In March of this year I was contacted by The TOPS (Take Off Pounds Sensibly) Arkansas Coordinator, Marcia Dohn, and asked me if I would like to represent Arkansas at the International Recognition Days in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, July 17-29.

I had been crowned our TOPS Chapter 0294 Fairfield Bay Queen but to represent the entire state, now that was unbelievable. I did lose 45 ĺ pounds with TOPS from 2007 through 2012 but I was sure other women had probably lost more than me and also reached their goal. Apparently the to be crowned King and Queen for 2012 TOPS had for one reason or another decided to not go to Calgary and since I was the state Queen Runner Up I was invited to attend. I was sworn to secrecy for my trip and was so eager to tell everyone. I did tell a few pals at my chapter but tried to keep it on the hush-hush.

I met so many inspiring members and their families from all over the U.S. and Canada during my recent trip. Iíll never look at a heavy or overweight person the same because after hearing their struggles and successís during the convention it gives me a whole new outlook on body image. TOPS had four general sessions and during two of these sessions we had four outstanding speakers to inspire and help us improve not only our weight but our health as well.

I was honored to represent Arkansas and as a new KOPS (Keep Off Pounds Sensibly) graduate and royalty I was in three different parades of success.

If you would like to find out more about TOPS, visit or join us at the Hart Center in Fairfield Bay on Mondays at 9:30 a.m., weigh-in starts at 8:30.