To write that I’m proud of my oldest niece would be an understatement. She will be in a pageant this weekend in the Twin Cities and my folks went down to support her. She probably has the talent portion cinched which is 35% of the score by the judges. She is a very good violinist and goes to the University of Minnesota School of Music as a college freshman. (She has been playing violin since she was about 4 years old, starting with the Suzuki method.) Also, the interview which is about 25% of the score, I think, is what she has been coached on. She knows she needs improvement on answering questions since she is not outgoing or vivacious but rather introverted like her parents. She will probably do fine in the swimsuit and evening gown portion of the competition so I’m eager to find out the final results. I noticed that some of the contestants she is competing against are the same girls who were in the December pageant she was involved with. Of course, part of the entertainment is to have the girls do a dance number together, a bonding kind of thing. Again, my niece is at a disadvantage there because she does not have any dance background. In any case, this is a good experience for her to have an audience to hear her violin playing, it will give her the poise for future performances she will be required to make as a music major.