I always feel appreciative to live in this great country and to be afforded the luxuries of being an American. I am probably one of the few people I know who prefers travel in the USA to travel elsewhere. So be it.

My parents were first generation Americans and they wanted my sister and me to have all the benefits afforded to children born in this great land—a quality public education, the opportunity to have the best health care in the world, the opportunity to live, work and vote in a democracy and the birthright to achieve your own greatest potential. As I look back on it, I have benefited from all of that and even more. It seems that as I take one path, I found at least two others that added greatly to me as a  person and also allowed me to add to it as well. Only in America, the land of opportunity is not just words in a song—it is the reality of what America brings and has always brought for immigrants looking for a brighter future. That has not changed…if anything it has gotten stronger. In my daily life in St. Louis or wherever I travel I meet people who have come here to have a better life and have added greatly to what is America and they are so proud to become true American citizens. They may know more about America then children lucky enough to be born here.

Last week while in my hometown of Miami, FL I was able to enjoy the diversity that has become Miami. Miami always had a Latin feel but that was furthered during the 1960’s when so many Cubans fled to Miami for a life of freedom. Thanks to all of these immigrants—so anxious for a future, that Miami was reborn and is today one of the hub cities in our country—a hot place literally and figuratively to live, work and play. No longer is it a place for just good weather and Spring Break pandemonium but it is a place where diverse cultures have come together to create a 21st century city like no other in America. It has not been easy nor has it been with out strife but it does work.

Not all immigrants to Miami are from Latin America. We met a man from Budapest at the Avis car rental who was so proud of just being granted his citizenship and the fact that his sons were in college and thriving. He spoke excellent English even though he was self conscious about it. His enthusiasm for what a good life he had in Miami and in America was understandable in any dialect. It was the sparkle in his eyes that really said it all. It is through his eyes and the eyes of all immigrants to our great country that we can see what we may take for granted—what freedom really means. How can we all understand how valuable it is if we have always had it? Aren’t we all immigrants of some sort? I immigrated from Florida to Missouri. I was an immigrant to the man’s world of business. Today I am a digital immigrant because I have had to learn technology where children today are born to it. I am an immigrant to all the things I have learned and still want to learn. I understand what it feels like to have to prove your sincerity, that freedom to achieve your true potential is not automatic—it still must be earned.

On this 4th of July weekend I am reminded of all the values I hold dear, all of the freedoms I have been granted and all of the responsibilities that come with being a citizen of this great country. I live in a state of happiness fueled by a passion for everything I am committed to: my company. The people I work with, my husband and friends, my community, my young Guests I meet each week, my industry, my gratitude for my good health and every breath I breathe in freedom. I know that I have created this happiness by choice. I do know it’s not just one choice that makes the difference—it is all of the mini choices that I have made along the way that have led me to this moment in time. The choices that I am able to make because I am an American citizen.




14 Responses to “GOD BLESS AMERICA!”

  1. Allison: AKA AllisonBearPaw1 Says:

    Happy late 4th of July.
    We are very fortunate to live in a country with so many oppurtunities and freedom.

    Hope to see you in BABV one day!

  2. jamieyourock41 Says:

    hey maxine i play on build a bearville every day of may life oh ad i have a questionmy mom loves polar bears can you get build a bear too make them bye december thank you jamieyourock41

  3. crystalcute444 Says:

    Another great entry =]

  4. FannyRockStar=) Says:

    Hey maxine I love your blog!I play everyday build-a-bearville and each day are more fun!! Thanks for all!!!



  5. destinygirlsrock10 Says:

    I totally agree maxine you totally rock most americans hate america fro some reason I don’t I think it’s great that we are a free contry

  6. Sarah2Cool Says:

    Thats an awesome post you rock maxine!

  7. Nick January Says:

    Go to my blog for lots of fun activities and now we have a special if you visit my blog, here’s the post: New Contest comeing up!
    Published July 6, 2009 Uncategorized Leave a Comment Edit

    Ok! I’m gonna do a conntest and the prize seems fair enough!I’m going to have a contest where whoever gets more people to come to my site gets a free babv hotel room.There will be a bed for you and your furry friend and additional beds are included if you want to bring a friend. tell the people to say who recomended them. The 1st place is the dorm, 200 bearbills to spend st the bee stylin salon,800 bearbills to spend at pawlette coufur’s, ultimate access to all rooms exept the other winner’s rooms, and their own concert in the hotel patio in babv with an adiance and a stage. The other wiinners will get a bed for you and your furry friend and additional beds included if they want andultimate access to all rooms exept the other winner’s rooms. To enter post your babv name below and get started. whoever wins gets added to my buddy list and the 2nd place -5th place’s rooms will be posted and they get to choose.NOW THE CONTEST STARTS!UPDATE:The first place also gets free food.

    Remember, only at http://bearycoolbearvillecheats.wordpress.com/

  8. lindacute25 Says:

    can you give 5 free credits to everyone on babv plz

  9. lindacute25 Says:

    can other people who can’t come to your workshop get the free items u give to people who come there plz?

  10. lindacute25 Says:

    i can’t come to the buildabearville store cos i live far away and there’s no babv store around there

  11. lindacute25 Says:

    can you plz give every a storecredit like u did the other day

  12. lindacute25 Says:

    can you plz give everyone a store credit like u did the other day

  13. milla3 Says:

    hey maxine do u own babv. everyone heres my blog http://milla3.wordpress.com/

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