Month: December 2012

My Christmas Day…

Merry Christmas, everyone! I hope your Christmas day was as enjoyable and rewarding as mine. My day began at 5:30 in the morning, tip-toeing around the house as I put on layers of thick hunting gear, preparing for the bitterness of 4 degree weather. Mom is already up, dancing around in the kitchen and working her magic with food. Dad comes into the living room with just as many layers on as myself. It seems like the perfect Christmas morning.

 

Dad and I getting ready for the hunt!

                      Dad and I getting ready for the hunt!

With as many hours I spent in the woods yesterday, it gave me some time to think. My family had gone to the midnight church service for Christmas mass and the words from the Lord’s prayer resounded through my mind; “Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.” As I was sitting in the midst of God’s creation, the peacefulness of the woods, this is all I could think about.

Every Sunday I say these words but not until this moment did I think about the depth of them. How can we ask for forgiveness if we ourselves cannot forgive those who have wronged us? Every night I ask God to make me more Christ-like, to make me a better Christian, and to forgive me for my transgressions. And yet, I can’t forgive someone who has hurt me? How hypocritical is that?

I'm a ninja! A very cold ninja...

                           I’m a ninja! A very cold ninja…

As the hours in the woods passed (and as the numbness in my toes grew increasing worse), I dwelt on that thought. I had held onto the pain and hurt that someone had caused me for nearly a year now. This led me to think about the meaning of Christmas. Christ was born so that he could die for the forgiveness of our sins.

And so, in the spirit of Christmas, I let go of my hurt—and I forgave. It was like a heavy weight had been lifted off of my shoulders. I could breathe again. Now, make no mistake. Forgiving is not forgetting. Forgiving makes you strong, forgetting makes you weak. Ignorance is not bliss, people.

In this Christmas season, take the time to forgive people who have hurt you. And, ask for forgiveness from those you have hurt. You would be surprised by how weightless you feel afterward.

It was as though God recognized the strength it took for me to forgive this person, because just moments later I was blessed to have 3 bucks walk out in front of me! They were all small, maybe a year old, so I didn’t shoot. It was such a gift to see these beautiful creatures in front of me. This is the one place where the world seems perfect. In today’s world, where shootings are occurring on a weekly basis, it’s nice to escape to the woods where none of that exists.

Thank God for everything you have been fortunate enough to have. Friends, family, everything. I wish you all a Merry Christmas season! Stay safe and keep checking back for new posts!

-Your Miss Outdoor Girl…

And the Winner is ………

It was Dec 8th, and a day I will never forget! That was the day that I became Miss Leavenworth County for the American system. I know most of you reading this blog don’t know me, so you might think that I was born to compete, or have been dreaming of being Miss America all of my life. Well, let me correct your thought process and really allow you to get to know me.Theresa Vail

When I was younger, I was the girl that just never really fit in with the so-called “pretty girls” or the “popular” kids. I wasn’t a nerd, but just didn’tfeel the need to work hard to fit in. Because I was a little bit different, I turned to mother nature and she provided  me with what is now my passion…..the great outdoors. I am the happiest when I am in a deer stand or drawing back that bow to mark the most perfect buck I have ever seen. Now, your thinking to yourself, there is no way this chic is an outdoor girl but I assure you, it is my passion and my heart and that is why I created Miss Outdoor Girl.

It's a button buck, but hey, it's my first deer to get during bow season!

It’s a button buck, but hey, it’s my first deer to get during bow season!

I normally wouldn’t think of myself as a beauty contestant, well, actually, I still don’t, but what I have learned about myself is that I truly believe in my platform and because of that I feel this pageant system will enable me to impact so many lives through my outdoor program for young women. I can’t tell you how surreal it was to hear my name called as the winner. You ever have that moment when you need someone to pinch yourself? That was me in that moment. I was one step closer to my dream of representing Kansas in the Miss America Pageant. Changing lives through empowering young women to embrace their own personal passion for outdoor activities. That is why I did this and  I am so thankful for all the support I have been given to help me on this journey to achieve my own personal dream.

I will share my journey with you through updates of events and appearances and some of the pageant prep as I get ready to compete in June. I will also be posting pics of some of the amazing people and young ladies I get to meet along the way. I hope you will take the time to check back in and follow me as I take on what I know is sure to be the biggest year for me yet! Thanks so much for all of your support and have a Very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!…