I asked my 92 year-old great grandmother the question, of everything you own, what is your most prized possession? I was surprised to hear her answer. She smiled and said, “The things I hold most dear I don’t own, but they are more precious than any gold or diamond ring I can leave to the beautiful women in my family. They are the memories of raising my family and watching each one grow into the characters that I am proud to proclaim possess my DNA.” (you can see my interesting use of words is bound in my DNA) That was a very profound statement.
So when Yes Video gave me the opportunity to interview 1997 Miss Universe, Brook Lee, my memories began to flood through my brain. We have given the pageant scene a whirl. I am a pageant mom as well as a cheer mom. For a couple of years Maddie Jane decided she would give the pageant world a try. She did quite well, winning a state title in her first few competitions. My gorgeous baby looked amazing in her gown, but she always excelled at anything involving an interview or speaking. Thinking back on her composure at such a young age gives me chills. She has not competed in a few years, but I will always look back fondly on being a pageant mom. As I researched Brook I found out she and my baby beauty queen had a lot in common.
I enjoyed watching her YesVideo memory reel. What made her so endearing to me was her wit, humor, and attitude. I watched home movies from her Miss Universe year and it made me like this lady. She seemed like an unassuming beauty that was not scared to give her educated opinion on any current event or media hot topic. I was looking forward to the chance to talk to her and hear more stories and get her opinion on how Miss Universe changed her life forever. I have to say she did not disappoint.
Brook is a very educated and well spoke woman, but what set her apart from most beauty queens is her attitude. She told us a funny story about how she would let anyone that expressed interest in her Miss Universe crown try it on. Her view was that she was the “every person” Miss Universe. Meaning that if she could do it, that goal could also be obtained by everyone so they had as much right to wear the towering head piece as she did. How could you not love someone with that attitude.
She went on to tell us it took her three tries to win her Miss Hawaii title, and it was not her desire to compete in the Miss America pageant that drover her, but the need for scholarship money to finance her higher education. She told us even though she lost her first time around, she still received a $17,000 scholarship. So with her second competition she was doing something she enjoyed with the benefit of receiving more funds for college. She told us upon entering for the third time she had no expectations of winning, she had learned how to lose and amazingly it had developed her character and her confidence. This time would be her time, and she would win her state’s title. She said at that point she had accomplished a huge goal and everything else would just be icing on the cake.
Man, that would turn out to be amazing icing, a win at the Miss America Pageant and a trip to the Miss Universe extravaganza. Brook is a dark-eyed-multi-cultural-glamour girl who definitely fit into the ranks with the international beauties. She told us it was amazing meeting and hearing the stories from the other contestants. Brook formed many relationships with her fellow beauty queens and could now find a friend in 89 countries thanks to the pageant. It made me respect her so much when she said that her friendships and experiences with the other contestants were her “prized possessions” from the Miss Universe experience. Relationships and memories, I have heard that before.
Okay, I got it. Two very wise women have expressed the importance of memories. In this day and age we are blessed to have mass amounts of technology to document our experiences. As a mom of three, the amount of photos and video I have taken of my children is astounding. There is one problem with our earliest memories, they are on VHS. I do not own a VCR, so they sit on the shelf, a box full of untouched memories. That will all be changing after I do as Brook has done. I will be sending my boxes of treasured past to YesVideo where they will process it to their site and also send me a CD copy as well. You can check out Brook’s pageant memories and also take advantage of a great offer, one video transfer for free. There is also a great app to create pics from frame shots within your videos.
Well, I hope everyone is out there making the most wonderful memories. After all, they are treasures that cannot be bought or sold, only held in our hearts.