|The doctor said it was the biggest stone he had ever seen. I like to do things right!|
I enjoyed shopping/browsing Nashville, Indiana (Brown County) on Monday with Mom and Charlie, where my tire on my wheelchair decided to go flat. Pesky cactus left over from my hunt! Fortunately, it happened after we had finished our shopping, so we hit a bike shop on the way home and had the innertube replaced.
I was scheduled to speak at the Civil Rights Symposium for the Civil Rights Task Force for the US Attorney's Office on Tuesday, but due to the government shut-down, the conference was cancelled right before I left Cody. They will be rescheduling the conference for sometime after the first of the year, so I am hoping that I can make it back to represent the disability aspect of the symposium. I was able to have lunch downtown Indy with some of the ladies on the Task Force, which was great. Plus- I got to go shopping after lunch at Circle Center Mall- bonus! We met friends at Steak 'n' Shake for dinner that night (My 2/3 trips before I left- love that place!).
Wednesday was a very special day for me. I was invited to return to my high school, Bethesda Christian School, to speak in several chapel services and enjoy an alumni luncheon. I started the morning with the upper elementary chapel, followed by the lower elementary, and finally the junior high/high school group. What a blessing! The kids were all so responsive and asked great questions after I spoke. It was encouraging to see how much everything has grown in the 10+ years since I graduated, and to know that the school continues as an opportunity for children to receive a quality Christian education. The luncheon was amazing as well, and I was able to see many of my former teachers and classmates. It was definitely one of the highlights of my trip.
|With some of the young people after the junior high/senior high chapel.|
I drove around town for a while to see what had changed since I have been gone, and caught up with some old friends. We went out to dinner that night with my step-brother and his family. I haven't eaten out so much in my entire life- but it was good!
On Thursday, Mom and I were able to meet some friends for lunch and do some more shopping (also a theme for the week). I needed a formal outfit for an event on Saturday, and we had so much fun trying on dresses! I miss shopping with my Mom!
We met two of the ladies from the CareStar Indy office for lunch on Friday. CareStar is a care management service provider based out of Ohio. They are an amazing company, and a major sponsor of the Ms. Wheelchair USA pageant. The organization generously flew me in for my visit, and it was wonderful getting to know their staff. On Saturday I drove back to Cincinnati to speak at their 25th Anniversary Gala. I was a beautiful event, and I can't say enough great things about CareStar, the people that work there, and the amazing things they do for people with disabilities.
|Not too great at taking selfies- but had fun getting dressed up!|
On Monday morning, Lowery and I headed for City Hall to meet with Stow Mayor Sara Drew and two other city officials about the SOAR park (more on this at a later date). After visiting this boundless park during the week of the pageant, I knew that I wanted to work on a similar project back home in Cody. Everyone was gracious enough to share their knowledge and experience of building the wonderful park there in Stow so that I could take the information back home to Wyoming. I am so looking forward to seeing this dream become a reality for the children and families in Cody!
After lunch we drove to Redeemer Christian School in Cuyahoga Falls so that I could speak to the kids. Another great group with awesome, honest questions! I love speaking to kids about my story, as well as how to interact with people with disabilities. We can all learn something from the honest innocence of children!
I was able to meet with some of the staff of The Dane Foundation, the non-profit that presents the Ms. Wheelchair USA pageant every year, for lunch on Tuesday before flying home that evening. Such an amazing trip, but I was also so excited to get home to Russ & Addison! I won't be traveling again until after the first of the year, so I will keep everyone posted on my plans. More updates to come!