Balloons, Grape Stomping & Big News!

Hi friends! One quick note before I jump into the ALBUQUERQUE INTERNATIONAL BALLOON FIESTA! On Thursday, I ran my 2nd 5K and it was such a blast and such a great 5K. It’s so much better running with others as opposed to running alone. I will most definitely be running the Esprit de She 5K (and maybe 10K) every year now! Highly recommend.


Ok, now BALLOON FIESTA TIME. I drove with my mom to Albuquerque to visit family and to check out the super famous Balloon Fiesta. It WAY exceeded my expectations. We woke up at 4am (3am AZ time) to get there early and see the ‘mass ascencion’ of balloons which was amazing. The super cool thing about the Balloon Fiesta is that you are able to witness the entire process from start to finish. I was able to see the baskets up close and the balloons all deflated on the ground. And yes I touched the material because how often do you get to touch a hot air balloon that is not up in the air. It felt like a weird plastic/cloth material. And you also get to see the crew inflating the balloons and you see the fire and you hear the noise and it’s so awesome. And finally you get to see a ton of balloons (I couldn’t count them all) just float up into the air at the same time. It was super great to watch, my mom definitely enjoyed it. I really only expected balloons with different colors but they had balloons from all over the world (Brazil, Mexico, Germany, etc) and some of the balloons were super awesome shapes like cows, birds, wagons! Feel free to look up #BalloonFiesta to see some of the best pictures you’ll ever see in your life. There’s a reason the Balloon Fiesta is the most photographed event in the world! So awesome, will definitely be returning every year.

Now for GRAPE STOMPING. This was totally unplanned and I had no idea that I would be crossing off this item on this vacation but my cousin recommended that I check out El Rancho De Las Golondrinas which is Spanish for The Ranch of The Swallows (Birds) and it’s a living history museum in Santa Fe, New Mexico. I’m always up for an adventure so I googled what it was and it sounded awesome and it just so happened that the weekend I was there was the Harvest Festival!!! I googled what kind of activities happen at a Harvest Festival and there was a ton of stuff happening but what really caught my eye was that they had GRAPE STOMPING. AND GRAPE STOMPING TO MAKE WINE HAS BEEN ON MY BUCKET LIST MY ENTIRE LIFE. I LOVE WINE. Hahaha, so I knew I had to go. The Harvest Festival was awesome and we made flower wreaths, learned some history, learned about water wheels, had some fresh apple juice, and so many other things!! To check out my adventures go to instagram and search #MairaInNM 🙂 GRAPE STOMPING was such a blast, and way harder than it looks. I stomped some grapes that would be used to make red wine (which is my favorite). It was so awesome. People were cheering me on and singing for me lol, definitely encourage everyone to go grape stomping!

Ok now time for the BIG NEWS that I’ve been hinting at since Blog 3. DRUM ROLL PLEASE….!!!

So I’ve been involved with SHPE (Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers) for about 5 and a half years now and I love everything that SHPE stands for. I love that we help students grow, professionals become better leaders, and impact our community by encouraging kids to go to college and study engineering. SHPE has helped me so much in my life, like I would literally not be where I am without SHPE. And I’ve met so many great people in SHPE that have given me so many opportunities and the big news is that I have been given an awesome opportunity by a friend of a friend. I was approached a few weeks ago and asked if I would like to participate in the SHPE National Conference STAR Awards Gala and help to present awards to ridiculously talented people (like CEOs, professors, engineers, etc.). I am always up for a challenge/an opportunity/anything that will help me grow as a person and I’m always super enthusiastic so of course I said YES!! I’m super excited to announce that I will be helping to present awards at one of the biggest Engineering Awards Gala in the country. This is basically the Oscars/Emmys/Grammys of engineering and I am so honored to have been asked. And coincidentally, I do have a bucket list item that is semi-relevant to this awesome opportunity: LBL item #48: Give an award at the Oscars/Emmys/Grammys 🙂 WOO I’m super excited! This will be happening in late November! A huge shout out to my wonderful SHPE friends who are making this possible: Deyzi and Mariela. You two rock, I’m super excited to represent SHPE UA, SHPE PHX, and Honeywell during the awards show.

Thanks for reading 🙂

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