Monday, December 19, 2011


What an exciting time of year! The hustle and bustle of Christmas and preparation for the BIG DAY are quickly approaching! My Miss America send off party was yesterday, and what an amazing day for me that was! Not only do I feel blessed to have such a wonderful organization behind me, but also my family and friends. In two weeks I leave for the most EXCITING and AMAZING journey of my life... MISS AMERICA. I'm so honored to be competing with 52 distinguished young women. We all have worked so hard for this moment and now it is time to sit back, relax, and enjoy the remarkable journey we are about to embark on and to know that God will place the right girl in the position as the next Miss America. 

My grandmother (memaw)
who I owe my love for classical music to!
Growing up I dreamed of hitting the stage on BROADWAY or the world renowned opera house in Milan, Italy- La Scala. Never in a million years would I have thought I'd be taking the Miss America stage by storm in LAS VEGAS!(Wow, funny how things turn out!) I always imagined myself doing big things but never actually realized that they would come true. I doubted myself as a young girl and only believed 50% in my hopes and aspirations. Now, I fully believe in myself and what I have to offer this world not 50% but 150%! The young Bree who sat on the couch after school, lacked self confidence, hid from the camera, and most certainly didn't believe she was beautiful is now a spokesperson to ALL that WE have the power in our own hands to make our lives what we want it to be. Yes, a lot of people see me only as "The girl who lost over 100 lbs" but I'm so ready to show the world the REAL Bree. I have so much to offer and I hope that people see or will come to know that Bree.


Playing at church with my dad!
Many people do not know that I'm extremely passionate about classical music and performing.
My grandmother who grew up on a farm in a small town adored opera and her love of the spectacular art rubbed off on me at a young age. Many times I spent my afternoons or mornings at my grandparents house. My grandmother, or what we all call her, Memaw, would be a busy bee in the kitchen. Whipping up all the "Southern Fixin's" and listening to opera. I smiled as I helped out and enjoyed being exposed to such beautiful music. It made me feel alive! I started singing at the age of 2 when my grandfather tickled the ivory's at church. "Have a Little Talk with Jesus" was our absolute favorite song to perform together. He also taught me to pick up the violin and enjoy the beautiful sound that it made. I began playing by ear and watching him. (Both him and my father can pick up any instrument and play by ear, I was so amazed by them) After getting the hang of the violin I was enrolled in lessons along with my sister and eventually joined my school and church orchestra. Tiffany and I both play the violin, while my two brothers play the trumpet. We are sometimes jokingly called "The Partridge Family" at church. My dad is the music director and we all play in the Orchestra or sing in the choir. I'm looking forward to this Christmas to be home with my entire family and play together a Christmas piece to celebrate the birth of  our Lord and Savior this Sunday. This is how we come together to be a family and enjoy each other. By giving thanks to God for the talents he has possessed upon us. I truly miss my grandfather this time of year. He passed away when I was in the 8th grade, but I will never forget the love he had for me, God, music, and anyone he ever came into contact with. I traveled with him and my dad as they sang in different churches as apart of a quartet. Gazing up at them I'd always sing along and loved when they pulled me up to join them. Every time I perform I think of him and the role he played in my life. He never once doubted me and deep down, I knew that. I know he is watching from Heaven and saying "I told you, my Bree, you'd be signing autographs one day!" He was so proud of me and my family. I know we continue to make him proud. 

At the age of 6 I decided I wanted to be enrolled in music classes and when I turned 8 I wanted to be a professional opera singer. Immediately I BEGGED for classical training! My parents saw that I was actually finally interested in something. For years, they exposed me to gymnastics, dance, cheerleading, and pageantry... None of what I wanted to do. They were thrilled that Bree had found something that was her niche! After we dropped my sister, Tiffany, off at dance or cheerleading, my mom whisked me off to voice lessons! I was so nervous and anxious every time I was dropped off at my weekly lesson! I wanted to impress my teacher by showing her all of the practice I had put into the piece of music she had given me the week before. My first operatic piece was Puccini's famous "O Mio Babbino Caro" and I blew my teacher away! Italian-PERFECT, vibratoinhibitions and doing what I loved. I never really expressed to my family that I dreamed

YES! That is me!
The (once) Cowardly Lion! 

My parents were approached by my teacher and she expressed to them that I as a natural at performing! I remember sitting there and seeing both of them look at each other and nod, agreeing that they KNEW that I had it in me to be whatever I wanted. Not what my sister or brothers hoped to be, but what BREE wanted to be. I will never forget the feeling that the acceptance andacknowledgment I saw on there face felt that day. She informed them of a Children's Musical Theatre Workshop at our town Theatre. The next week I was attending classes that taught me stage presence, acting techniques, makeup lessons, dance, and more voice lessons. All week long I looked forward to Tuesday and Thursday afternoons! That meant I was going to the theatre! Even though I was the chubbiest of all the kids there, it didn't matter to me when I stepped into that building. I wasn't Bree, I was THE PERFORMER. I didn't care that Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz was thin with deep brown hair and shiny shoes, I still auditioned for the part. No, I didn't get Dorothy, but I was cast as The Cowardly Lion! I practiced and practiced and committed to the character. Opening night, I BLEW away the audience. I was funny, my song was EXACTLY on point, and I was enamored by the thought I could actually make this a career! I stuck with it and after graduating high school I went on to college and attended Liberal Arts school, Francis Marion University. My dreams of being a successful actress then turned into fascination for playwright, dramaturgy, theatre history, producing, directing, makeup/costume design, as well as set design. I loved it all and knew I wanted to get my hands into all of these things. It excites me to know that I'm doing what I love despite others views or thoughts on having Theatre as a major. Without the arts I wouldn't have been able to break away from the day to day struggles I dealt with inside myself growing up. The arts pushed me to be dedicated and passionate about something. I now encourage the kids I speak to, to become involved in the arts and how it ultimately shaped my life. While Living in Las Vegas for over a month two summers ago with my sister and her husband, I had the wonderful opportunity to study under the co-conductor for the Phantom of the Opera Las Vegas. His insight and ability to see my potential at making this a career pushed me to think outside the box when deciding on the piece I would perform for talent and I am thoroughly looking forward to my biggest performance as of yet...My talent presentation at MISS AMERICA! Just days before I check in for Miss America I will be staying in Vegas and doing extensive work with him to finalize and make my talent perfection. I'm looking forward to expressing my passion for opera and performance and wowing the audience and judges! 

From a little boy I met! This is what makes my job
worth it all!
When I ask the children I speak to what they think of when they hear "MISS AMERICA" most of them respond with "Beautiful, talented, smart, friendly" and the list goes on. I explain to them that being Miss America is a FULL TIME JOB! It isn't necessarily about being beautiful and talented, but it is about being that one young woman who saw her own full potential and strives to see that exact same thing in each person she is able to meet. It is about being captivated by the people she comes in contact with. Those people who come from all walks of life. Miss America must be able to relate to them and teach them lessons, but she must be willing to have them teach her as well. She travels non stop and regardless of feeling tired or sick, she gives each appearance and each person her best! She pushes others to step up to the plate and be THEIR personal and professional best. She challenges the people around her to go for their dreams and to never give up hope. Although the crown and sash come off at times, she must be Miss America to EVERYONE 24/7! She is presented with difficult task, but sees them through to the best of her ability. Others will be negative and only try to bring her down. But she brushes them and their comments off by showing confidence, poise, and intelligence. Miss America has the ability to light up any room that she walks into and sure, these are only a few of the things that she does, but I find it so amazing that most people do not see that Miss America is THE role model that everyone can relate to. Not the famous pop singer, magnificent actress, or Hollywood's "it" girl, but THE IT girl who represents America. Her smile is a plus, but Miss America's her heart to give back to others is what we all need to strive to be. Regardless of whether I win the crown in January, I know I possess these qualities and to me, I have already won the title of Miss America. I feel that all 52 contestants that will be competing in January feel this same exact way. We have given back to our communities, spent time working on being the best person we can be, perfecting our talents, knowing about the world around us, having our own sense of self, and all possessing the qualities of Miss America by doing so. I'm proud of the woman I have become and proud to represent my state on July 14th. Everyday I remind myself, "I can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens me." 

Thank you to all who took the time to read this! I wanted to write a little something and it had to be fast because I must spend time with my family (see below, I vowed to myself- HA!) So forgive me if it is sloppy and a bit LONG! :) 

This week I vow to spend time loving on my family, packing, celebrating Christ birth, packing some more, seeing friends, not wearing makeup OR doing my hair, catching up on much needed sleep, finalizing prep for Miss America, again...spending as MUCH time with my family AND more packing!! I vow to do these things because I may not be returning home after January 14th. 53 of us have an amazing shot at an amazing year as Miss America and I know that I am fully capable and ready for that job. Thank you to all who believed in me from the start and the MANY (AND I MEAN MANY) of you who have decided to join me in Vegas to cheer me on! I love each and everyone of you and I look forward seeing the purpose God has planned out for my life. 

Merry Christmas to you all and HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!!!! May you be blessed with family, friends, laughter, and love! 

All my best,
Bree Boyce
Miss South Carolina 2011 

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Today is the day for you to say... I LOVE ME!

"It takes a little courage, and a little self-control. And some grim determination, If you want to reach the goal. It takes a great deal of striving, and a firm and stern-set chin. No matter what the battle, if you really want to win, there's no easy path to glory. There is no road to fame. Life, however we may view it, Is no simple parlor game; But its prizes call for fighting, For endurance and for grit; For a rugged disposition that will not quit." 
Navy SEAL Masterchief 

This is one of my favorite quotes! It simply says that with hard work and determination ANYTHING is possible... But, YOU must be willing to work hard and push through the tough times you face to win in the end. As I've said before, my journey was not an easy one by any means. There were tears, moments of feeling sorry for myself, shame, guilt, unhappiness, failure, the "I CAN'T DO IT" attitude, and the days that I wanted to eat everything in site and lay on the couch to watch Real housewives of Orange County reruns! BUT... like the quote says... "But its prizes call for fighting, for endurance and for grit; For a rugged disposition that will not quit." And that is exactly what I did. I fought through the battles I struggled with and endured the tough times to WIN IN THE END! 

It is now YOUR turn to WIN, WIN, WIN! Whatever your battle may be, fight through it! We are only as tough as we prove to be... So prove your worth to the most important person. You! We are all so very special, but we are only as special as we make ourselves feel. Self worth is so important to living a happy life. First, you must realize how important you are, what you must do to make you your professional and personal best, make the right choices in living a healthy life, learn to know that we do make mistakes and THAT'S OKAY because tomorrow is a new day, and most importantly- live everyday to the absolute fullest. 

It doesn't matter what size you wear or the number that is on the scale. At the end of the day, if you are taking care of your body and living a healthy lifestyle... That's what counts the most. We should never compare ourselves to others. God made each and everyone of us different and that's what makes us so special. For example, one of your friends may be stick thin, eats healthy and gets the same physical activity as you, but you are not exactly stick thin like he/she... That's fine! Because you are taking care of your body, that is all that matters and you must realize that you will never be the same as the next person, but that should make you love yourself even more to know that you are so special that you don't look the same as someone else. How boring would life be if we were all the same? Think of it that way! 

This is one thing I had to realize before entering the Miss SC pageant. I had to realize that some of the girls I was competing against were naturally thin and fit. I had to process that I wasn't going to look the same as any of the girls, because once again, we are all different. But, as I reached my goal I then began to realize that WOW! This is me, I achieved this body through hard work, perseverance, and dedication! I was extremely happy with myself and I'm not afraid to say.. I LOVE ME! I can proudly say that because I changed my life, no one else but me. I loved myself so much that I didn't ever want to look back and say "If only I had taken care of my body..." or "I'm unhealthy because I was to stubborn to make a change." 

Now, I want you to evaluate your own self. How much are you worth? The answer should be "I'm worth more than anything!" You should love yourself! Never feel bad for caring, loving, and knowing yourself! So I challenge you today to say out loud in the mirror, "I love myself, I'm worth it, and I will take care of my body." 

****I also have this thing where I give myself a fresh food of the day to work with! I will do the same for you all! Today, my fresh food is: Red onion!
So today, I will make something with fresh red onions incorporated into it! I'm thinking fresh vegetables skewers! YUM! Share with me what you did with red onion or what your fresh food of the day was and how you incorporated it into your meal! I'd love to hear!****

Many blessings and success to you!

Monday, August 1, 2011

I am finally getting around to writing my FIRST official blog as Miss South Carolina! Tomorrow will be a month since my big win and I cannot explain the exciting feeling that resides over me everyday since becoming Miss South Carolina. From the moment that I won, I knew my life would be forever changed. Although I knew it would change, I would have never imagined exactly how much it actually would. The Monday after winning I got the phone call from my director that caused me to cry tears of joy, do a happy dance (which by the way I can't dance so you can only imagine...Pretty funny stuff!!), and immediately start packing for NYC! I was heading to appear on Good Morning America and The Today Show! But, I didn't exactly get this media attention for winning Miss South Carolina alone, it was because I had done something that you don't necessarily hear of a pageant winner doing...Losing over 110 lbs. As a obese teen I realized after having knee pains and several health issues that it was time to change my life forever! I began to educate myself on the things I was eating and joined a gym. But, it wasn't as simple as those two things sound. There were days that I wanted to give up on everything and just say... FORGET IT! But, I kept reminding myself of the person I wanted to be. I wanted to be the healthy, happy, and successful person I had always imagined myself to be. I couldn't achieve those things by being unhealthy and that's what motivated me to keep going. If you are ever in a situation where you want to give up just take two minutes to remind yourself: Why you are doing this, who do you ultimately want to be, and how will your life turn out if you don't continue on the path towards success.

I look forward to a year of service to my state and hopefully another year of service as Miss America 2012. My platform "Eating Healthy and Fighting Obesity" has only scratched the surface! There is no stopping my platform as it is much needed in the world today. Obesity rates are only growing and it is my goal to partner and network with others who also want to see the rising numbers drop and to combat the obesity epidemic once and for all!

My blogs will consist of delicious and healthy recipes that I enjoy, fun exercises to get you up and moving, motivating words, and my journey as Miss SC 2011!

Please feel free to comment and ask me anything! I promise to get back to you as soon as possible...


Many blessings and success to you all!