November 5, 2016

Flying High

Howdy! At the beginning of October, I was surprised with an amazing opportunity.  I got to take my very first flight lesson! That's right, I flew a plan!  It was mine and Island Boy's one-year anniversary and he surprised me with a discovery flight.  Basically, I got to help take off and then a few basic flying fundamentals.  It was so much fun!  Also scary. It was a lot like when you are learning to drive for the first time and then your driving instructor tells you to go out onto the highway. Terrifying at first, but once you're finished you just want to start again!

When we reached our destination of the airport initially, it was very crowded because there were some naval fighter planes on display.  The funny part about those planes was that the previous day when I was at the architecture studio we all heard a very loud noise.  My classmates and I then gathered around the window thinking a plane was about to crash because not only are those jets loud on their own but Langford amplified the sound. We thought we should hide until we realized what the sound was. Its pretty funny to think about now.

Once we met with the pilot, who was super nice, cool, and laid back, we got situated in the Cessna. It was pretty comfortable! He showed me all the different controls and then we taxied over to the runway.  It took at least half an hour to get clearance to take off because there were so many private jets flying into the airport for the big Marroon Out game that weekend.  

Once we got the go-ahead to take off, he let me help with it. We ended up getting about 2000 feet in the air if I remember correctly. It was magical.  It felt like something from a dream. I got to learn how to steer the plane, turn left and right, and descend and ascend. We flew around for about 40 mins and then headed back to the airport.  The Pilot did the landing and we had a lot of turbulence from the plane that had landed before us.

This experience makes me want to get a pilot's licenses so bad.  Driving in a car just is not the same anymore!

Afterwards we had dinner at Panera, my favorite, and then went and watch Sully! Glad we watch that movie after I flew and not before! Good movie though!

Photos are courtesy of Island Boy

Houston Trip

Howdy y'all! To say this semester has been stressful would be a major understatement. My design studio is really the most grueling. I've pulled so many all nighters for that class that I am almost positive that I've lost several years off of my life because of it.  However, there has been some fun aspects to the class.  Other than getting closer to my amazing classmates, we got to take a trip to Houston.  Despite having lived in Texas my entire life, prior to this trip, I had never been to Houston.  Houston is roughly 5.5 hours away from my hometown so never really had a reason to drive there.  That made this trip very exciting!

The purpose of this trip was to see different landscape design features and do one firm visit.  It was really awe inspiring!  We went to Discovery Green across from the convention center, visited a really amazing firm, ate lunch in Market Square Park, explored Centennial Park, ventured around Buffalo Bayou, and finally, we saw Rice University. 

Each destination had features that were fun, unique, and innovative.  The whole trip just reassured me that I really love the field of landscape architecture even if sometimes I doubt myself.  Discovery Green was probably my favorite.  It was like an oasis in the middle of a bustling city.  It was sectioned off into different pocket gardens and venues but was still an incredibly cohesive design.  

Now I will say, visiting the firm really made me apprehensive.  All the employees at the firm looked tired.  I hope I am not perpetually tired in my future. 

One of the greatest aspects of this trip was going with some of my favorite people.  I'm really blessed to have such amazing individuals as classmates!  They make stressful things fun and fun things fantastic!  I couldn't ask for a better group of people to grow with as landscape architects.

Overall, this trip really inspired me and also makes me want to take more trips to other landscape architecture attractions across the state!

November 4, 2016

Apartment Tour and Benefits of Living on Campus

Howdy! Gosh, It's been a while since I've posted! This semester has been brutal. I've pulled so many all nighters and I am perpetually sleepy. At least with thanksgiving approaching, it means I'm on the home stretch! This semester hasn't been all bad though! I've made new friends, joined new organizations, started getting involved with a church, discovered a love for horticulture, and got to take a flying lesson! More on all that later! Today's post is all about living on campus.

This is my third year to live in campus housing, which for some people may seem a little odd, but there is nothing quite like being in close proximity to everything.  I live in newly built apartments on my school's campus. Now that I am thinking about it, I've never actually lived in a proper dorm at either of my two schools I've attended. Even at MCAD, the housing were small apartments. However, unlike MCAD, I actually have a private room and NO MICE! MCAD housing was honestly horrendous. 

That's the thing with on-campus housing, sometimes its great, other times its a nightmare.  I've been lucky these past two years at TAMU. I've had good roommates and no maintenance issues.  With that being said I thought I'd share some benefits of living on campus!

  • Proximity: Even though my apartment building is located pretty far from all my classes, it's still closer than the alternatives. If I wake up late (which with 8ams everyday it is bound to happen) its only a 12 min bike ride to my building which is located on the far North end and my apartment is as west as you can go and still be on campus.  Also, living on campus on game days is a HUGE advantage! Our school is 4th in the nation currently for football so as you can imagine traffic can be rather horrendous with all the Aggie fans coming into town (you won't believe how many people fly in on private jets for the game). If you're living off campus this means you have to plan accordingly to get to the game.  The buses fill up fast and the lines for the buses leaving the games is longer than my 8am class. Since I live on campus, I just have to walk over to Kyle Field. It's only like a 5 min walk too. It is so convenient.

  • Emergency Services: For some people this may not be much of a concern, but for me knowing that an ambulance will be able to get to me quickly is a major factor in deciding where to live. Not only that but, on campus ambulance service is SO much cheaper! 

  • Residents Hall Association: A fun aspect of living on campus is that the RHA hosts some fun events, and you can even get involved with the RHA program.  I did by chance my first year here and it was a ton of fun and a great resume booster. We have Halloween parties, Football game viewing parties, Mug decorating, and a plethora of other events. There is always something going on.

  • Maintenance: Because the school runs this apartment complex, if something is broken it gets fixed very quickly! I hear so many of my friends complain about how maintenance still hasn't fixed any of their issues, and I'm glad I don't have that problem.
If you're about to come to college and are considering living in campus housing I totally suggest going ahead and trying it out!

I thought I would give a little photo tour of my apartment, these photos were actually taken before school started and aren't the best quality, but hopefully they will give you a glimpse of what it is like living here!

Coffee is seriosuly the liquid of gods

Why leave a light switch boring when you can decorate it with washi tape?

Life Hack: Walmart bags make for good trash bags

 Postcards make for really good framed pictures!

Command hooks/strips are seriously my best friend

Our living room is more decorated now, and my new fish ,Watson, live in there.