For lack of a better title, I decided to just cut right to the chase.
My 10yo daughter won a pretty big art contest in her little world.
About a month ago she came home with a note from her school that they were holding the Lake Myrtle Elementary School yearbook cover contest.
The kids were encouraged to draw a photo with the theme "Life Around the Lake." Haley's school mascot is a turtle. The winner of the contest would have their artwork printed on the COVER of EVERY 2014-2015 LMES yearbook.
Haley LOVES to draw and doodle, and really wanted to enter this contest.
A few weeks went by and I noticed Haley wasn't working on anything. On a Wednesday night in early November I suddenly said to her, "Haley what about that yearbook drawing? I think you might have missed the deadline."
She looked at me in a panic and said, "oh no, mama I hope not!!"
She found the paper and the artwork was due on FRIDAY! That left her with about 36 hours to come up with an idea, design it, and color it all in.
We brainstormed, looked at past years winners, and came up with an idea.
This is what she came up with:
There was certain criteria that had to be met. The design needed to vertical, it needed to take up most of the page, follow the theme "Life Around the Lake," have the words Lake Myrtle Elementary School on it, as well as her name, and that was IT!
She took the school mascot "TURTLE" made it into an acronym and then drew the cutest little turtle with a speech bubble saying the words "Lake Myrtle Elementary School 2014-2015" and then added all the other animals that make up the school. Each grade level is given an animal that represents them: owl, alligator, butterfly, frog, dragonfly, fox.
She drew this all freehand on a special paper that the art teacher provided. A very thick, very smooth paper.
She turned it in on Friday and we waited for the news.
I asked her nearly every single day if she had heard anything. The answer was always NO.
But yesterday, yesterday was different.
I have lunch with the #TampaTrio every Friday, so this week I showed up just as Haley was walking to recess. She saw me, and this HUGE smile just spread over her face and she started saying "mama mama mama, I WON." I knew immediately what she was talking about and she ran over to hug me. We walked over to where her classmates were waiting and her teacher looked at me and smiled and said "Haley won, and we are all so proud of her. Her design is just perfect, and we all love it."
We walked into the cafeteria and people started clapping and saying "that's Haley Hodges, that's the girl that won the yearbook contest."
And one of the school secretaries came up to me and said "I have a photo I want to text you. I was there when it was announced that Haley won and I got a photo of her the second it was announced."
She's crying tears of joy.
She had been chosen to read the school announcements this quarter so she was already in the office when the principal, Mr. Petry came in to read the list of runner ups and the winner. The 9 runner-ups get their artwork featured in a thumbnail on the back cover while the winners work graces the entire front page.
Haley listened as the runner-ups were announced. She didn't hear her name and she thought for sure that meant that she was out of the running. She honestly didn't think that she would win.
And then Mr. Petry said "and the winner of the 2014-2015 LMES Yearbook Cover Contest is Haley Hodges." As soon as Haley heard the word Haley, she SCREAMED! The mic was on so everyone in the school heard her excitement and then the tears started flowing.
I am SO proud of her.
Here she is with her assistant principal, Ms. Sarah Border.
That's my Haley.