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As I’m sure you all know, my platform is mental health. Although it is a very common platform this year in the Miss Teenage Canada Pageant it is also a very important cause that needs a light shawn on it in terms of ending the negative stigma associated with mental illnesses. Some of my friends in high school were diagnosed with depression and had a really hard time dealing with their illness and other peers in school. They didn’t want anyone to know about their mental illness and as a result, no one understood why they were acting different at certain times. Some say depression is an excuse to avoid dealing with responsibility in life, but they think this only because they are uneducated on the illness and don’t understand. Creating awareness about what it is like to have depression, giving people something to relate to, and spreading the word that there is absolutely nothing to be ashamed of is the first step towards changing the negative stigma.

As a musician, I express myself and my beliefs through my music and song writing. I wrote a song and created a music video called Breathe Easy to support those with mental illness. The lyrics in the song describe how a person with depression feels and how it is so important to support our friends when they are going through hard times. Creating awareness is the first step towards finding support.

I believe that people respond to music. Music is a way to storytelling that holds people’s attention and if you get the right lyrics and melody people will feel a connection to your message. I once performed Breathe Easy for a competition in Nashville and the judges started to cry. They heard the message loud and clear and they could relate to person in the song. One out of five people will suffer from mental illness sometime in their life.

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I had the very fortunate experience of meeting a very kind veteran named Major Nick Nicolas who at the age of 70 was doing a 13 day walk through the Rideau Trail from Kingston to Ottawa to raise money to train service dogs for Veterans with PTSD. I was so inspired by Major Nick that I wrote a song to help create awareness about PTSD, called Carry You. Major Nicolas invited me to sing the song at his kick off in Kingston and then on Canada Day as he arrived at the Aviation Center in Ottawa. I was so honored to do so. In a blog that Major Nicolas was writing he referred to me as a humanitarian and he could not have given me a greater compliment.

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If I was chosen as Miss Teenage Canada I would continue doing humanitarian work using my music to tell the stories that need to be heard. I would use my music to help the less fortunate and use my music to teach the more difficult messages that need to be taught.

Thanks for reading <3

Amanda Jordan

 

 

 

 

 

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As I grew up over the years, every time I met my Great Uncle John Gendron, who was a war Veteran, he always ended our conversation with ‘We live in the best country in the world’. This brave soldier had a very unique story to tell, and he was always eager to tell it. He was a bomber in WWII and flew many flights over Germany in the Halifax 11. His crew was the only Canadian crew known to have been shot down, where all crew members survigendronjohn_001ved the crash. They were all taken prisoner of war, and lived to be released at the end of the war. So when my Great uncle said ‘We live in the best country in the world’ I think his experiences during the war gave him the right to make that disclaimer,  and I agree with him completely. He and all the other soldiers from WWI and WWII risked their lives so that we could continue to live in the best country in the world.

Our beautiful nation was definitely worth fighting for. From the colourful maritime fishing villages through the great Canadian shield, the golden plaines of the prairies, to the breath taking mountains of the Rocky’s, Canada is rich in natural resources. During the 1920’s and 30’s, Emily Carr and the famous Group of Seven painters recorded the beauty of our nation with their paint brushes and bold colours.

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Because of those brave soldiers our Country was allowed to continue to develop all the while protecting the rights and freedoms of its’ people. With the development of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms our forefathers recognize the importance of protecting our freedom of speech, religion, peaceful assembly and association. Canada was a leader in the acceptance of gay and lesbian marriages by making it legal 9 years ago while other countries are still debating the subject. As well, Canada is a leader in terms of human rights and equalities by not allowing discrimination based on age, sex, race, or disability. All these things make me extremely proud to be Canadian and very grateful for the wisdom of our forefathers.

Canada has made incredible contributions to the world. One of the most important contributions was standard time, which was invented by Sir Sanford Fleming. The second major invention is the invention of insulin by Frederick Banting. This invention has saved the lives of many diabetics, including my dad who has type 1 diabetes. Another huge invention was basketball created by Naismith in 1891 who lived only half an hour away from my house in Almonte.

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When I think about why my Great Uncle finished every conversation with a statement ‘We live in the best country in the world’ I realize that he wanted to make sure that we appreciated this great Country. It was his gently reminder that many lives were lost so that we could enjoy this beautiful land and our freedoms. With this freedom and safety, our people are allowed to create, solve problems and contribute great accomplishments to the world. I am very proud to be Canadian and so grateful to live in this land, the true north, strong and free.

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thanks for reading,

Love, Amanda

Miss Teenage Southeastern Ontario

 

 

 

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Making a Difference by Meeting Miss Teen Canada’s Challenges

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Well, finals are just around the corner, only three and half weeks to go! Everyone’s getting excited, planning their fundraiser events, stressing about gowns and booking their plane tickets! First off, I’d like to say that I am truly looking forward to meeting all of you in the near future. We all have something in common and I think it’s very special- we’re trying to make a positive difference in our society. Whether it’s through sharing on social media, giving speeches at schools, raising funds for a good cause or being kind to others as a role model- we are all trying to make a difference. So congratulations. Everyone should be so proud of their hard work. I say it’s time to step back and acknowledge how far we’ve come. As well I think we should acknowledge the Miss Teenage Canada Pageant, as without it we would not be having the great experiences we are having now. They challenged us to make a difference and we responded and reached for the goal.

 

If you’re wondering what I’ve been up to, my days have been fairly eventful and busy just like the rest of yours. I’ve been planning my Charity Youth Talent Concert for Free The Children, Open Doors Mental Health for Youth and Neil Doef, a local hockey player who suffered a spinal injury. I really see the benefits of Open Doors in my community as they provide counselling for the youth on a moment’s notice. They have saved the lives of many students by providing support and I just thought it was time that someone recognize how valuable this service is. Neil, a local teen hockey player who had a university scholarship to play hockey before his accident this winter is making remarkable progress and I admire his courage and his strength is an inspiration. Last night I had a 12 minute radio interview about the Charity Youth Talent Concert of Lake 88.1 radio station in Perth Ontario and I sang my new song “Carry You” live on air. Thanks so Brian Perkins and the Lake 88.1 for donating so much air time to my event.

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I was absolutely thrilled to be invited to perform at the Pan Am Games Torch Relay in my home town, Smiths Falls. Athlete Neil Doef, was one of the Pan Am Torch Relay flame bearers and everyone welcomed him as the flame arrived. Games were set up for children and one of the first acts was teaching the audience Zumba so everyone was dancing, and grooving right from the start. It was a fun time and we all wish all the athletes the best of luck at the Pan Am games in Toronto.

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I am so proud of Major Nick Nicolas, the 70 year old veteran who I had the great fortune of meeting by accident only a few weeks ago. He wanted to do something special for his 70th birthday so instead of getting an ice cream cake he decided to walk 350 kilometers, an 11 day walk through the Rideau Trail from Kingston to the Aviation Museum in Ottawa. He wanted to raise $15,000.00 to train service dogs to help soldiers with PTSD. He completed the walk faster than anyone had ever done and we celebrated July 1 at the Aviation Museum in Ottawa. He invited me to sing “Carry You”, a song I had written when I heard about his amazing expedition. I performed it with my friend Matt and its written to support and create awareness of soldiers suffering from PTSD.

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All of these experiences I have had over the last few months have come about because of the humanitarian challenges set out for us by Miss Teenage Canada. So in response to Kacey Musgrave’s new album entitled Pageant Material, which I am in LOVE with, by the way, we say Yes, We are pageant material, and yes we are proud of it, because we are making a difference in our communities

thanks so much for reading everyone it means a lot <3

love,

Amanda Jordan

Miss Teenage Southeastern Ontario

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Meeting Superheroes Who Overcome Giant Obstacles While Providing Inspiration To All

Well it has been a busy couple of weeks for sure with pageant duties. When I am invited to perform at a charity fundraising event the people I meet there never cease to amaze me.  Most recently I performed at the CTV CHEO Telethon and there I met a wonderful women who offered to help me see if I would be able to sing in the hospital for some of the children. I am really looking forward to hearing back from her as this is the least I could do for these little Superheroes. As I listened to the incredible stories of survival of those very brave little children who have gone through so much it made me realize that one of the best outcomes of the CHEO CTV telethon is not just the funds raised which was an incredible 7.8 million dollars but it is the awareness created when the children’s stories are shared.  The theme of the CTV CHEO Telethon was Superheroes which I think is a very accurate theme.  We heard the story of Justin, who at age nine found out he had cancer in his leg . This young hero had his ankle removed and attached to his knee so that he could have a prosthetic that would function well.  He has been an inspiration and emotional leader for his parents over the last several years.  With a smile on his face he stated to his Mom and Dad over and over  “We do what we have to do.” What a courageous little man, mature far beyond his years and a true inspiration.

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Last Saturday I was the entertainment for the Curvy Girls which is a support group for youth that suffer from scoliosis. Two to three percent of our teen population suffer from scoliosis. Some of these teens have to wear a very hard plastic corset around their whole torso for up to 24 hours a day and they deal with a lot of back pain and many surgeries. I wrote a song for this group a few years ago called “Got Your Back” as I found these teens so inspirational.  If you know anyone with scoliosis this support group is amazing and can be contacted at  http://www.curvygirlsottawa.ca/     .

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It is always surprising to me how sometimes a simple coincidence can turn out to be such a wonderful opportunity and learning experience.  Recently I was asked to be a guest host on a new Rogers Daytime TV Series on Organization and Recycling. While at the Daytime TV studio in Ottawa watching the producer do a show I was waiting there in the waiting room I had the wonderful experience of meeting Retired Major Nick Nicolas of The Canadian Armed Forces. Nick, a  36 year veteran who is turning 70 this year wanted to do something special for his birthday so he decided to fundraise for The Citadel Canine society in Ottawa which is an organization that trains service dogs to help soldiers who suffer from PTSD- Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome.  Often times when our soldiers return from the battlefields they suffer sever flashbacks, night sweats, nightmares, anxiety and depression.  They never know what might trigger a flashback. It could be a crowd in a mall, fireworks, or even an ambulance siren.  The dogs are trained to put their paws on the soldiers lap if the soldier begins to cry or starts to experience an anxiety attach or is having a nightmare.  The interaction from the dog brings the soldier back from his nightmare and into present reality. Nick created a fundraiser called Boots 4 Pups and he is going to raise funds for this program by walking 350 kilometers through the Rideau Trail from Kingston to Ottawa on an 11 day hike starting on Sunday June 21. I was so inspired by Nick and the service dog organization that I offered to write a song about this special program. I’ve been working hard on it for the past few days. I’ll be performing the song Sunday June 21 in Kingston at the open ceremony of the 350 kilometer walk by Nick on the Rideau Trail. If you would like to read more about this amazing story or donate you can go to the following website. http://www.gofundme.com/Boots4Pups.

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Well those were my Miss Teenage Southeastern Ontario adventures for the last week or so. I wonder what the next superheroes I will meet and be inspired by next on this exciting journey.

Thanks for reading everyone <3

Miss Teenage Southeastern Ontario

Amanda

 

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Sorry it’s been a minute since I’ve written a blog, but I promise I have a lot to catch all of you up on! Finally, Summer is here, a time to sit back and watch the beautiful sunsets on the Rideau Lake and reflect on my year at Bishops U where I study music and psychology. I’m extremely happy to be home with family and friends, and very grateful for the wonderful opportunities and very special people in my life. Rideau Lakes

Finding a summer job was definitely a priority and was a focus for the last few weeks. Luck was on my side in this field as I now have two part-time jobs and one full time job. I am singing and playing guitar at two establishments in Smiths Falls. Check out my youtube clip of this here

At Players Sports Bar and at Fort Hemlock Restaurant, I play four hour sets a night and I’m loving it. When you love your job it really doesn’t feel like work and I’m so grateful to the local owners for inviting me to perform. I also am a waitress at another restaurant called King Star Buffet where I work with my twin brother Thomas. Most recently I have just accepted a full time position with Parks Canada at the World Heritage Rideau Canal Locks. I will be locking tourists and their boats through the Rideau Canal locks at Edmonds Lock Station near Smiths Falls.

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There should definitely be more  history of the Rideau Canal in the school curriculum because studying for my interview for this position was eye opening. It’s crazy how much we don’t know about our own local town’s history.  The Rideau Canal design is considered a feat of genius designed by Colonel John Bye. It consists of 24 lock stations and 47 locks and was designed to move boats inland in case the Americans took control of the St. Lawrence. It was built in 1926 in only six years and extends from Ottawa to Kingston with 1000 people losing their lives during its construction. I feel so proud and honoured to be selected as one of the student workers at this UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Well, it’s official now, I have been busy working with the Smiths Falls Station Theatre committee and they have approved me using this site to produce a Youth Talent Concert with all proceeds going to Free the Children and Open Doors. We have so many talented youth in the Smiths Falls and surrounding areas and I am hoping this will give them an authentic venue to perform in. I’ve invited Brea Lawrenson, the Canadian Music Association of Ontario’s nominee for Female Artist of the year to join the show.  Stay Tuned for more details!

Brea Lawrenson at CMAO's

If you’ve read this far, it means a lot. Thank you for following my adventure

x0x0

Amanda

Miss Teenage Southeastern Ontario

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Hey girls, I hope everyone’s having a great Easter enjoying time with your families   having egg hunts and turkey Dinners. I’m sure everyone’s more than excited for the big contest coming up in August.  I came across this quote and thought I should share it. Lets empower one another as we move towards the competition.

I’ve been feeling really sick for a couple of weeks with a bad cold but I’m now ready to start some healthy routines once again. I thought I would share some of my health tips with you. I try to work out three to four times a week but university has me really bogged down with exams and assignments coming up. I’m sure all of you are feeling the same and we’re all in the same boat but it’s really important to get exercise in whenever you have a bit of free time. It boosts your serotonin levels making you feel more energized, happy and you’ll feel more accomplished.  I’ve been with Angies models In Ottawa for several years now and over that time have developed some healthy eating tips that I thought I would share. Some of my favorite things to eat when I’m watching my weight are egg white omelets with cheese, homemade chicken casadeas with lettuce and cheese on a wrap with low fat Italian dressing.  When I’m craving chips or salty foods at night, pickles are a great low cal snack. Just make sure you don’t eat too many as the sodium levels are high. I dunno about you guys but I always wanna snack at night cause I’m either bored, stressed or into a good show on Netflix. I like to eat sugar free Jell-O cups. They only have five calories so sometimes I eat like 10 a night lol.  Just kidding I don’t recommend that. They have a lot of chemicals in them. You shouldn’t be starving yourself, if there’s one thing I learned you should be eating every two hours. Eating small portions consistently throughout the day is much healthier and better for your body than eating three big meals a day so keep that in mind. I’ve also been drinking a lot of water lately. It’s really easy to forget to drink water throughout the day but it’s the most important thing for your body.

Here’s a quick link to an  ab workout called 8 min abs https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vkKCVCZe474

It literally takes 8 minutes out of your day and if you do this every day you should be looking pretty good in your bikini when finals come.

I hope you’re all doing well, I’m really enjoying reading all your posts and can’t wait to see you in a few months

 

Thanks for reading,

Xo

Amanda

Miss Teenage Southeastern Ontario

 

 

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Hello everyone! I’m delighted to share my very first blog with you and am proud to say I will be representing Miss Teenage Southeastern Ontario

I was extremely grateful when when my name was called to receive a crown at the Miss Teen Ontario Pageant.  I had been looking forward to the pageant for several months and had worked hard raising $1000.00 for Cardiac Kids.  Being crowned Miss Southeastern Ontario is a huge honour and I am looking forward to working hard at raising money for my platform which is Open Doors Mental Health for Youth and Children and for Free The Children.

I grew up on the banks of the Rideau Canal in Smiths Falls Ontario. I spent  time on my Grandfather’s farm in Montague helping with the farm animals and loved spending time outdoors. I strongly believe in simple country values and the importance of the family unit and helping in the community.

In 2013, I travelled with my church youth group to The Dominican Republic to help build schools for the poor.  There I mixed cement, built school walls and witnessed the smiles on children’s faces as they looked forward to the prospect of having a seat in the school. This was a learning experience I will never forget and  I hope to return in the near future to help out again.

I have been singing since I was extremely young. At the young age of 18 months, my caregiver was surprised to hear me singing “Nobody Knows the Trouble I’ve Seen” as I held onto the side of my crib. After some research it was found that this song was on the nursery rhyme tape that I listened to each night while going to sleep. My family never did find out what was troubling me but it was clear I was indeed, a singer. At age two, I was singing the National Anthem ‘O Canada’, in the arms of my Grandfather at a provincial political picnic. At the age of five, I sang and danced at the Chateau Laurier in downtown Ottawa for a Christmas banquet and in Street festivals at our nation’s capital.

In 2013, I was one of the top ten ‘Ottawa Idol’ winners, and was referred to as  ‘Our  Rural Songbird’ by local papers. During my high school years, I travelled four hours a day to attend a specialized music program at Canterbury High School in Ottawa. I loved surrounding myself with people who held similar interests as music has always been my passion.

Most recently I was cast as a singer in a made for TV Lifetime channel movie called “Revenge of the Daughter” where I sang and played my guitar for two original songs. The movie company bought my two songs and the movie starred Elizibeth Gillies from the TV show “Victorious”. As well I was recently cast as a guest host and performer in a Cogeco TV Talent series called ‘Music Volume’ where I performed my original music. In addition, I have performed for CTV’s CHEO Sick Children’s Telethon and Cogeco’s Palliative Care Telethon. While in Nashville, last year I performed at the Wild Wing Cafe, Spotlight on Nashville, and sang at the open Mike at the Bluebird Cafe.

My original music cultivates  awareness for various social causes such as teen mental health, disabilities and teen relationships. I wrote a song for a group of teen girls who suffer from scoliosis called “Got your Back.” The song, entitled “Breathe Easy” was written to create awareness and sensitivity towards teens who suffer from depression or other mental illnesses. This song portrays the importance of providing support to our friends in need.

In October 2014, I released my first single to country commercial radio stations across Canada. The song released is called ” Letting it go Tonight” and was played on radio stations in Ottawa, British Columbia, London Ont, and the UK.  My second single will be released this spring.

Presently I am working with a group of friends to produce an organic natural oil fragrance product called “Maple Key, Plant a Tree”. Each bottle of maple scented fragrance will have a maple key seed attached for the customer to plant. The plan is that some of the funds from the sales of this product will go towards youth mental health agencies and be used in sending children to summer camp, as well as Free The Children. In addition, I am planning on producing a music talent show for youth in the community. Profits from the show will go towards the youth mental health agency in Smiths Falls and Free The Children.

I am extremely honoured to be apart of the Miss Teenage Canada competition and I am very appreciative for the focus on charity fundraising as it has given me the opportunity to experience the power of giving back and helping the community. I encourages other young women to get involved in Miss Teenage Canada if they want to challenge themselves, meet new friends, and deepen their understanding of themselves.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read my first  blog.  I hope you will stay connected and will be joining me on this  journey in becoming Miss Teenage Canada

Thanks everyone, xoxo

Amanda

Miss Teenage Southeastern Ontario, 2015

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Day 3:

Another amazing day planned out for the girls 🙂 we had a LONNGGG day. We were suppose to be up and ready for 5am, so me and my roommate were up by 4am. This was very difficult for us aha! We then had a live segment booked for 7:40 with Breakfast Television. I had so much fun being on tv with all the girls. You can check out some pictures of the event on my Facebook page 🙂

After being on air with Breakfast Television, we went for a nice breakfast at High Park. We had eggs, bacon, hash browns and toast. It was delicious 🙂

Lastly we went to the a Yorkdale Mall and we received a $25 gift card to Bench Clothing. We all got to go on a little shopping spree and buy ourselves a little something from Bench 🙂
I got a nice grey tank top that I hope to wear to the gym or even with a casual outfit. We all got a Polaroid pictures that we can all keep for memories 🙂

Day 3 was a success and it couldn’t have gone better! It’s only been a couple days and I feel like all these girls are my sisters 🙂

Day 4: Well …. Another early morning. We were up by 5:00am getting ready for Global News. It was a very nerve racking day for us because durning this love segment this we’re picking random girls names out of hat and asking them questions pulled out aswell. The girls who were picked answered all there questions perfectly and we could not be more proud 🙂

After we were done Global News we went to the CN Tower. The last time I visited the CN Tower was when I was 8 years old. It felt nice to go back and see how beautiful the CN Tower is. I forgot how high up it was! Durning our Tour I wore my Hi Tech Sandals! They were so comfy when I was walking around in them!

When we done with the CN Tower we went to the Eaton Centre and went shopping 🙂 Thank you Eaton Centre for giving us gift cards towards our dinner, it was very good! I had Sbarro, a Italian restaurant.

Day 4 was an awesome day and I look forward to the rest of the week planned 🙂 Remember to take a look of my photos on my Facebook page and to VOTE for me 🙂 till next time

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It’s day 2 and I’m already having a blast 🙂 I’ve met so many girls that are so welcoming. It’s a rainy day here in Toronto but the weather isn’t bringing anyone down!

We had a great day today. We started off with getting our make up and hair done by Motives (http://ca.motivescosmetics.com). There team was amazing, I was so happy with the result of my make up and hair 🙂

After we were finished with the Motive team, we went to go change into our video interview and photoshoot dress. As I was waiting for my turn to go do my photos, I was to able to interact with alot of the girls and get to know them better.

Once i finished my video interview and my photos I started preparing for the face to face interview. I was so nervous for it but the judges were so down to earth and nice and that it just took all my nerves away 🙂

Day 2 was an amazing day and I’m looking forward to the upcoming events for the rest of the week! Find out what I’m doing tomorrow by visiting my blog, Facebook page, and even Instagram 🙂

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Written by: Kaylie
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