Elettra Giovanelli

Treasures within Villa Aurora - cherubs by Valesio

The sitting room where guests gather

Guercino's Aurora fresco 1621, for which the villa is named

Joseph as we were departing the villa...and the gate as we bid "arrivederci"


This link is a wonderful read, about a truly lovely couple:

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/16/greathomesanddestinations/16iht-rerome.html?pagewanted=all&_r=1&

Grazie! to my gracious and warm hosts, Rita and Nicolò, and to each and every one who attended this lovely luncheon held in our honor. Joseph and I are humbled beyond words and will never forget this experience or any of you!

With love and blessings,

Sarah Bazey
Mrs. International 2012

Monday, May 20, 2013

FAQ

As I have interacted with a variety of current and future contestant over the past year, I am frequently asked, “How do you make yourself standout next to so many fabulous women?”  The answer is not found in a magic face serum, hair product or brand name designer.  The answer is based in your commitment to your platform.  Your connection should be more than a casual relationship.  If you are new to volunteering don’t be afraid to ask for a challenging assignment.  The deeper your experience the richer and more sincerely you can speak about it.

If your volunteerism is based on walking to support a cause, make sure you take the time to speak to other walkers and learn their stories. Make connections and support their efforts. Create a network of supporters and encourage them to follow and support your cause!

If you are raising money for a cause, take the time to visit the headquarters and meet the directors.  Make sure you get a sense of what motivates them and how the funds are used.  Ask if you can participate on a project team or specifically how you could help, outside of a one-time event.  Be creative, perhaps you can organize your own event to support your cause. Make yourself a part of that organization in any consistent way.

The more time you spend with your organization, the more prepared you will be during the interview to express you passion.  You should have at least one quick story that explains why you selected your organization (Quick meaning, 3 sentences or less). Don’t give away all your information in one big breath. By giving the listener little bits of interesting facts about yourself throughout the interview it will keep them interested and drawn into your conversation.

And remember, it is a conversation. You should conduct yourself in a professional interview style but still show your personality, charm and wit. Don’t be afraid to use your hands to gesture and laugh at yourself if you make a mistake or get tongue tied. As I always say, be yourself! Don’t worry about being perfect, there is no such thing.

Good luck with your preparations!

Krista Wanous
Miss International 2012

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Honors Brunch 2013

I think one of the most frequently asked “pageant questions” is, “Would you rather be beautiful or intelligent?” For me, that answer has always been very simple…intelligent! My parents have instilled in me a pride in my school work from a young age. I can distinctly remember practicing my coloring every night with my mom when I was in preschool, so I would not color outside of the lines in class. Even though it may seem silly now, I know that she was teaching me to value diligence and hard work, because in the end, it always pays off!

After twelve years of balancing youth group, spending time with friends and family, dance, cheerleading, piano, school clubs, the title of Miss Teen International 2012, and my school work, I can finally say that I am done with high school! I will graduate as a member of the National Beta Club and Honors Society with an Advanced Academic Diploma and grade point average of 111.23. WHEW!!! I have to say that I am so relieved!

However, I definitely was not the only one in my school system who successfully juggled extra-curricular activities and school work. Our school system recently held a brunch for the Top 10 students at all five of the schools in Houston County. We each were presented with an award for our academic achievements and were asked to tell about our future plans. As I watched my friends step up to the microphone as today’s basketball players, cheerleading captains, and club presidents to tell about their goals, I knew that we are all destined for an amazing future!

Honors Brunch - The Top 10 Students from Ashford High School

Caroline Crowley

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Breathtakingly Beautiful Geneva, Switzerland!

Joseph and I agree, the train system in Europe is a fabulous way to travel and most importantly an amazing way to take in some pretty spectacular views! Check out a couple shots I took as our train carried us toward beautiful Geneva, Switzerland!



Since the sun had not yet set when we arrived, we decided to quickly unpack in our fantastic room at the elegant Beau Rivage Hotel, and then walk out the front entrance for a stroll along the promenade on the shores of Lake Geneva. The energy and sophistication we felt as we explored the city was something Joe and I both commented on immediately. It was the way in which people dressed, in a rather tailored and classic style, as well as, the languages being spoken all around us. French seemed prominent, however, I believe there are four different languages used frequently in this city.

The other obvious indications of sophistication and wealth are the displays of the world finest watches in windows in every direction, the presence of Mont Blanc both in the distance and as a brand, and the vast array of exotic automobiles, including; Bentley, Rolls-Royce, Maserati, Ferrari, Audi, Aston Martin, Mercedes, Land Rover, Lamborghini, Pagani, and Bugatti. Again, my husband was enjoying himself as there was a seemingly endless parade of luxury cars everywhere we looked.

Le Jet d'eau- Water Fountain shoots 500 liters of water per second to a height of 140 meters 

Standing by the Brunswick Monument built in 1879 to honor Charles II, Duke of Brunswick who bequeathed his fortune to the city for construction of a replica of the Scaliger Tombs of Verona, Italy 

After the sun set, we enjoyed dinner at a Tex-Mex Restaurant and turned in for a good night's rest. The following morning we made our way to a towering structure, which is home to the World Heart Federation for an opportunity to meet with the staff and to share with them the affiliation we enjoy between the "Go Red for Women" campaign and the International Pageant System.

World Heart Federation


We were greeted by Heidi Lake, introduced to the staff by Johanna Raiston- CEO, and made to feel welcome by all. I addressed the group by first explaining to them the foundation of the International pageant, then elaborated on the alliance we share and the mutual benefits to their organization, as well as, the women who participate in the International pageants around the world (not to mention those who benefit from the message itself). As I launched into the type and variety of events in which I have volunteered on behalf of the AHA, often along side other titleholders within our system, the group seemed collectively engaged and encouraged. Fortunately, I was able to bring a flash drive and moved through photographs of related events as I spoke. When I was finished we took photographs and several staff members stayed on for further discussion.

My official Clay Spann Go Red photo

There were many good questions 

Honoring Twin Cities Heart Walk Fundraisers 

Sharing the message with International participants 

It was an honor to meet the staff of the World Heart Federation! 

The weather was so incredible, Joe and I decided to walk back to Beau Rivage along the river L'Arve and Le Rhone. One of our favorite sights was that of the Hans Wilsdorf Bridge. The elliptical steel truss design is often referred to as the "bird's nest," and the structure is named after the founder of Rolex Watches and funded through the Rolex Foundation.

Hans Wilsdorf Bridge over the River Arve

After a lovely lunch at a sidewalk cafe, we boarded a Swissboat and toured Lake Geneva. I could write about the tour highlights for hours, but instead will simply share the photos of some of the most breathtaking scenery in the world!

Leaving the Harbor  

St. Peter's Cathedral

Little Mermaid of Lake Geneva 



Maison de Saussure-Eisenhower (1955)


Paquis Lighthouse


Beau Rivage Hotel from the boat

Returning to Harbor

Before leaving Switzerland it was an absolute must...to enjoy a Swiss Chocolate Fondue...and we did! Oh my goodness, we found a most authentic and charming spot in the heart of Geneva, with a painted ceiling and a fondue to remember!



My sincerest thank you to Johanna Raiston and her staff at the World Heart Federation for your time and for making both Joe and me feel so very welcome. And, of course, my gratitude to Becky Thoreson for making this wonderful connection.

Au Revior from Geneva,

Sarah Bazey
Mrs. International 2012