A Christmas Poem…

The following poem is based on semi true events….

One day I’ll share the full story of what happened that fateful night, but only when my therapist gives me the ok. 

T’was the night before Christmas and all through the house, flour was everywhere, mostly down my blouse.

The pie crust was flung over the pan without care in hopes that salmonella would not be there.

The puppies had burrowed down deep in the chair, burying their noses from what smelled like burnt hair

And Matthew with the fire extinguisher and I with the water, while mom’s in the corner screaming “Why even bother!!”

When out of the alarm there arose annoying chatter, I hit it with the broom to shut it up faster

Away to the oven we flew like a flash, tore open the garbage pail, because this pies now trash

The smoke in the kitchen had begun to grow, just the cherry on top of this Christmas sh*t show

When, what to my watery eyes should I see, a pristine frozen pie baked by Sara Lee

With the oven still on I knew pretty quick, I could salvage this Christmas like a pig with lipstick

The pie was in one piece, who cares it’s not cherry, “just don’t burn it this time, this is our last Hail Mary”

The timer was set, I wound it myself, “if they want a fresh pie next year they can bake it their self.”

As the buzzer went off no one batted an eye, hope Santa doesn’t mind the taste of mincemeat pie.

How Not to survive a day at the park….

Because you should totally take advice from me, the Ariel of six flags hurricane harbor, Arlington Texas.

First and for most, I must say I had a blast with my girls, De-bor-ah and Liz lemon, celebrating Debbie’s birthday!! The bond we share, (the side eye, awkward laugh, this is why I love you, what had happened was, no ma’am, donut getting, know what the other one is thinking or looking at without having to say it out loud kind of bond) is a friendship like no other.

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Second, before I begin, I just want to make it clear that you will not see any mocking of swim suits and the bodies they are attached to in the post. I am the LAST person that needs to be making judgment calls based on beach ware as I once received an epic wedgie’ from a massive water slide that went unnoticed for a half hour. Your welcome  for that intense visualization in advanced.

1.) Sun tan lotion and sunscreen….know the difference. Make the wrong decision and it becomes the deciding factor between sun kissed beauty and fried lobster.

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2.) Choose a friend with a good attention span and great spatial reasoning to apply your sun screen. If you choose wrong the consequences could be scary and psychedelic. My friend Debbie here, selected the wrong sunscreen buddy (Cough Cough Liz Lemon) ,and will be living with the side effects of tie dyed skin for weeks to come. Lets all share a moment of silence for Debbie and her sunburned back.

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3.) If your bored while waiting in an hour long line for a 30 second ride, play fun games like iSpy or a new family favorite, appendix, appendix, no appendix (Similar to duck duck goose and reflector reflector, DEER if you read my last blog).  Its fun, simple and you don’t even have to be a brain general surgeon to play!

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4.) Fix your hair in a way that won’t leave you frustrated and irritated the whole day. Nothing more obnoxious that fixing a pony tail every 3 mins. With this warning I give you another. If you pick a hairstyle as classy as cornrowesque twist’s tight in the top of you head, please wear sunscreen (not sun tan lotion) unless you want to look like a college ruled note book with a chance of bad dandruff in the weeks that follow, please head my advice.
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5.) Find a place you can relax. Many would choose the lazy river for this..well I am here to tell you that in some cases, this is not the place to go. The lazy river is the only place in the park that you can go from relaxed to kicked to groped (on accident) in less than 25 seconds. For tense situations such as this, I have borrowed techniques from other frustrated and disgruntled adults before me ( shout out to Marc Antony/William Shakespeare) and have written a simple speech that shall be read upon my entrance in to said lazy river. “Friends, Parents, Children, lend me your ears. The lazy river is for relaxation, not hyper-ness. The splashing and running you all do, will follow behind you, as I am bigger than you and can splash 10 times harder…take heed and take cover”

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HOW NOT TO PREPARE FOR A 18HR CAR RIDE..

….because being practical and flying is soo 1903..

Ahh, the great American road trip; hours of ispy, rock, paper scissors and STOP TOUCHING ME, that childhood memories and divorces are made of.  Nothing tests the strength of your patience and marriage more than sitting side by side in a car with someone for 18hrs.

4 years ago when I married a private pilot, I thought my long distance driving days were over. I could not have been farther from the truth. So today I bring you  6 steps to prepare for your long journey that will not only secure your marriage but your sanity.

1.) Proper sound is track required. Now I know I mentioned how important it is to save ones marriage in this impossibly long trip, but you cant win all the battles and in our house hold, music is where there is definitely a dividing line. We agreed when we left Texas that who ever was driving picked the music on the radio. If you want to listen to 5 hours of Jimmy Buffett and George Strait (I don’t care if you are honoring his last concert) that is fine by me, but you better be prepared for 7 hours straight of Streisand, Bel Biv Devoe, Neil Diamond (#sogood, #sogood, #sogood shout out to Amy Lambert) Frozen and Fiddler on The Roof. Nothing wakes your senesces up more than Singing shouting the hills are alive with the sound of music at 3 in the am.

Speaking of music….

2.) Scientists and country music artists everywhere have proven that your vocal talents really sound the best at three am. Its a mix of confined spaces, tired enthusiasm and deep tenor snoring accompaniments that make a Grammy performance . So don’t be afraid to turn that radio up…and find your favorite rumble patch along the road and give the best Bob Dylan impression you can do. (Ps for better acoustics or for more daring musicians/driver, the Bob Dylan effect also works great on railroad tracks.. preferably abandoned 🙂

3.)  Become better at recognizing the difference between deer eyes, large white wild flowers and road side reflectors. You know the game duck duck goose..this is similar..reflector reflector.. DEER!!!

Speaking of road kill….

4.) Issue all warnings and memos to wild life prior to departure, you know, just in case your “reflector, reflector, DEER, skills are rusty. I find that in cases like this a simple ‘form letter’ will work perfectly and can be adjusted to the particular state and wildlife you are aiming to reach. Feel free to use mine.

“ To the deer and other medium to large sized wild life residents of Arkansas, don’t think for 1 second that I did not see your beady little eyes staring at us from the side of the road. you stay put and I will do my thing and you will do yours. Please let the dead raccoon next to mile marker 215 serve as your one and only warning…good day” ©

5.) Scented sachets make your car smell great from just sitting there, but by placing them over defrost vents makes your car smell even fresher at 430 in the morning when your husband, who has been snoring for an hour, passes gas and you are left with no way out. Just flip the vent from air conditioning to defrost (full power for those hard to tackle stenches) and  BAM..your no longer in a stuffy dodge journey in the middle of Arkansas reliving last nights tacos, but now in the middle of a Kirkland’s, Bath and Body Works or  Yankee Candle Company.

And finally the most important step of them all…

6.) Have your imaginary brakes serviced. Even the most novice of back seat/front seat drivers, know the importance of fake brake control.  The imaginary brake is like the Schrödinger’s cat (Schrödinger who? read about him HERE..)of long distance driving. Unless you press the fake brake you may be either dead or alive.  

How Not To Fly A Plane

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Most of you probably already know that my husband is a flight instructor. He is paid to hop in a plane everyday with people he barely knows and teaches them how to fly gracefully above the beautiful Texas land. As you can imagine, a job like this would require a fair amount of trust and patience (neither quality I strongly posses’). While I have been given the chance to fly quite regularly with Matthew over the last 5 years, I have never really taken the initiative to ‘learn’ the ropes of the plane if for any reason to share in his hobby that he is so passionate about (and of course to be able to personally answer yes if a flight attendant yells “oh my gosh, is there a pilot on board” on a crowded plane). Well that all changed today when I asked my brave, oh so brave, husband to treat me like a first time student and not his wife of three years. I could see this ending in one of two ways; 1. I am a natural Amelia Earhart, a maverick in the sky, pushing all the right buttons and making all the radio calls. or 2. I am a natural yet elusive Turkey, surprising agile, but limited in airtime as we like to stay closer to the ground because that is where the food is at. I’ll let you all be the judge of that. The following are just a few key items to remember when wanting to learn how to fly:

  • Evaluate relationship with flight instructor

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  • Whether your married to your instructor or not, it is probably a wise idea to make sure that the personalities line up enough to where you feel comfortable to learn and to be taught. If it is someone who makes you nervous or annoys you, the motivation and drive to really learn may not be there. In my case, I needed to look at several different things. Were our wills in place just in case I manage to kill one or both of us (ie. who will get the cats..liz lemon?)? Are the spare blankets clean in the event of a major fight that will result in my husband sleeping on the couch for a night or two? Have I done anything to make him angry in the last month that would tempt him to push me out of a plane at 3,000 ft. Who has the better divorce lawyer? These are all very important situations to consider!
  • Pre-flight Check List

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  • I am a list girl, so when Matthew whipped out this little book of items to check before taking of, I was in OCD heaven. Of the 100 or so preflight tasks to complete, I shall focus on an important one.  Apparently it is quite crucial to UNTIE said plane for the earth to which it is bound to. Who knew that three tethered ropes make the difference between going….and not going. My flight instructor knew this the whole time, and was testing me. I, failed miserably..Plane 1 Jennifer 0
  • Get familiar with dials on panel

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    • We were flying a 2001 Cessna 172 which contains about 15 circular dials and one updated flux capacitor. Matthew did a quick rundown of a few of the dials, and I will short hand for you what I learned.
      • 1: Air speed indicator, tells you how fast you are going Smile duh..even a flightless bird such as the Ostrich could tell you that!
      • 2: Attitude indicator, reminds you ‘loose the tude’ and to check yourself before you wreck yourself, literally
      • 3: “Imitator” lets you know on a scale of 0-9 how close your imitation of being a pilot is. 0-2 you look like an ostrich,3-5  you’re a turkey 6-9 Amelia Earhart
      • 4:  Turn Coordinator with Gyroscope tells pilot how sharply they are going to need to tilt plane. if done correctly a fresh Gyro will be waiting for them upon landing.
      • 5: Plane indicator, is there solely to remind pilot that they are in fact flying a plane and not a train or a car.
      • 6: Vertical speed indicator..which is code for..your falling to the ground..and this is how fast your going to get there
      • 7: Candy cane indicator, lets pilot know exactly how long and how far they have to fly to get to the North Pole
  • Be clear with radio
    • For almost your whole flight you are connected with the flight instructor and tower by way of radio. This is so your position and your intentions are clear to all around you. For me..a person who clearly loves the sound of their own voice, it became a new venue to sing todays greatest hits. Fun fact: Did you know singing Miley Cyrus’ “We Cant Stop” is sudden and instant grounds to be dismissed from the plane by the flight instructor, even at 3000 feet? Furthermore, At one point I asked Matthew to stall and kill time as I was texting a friend that we were currently above them so they could come out and waive…he took this statement quite literal and “stalled” the plane..I stopped singing Miley after that.

We were in the air for a whopping total of 18 minutes before we, in an attempt to save the plane the citizens of bell county and our marriage, decided to land gracefully. I am proud to announce that no one died, no one is getting divorced and no one is sleeping on the couch. I will, however, be finding another hobby though Smile