As a proud grandmother of three boys, Scott said that she loves being around children, and one of her favorite pastimes is reading to them.
“Love. Read. Learn!” focuses on reading and literacy, as well as healthy lifestyles for children and families, Scott told those gathered at the hospital.
The visiting dignitary stopped by two rooms in the Family Birth Place center. The first room was the temporary home of Billy and Jessica Dawkins of Defuniak who had just welcomed their third child, Connor Timothy Dawkins one day prior.
Jessica, who is a third grade teacher at West Defuniak Elementary School, said she shares the first lady’s love for reading and education and that she often finds her 9-year-old daughter up before dawn reading in the living room.
“She just can’t stand it, she has to know what is going to happen next,” she said.
The second family to meet Scott was Nolan and Nicole Weeks, who were celebrating the arrival of their seventh child, Ashylnn Bell Weeks.
“Sounds like you have a lot of help at home,” said Scott.
After hearing that Nolan is a deputy with the Okaloosa Sheriff’s Office, and that the couple adopted their eldest child, Scott added, “You have big hearts. God bless you.”
Scott presented both couples with personally inscribed copies of her baby journal at the close of her visit.
“You can include all of your baby’s milestones from birth to age five,” she said.
The journal includes fill-in-the-blanks for antidotes such as a baby’s favorite song, toy, and bedtime stories as well as a suggested reading list, health tips from the Florida Department of Health, and nutritious recipes from Chef Justin Timineri of the Florida Department of Agriculture.
“This is a happy visit for me,” said Scott after visiting with the families and holding the two new babies. “This is the fun part of my job. I always tell everyone I have the best job in the world.”