Wendi Russo 
 
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Mrs. January 2010

Fabulous Forties was the theme of the very first "Calendar for conquering Cancer" to raise money for non-Hodgkins Lymphoma, a rare form of Cancer for which there is currently no cure. I was chosen as Mrs. January 2011 to ring in the New Year.   Michelle Murphy Jopp is the brain child behind this charity and helped to raise thousands with the silent auction alone.  A huge success but many calendars to sell!

Please support this worthy cause associated with the Mayo clinic by purchasing a calendar today at www.calendarforconqueringcancer.com   for $20.  I am happy to sign it if you let me know.  
 
 
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With the owner of Tiara Trade website on facebook wearing a gorgeous Mac Duggal dress!

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My family and I went on an adventure to Iowa for the first time to see the American Spirit Pageant, a brand new system that requires that thier contestants raise money for HAVELIFE which funds extracurricular activities for children who's parents cannot afford it.  The belief that many children derive their self esteem and purpose from sports, art and music, is what drives the vision of HAVELIFE. 

Mario Lopez was the MC at the event so everyone was giddy with excitement to see him.  Christine Streets looked divine in a red Mac Duggal as she was busy monitoring the judging panel and making sure the pageant went off without a hitch.  Mrs. United States 2010, Rachel Juillerat was one of the judges looking as gorgeous and svelte as ever.  My daughter was obsessed with how big her crown was! 

I'm very proud of my 2 clients, Jill Provancha and Kara Wattenun who won the Miss division interview.  I look forward to going back next year!
 
 
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Today I volunteered at the Make-A-Wish foundation booth at the Mall of America.  Our intention was to raise some money to support the wishes of the children around Minnesota.  Within my first 20 minutes, I began speaking with a woman about what our organization is about and what children are waiting for donors to grant their wish.  She looked at the boards and chose a little boy to sponsor his wish....a $6,000 donation!!!  Noone at the booth could believe that someone had been that generous!   

About 15 minutes after this secret donor left, a family came up to the booth and was chatting about  the boards with the children's photos and mentioned that the one little boy that they knew still had not been adopted with his wish.  They said he was the sweetest little boy and that they really hoped that SOMEONE would make his wish come true.  I asked which boy it was...well, it turned out to be the very boy that he woman 15 minutes earlier had chosen!! Is that not THE UNIVERSE speaking???  Fate.  When the donor came back 20 minutes later to pay, we told her the story about the family and she said "It was meant to be"...yes, it was.  I've now been deemed the "good luck charm" and have been asked to come back another day to make another wish happen!
 
 
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With my client, Miss South Dakota USA 2010, Chandra Burnham

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What an exciting pageant!  I am proud of my clients Anna Roland for placing Second Runner up at the Miss MN USA pageant and Hailey Huver, for placing in Top 15 in the Teen Division.  Both girls won Most Photogenic too!  Neither one of them had done a pageant in their lives and I only had 3 weeks to work with Hailey and 2 months to work with Anna, so I had to work my coaching magic to make it happen for them!  They both looked beautiful as did all of the women there!

Congratulations to Brittany Thelemann who won Miss Minnesota USA.  She is statuesque, beautiful, and stood out on stage in her red fitted gown.  As kind as she is gorgeous, she truly shone as the winner.  Hannah Corbett has a fresh beauty that reminds me of Barbie Benton back in the day.  Anyone remember who she was?  I know they will both make Minnesota Proud at Nationals!  Great job ladies!
 
 
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Below zero temperatures greeted my daughter and I as we drove down Lake Street in Excelsior for its annual Christkindlemarket parade with Santa, sleigh and reindeer leading the way.  I was in a beautiful red vintage convertible and my daughter tucked under my fur coat to keep warm.   This is by far the most charming Christmas festival in all of Minnesota.  We took a trolley ride with Santa, pet some Llamas and Caribou, drank hot chocolate and shopped.  Natalie Hagemo, was my wonderful guide, introducing me to the Mayor of Excelsior and steering me to warmer eateries.

I only wish I didnt have to go back to work, or I could have spent the entire day there!
 
 
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With John Garden and his wife, Barbara and the co-owner of Mainstream Boutique in Stillwater, MN, Linda.

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I was honored to be asked by John Garden, owner of the River Falls Hotel in River Falls, WI to speak at the Women's Expo.  His beautiful wife Barbara owns a clothing boutique called "Mainstream" in Stillwater which carries fashionable but affordable clothing--I emceed her fashion show and helped her find models, who included Judy Justin, Yasmine Rybeck and Ava Bielke, America's Perfect Miss.

  It was the first major snowfall of the season, so turnout was light but everyone still had a wonderful time networking, shopping and luncheoning together. I spoke about Mentoring and hopefully planted seeds in the women who attended that they consider giving back through mentoring other women.    The comedians that evening were a hoot!  I sitll love the references to the women in Minnesota who are Minnesota Nice...until they're driving on the road and angry! ha!  The town of River Falls was charming and we hope to go back next year!
 
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