Tuesday, November 16, 2010


Today, my ten-year old daughter, Alex, delivered her much anticipated campaign speech for the quintessential role of Vice President of the Cottage Lake Elementary Student Council, to a gym full of elementary school students.

During the last two weeks Michael and I have worked as her campaign staff, designing posters until midnight, playing the part of the enraptured audience when she practiced her speech, helping her strategize her core messaging and discussing what would happen if she won and what would happen if she lost.

My favorite poster, designed by the candidate herself, features a cut-out photo of Alex with a speech bubble that declares, “Peace and Justice for All!” One of her posters even had Christmas lights on it ($1.99 battery operated string from Rite-Aid).

Her speech evolved from discussing her love of ice-skating and puppies to a real discussion of what leadership gifts she could bring to the table. It really was a fun process to watch. This morning, she woke up early, asked me to straighten her hair, practiced her speech, and insisted that we go pick up her new glasses at the eye doctor before school (the ones she was wearing had been bound together by scotch tape for a month – fair enough.) Mike let her borrow his special black leather folder that he uses for his notes when he performs weddings and funerals (he’s a real pastor, not the internet kind) so she could hide her marked up, crumpled speech and look professional – it was kind of like witnessing the passing down of an heirloom.

At 11am, I tucked myself into a folding chair in the back of the gym and waited for my baby girl to speak to the masses. I’m pretty sure I was more nervous than she was – not in a stage mom kind of way – just in a I-want-to-protect-my-child-at-all-costs kind of way.

While her tiny head barely made it over the podium, she knocked it out of the park – or at least that’s what this audience member thought. My favorite line was, “ My favorite subject is writing, and… I love puppies.” My next favorite line was, “I will do everything in my power to make this school a better place – more exciting and fun for everyone.” My third favorite line was the clincher at the end, “I would make a good leader because I have hope.”

She clearly gets her optimism from her father.

Oh, and she won.

Here's the very rough video I took of it - minus the first 10 seconds (I couldn't get the thingy to turn on.)


  1. i'm gonna admit it ...

    ... i just cried.

    like in the i'm-a-proud-relative-but-not-by-blood kind of way.

    so stoked.

    love her.

    gotta go get some kleenex.

  2. Clapping and cheering at the McPherson house! Congratulations Alex!

  3. YAY Alex!!!! I love that girl...and I am so PROUD!

  4. This video of Alex is a PURE delight! Made Rob and I smile so much our faces hurt!

  5. Thank you so much for posting the video. I wasn't able to hear the speeches (out of the building yesterday), so I'm glad I saw Alex. Be proud!

  6. Congratulations Alex!!! Great speech!!! Love the last line. Give her a big hug!!!~

    The Howell's


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