Clutching the paperwork she's sought for the past 18 years, Veronica Estevez walked proudly into the Hall County Election Commissioner's office with her hard-earned citizenship certificate on hand.
"That I just got on Friday," she said proudly.
She was registering to vote for the very first time.
"I'm really excited," she said.
She's been on this journey since she came from Guatemala at age 15. With her oath ceremony now complete, and her citizenship official, she turned her voter registration in, and took the next step in the democratic process.
She said, "It's a dream that I honored for a long time. It's been a long process to obtain citizenship in this country, but it's worth the wait, yes."
Registering new voters and handling record numbers of early voters, the Hall County Election Commissioner has pulled staff from other offices but can barely keep up.
"We're buzzing in here," Dale Baker said between helping people.
Baker says she's just trying to stay above water, since a full ten percent of registered voters want their ballots now.
She said, "A little over 3,000 have requested ballots. What that is to us is about 500 ballots a day so we are busy, busy, busy."
Hall County has 5,000 envelopes and that may not be enough. They're also scrambling to enter updated information in the computers, and stick labels as quickly as they can.
Baker said they've been able to get it done within normal hours during the past few elections, but not this year.
"We're going to be burning the midnight oil I think," she said.
Veronica's an undecided voter, but just to be able to cast her vote is a dream come true.
With a smile, she said, "This is the good life."
Chris Lewis in Adams County reports she's been swamped too. They've done about as many early ballots to this point as they did all of 2012.
Across the state, election officials report similar numbers. In North Platte, the Lincoln County Election Commissioner said the first week of early voting was the busiest she's ever seen.
Secretary of State John Gale said, "A surge in early voting signals a probable high turnout for our November 6 election. While convenience is a factor, early voting shows people have been paying attention and are ready to vote." He reminded those who wish to cast their ballots early, there are deadlines approaching:
"Don't waste your ballot. Early voting in person or by mail should be done well ahead of deadlines to make sure your ballot gets cast and counted," advised Gale.
"Early voting mail-in ballots have been shown to have as high as a 4 percent rejection rate when envelopes aren't signed, or signed by someone else, or sent in a wrong envelope, or returned due to no postage. So, follow the simple rules, get it done right, and make your ballot count."