Year One: Thank You!!!

The long awaited post reflecting over my entire first year of college at Iowa State is finally here! I pushed off the writing and publishing of this post first because I was busy in the heat of finals week and second because now that I'm done I feel like I have so much to reflect on and I want it to be right. I decided to just combine last week's post with this weeks so here we are!

I determined that one of the best ways to start the process would be to thank many of the people who helped to make this year absolutely amazing. There are so so many people that I want to thank that if I included everyone this post would be way too long. I hope to thank everyone whether in this post, in person, or just in some way. To anyone reading this, in just your reading and following of my blog you have helped to make this year extra special. Your support of my blog, something that I have grown to love and use to express myself, means the world. So THANK YOU!


In general, thank you to my whole family for being a source of love and support throughout the entire year. To my immediate family- thank you for prioritizing our Sunday FaceTime dates and for randomly texting/calling me to keep me updated on the happenings of the Pincombe family. I cannot express how much I missed you guys somedays, but I can confidently say that being away taught me a lot and made me realize just how lucky I am to call you my family. To my extended family- thank you for sending me letters, for randomly texting/calling, for reading my blog, and for simply showing interest in my first year of college. I love you all dearly and I am so lucky to have you in my life.


Some of my favorite memories from this year are our many car rides to and from Ames. Thank you for being excited about my Spotify playlists and for dancing and singing along with me. I appreciated your willingness to edit my resumes, important applications, and papers every once and a while. Thank you for being there for me to ecstatically call during/after Packer games, March Madness, or basically any sporting event. You sure raised me to love sporting events and I think we can agree that we have both turned into cyclone fans! I don't think I could have made it through Microeconomics without your encouragement. While I don't think I will become an Economics major like you were, I now understand that I can do anything I put my mind to.


No matter how crazy my day got or how much I missed home, I knew that I could always call you up and talk. You gave me support, motivation, encouragement, and praise, when I needed it most. When I told you that I desperately wanted to come home one week in October, you stayed up just to try and figure out a way to make that happen. Then when I came home you had a sign hanging to welcome me home. The little things you did helped me make it through the year. The fact that you sent my dorm address to a ton of friends and family so that they would surprise me with letters in my first weeks made my heart so happy. Every time I came home I looked forward to your delicious home cooked meals and spending time with you. Time apart from you drew me even closer to you and I couldn't be more thankful for that.


First, I am so proud of you. I can't believe that in a few short weeks you will be graduating high school. It was so fun to watch all of your accomplishments and doings from afar. I feel so lucky to have a sister who makes being away so dang hard. I don't even want to think about being 17.5 hours away next year. Thank you for surprising me with calls and FaceTime dates and for constantly inspiring me to work hard, try new things, and dream big. Thank you for being authentically yourself.


I am so thankful for your hugs and being able to attend your sporting events when I returned home. You never fail to impress me! One of my favorite memories is when you, mom, and dad came to ISU before my birthday and you got to go to a cyclone basketball game with me! I had so much fun sharing my love for Iowa State with you. Your hilarious comments during our FaceTimes and the fun stories you tell made each day a little bit easier.



Going into my first year of college, 4 hours away from you, I was nervous about the toll that it may take on my closest and most valued friendship. I had absolutely no reason to be worried! Distance definitely made me miss you more, but it also made me value every minute I had with you or talking with you. Thank you for randomly calling me during the school day when I was miraculously free so we could have a heart-to-heart. Thank you for helping me set high standards for my new friends based off of the strong and deep relationship I have with you. I am so beyond lucky to have a friend whose strong faith inspires and challenges me everyday. I truly cannot wait to be reunited for the summer!


Although I got you as my mentor through Blackhawk Church's High School Ministries, you continued to influence me and pour into my life throughout this year. Thank you for making time for calls here and there despite your busy schedule and kids. Those times telling you stories and sharing how God was moving in my life meant the world to me. Thank you for helping me build a strong spiritual foundation that I was able to bring into college. Also, thank you for always having open arms and open doors whenever I was home and allowing me to come hang with you and your kids. I love you so so much and am so thankful that God brought us two together my freshman year of high school.


There are so many reasons to thank you dear roommate! I honestly don't think I could have made it through this year without you by my side (literally, that room was pretty small). Thank you for welcoming me into your family and for showing me around Des Moines. So many of my favorite memories from this year include times I spent with you. I will never forget our many random dance breaks, our Disney Channel movie nights, and our Wendy's runs. I am so glad that this year we got to grow in our friendship and in our individual spiritual lives together. I am so stinking excited to live with you next year in our amazing apartment! I hope that we continue to grow closer and that we continue to create tons of amazing memories.


My sweet sweet Avery! Thank you so much for being there to give me a hug when I need it most and inspire me with your kind words and amazing talent. I am so glad that I met you through recruitment and that our friendship remained constant throughout the year. Thank you for always being there for me to delight in the little accomplishments and to comfort me when I'm down. You have such a gifted and sweet soul. I miss you tons already and can't wait to meet up a ton next year!


I still can't believe that I only met you the first week of second semester! I am so thankful that we immediately connected and that we grew to be so close. Thank you for being there to lay on the comfy rug together or to eat meals together. Also, thank you for being willing to take random runs to the store or trips to the C-store. You are the best buddy a girl could ask for. I am already looking forward to regularly scheduled catch up sessions next year!


Thank you thank you thank you. First semester I wasn't completely sold on being in a sorority because I hadn't found any close friends in my pledge class. You completely and utterly changed this and I could not be more grateful. Thank you for pushing me to do Lip Sync because this opportunity helped me meet a ton more people, it allowed me to finally dance after missing it for so long, and it gave me the chance to meet you. You are one of the sweetest, God-loving, light-hearted people I've ever met and I am so lucky to have met you. Thank you for coming over and hanging in my room with me for hours. I loved having deep talks with you, sharing dance memories, and watching movies. You have honestly become one of my closest friends and I can't wait for all of the adventures that I know are ahead of us! I can't wait for you to come to Madison and then after that I can't wait for recruitment together!


You were one of my first friends within our pledge class. I am so thankful for when we did the run/walk together and the night when you came over and we just talked for a long time about life. You always know how to make me smile and we always have tons of fun together. Thank you for being willing to go to dinner together and for being a great dance buddy and photographer at semi-formal. I can't wait to continue getting to know you. You are such a sweet and genuine friend- I am so lucky! Love you girlie!

Madison and Emily-

Thank you for being my amazing friends up stairs! It was so fun and comforting knowing that you were always a short sprint up the stairs away. I loved our girls nights complete with face masks and movies and our meals together. Tailgating together made for some fun memories first semester. I am so glad that I got to know you two through living close by and Salt Company. Thank you for always supporting me by coming to events and just listening to my stories. Son- I love you even though you love to make fun of me. I am so thankful for you and all the fun we had. I can't begin to explain how excited I am to live close to each other again next year!


Thank you for being one of my closest friends since the first day of recruitment. When I met you initially, there was no way I could've known how close we would become and all the adventures we would go on together. Thank you so so much for inviting me into your family for Easter and for showing me around your hometown then and once in the fall. I had so much fun getting to know you on a deeper level. Thanks for all of the late night boy talks and the times we watched movies until we both fell asleep. Thank you for letting me crash on your futon and for being the person I could always count on for a ride to church. I am so lucky to call someone like you one of my closest friends. I will definitely be stoping by Pi Phi next year and expecting to meet up regularly!


Sami Hillmer. You make my heart so darn happy! From the day I met you in our Salt Company connection group I knew you were something special and I immediately admired your God-given wisdom. Sometimes all I can do when you talk is sit back and smile and open my mind to the things you are saying. You deserve to be heard because girl you will move mountains and bring people to Jesus! Thank you for being a constant source of inspiration and knowledge for me both personally and spiritually. I am so beyond excited to be Salt leaders together next year. I have no doubt that God has some amazing things in store for both of us. Thank you for asking me to lead with you and for letting me hammock with you.


This is just another shoutout and thank you to you for being the best semi-formal date I could have asked for! Thank you for making that night one to remember. I am so glad that I got to meet you through TOG class and that I have continued getting to know you since then. I feel comfortable admitting that you may have showed me up on the dance floor ;) I am so excited for you to be a counselor in Wisconsin this summer so I can hear all about it! Thanks for being an amazing friend who never fails to make me smile!


Claire and Kelsie-

My freshman year truly would not have been the same without you. Thank you for being the best connection group leaders I could have ever asked for and amazing spiritual influences in my life. Thank you for including me in your activities and being willing to drive me to Salt when I needed it. I am so glad that I have two people like you who genuinely care about me and are always there if I ever need anything. Thank you for making my Tuesday/Wednesday nights (c-group) and Thursday nights (Salt) some of my favorite nights of the week and ones I always looked forward to. Thank you for pushing me to go for leadership and celebrating with me through the whole process. Lucky doesn't even begin to describe it. God truly blessed me with having you two in my life.


Thank you for providing an open and loving atmosphere where I could be completely myself, learn a ton about God, and meet some truly amazing friends. You made Tuesday/Wednesday nights great! I had so much fun laughing, crying, and just growing alongside you this year.

Pancake Party Peeps-

Thank you for being a fun, safe place to spend a Friday night! Thank you for introducing me to some of my closest friends and for letting me dress up in weird outfits and dance the night away! Oh and you can't forget that the pancakes were AMAZING!!


Women of ADPi-

Even on the first day of recruitment I wasn't sure if that was where I was supposed to be. I wasn't sure if I was meant to be in a sorority. When I opened my envelope on bid day and say Alpha Delta Pi Pi Chapter written on it, I was ecstatic! Despite this excitement, I was still unsure as to what this experience would look like for me. To the 52 women in my pledge class an the many other women of the amazing chapter I now call my home, thank you! Thank you for welcoming me in with open arms and thank you for continuing to impress and inspire me with all that you are and do. You are some of the most talented, accomplished women I have ever met and for that I am so grateful.


To the woman who recruited me into the chapter I have come to love, thank you! When I met you during recruitment I was blown away by your poise, wisdom, and confidence in yourself and your decisions. You were so strong and determined but even by the just our second conversation I could see your compassionate heart, your sense of humor, and the way you live out your values in everything you do. As a nervous freshman those things stood out to me and inspired me. Not only that, but after bid day when I ran home to ADPi, you never stopped caring about me. I am so thankful for our dinners throughout the year when we would just talk about life. Thank you for teaching me so much about myself, college life, and being a member of ADPi. CONGRATULATIONS on graduating, you are going to do big things Zoe! I hope to see you soon and visit you!


I can't imagine not meeting you that day during recruitment at the FIJI break house. Seeing you reveal yourself as an ADPi made me even more excited to be a new member of that chapter. Since that day you have showed me what it means to be a member of a sorority and take the upmost pride in your chapter. Thank you for being a huge influence on all of the members of our chapter (your influence is so great that I feel confident saying that). Thank you for persuading me to go out with you and Karina and then driving us in your truck. That was a fun night! You have already done so many things to improve Pi Chapter and I know that your actions and simply your personality will leave a lasting impact on Pi Chapter.

EGLitC Friends-

I feel so lucky to have had the chance to meet each and every one of you. Meeting and interacting with members of different chapters throughout the Greek community has taught me so much about what being a leader within it means. Thank you for each being your goofy selves and for making me laugh endlessly during meetings. Thank you for being wholeheartedly interested in bettering the community and yourselves. Seeing that makes me confident that the future is bright. I can't wait for the fall when we can get back to meeting and serving up shenanigans!

As I said at the beginning, there are SO many people that positively impacted my freshman year at Iowa State University. Just because you weren't included in this list doesn't mean that I didn't appreciated the ways you worked in my life. From the bottom of my heart, thank you!

And thank you for reading this and props to those of you who actually read it all :)

Much Love, Madison


To play, press and hold the enter key. To stop, release the enter key.