Calli & Lizzy… A {Carolina} Princess Dream


As we head into the coming week… I thought it would be the perfect time to share this particular session. It’s one that’s very near & dear to my heart because it is of my own sweet Lizzy and her mentor, Calli. Specifically, Lizzy is a Carolina Princess for Calli… Miss Moore County’s Outstanding Teen and tomorrow they start pageant week downtown for Calli to compete for the title of Miss NORTH CAROLINA’s Outstanding Teen! She will be competing in interview, onstage questions, fitness, gown and my favorite of hers… talent (goodness, it’ll BLOW.YOU.AWAY!!). Lizzy will be there throughout to cheer her and our other friends on… and even dance together on the Memorial Auditorium stage with the other Teen contestants & their princesses, in a super fun production number during each preliminary night, as well as the Miss finals on Saturday (get your tix HERE &/or watch the Miss Finals, including Teen production number on ABC11 Saturday, June 23rd at 8pm). It’s a majorly exciting time for all!

As I mentioned in Calli’s Fab Grad Spokesmodel spotlight just last week, she has quite the array of impressive accomplishments and talents (you catch that again HERE). When Calli asked Lizzy to be her princess last August, we honestly had concerns about the time and financial commitments around all of her other activities. However, Lizzy has always been incredibly self-aware of her abilities and limits and felt she could handle it all. We also knew that it just wouldn’t be right to say no to an opportunity for her to be exposed to such an extraordinary role model and positive influence that had already started bonding with her. See, in the Miss America line, the Princess program is not a competition at all – it is a mentorship program. And that it has been! From that day, Lizzy has been growing in SO many ways. She began that very night with practicing her very long title (“Miss Moore County’s Outstanding Teen’s Carolina Princess, Lizzy Mink”)… repeatedly until she got it down smoothly.  They have ridden in parades together where she began very shyly, to the most recent where she hopped on, held her head high and said ‘see ya, mom, I’m good!’ then proceeded to smile & wave her way on down the road! She stands on stage next to Calli or her peers as they are introduced at other pageants, has built new friendships and become quite comfortable with an array of other girls, ages & personalities in the program. We’ve had opportunity to watch Calli perform in dance and theatre, complete with backstage experiences! Everyone told me that it was okay that Lizzy was super shy going into this – that the program would change that before the year was over. And sure enough, Lizzy’s strength & confidence on stage and in person around others from peers to adults has blossomed SO beautifully… with much thanks and appreciation to Calli & her influence! Lizzy has had kids at school, even close friends, tease her about being a princess & having a crown; not believing her or understanding what it’s all about… I’ve even had adults give me the quizzical ‘really?? pageants?!’ look & discussions. I don’t know how much of this is or isn’t in our future, but I do know that we wouldn’t change our decision to let her go down this path this year for anything! And Lizzy feels the same way! She holds her head high & proud that she is a Carolina Princess… Calli’s Princess, as do we!

I started this blog with the above image because it is so representative of the warm smile Calli flashes Lizzy… and Lizzy’s love & admiration for ‘her Calli’ in the way she literally looks up to her. I feel like I see them bringing out the best in each other when they are together and we even kid around that Lizzy is Calli’s ‘blonde mini me’! The most precious thing above all of the things that has grown this year is their very sweet, natural bond and love for each other.  Their relationship just melts my heart and I am so glad that we had this opportunity to capture just a fraction of that in images…



“Ready, Girl?! Let’s do this!!!”… BEST wishes this week Calli… we love you so very much, believe in you & are in constant awe of your incredible talents, successes, service, style & scholarship!!!!



The fun they have with each other is just too adorable to not share some of the silly behind the scenes too – I love them just as much as the more formal posed…




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