23rd Annual Best Mom in Southwest

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In 1992, the Southwest Orlando Bulletin — then just a little more than 6 years old — introduced what has become a Southwest Orlando institution — the annual Best Mom in Southwest contest. Now in its 23rd year, the contest has grown from just 300 entries in that first year to more than 750 submissions in 2014. What started as a contest for school-age children is now a way for child and adult residents alike to express to their moms how important they truly are.
It seems that mothers are perpetually protecting their children from the ills of the world, tirelessly cooking and cleaning, and preparing their children for adult life, all while managing to somehow be the kindest and gentlest women, despite occasionally having to dole out discipline.
Congratulations to this year’s winners: Carson Montgomery, overall winner; Jose Cruz, 13-and-older winner; Megan McNulty, 9-12 winner; and Jonaiah Louis-Jeune, 8-younger winner, and all of our honorable mentions. They join a long list of past participants who believe that their mothers are truly the best.


 

Overall Winner

Carson Montgomery, 11
Windermere
Best Mom: Connie Montgomery
Southwest Orlando Bulletin's 23rd annual Best Mom in Southwest is Connie Montgomery of Windermere, who is pictured with her son, Carson.

Southwest Orlando Bulletin’s 23rd annual Best Mom in Southwest is Connie Montgomery of Windermere, who is pictured with her son, Carson.

You could say that I love my mom, but that would be an understatement. I can’t even begin to describe how lost I would be without my mom in my life. Many kids aren’t fortunate enough to have their parents in their life; that’s why I know I am truly blessed.
The great thing about my mom is she never complains. When she’s having a rough day and I need something, she is there in a heartbeat. Also, my mom seems to understand me. When no one gets what I’m going through, she listens and makes me feel better.
My mom has such a great personality and always seems to have a smile on her face. This is why I love her so dearly. She’s always checking up with me on my grades and to see if I got my homework done. I would starve to death without her because I don’t have the first clue about cooking.
One last great characteristic about my mom is that she is always supportive of me yet pushes me to become better. I love that she can be honest with me about how she feels about certain things. She and I are like best friends who can share even the deepest of secrets with each other.
I love my mom so much, and I would never change her for any other mom in the world.


13-and-Older Winner

Jose Cruz, adult
Silver Woods
Best Mom: Jannette Cintron
Jose Cruz of Silver Woods, winner in the 13-and-older age group, is pictured with best mom Jannette Cintron.

Jose Cruz of Silver Woods, winner in the 13-and-older age group, is pictured with best mom Jannette Cintron.

There are many reasons why I feel that my mother is the best. She has made it her life’s mission to raise me to the best of her ability since the day I was born.
She took charge of raising me on her own when my father died in 2000. She responsibly handled every household duty, never missing work or a school activity, or leaving a bill unpaid. Because of having a mother like her, I have had a privileged life. She taught me to be responsible, respectful, honest and a hard worker.
Two years ago, she was diagnosed with Stage 2 breast cancer. Even with painful medical procedures such as chemotherapy and radiation, being forced to retire at age 56, and becoming disabled due to the metastasis of the cancer to her bones (Stage 4), my mother has managed to continue being the strong, responsible woman she has always been, even with the hardship of having terminal cancer.
She still teaches me new things every day because she is an intelligent, positive and persistent person. She is an exceptional woman with a lot of faith and the best mother I could ever ask for.


9-12 Winner

Megan McNulty, 11
Lake Cove Pointe
Best Mom: Carrie McNulty
Megan McNulty of Lake Cove Point, winner in the 9-12 age group, is pictured with best mom Carrie McNulty.

Megan McNulty of Lake Cove Point, winner in the 9-12 age group, is pictured with best mom Carrie McNulty.

I love my mother to the moon and back because she is the sweetest, most caring mother in the world. She loves to take me shopping so we can spend time together. She is full of encouraging, helpful words to bring me up instead of tear me down. She always gives me a good laugh even when I don’t really feel like laughing. She is there to help me whenever I need it. She is very outgoing and never shy. She has the same style as me, so when she goes shopping, she knows exactly what I need. She rises above everything that is bad. She is a follower of Christ and follows God. She knows the difference between right and wrong. She loves to help and serve others before herself. She gives me warm hugs when I am feeling down. She is grateful for everything she receives. She makes sure everyone has a smile on their face and that they are having fun and laughing. She bakes the best cookies, brownies and other great-tasting food. She is very smart and courageous. She is the kind of mom I can go to when there is a problem. She is very pretty and always looks happy. She loves to play games and watch movies with me. She wears the cutest clothes and shoes. She is very good at running half marathons. She teaches me what to do and what not to do. She always says funny things that make me burst out laughing. She puts a smile on everyone’s face when she walks into a room. She lightens up my day just by giving me a hug.
I must be the luckiest girl on earth to have her as my mom.


8-and-Younger Winner

Jonaiah Louis-Jeune, 8
Stonebridge Lakes
Best Mom: Natalie Guerrier
Jonaiah Louis-Jeune of Stonebridge Lakes, winner in the 8-and-younger age group, is pictured with best mom Natalie Guerrier.

Jonaiah Louis-Jeune of Stonebridge Lakes, winner in the 8-and-younger age group, is pictured with best mom Natalie Guerrier.

My mom is the best in Southwest Orlando.
The first reason is she is a good listener. I tell her about my feelings, and she makes me feel better. She’s like the hug monster and the kiss fish. She gives me advice to make me happy.
The second reason is she’s a good friend. She’s there when I need her. Sometimes, when I’m clumsy, she’s there to tell me to stop. I’m her cute baby, and she’s my loving mom.
She loves me like crazy. She calls me her loveworm. When I was born, she started crying the exact minute that I did. I love her so much, no matter what. Even if I’m mad at her, I still love her. I’m so thankful for a mom like this one.
She’s the best mom, don’t you think?


Honorable Mentions

This is going to be the best Mother’s Day ever — not only for me, a daughter, but for my wonderful mother, Stacey. This past September, my mom became a mother of four, so this year she gets to celebrate giving birth to another beautiful daughter, Riley. For every holiday or celebration, my mother only asks for a healthy, happy family, but she deserves so much more!
My mother’s a great role model. She will care for you and help you through your troubles. She’s mostly an everything-you-could-dream-of mother, and the fact that I get to be this fantastic person’s daughter means the world to me.
My mother’s an all-in-one combo. She cares for you when you’re sick or just need a warm heart to hug. She’s a beautiful, caring, loving, sweet, funny role model. She’s a perfect role model who I want to be like.
You could give me my whole life to write about her, but there is always something new. And as I tell you this, my list will never end. My parents are the happily-ever-after I want to be like.
Mom, I hope to marry a prince charming like Dad so I can be a modest princess like you. I hope you know how strong our bond, love and friendship are. Go deeply into my heart, soul and mind, and that’s where you belong. Thank you, Mom, for being supermom.

Alyssa DeHart, 11
Westover Reserve


My mom is so sweet and kind. One time in kindergarten, I fell and hit my chin. The school nurse taped my chin, and I went to the hospital. When the hospital was done fixing me, I went home. I was drinking Gatorade, and it got on my chin. I went back to the hospital. They did not numb my chin this time, and they told my mom to get out of the room.
When I was done, I had people come visit. My mom came in the room with a stuffed animal. She helped me get up and hugged me. She missed me and told me she loved me.

Gianna Pucci, 6
Southwest Orlando


I love my mom because she loves me. She is a sweet person and would do anything for me. Of course, one must never forget that moms deserve all the respect possible for the obvious fact that they brought you into the world. Not only did they bring you into the world, but they keep you in it by feeding and sheltering you. My mom has my utmost gratitude for keeping food in my stomach and a roof over my head.
Secondly, my mom gives away more love than any other human being could give. She is always there for me. No matter how big or small a situation, she will be there. For instance, a few weeks ago, when I had my brain surgery, she never left my side. Neither did my dad for that matter, but this paper isn’t meant for fathers. And, since the surgery, she has been completely understanding, as all good mothers are.
Not only is my mom special to me, but she is to my brother as well. I know and can say, for a fact, that my brother loves her just as much as I do. The great thing about mothers is that they have infinite amounts of love, no matter how many children they have.
Overall, mothers are meant to love and be loved. They come in all shapes and sizes, and are special to their children in special ways.

Daniel Robey, 14
Ocoee


My mom is the best in Southwest Orlando.
M.O.M. — the first word that probably pops in to your head is loving, caring or nice, but to me, my mom is much more than that. She has guided me throughout my life to be the person I am today. She has taught me so much of what I do in my everyday life, like using my manners such as “please,” “thank you,” and “how are you?”; how to sit properly at a table; and how to have patience. She taught me how to make my bed and do my laundry, too.
She also helps me in school by working with me on my homework and school projects when I’m stuck on a question. She volunteers whenever she can in my classroom, which is a big help to me.
But one of the main things I love about my mom is she has faith in me. She knows that if I never give up and keep trying, everything will turn out just fine. She also knows that I have a bright future.
My mom has been there for me through thick and thin. She has shaped me into the person I am today, and I like her just the way she is.
I love you, Mom. Happy Mother’s Day!

Samantha Tyson, 10
Gotha


My mom is the best because she is nice, sweet, loving, caring and beautiful, and she helps me if I need it. She takes me to gymnastics, and then she takes my brother to VI. Afterwards, she drives home and makes dinner for me and my friend, and then drives all the way back to gymnastics to pick us up and drive us home. We eat in the car together and play games. Then we go home.
My mom is the best mom in the world, and I love her very much. I am making her a beautiful handmade rose. My mom is very busy, so she deserves the best from me.

Peyton Bean, 7
Windermere


My mother is spectacular, not just because she spoils me rotten, not because she is my mom, and not because I’m supposed to say so. My mom is spectacular because of what she did for me one day when I was young. She gave me life, and I couldn’t ask for a better mom to do that job.
She gave me the passion to read, she gave me the inspiration to keep writing, and she helped me become original. Most boys think reading and homework are chores, but because of my mom, I think reading is one of the most fun things to do in the world. Studying with her feels like I’m playing a game of Memory or even just humming my favorite tune. Most of my A’s are because of her, and I need to repay her for all those A’s.
She takes me on trips that I will never forget, like the trip to Rome and Paris.
I could go on talking about her forever, but I’m coming close to an end, so let me say that the best way to describe my mom is that she is absolutely supercalifragilisticexpialidocious, and if anyone disagrees then they don’t know what they’re thinking. Maybe they just don’t know what she’s like, but I do. Even if I could, I would never change anything about her because she is perfect and beautiful just the way she is.

Victor Norman, 12
Orange Tree


My mom is the best mom you could ever have. My mom is so caring because she gives me soft Band-Aids when I am hurt. She even cleans my room when I go to school. Then she makes a yummy dinner.
I like her because she also buys me toys and tells me funny jokes.

Ribav Olety, 7
Windermere Ridge


Mom, you are the best. You help with my homework, my sports and a lot of other things. Whenever you talk, it soothes my heart. You are nice to me, and you encourage me. You teach me about God and teach me to live a godly life. You want me to be the best I can be, and that’s all I can ask of you. You love me with all your heart, and I love you, too. You comfort me with your love and help me to do the right things. You help me with my studies.
Thank you for making me happy and keeping me safe. Thank you for your kindness, too. You watch over me even when I think I don’t need your protection. Thank you for letting me fall when I had to learn from my own mistakes. Thank you for teaching me to be neat and tidy, even though it didn’t work. Thank you for teaching me to see the good in people.
You spoil me to this day, and I’m very grateful for that. Thank you for thousands of phone calls telling me what time practice is. Thank you for teaching me to be honest, trustworthy and loving. Thank you for reading to me when I was very, very young. Lastly, thank you for those endless hugs and kisses. I love you with all my heart.

Drew Dizney, 12
Isleworth


A lot of moms are great, but my mom surpasses them all. She’s never judgemental; she helps me and spends time with me doing the things we like, and she puts others’ needs ahead of her own — and I’ve only scratched the surface!
My mom enjoys doing things for and with her family. She goes to baseball games with my dad and me because she just enjoys being with us and seeing us happy. That is her reward; she asks for no more even though she deserves everything and anything good.
Mom home-schools me, so she is my teacher. She also helps the rest of her family, her and my friends, Dad’s friends and even complete strangers. My mom contributes to many charities and homeless people.
Whenever my friends are over, she makes sure they have at least one full meal before they leave, and she leaves a warm impression on everyone who sets foot through her door. My mom even caters to stray animals or lost ones. She has returned lots of pets to their original homes, and to this day, we are still taking care of an abandoned animal and making its life a lot better.
Finally, my mom has never and will never give up on me or my dad. She believes everyone deserves a good person by his side to help. For many people, that person is my mom.
She is the best mother in the world, and the best part is she’s all mine.

Lance Airasian, 14
Celebration


Mom. A common word used in everyday life, but when I stop and think about it, my mom is all but common.
My mom is caring, loving, affectionate and an important role model in my life. She loves me in every situation imaginable, even if I do something wrong. When she disciplines me and I complain, she says she’s punishing me out of love. She takes time out of her day just to spend time with my brother and me. I look up to her when I am troubled, and she cheers me up when I’m down. She supports me and cheers me on in anything and everything I do. She always asks how my day was and how I am feeling. I express to her freely, because I know she cares. Sometimes, she gives me great advice if I am making a decision. I can count on her to tell me just what I need to hear.
My mom is also faithful. She is faithful to the family and says we should stick together and work as a team. She is faithful to God and always asks where we have seen God today. She looks to God in her life and asks Him to lead our family in the right direction. She prays for our family no matter what we are going through. She encourages us to spend time with Him and to read His Word.
My love for my mom is indescribable.

Jake Dimas, 11
Phillips Landing


My mom is awesome!
My mom is president of the West Orange Junior Service League, and she volunteers a lot of time to others. My mom likes to make other people happy. She is the best in Southwest.

Cael Reish, 8
Bronson’s Landing


My mom is my inspiration. She’s my best friend and mentor. My mother is there for me with everything and anything I need. She knows when I’m sad, mad or happy. She and I have a special bond. Yes, we fight; yes, we argue — but that’s because we are just alike.
My mother is my biggest supporter. When I play softball or when I am having a test, she is there for me. I can count on her to have my back no matter what.
I know I can count on her to make me smile. I love my mom. She is the best, and I don’t think I would trade her for all the money in the world.
My mom has been through a lot in her life. She is a strong woman. Raising two kids with little help from anyone has made her strong. She is in college finishing her degree in social work at UCF. That’s a huge accomplishment to go from a dropout to a college graduate, all while raising two young women!
My mom only really got to know her dad about three years ago, as her parents separated when she was 2 years old.
All of this and more are why I believe my mom is the best. I don’t know where I would be without her.

Hannah Novoa, 15
Ocoee


She loves me each night with the things she teaches,
While staying calm like tropical beaches.
She smells like brownies and tastes like strawberries.
She dances like a star and glides like a fairy.
She gave me my life and is a treasure to me.
Her love is endless, always there and free!
God blessed her smile with a power,
To bring out the sun during a rain shower.
I can’t wait to see her each day,
It’s like endless recess, nothing but play.

Madison Gass, 9
Willowwood


Mothers are special people because they have known us all our lives. My mom is special because she does so many things for me.
It takes a lot of time for my mom to help me with my homework. My mom is a teacher, and I know she has a lot of schoolwork to do. Even though she has lots of other work, she always tries to help me first.
My mom is special because when she has extra money, she takes us to Twistee Treat for ice cream. Sometimes, she surprises me and my brother by taking us to Steak ’n Shake for dinner, too! When my mom thinks the weather is warm enough, she takes us to the pool.
These are just some of the reasons my mom is special to me. I know my mom loves me and does her best to take care of me.

Dillon Chapman, 11
MetroWest


My mom is the best mom out there. There are so many reasons why she is so good. She cares for me and gives me a place to live. She is slow to anger. Even when something is going bad, she is the clarity and peace in our family. She also loves me unconditionally. Even when I’m completely rude, inconsiderate and ungrateful, she still loves me. She is very understanding and listens to me. She is there when I am hurting, and she helps me through it. She listens to what is happening in my life and relates to it.
She is also the best because she is funny. She always makes jokes and makes me laugh. She has a unique accent, which really makes me laugh.
She is one of the best chefs I know. She knows how to make the perfect dish out of leftovers.
But best of all, she loves me and is always there for me.

Chris Lamprecht, 13
Oakland


Mom,
When I think about those who love and care for me, you are the first who comes to mind. Your tenderness fills my heart with love and joy. You bring laughter to all. I think of you not just as my mother, but as my role model. You are loving, caring, nurturing and thoughtful. You love me unconditionally, and your encouragement lifts my spirit.
Am I wrong to say the world would be incomplete without your loving attitude? Your ways are always wise. We might bicker or get annoyed with one another, but we always come to our senses. You would take my fall, and I hope you know I would do the same for you.
You have turned me into the girl I am now, and I hope I am just as great a mother some day as you are to me. I could never imagine writing this letter to anyone else.
You have gone through all my life, and I cannot wait to see what the future holds for us. Without you in my life, I would not push myself as much as I do. If I have a problem, you rush to my needs. I would never be able to handle all the stress of being a wife and mom of three kids. I know when I am in a sticky situation, your arms are always open for love and support.
I love you!

Callie Rizzo, 11
Keene’s Pointe


My mom is the best mom in Southwest because she is there for me day and night. One of my favorite places to go with her is SeaWorld. We usually spend most of our time at Shamu’s Happy Harbor. I enjoy spending time with my mom.
One of my favorite rides at Shamu’s Happy Harbor is the Shamu Express roller coaster. When I was younger, I was scared to ride it. Then, one day while we were at Shamu’s Happy Harbor, my mom convinced me to ride the roller coaster by telling me that I was brave and it would be a lot of fun. When the ride started, I was holding Mom’s hand, but by the end, my hands were up in the air. I was so happy that my mom was able to hold my hand for my first Shamu Express ride!
Mom is always there for me because in the mornings she drives me to school. In the afternoons, she helps me with my homework. Also, in the evenings, she helps me figure out what we don’t have in our lunchboxes.

Kaitlyn Cohen, 9
Dr. Phillips


Moms — they would give their lives for you because they are, well, moms. I know that all moms love their children, even if that means being tough. They’re only doing it because they love you. So now, let’s talk about my mom, and I have a lot to talk about.
My mom and the rest of my family are constantly teaching me about my religion. My mom even became a part of my Sunday school. She is so happy that she gets to be with me every Sunday.
The last subject I am going to state about my mom is that she believes I am talented, smart and beautiful. If she had never told me I was so talented, I wouldn’t have gotten a lead in the school play. If she wouldn’t have told me I was smart, I might have given up on school and failed. If she didn’t think I was beautiful, I might have looked like a total weirdo.
So, do you think my mom is the best? I bet you do! My mom is awesome, and honestly, I wouldn’t be here without her. My mom is the best!

Emilia Powell, 11
Gotha


There are so many reasons why I wouldn’t trade my mother for any other mother in the world. She helps my dad put food on the table. She puts my family and me first. My mom works extremely hard at her job. She tries to do everything to please our family.
My mother is amazing. I know that she gets stressed out at work, but she still does everything in her power to make us happy when she comes home. I love her so much. She has done so much both for and with me. She and my dad take me to do fun things with my friends, like going to the movies. I am extremely privileged to have a life with caring parents, as they try so hard for my sister and me. I wish I could do more to pay her back for everything she has done for me.
My mother is the best mother in the whole world. She has taught me so much through the years, like morals and perseverance. She helps to show me the right things in life, which has shaped me into the person I am and will become. My mom is doing a phenomenal job using her parenting skills.
Mom, I love you so much that words can’t describe my love. I love you as wide as the sky. You are the absolute very best!

Miranda DeWoody, 14
Oakland


My mom is awesome because she gave birth to a girl obsessed with lots of shows and movies.
If people in my house are picking on me, my mom is the first person I go to. My mom will buy me merchandise from fandoms I am in, which makes me really happy.
When I was little, I never slept. I would be annoying in my crib, and my mom would come in at 3 a.m. and take me to the living room. She would watch TV with me so I wouldn’t wake up my brother, Alex.
Although I play games with my dad, I like to go shopping and talking with my mom. Of course, when I see something I really want, she will say, “Put it back,” unless I’m lucky enough to get it.
I do everything with my mom. Once, she wanted to watch Harry Potter with me because I could say the spells.
My mom calls me nicknames like Peach.
In conclusion, my mom is the complete package and is so amazing.

Camille Nash, 10
Ridgemoore


I assume everyone already knows that my mom is the best one in Southwest Orlando, but here is why I think so.
The first thing is she is an amazing Chinese cook. She is especially wonderful with her plump dumplings. She says it’s her specialty. One day for dinner, she decided to cook her specialty. When I ate it, it tasted like heaven. She added some spicy hot sauce and sweet corn — my favorite!
My mom is best because she is helpful. She and I sit at my table and do my homework together. She teaches me hard things related to my homework. She tells me that I have to be independent like my older brother, Tony, who got into Harvard and Yale. My mom helps me to become a successful citizen.
Lastly, she rewards me by tickling me. She does it at certain times such as when I finish my homework or I’ve had a good piano lesson.
Now you know why my mom is best. I hope you will spread the news.

Lucy Wu, 7
Hampton Reserve


My mom is the best in Southwest and always will be for so many reasons. My dad works all day, and I’m at school, so that leaves my mom and dogs at home. The dogs aren’t much help with mopping and dusting, so that leaves Mom as the one who cleans the house. Since our house is 4,100 square feet, it is a big job to clean it, but my mom always makes it dust- and dirt-free.
Besides this, my mom does much more. She takes care of me, Dad and the dogs. Every morning, she gets me up, ready and to school. Along with this, my mom always takes time to make my lunch so that I don’t have to eat school food.
During the time I’m at school, my mom goes grocery shopping for dinner. After she is done shopping, she goes home and starts dinner so it can be ready for me to eat when I get home. Then, at 3 p.m., Mom comes and picks me up from school to take me home or to some after-school activity, depending on which day it is.
This is just my mom’s normal day. Can you imagine what it’s like for her when I come home sick? In first grade, I got influenza B, and for 2 1/2 weeks, my mom took care of me.
Thank you, Mom. You are the best mom ever!

Leah Meyer, 11
Balmoral


My mom surely is the best. To me, she is my security blanket. No matter how bad a day she has had, she is there to provide me with a shoulder to cry on and a sympathetic ear. Even if she has been exhausted by my siblings, she is eager to hear me squeal about my drama-filled day. She puts up with my mood swings, constant chatter and demanding requests, yet still runs an outstanding household.
My mother is an incredible influence, but honestly, she has one flaw. She loves me way too much!
If I had a flower for every time she made me smile, I’d have a garden to walk in forever. Without my mom, I’d be lost. She truly is a gift from God in each and every way. Words cannot describe how much I love her. Happy Mother’s Day is the least I can say after all she has done for me.

Christie Simaan, 12
Orange Tree


My mom is valuable to me, and she gave me life. Her smile lights me up. I couldn’t live without her. She is my morning star that greets me every day. She gives me hugs and kisses. I feel like I am on top of the world because she cares for me and helps me with my reading homework. She also encourages me when I am scared.

Kayla Estep, 10
Dr. Phillips


My mom always has open arms for my brothers and me. She is there for me and my No. 1 supporter in whatever I do. Whether it’s cheerleading or buying new clothes, she’s there.
She doesn’t only support me, she also supports my brothers in school and sports. She helped with our church’s Easter-Egg hunt, and often plans and organizes other church events.
She works but also juggles the “job” of being the team mom for my cheerleading squad. She makes sure all the girls are at the competitions, makes goodie bags for them, and screams the loudest over all the other moms.
When she comes home, she cooks, folds clothes and helps me study, even when all she wants to do is take a bubble bath and read.
My family goes to church almost every Sunday. My mom makes sure I have the best relationship with God that I can have. She encourages me to go to church events and to help my church and community in any way I can.
My mom doesn’t have to be skinny or have on makeup to know that I love her. And I know she loves me by how her helping personality has shaped me into the girl I am today.

Leah Humphreys, 13
Ocoee


What are the characteristics of a mother? Kind, beautiful, caring, sometimes a neat freak. Mothers do more than just clean, cook and tuck you into bed. All mothers go above and beyond for their children.
My mom takes me places so I can have an awesome time with her. We go places like the movies on the weekend. Other days, we go to theme parks, especially Universal. I enjoy the time I spend with my mom.
My mother makes sure I look nice. She takes me to get my hair done and buys me clothes that I like. Sometimes, for fun, we get our nails done together. My mom makes sure I look presentable both in and outside of school.
My mom shares her past with me. One day, Mom showed me Bethune-Cookman University, where she went to college. Every once in a while, we go to Miami, which is where her family grew up. We still have family that lives down there that we visit when we go.
My mom isn’t a famous movie star, and she isn’t on my favorite TV show, but she is still the best for me.

Faithlyn Moss, 10
Lake Fischer Estates


Moms. What do they do? You might say they cook, clean and work. Well, they can also take you to cool places, make you laugh and buy you neat stuff. Think about this, and your answer might be different.
In the morning, my mom gently wakes me up. I walk into the kitchen and see a plate of hot pancakes drizzled with syrup. Delicious! After I eat and get dressed, I get into the car. My mom and I make jokes and converse all the way to school.
When she picks me up, Mom greets me with a big smile on her face. I tell her all about my day. As soon as we get home, I do homework, and Mom gladly helps if I have any trouble.
After my homework, I go over to my friend’s house. When I get back home, there is a delightful aroma. Mom cooked roasted chicken, one of my favorites. She, Dad, Kelsey and I talk about our day as we eat. Everybody thanks her when we are done.
As soon as I am done with reading and my shower, Mom kisses me good night and turns out my light.
Think again. What does your mom do?

Courtney Aaron, 11
Windermere


My mother is the best mom you can ever have. Since the day I was born, my mother has been there for me. She is very sweet, has a great sense of humor, and is a magnificent cook. Mom is also very friendly. Once you meet her, you will become friends instantly. Without my mom, my life would be a total failure.
My mom is as sweet as a chocolate cake. The day before my 11th birthday, I was really mad that my mom didn’t put up any decorations, but when I woke up in the middle of the night, I suddenly found the whole living room filled with decorations. That is one of the many sweet things my mom has done for me.
Other than being sweet, my mom is also a great listener. If I need someone to talk to, she is there to listen and give advice. Mom has a great sense of humor. She is the funniest mother I know. She can make me laugh for days when she is cheering me up or telling a story.
My mother is also a great cook. Whether it is breakfast, lunch or dinner, I know every meal will be divine.
My mom is an angel to me. I would never trade her because of all the sweet things she has done for me. The times we spend together are unforgettable and will always be in my heart.
In conclusion, my mom inspires me to be the best I can be at everything I set my mind to. Mom is a role model. She is hardworking, disciplined, kind and loving. My mother will always be in my heart because that is how much I love her.

Krubel Aylay, 11
Southwest Orlando


Moms are kind, strong, caring, beautiful and smart, but what makes my mom so unique? First off, my mother is a follower of Christ. Many people are, but by this I mean everything she does and stands for is a symbol of Christ. My mother knows that if I am in need of her help, the best way to calm me down is with kind words from her heart.
Not many people can say their mom’s perfect, but my mom is perfectly imperfect. Meaning, yes, she has her moments of anger, and she may upset me, but she is always there when I need her. God gave her to me not as just a mother, but as an inspiration to keep living life. There have been troubles in our life because we aren’t perfect, but if I ever need that someone to keep me on my feet and not crumple down, I can count on my mom. She has taught me to make a statement of life and not to waste it. My mom isn’t amazing because of her talent of being a mother but because of the natural beauty inside her heart. It’s hard to find a great person and a spectacular mother, but when you see my mom, she’s both.
My beautiful mother isn’t just my helper, cleaner or cooker, but she is a mother whose heart is full of grace. There are no words to fully describe her.

Nathalie Ari, 12
Cypress Landing


My mom is the best because she carries me to my room when it’s bedtime if I’m too tired. She vacuums my room when it’s messy. She buys me clothes, food and things for school. She even lets me hold our dog in the car. She pays for tickets to go on vacation. She also lets me go to fun places for my birthday. That is why my mom is the best.

Ella Beerensson, 7
Bay Vista Estates


My mom is the best in Southwest Orlando, and nobody else is better! Here’s why …
The first reason is since my mom used to work at Disney and Animal Kingdom, I can get in for free. Also, we do lots of extremely fun things, like build Legos and much more. Another thing is we have a lot of memories since I was a baby, and it’s all because of my mom.
Secondly, she plays with me. Sometimes, after a sad day, she’ll say, “Cowabunga,” and pick me up, throw me on the bed, flip me and tickle me, which is fun.
Sometimes in the middle of the night, when there’s nothing to do, I’ll sneak over to her bedroom, and she will take me to my room and tickle me a lot until I cry.
Another thing is she teaches me many things. For example, when I can not say a word, my mom has me separate the word in two and then put it together. If I don’t know what a word means, she’ll have me look it up on my iPhone, or if it doesn’t make sense, she’ll explain it to me.
That’s proof that my mom is the best. Nobody’s better. I love her so much!

Nigel Jenkins, 8
Vista Royal at MetroWest


I can honestly say my mother is one of the most important people in my life. From the day I was born, she has loved and cherished me. From tea parties in the living room to helping me with my homework for hours to cheering the loudest from the stands at my soccer games, she has been there for me, keeping every event in my life from being a dull moment.
Her cooking is absolutely exquisite. When I get home exhausted from tennis practice, I walk through from the front door, and I immediately smell the delicious aroma of the meal she cooked that night.
In addition, back in 2009, my sister went to a pool party that changed the rest of her life. She was in a critical water slide accident that knocked out her two permanent front teeth. It was a hard, depressing time for my family, and I don’t think we would’ve gotten through it without my mom’s positive attitude and encouragement. It has been five years since my sister’s accident, and she is now happy, healthy and blessed to have a perfect smile.
My mother has helped my family in all ways possible, through thick and thin. I love my mom more than anyone else in the entire world.
Mom, you’re the best mom in the entire world, and I love you to the moon and back. Happy Mother’s Day!

Gabriela Kaiser, 12
Westover Reserve


My mom is the best all-around mom in Southwest Orlando. First of all, whatever I ask, she knows. She is the best reader in the world. She is awesome at math.
Second of all, she will crack you up! If you look inside her brain, there are thousands of jokes. She makes you laugh so hard, you can’t breathe.
Last of all, every night and day, she gives me a kiss. Her hugs are super soft. She makes sure I accomplish everything like school and sports.
So now you know my mom is the best in Southwest Orlando.

Anthony Blount, 8
MetroWest


“This is the most crowded ‘empty nest’ I have ever seen.”
This is the answer my mom gives to her friends when they ask her how she is going to cope, come August, when her “baby” goes off to college and she is left with an empty nest. With her oldest at 23, her middle child at 18, and her youngest at 17, you would think she would have an empty household. I mean, what young adults (graduated from college, in college and headed to college) actually enjoy being at home? Just come over to the Nugent household any day of the week, and you will see that it is far from empty. You will also see why.
My mom is the best in Southwest because she is devoted to being a great mother, a wonderful wife and our best friend. She fills our home with unconditional love and support. We are blessed to have a mother who still cooks us dinner and, when we’re lucky, chocolate-chip cookies, too! She makes the saying “there’s no place like home” as true as it can be.
My mom is the best in Southwest, because she never goes a day without making her babies and husband feel loved and cared for. I expect this little nest of hers to be crowded for a while.
What can I say? Who wouldn’t want to live with the best mom in Southwest?

Danielle Nugent, adult
Orange Tree


Who we are today, and who we’ll become tomorrow are formed by the person we call mom.
From the time I was born to right now, my mom has been there for me every step of the way. I know my mom works hard for me to be who I am today. And I know she works hard so I can be who I am in the future.
My mom is wonderful, kind, nice and everything I could want from her. She is the petals on a flower, leaves on a tree, and the one who kisses me on the forehead before I go to bed. But most importantly, she is the one who loves and cares for me.
My mom is the person who taught me about life, and I can say life is wonderful. She is the one who taught me to be myself. Without my mom, who would I be today or tomorrow?
I know my mom is the best, because she believes in me, and that is all I could ever ask for from my mom.

Layla Vermeulen, 10
Southwest Orlando


Think of one word to describe your mom. Just one. Tough, huh? For me, thinking of just one word to describe my mom is like asking a teacher who their favorite student is. My mother has done so many things for me to be where I am today.
First off, my mom is encouraging. Without my mom, I would never have had enough courage to try and compete in oration. She told me that this chance doesn’t come very often and that I should take the chance and go on. I competed in the class competition and ended up getting third place!
On the other hand, my mom is very helpful. Whenever I need help on Study Island, she gives me a full explanation of how to do it. Also, whenever I am trying to clean my guinea pig cage and I need help, my mom stays far away from the smelly cage and tells me what to do.
In conclusion, my mom is definitely the best mom in the world. She has done so many things for me to get this far.

Katrina McMahon, 11
Lake Fischer Estates


My mother is a great person. She loves me for who I am and who I am going to be in the future. I might think I know everything, but I know Mom knows best. I don’t always listen to my mom when she warns me of certain things, but I always learn my lesson afterwards. The reasons why I think my mom is the best are she is kind-hearted and a prayer warrior.
My mother is a kind-hearted person, because for every need I have, she is there to give me a hand. When I feel like my world has ended when trying to do homework, she is there to help. When any of her friends need help, she’s there to give a word of hope. She also has the greatest sense of humor during the best or worst of times.
My mother is a prayer warrior. She gets up every single day at 4 a.m. to pray for my brother and me. She prays for us to find our purpose in life. She prays for healing and prays for the president to receive wise counseling. She prays for my school, for safe keeping and to keep angels around me every day. I love her so much.
In conclusion, in my heart, I love my mom so, so, so much! She is a leader, teacher, caregiver, healer and forgiver. She has raised me to be a leader and an example to others. Without her, I don’t know where I would be.
I love you, Mom!

Ben Ogletree 14
Winter Garden


If you are looking for the best mom in Southwest, it’s my mom.
My mom is the best, because she helps me. She helps me spell difficult words like turquoise. She also helps me with math, like finding unknown measures or degrees. When I’m writing, my mom has great ideas of fun adventures. Also, when I was little, she helped braid my hair and tied my shoes so I wouldn’t trip.
Another reason she is the best is because she is caring. My mom cooks yummy food like her homemade cookies. I love going into the kitchen and smelling the chocolate chips in the oven.
My mom also cleans everything! You should watch her walk into a room to clean. She can go in my room with a duster, vacuum and her bare hands, and make the room perfectly clean.
I really think it’s caring when my mom laughs at all my jokes whether they are funny or not. I enjoy her laugh, because she smiles. I think my mom has the prettiest smile in the whole world.
My mom makes my hair look beautiful when she braids it. She does it in a swift motion, which I like watching. Also, when my mom puts my hair into a ponytail, she always says, “I think this is the best ponytail in the world.” It makes me laugh every time.
My mom always makes time for me. Even though my mom is busy, she helps me with my homework every night.

Arden Spehar, 10
Belmere


Who is the greatest mom? It is my mom. No one loves me more than my mother; no one is willing to sacrifice everything for me like my mother.
My mother is the best woman in the world. No one could replace her in my heart. I admire my mother. I don’t know why she is always busy working two jobs almost every day, working 45-plus hours a week.
She loves me more than the ocean, the universe and herself. When I am happy or sad, she is there to honor me or listen to the problem.
Mom, you give me everything, but you never ask me for payback. You are the best, the greatest woman in the world and in my heart. I love you forever. I am happy to have you by my side to take care of me, protect me and give me your love.

Brady Fallon, 11
MetroWest


My mom is the best mom in the world, and here’s why.
My mom has six kids and still manages to love and care for every single one of them. She is the kindest, most loving person I have ever met. She plays football with me and, surprisingly, has quite a good arm. Sometimes she can even throw better than me. But catching? That’s another story.
My mom treats me kindly and fairly, and almost never makes bad decisions. Even though sometimes I think her decisions are unfair, I look back on them and realize they were fair. She is kind and fair to all my siblings. If I was a mom of six kids, I think I’d go crazy.
She’s a nurse and works four days a week and does up to 14-hour shifts. She works all day and sometimes even all night to care and provide for me. She always seems to remember the smallest stuff, like what I like to eat or drink, and sometimes even stuff I don’t remember. She does the most fun things with me and my siblings on the weekends, like going to Sky Zone or having a block party or just playing outside with me. Even when times get tough, my mom seems to have a positive attitude. She is also one of the best cooks ever.
I love you, Mom. Happy Mother’s Day!

Austin Albers, 12
Stoneybrook West


Hi. My name is Paxton. I want to tell you about my wonderful mom, the best in Southwest Orlando.
First thing about my mom is how I very calmly sleep with her. In my opinion, I’m a bed hog. Then, before we watch TV, we snuggle up in a cozy blanket on the couch. Sometimes we do mouth-talk. It’s when we have no voice but pretend we’re angry at each other.
When I get hurt, she gives me helpful hugs. She also cures my hurtful boo-boos. She cures them with kisses and Band-Aids.
Last but not least, me and my mom love Kentucky games. We do all kind of cheers. For example: “C-A-T-S — Cats, cats, cats.” Sometimes we even eat peanuts when we’re nervous. But, most of all, we like to watch the game.
I bet no one has a mom like me, because she’s the mom of my heart.

Paxton Wojciechowicz, 8
Abingdon Hill


I believe my mom is the best mother in the world, because she taught me about following my heart and reaching for my dreams.
When I was 10 years old, she bought me a guitar because I wanted to learn to play country music. At first, it was hard for me to practice every day. My fingers hurt from playing, and I wasn’t very fast, but my mom said, “You can quit or switch instruments, but you have to stick with it for one year.”
After I had played the guitar for a year, I didn’t want to quit anymore because I was a lot better than before, and it was really fun. Now my mom takes me to open mics and gigs where I can play my music.
Another thing my mom has taught me is that helping other people with their dreams is good, too. She says it’s more important to use your talents, not to be famous. Three years ago, my cousin, Elyse, wanted to audition for American Idol, so Mom volunteered to take her to try out, because no one in her family would sleep in a parking lot on the ground all night to help her get into the audition line. My mom even helped Elyse with her performance. Elyse auditioned and didn’t get in, but my mom told her never to give up, and Elyse didn’t. Now, she sings and performs in many local plays.
I love my mother because she is kind and considerate to all people, and she will always love me … no matter how many guitar strings I break!

Alec Knight, 14
Tuscany


My mother is the best. She sounds like a hummingbird. She has never let me down. My mother looks like a pretty red rose, and her eyes shine like diamonds. My mother smells like Dove soap. When I have a frown, she turns it upside down. Every morning she gives me a hug and fixes me some breakfast. My mother is always by my side. She helps me to ride my bike and with my homework. She always makes my day. My mother feels like the fur of a kitten. When I had a stomachache, she gave me the medicine I needed.
I love my mother, because she’s the best in Southwest. I hope she always loves me.

Lauryn Lacy, 8
Southwest Orlando


My mom has the hardest job in the whole world, and she never complains when she is doing it. Waking up at 3 in the morning, my mom treks to work at Starbucks. She helps other people start off their day with a smile from 4 a.m.-1 p.m. Exhausted from serving customers, she arrives home with no time to herself.
After getting home, she ventures into teaching her three kids, all of whom are in different grades. Shortly after educating us for several hours, she jumps back in the car to take us to tennis, baseball and swimming practices. Mom always watches at least one of the three practices from start to finish. She picks up all her kids and journeys home to start preparing a meal for her family.
Following the meal, she spends time instilling kindness into us by reading the Bible and reminding us to live each day with kindness in our hearts. Next, she might start helping one of us study for an upcoming test for the next day. Some days, her schedule keeps her going until midnight.
Finally, my mom gets to rest and go to sleep, but don’t forget that she wakes up in a couple of hours to do the same thing all over again.
Thank You, God, for graciously blessing me with a wonderful mother who gives tirelessly of herself to everyone she touches.

Ryan McGinnis, 14
Independence


My mom is terrific and wonderful because she has helped and encouraged me with my learning problems. I have a learning disability that makes it harder to do math and writing. With my mom’s help and much-needed encouragement, I am able to overcome and do what needs to be done. She is open to new ways and strategies to help me gain better knowledge.
She puts others before her needs. She takes me to and from school every day. No matter how tired or upset she is, she is always available.
It makes me feel proud to say, “My mom is picking me up.” She also takes me to sporting events. She helps encourage me when I am struggling and reminds me to keep moving on.
My mom is the best because I am able to overcome my learning disabilities and struggles. I am able to be what I want to be because my mom has made this possible.
There is no better way to conclude this than by saying, “Mom, you are my hero, my joy, my help and the best mom anyone could imagine. You have taught me to believe in myself, overcome my disabilities and reach for my greatest goals.”
My mom is the greatest mother around!

Sarah Gegerson, 14
Wesmere


My mom is the best in Orlando.
My mom kisses me. Sometimes she even hugs me. Oh, who am I kidding? She hugs me a lot. We even play water war. She also buys me candy like lollipops and bubble gum. The candy is very sweet like my mom. She even helps me with my homework.
That’s why my mom is the greatest!

Carlee Ocasio, 6
Landsbrook Terrace


Do you know Lisa Alemany? Well, she is really nice, courteous, helpful and funny. She is a good mom. She is wonderful. She is kind because she helps me when I am sad. This is how she helps me. She lets me call my dad when I am sad.

Isabella Alemany, 7
Sand Lake


All through my life, my mom has been the person I’ve looked up to. These are some of the reasons why. She’s a hard worker and works morning to night. She is also very supportive. If you want to know more about my mom, read on.
On some of her hardest-working days, she’s on her computer. Some days she travels to clients. She works 12 hours per day. Being a CPA is hard work. She’s hardworking at home, too, taking care of three kids.
She is also very kind. As I always say, “A mother is a daughter’s best friend!” She helps me when I’m sick with the flu. She helps me with my homework, even with her tight schedule. I know she will be there no matter what.
My mom is supportive. She takes me to cheer every Friday and sits in the gym for hours to watch me. She also goes to all my brother’s football games. She always cheers on my sister and me at our cheer competition. She goes everywhere.

Maddy Boudreaux, 10
Westfield


Moms are the best thing in the entire world! What would we do without our wonderful moms?
My mom is the best thing that has ever happened to this very earth. She’s loving, she’s caring and she definitely knows how to cook.
I know many kids don’t have a mother to care for them or love them, but I know for a fact that my mother will never depart from me or my family, no matter what the situation is!
Some kids (precisely teens) don’t understand what their mothers do for them. They buy you clothing, food, even (maybe) a phone. I know I will always appreciate what my mother does for me. Not only me but the family and the patients she works with at ORMC. (That’s why she’s pretty awesome!)
I know I will always love her, and she will always love me with all her heart and mine!

Lyanna Rivas, 10
Reserve at Belmere


A mom is a person who makes your meals, washes your dirty clothes, and cleans your messy room — but most importantly, she loves you.
Let me tell you about my magnificent mom.
To begin with, my marvelous mom is an excellent cook. My top five favorite things she makes for me are chewy chocolate-chip cookies, cheese pizza with extra mozzarella cheese, chocolate brownies, cupcakes and Kraft Macaroni & Cheese.
Every Friday night, we have family pizza night. My mom starts making the homemade dough and mixing it in the bread maker. It smells delicious! We get to create our heavenly pizzas. We devour our creations, and watch the Disney Channel and Animal Planet on TV. I snuggle next to my mom and enjoy her warm, cuddly hugs.
Another reason I love her is because she is so creative. She sews, crochets, scrapbooks, and my favorite is her cute cupcakes that she makes for every occasion. One year, for Easter, she made vanilla cupcakes and frosted them with green frosting and transformed them to look like they had grass. She put three pieces of malted-milk robin eggs candy in the middle so they looked like Easter eggs sitting in grass. They were adorable and heavenly!
My mom is a special person, and I love her with my whole heart. She is the best mom ever because she loves me for who I am.

Morgan Medcalf, 11
Southwest Orlando


There are lots of fantastic parents in the world, but my mom is the best one of all.
My mom cares for me a lot, and I love it. She braids my hair and dresses me up. It doesn’t matter if I’m crabby, mad or sad, either way, she loves me just the same. I feel the same way about her. If I had a different mom and knew my mother, I would wish she was my mom.
Another thing I love about my mom is that she is herself all the time, no matter what is going on. She sticks true to who she is.
My mother is kind, caring and friendly. Whenever our neighbors are outside and my mom is, too, they have a long chat. I want to be just like her when I grow up.
My mom loves to have fun. She loves — I mean loves, loves, loves — the beach. Whenever we are there, we are at the pool, tubing or on the beach.
Mother’s Day is always awesome with my mom. If I got to pick out my mom, I am positive that I would pick my mother. I cannot say how much I love her. Actually I can. I love her to the moon and back!

Taylor Scaletta, 9
Reserve at Belmere


My mom, Alison Luna, has volunteered countless hours at many local food banks and public schools. She is a generous person who sacrifices her time to help Second Harvest Food Bank pack and ship food. She also helps many other organizations, including Osceola County Public Schools and even my former school, Montessori World School. She volunteered while working a full-time job at Google, and she also worked a side job at my tae kwon do school. She’s a third-degree black belt and high-ranking instructor who takes and teaches classes.
Finally, my mother helps around the house with cooking, cleaning and doing laundry. No one asks her to. She instinctively does things for her family because she is an amazing mother.
My mother is a hardworking PMP, volunteer and home-schooler. Most of all, she is the best at what she does — being my mom.

Nicholas Luna, 14
Dr. Phillips


The staff of the Southwest Orlando Bulletin extends special thanks to the following schools that participated in the 23rd annual Best Mom in Southwest contest: Bay Meadows, Lake Whitney, MetroWest, Sand Lake, and Thornebrooke elementary schools; The First Academy; Hope Charter School; Humphreys Junior High; Premier Academy; and Windy Ridge School.


Editor’s note: Entries may have been edited for grammar, punctuation, length and content. To pay tribute to as many “Best Moms” as possible, Sports does not appear in this issue.