Mother's Day in the Bahamas


She was slipping off the rocks a little bit because it was so wet. After a while the photo shoot was moved to the beach, which she liked because she could move around a little easier. Serena B. was nervous and anxious, but in the corner of her eye she saw her mother, Christina, smiling at her.

"I just kept seeing her [smiling, nodding]. She was making facial expressions. She didn't say anything," Serena said of her mother, who accompanied her on the trip. "It kind of just motivated me a little bit more. From everybody else, you hear lots and lots of things, but when I saw my mom it kind of kept me on Earth, back on task and focused a little bit more because I realized I was doing my job."

Serena is not only a rookie to the calendar shoot, but she's also a rookie to the cheerleading squad. It's all part of what is amounting to a very exciting time in Serena's life. The first-year cheerleader is currently working five jobs while preparing to go to the University of Baltimore on a full scholarship in the fall. As anxious as she is about the whole experience, she's still finding time to soak it all in, especially by talking with the vets.

"They give you a mindset you should think about when you wake up, that you're a Ravens' cheerleader," Serena said about her new teammates. "You need to go out and you need to try your hardest. If you don't, people won't take you seriously and they won't think you want to be on this team."

With Mother's Day on Sunday, Serena's family thought it would be a good idea for her mom to come along on the cheer shoot trip. Serena was happy she was there, if for no other reason than she's having a good time.

"She didn't really come for me," Serena joked. "She came to get a break."

Christina quickly chimed in. "I did come for her. I told her I'd be invisible, but if she needed me, I'd be there."

Serena was glad to have the extra support.

"I mean, it's your mom.  She's always gonna be honest," Serena said. "She's going to tell you exactly, straight how it is.  If you're not doing something right or you don't look right, she's going to tell you.  Not like someone else.  I just know that her honest answer is all I need."

I love being here with my daughter," Christina added.  "This is a wonderful experience.  It's great to spend some mother-daughter time together and be here to support her.  I'm very proud of her.  I know what she's capable of.  It's weird to see people looking at her, but it's for a good reason."

For someone claiming she would be invisible, Christina had carved quite a niche for herself on the trip. She has gone to every item on the team's itinerary throughout the week, and has even had lunch with some of Serena's teammates without her daughter. The team has even grown accustomed to calling Christina "Mom."

With her shoot over but the week just beginning, Serena says the first two days felt more like two weeks. Despite her nervousness, the first thing Serena thought when she was done was I wanna do it again!

With a mom like Christine coming along, the rest of the team will want Serena to do it again, as well.

Daily Notes

The girls did a few shoots off the beach Wednesday morning as a few were taken to off-site.  Ashley and Meghan D. were taken to a nearby golf course and did thier shoots by a stone wall just beyond the 2nd hole.  Paige and Chase climbed up into a tree just off the 11th green and did their shoot there...Daily activities pool aerobics, dance lessons and beach volleyball continued to be big hits with the fellow hotel guests...The afternoon was jam-packed with shoots as five different girls (Kellie Lee, Andrea, Abbie, Sarah and Spencer) were all photographed in various spots around the beach...98 Rock's very own Mickey Cucchiella performed a free stand-up comedy show for all hotel guests.  Mickey was accompanied by two other comedians and a live band for the evening.

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