Wow! It is hard to believe that it has been yet another year, and 2017 is almost history. As usual, a lot has happened this year.
The most significant news of the year is that in May Jess accepted a new job as a Senior Quality Assurance Specialist at Kemin Industries in Des Moines for the Human Nutrition and Health division. KH manufactures dietary supplements for things such as eye health, weight management, immune health, and brain health using natural materials like marigolds, mint, tea, potatoes, and algae. At her new job, she is in charge of the supplier approval and environmental monitoring programs, is a member of the HACCP and the Food Safety team, and verifying labels and other documents. She has enjoyed the new challenges and her great coworkers as a part of a very family oriented company. Andy continues as a Senior Software Developer at Pioneer (now the Agriculture Division of Dow DuPont). While the merger of Dow and DuPont has closed, we are all still waiting to see what new opportunities this will bring.
This year was filled with many travels. We started by joining friends on a Western Caribbean Cruise aboard the Norwegian Getaway. Stops included Roatan Island in Honduras, Belize, Cozumel and Costa Maya, Mexico. It was fun visiting the Mayan Ruins of Tulum and Nim Li Punit, a Belize spice farm, as well as just relaxing on the beach. The trip was a change from our usual solo travels as we were a part of a group of friends as the trip was organized by one of our friends from marching band. Over the 4th of July weekend, we also took a short trip to Nashville where we toured the Country Music Hall of Fame, RCA Studio B and enjoyed great food and music. Finally, as part of the AΣK National Convention we traveled to Denver, CO. While Jess was in meetings, Andy toured the Coors Factory and met up with a coworker and his wife. Then we both visited Jess’ family and the Garden of the Gods. Finally, we are concluding our yearly travels with a trip to Memphis to celebrate the New Year and attend the Liberty Bowl to watch the Cyclones vs. the University of Memphis.
Jess and Andy have continued to be involved with many groups. Andy finished his term on the ISU Alumni Band board as a Director At Large and continues to serve as the President of the Central Iowa Linux Users Group. Jess still has one year remaining on the Council at Church. She also was rather busy with her baking at the Iowa State Fair where she received 11 ribbons for cakes/cupcakes, pies, and cookies including a 2nd place for monster cookies. Unfortunately this year, none of Andy’s photos were accepted for the State Fair Photo Competition.
We hope that everyone had a great year and we look forward to the next adventure!
Andy and Jess