Tuesday, October 27, 2009

New Look

I decided it was a time to change the look of the blog up. I like it, but I can't figure out how to move the picture at the top so that it's not cut off on the side. I didn't feel like fighting with it so I just left it alone!

Well today was an absolutely beautiful day! Probably the best day we've had in the entire month of October. This month we've had two, yes two, days of snow with accumulation, and basically every other day it has rained and been dreary. So when the sun shone all day long, I got a little excited! I'm afraid that there won't be anymore days like today, so I tried to soak it all in. I got off work a little early, so I decided to grab my camera and take some fall pictures. The Jay C. Hormel Nature Center is a big nature preserve right outside of Austin. There are several miles of trails, and it's really pretty. I walked around for about an hour just snapping pictures. With all of the snow and rain, the leaves weren't as colorful as I hoped they were, but there were several trees that didn't disapoint! I'm still learning how to take somewhat professional looking pictures with my camera. I wish I had more days like today to practice with it. I'll post some of my favorites for you to enjoy.

In other news, Halloween is this weekend. I'm super excited! I'll be going to a party on Friday night dressed as a Tacky Tourist. You'll just have to stay tuned for the photos of that! Tomorrow night I'm getting together with some girls I work with and we're going to carve pumpkins and decorate cookies to get ready for the party!

That's about it for this post. I'm now an old lady and go to bed early so I'll just leave you till next time!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Introducing Lily Piper Anderson!

I know I promised to write a long time ago, and I'm sorry. You could look on the bright side that it's a good thing that I haven't had time to write, because that means I've been keeping myself busy. The job is still going well. I play on a rec volleyball team every Wednesday with other girls from Hormel. I know, most of you who know me are thinking "Really Rachel? You are horrible at any sport requiring hand and eye coordination." This is true. My team also knows this is true, but it's something to do and it's been fun. I've already made some good friends up here. I'm really looking forward to Halloween. I've been invited to a Halloween party, and some of the girls I've become friends with and I are going to get together and make cookies and carve pumpkins to get ready for the party. I LOVE pumpkin carving!! :)

Other than that, I actually have a pretty great reason for writing. This past weekend I was asked to be on the official committee for the Iowa State University Intercollegiate Meat Judging Contest. I was excited to be on the committee. It was definitely different to be on the other side of the contest. I had a great experience. I think we put together a good contest. Friday night they fed the committee dinner and it was quite possibly the funniest dinner of my life! The jokes and stories that were told had me basically in tears from laughing so hard! It was also really great to see Dr. Carr with his judging team. This is Dr. Carr's last team, as he is retiring after this year. It was a great last trip to Ames for TC, because his kids won the contest! Judging definitely won't be the same without that man! Putting the contest together and reading reasons was a lot of work, but I hope I can be asked to official other contests in the future so that I can stay involved with judging.

But the contest isn't my reason for writing. Most of you have probably heard me talk about Mark, my officemate from grad school, at some point. He has basically been my second big brother since coming to Iowa State. His wife, Katie, and I also became good friends and we joke that she's also my wife. Well the two of them were expecting their first baby this month. I had to be in Ames Thursday night to get ready for the contest. I talked to Mark on Tuesday, and I told him that I would appreciate having a baby to visit when I got to town. Knowing how important Aunt Rachel is, Lily Piper Anderson made her way into the world on Wednesday night. I was so excited to wake up Thursday morning with a message from Mark on my phone with a picture of Lily!! Thursday evening I got to visit the new family in the hospital with my two other officemates Brad and Wangang. It was so cool to get to meet Lily with all of them! I can't wait to see her again when I go back to Ames this weekend for ISU Homecoming!