Friday, September 26, 2008

Iowa State Recruiting Trip

I have been lucky enough to be on Boeing's college recruiting team for four years now. I get to go back to my school, Iowa State University, to help work the booth at the gigantic Engineering Career Fair that is held every year. This year, I flew out early so that I could spend Saturday and Sunday with my mom and dad. They drove down from Minnesota to see me. It was so fun!

Here we are before they left on Sunday. We had fun walking around campus and Ames, going out to eat, and watching a movie.

Everyone who visits ISU's campus has to take the token picture with the Campanile in the background. It's the most iconic structure on the beautiful campus. I love how it chimes on the quarter hour. During the school year on weekdays, there is a musician who plays music at noon every day. It sounds so pretty!

This is Morrill Hall. It is one of the oldest buildings on campus. Iowa State just celebrated it's 150th anniversary, so that is pretty old! This building was always closed during my career at ISU because it was in such bad repair. It has now been renovated and I finally got to go inside! It is beautiful and I was so lucky to finally see inside it! It houses several museums and a student success center. I hope students love using it as much as I loved it from the outside!

This is the historic water tower. It is not functioning anymore but is actually listed on the Historic Landmark list and towers over many engineering buildings.

No visit to campus would be complete without visiting Lancelot and Elaine. Iowa State has always had a pair of swans and they are always named this. Iowa State loves traditions!

Here are two of my fellow Boeing recruiters, Julie and Nick. We were proud of our booth set up, can you tell?

The career fair was the craziest one I have ever been to. There were five of us, and we all seriously talked for six hours straight with no breaks. So many students wanted to find out about internships and jobs with Boeing. I barely moved from the same spot for at least the first three hours before I was dying for a drink of water. We talked to some really great people, and even though my voice was gone by the end of the night, it was fun! I love talking to people and telling them that Boeing is a great place to work!

I had a lot of fun seeing campus and Ames again. It was such a great place to go to school! But I was really happy to head home on Wednesday to see my family! Hope I get to go again next year.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Fancy Feet

Jack had new shoes put on last week. He has classic flat Thoroughbred feet, so he gets pads put on his front feet in the summer when the ground is hard and dry. He used to get the plastic cut to fit pads, but Nancy, our amazing farrier, has been trying pour-in pads the past few times.

Here is Jack warding off the pesky flies with his fly mask on. I still think it's adorable how all the Stoneybrook horses have their names across their forehead. It's like a bunch of little kids with name tags on. He's sticking out his tongue at the camera!

To do the pour-in pad, Nancy fits his shoe, then trims a piece of mesh to the outline of his hoof. She nails the shoe on with the mesh sandwiched between his hoof and the shoe. Then she squirted in the goo (I don't know what the actual noun for the stuff is!) so it fills the space under the mesh. You can see a piece of clear plastic over the whole mess to hold the goo in while it dries. It sets in just a few minutes. I wish I had taken a few more pictures of the steps... maybe next time, but that may not be until next year!

Once Nancy is done, I usually put Tuff Stuff on his nice, neat feet to seal the nail holes. This is what I tell Jack: "You have Fancy Feet, now!" He does not have great feet, but we are trying to keep them as nice as possible!

Now we're ready to ride! It was an easy, short ride in the indoor on the soft footing. The pads needed to cure completely, so we couldn't do any really hard work. Lucky Jack!

Oh, and Jill (if you read this), you would not believe how much everyone still raves about my market basket that you gave me! I still get comments on how cute and handy it is, and I love it! Perfect for toting all my stuff to the barn. Thanks!

Oops, this was posted by Heidi. Somehow the computer was already logged in as Dave. Oh well!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Delightful Driveway

As promised to my mom and dad, here are pictures of our house and the newly sealed driveway. I love it! The grass on either side of the driveway now looks especially sad compared to it, but I'm sure it will start raining before too much longer and things will green up. I'll take dead grass and beautiful weather any day!

These are the flowers my mom planted back in July. They are still exploding with color. Thanks, Mom! Oh, I better remember to pull those lovely dandelions. Yuck!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Lincoln Creek Horse Trials

This was a busy weekend! On Saturday Dave and I sealed our driveway. How fun! Haha. We had been waiting and waiting for consecutive weekend days with nice weather so we could do it, and it finally happened. It was sunny and mid 70s all weekend... absolutely perfect for all outdoor activities! The driveway turned out perfectly. Dave even had a neighbor come over and ask who we had do it for us. That was a compliment!

Stacy and I went for a crazy trail ride on Saturday afternoon. Jack spooked across the road at a bag of leaves, was a nut on the trails, and then spooked and half reared into the road on the way home at the same place. He apparently hasn't been working enough with all those abcesses! When we made it safely back to Stoneybrook, I worked him for a long time in the indoor to get some of his energy out. We had a lovely, forward trot, and some nice canter work too. He was very light and straight, so I guess it turned out good in the end!

Sunday morning we left bright and early at 7 am to drive down to Centralia to watch Alyssa, Ting, and Anne in the Lincoln Creek Horse Trials' stadium phase. Once again, the weather was gorgeous and we had fun watching everyone.

Here is Alyssa and her Thoroughbred, Josh. They were in the training half star and were awesome. They even moved up from 5th to 2nd place. Good job, guys!

Here is Ting and her horse, Tristan. Ting was grinning the whole time like she always does when she's riding. They had a fast round and moved up to 3rd place. Way to go!

I had a lesson on Jack today. We finally got to jump! He still pulls coming off the left lead, but we got a few really nice jumps off the left, and coming off the right was great. I just need to get comfortable letting him alone and not giving him any resistance to pull on. I am going to work hard on jumping this winter. He's so much fun!

Monday, September 1, 2008

I Love Dressage!

I finally had a lesson on Jack today! It has been three weeks since our last one because Jack has had abscesses in each of his front heels, one after the other. I have been riding him at the walk for a week now, yesterday we trotted a little, and today finally got to canter! I figured it would be best to just do dressage until his right heel is completely better. He is still a little tender and doesn't like to do tight right turns yet. He went great on the nice soft indoor footing. Dave came with me since we had Labor Day off from work. He took a lot of really great pictures of the lesson.

This one was my immediate favorite. Dave shot in raw, so we played around with the colors and whatever other settings in Photoshop that you can. It was cool to see how we could fix different settings on the picture to make a good picture really great.

Jack was awesome! He's getting a great topline and tries really hard to do what I ask him. Anne showed me how I can work on his left bend on the ground, since he's a little stiff and unsure of how to bend to the left the way he can to the right. I think once he understands the aids, he will be happy to comply. I just love how balanced he looks in this shot, and the white polos really make him look snazzy!

I think we'll do a few dressage shows this winter to keep us progressing and to practice doing tests for next show season. My goal is to go beginner novice at a few recognized events next summer, so we'll have a lot to work on through the fall and winter!